Bajadero de Guadalupe and Los Almendros Viewpoints
When traveling along the Managua-Masaya highway, around 26 kilometers out of Managua in the rural region of Nindirí, is the settlement of El Hoyo – the starting point of the flights of stairs leading down to the viewing platform of Bajadero de Guadalupe. Although the viewpoint it rather off the beaten track, it is nonetheless popular with both locals and visitors to the exotic country of Nicaragua as it offers a breathtaking view of the Masaya Lagoon, the Masaya Volcano and Piedras Quemadas Park. The path and steps are well maintained and easy to walk, and the stone and concrete viewpoint point has a concrete balustrade around it for safety.
Visitors are likely to come across friendly local villagers as they walk along the path as it is used by them to access the lagoon where they wash their laundry and gather firewood in the untamed surroundings. Situated just a few meters from the viewpoint, visitors will see the ‘sacrifice stone’, which according to legend was used by the indigenous Indians in days gone by to sacrifice the settlement’s most beautiful girl in an effort to appease the gods and thereby prevent a volcanic eruption – a ritual which thankfully was abandoned many years ago. Today the area around the stone offers a pleasant and peaceful location to spend some leisure time, and is reportedly popular with young couples.
The Bajadero de Guadalupe offers some excellent opportunities for photography, bird-watching and enjoying the lush fauna of the area. Visitors can also trek from this lookout point to the Los Almendros viewpoint which is located on the shore of the Masaya Lagoon. There are a number of paths leading to Los Almendros, including via Bajadero Las Gradas and Bajadero de Veracruz, with the latter being part of the Masaya Volcano National Park. At Los Almendros visitors will find the ruins of the chalet once occupied by President Anastasio Somoza Debayle, the last member of the infamous Somoza family to rule as President of Nicaragua. From this viewpoint, in addition to spectacular natural scenery, it is possible to see the Roberto Clemente baseball stadium in Masaya.