Ometepe Island has an interesting living culture with unique artisan crafts, cattle as a mode of transport and for hauling crops and supplies and a proud indigenous community that no longer has unique dress or language, but is very much together sharing land and an interesting spoken history. The Island of Ometepe is one of the most interesting places in Nicaragua for archaeology with a precious past of great pre-Conquest cultures who have left unique remains such as petroglyphs, basalt idols and stone and ceramic art.
Below are just a couple of the destinations you can visit on your own, but please write us in advance if you would like to arrange a culture tour for your visit with a bilingual guide and transport. Those visiting the village of Altagracia will not want to miss the basalt indigenous statues that represent humans morphing with animals. These statues are all held in museums now, with the exception of this patio outside the parish church of Altagracia.
Monetary history museum of Nicaragua (best money collection) and pre-Columbian museum (one of the best private collections in Nicaragua) The museum is divided in 2 parts; the Coin section and the Pre-Columbian section. In the Coin section you can find the Nicaraguan history told through the national monetary; starting since the exchange of the cacao seed as a currency to the up to date Cordoba. The pre-Columbian museum has won awards for its unique collection that dates back to 3,000 BC. Museum guides speak English, and either if you are single or with a group, you always have the right to take a guide included in your price. There is not set timing on how long you can take the tour for; is up to you how long and how deep you want to emerge into the history. based on a minimum of two people.
Located on the east slope of the Maderas Volcano near the village of Balgue. There are many sites around Ometepe to view petroglyphs, but the easiest and most popular and one of the most interesting sites is near the coffee cooperative and backpacker lodge of Finca Magdalena. There are also coffee tours. From San Juan de la Isla with bilingual guide and private transfers, and admissions, cost per person is US$ based on a minimum of two people.