Travelling Nicaragua - Geography Lessons

Nicaragua is situated in Central America and is the largest nation in the region. It is a very diverse country, both ethnically and environmentally, making for sensational vacations. The land here varies from flatlands to rugged volcanic peaks and everything in between, including tropical rain forests and jungles. The two longest rivers in the region, the Rio Coco and the Rio San Juan, are also the northern and southern borders of Nicaragua with its adjacent states.

The nation is dotted with lakes and volcanoes. The two biggest lakes are Lake Nicaragua and Lake Managua, but there are also over a dozen other lakes created from the craters of extinct volcanoes. Lake Nicaragua is the largest lake in Central America.

The climate is sub-tropical, with temperatures lingering around 80 degrees in the summer months, but nippier in the mountains. The rainy season lasts the entire month of October. The climate is favorable to a broad assortment of animals, from mammals to insects, including birds and fish of all assortments. Many biologists believe there are still living specimens here that have not yet been discovered. The country has taken steps to maintain this diversity by setting up large preserve areas throughout the country.

Agriculture is still the backbone of Nicaraguan life. Coffee is a prevalent crop here, as are corn, bananas, and tobacco. Livestock is making a mark in the Nicaraguan economy as well, with beef, poultry, and seafood topping the list of expanding export commodities. Unfortunately, the upsurge in animal exports has also lead to wide-spread deforestation, which remains a dilemma to this day in the country. Demand for the old-growth wood found in the forests here is also in high demand, and what land isn't being cleared for livestock is being cleared for lumber.

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