The full name of the Río San Juan’s historic fort is La Fortaleza de la Inmaculada Concepción de María, though everyone refers to it simply as El Castillo. Lying on a hillock beside a narrow stretch of the Río San Juan, the fort was built by the Spanish as a defensive measure against the pirates who continually sacked Granada in the seventeenth century. It was more or less effective for a hundred years, until a British force led by a young Horatio Nelson finally took it in 1780, after which it was abandoned for nearly two centuries. The neatly restored structure boasts an interesting small museum with dusty armaments of the period, information on the area’s history and a few random artefacts found during the restoration of the castle, and a library with more than a thousand books on the history of the castle and the Río San Juan area.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

Nicaragua features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Nicaragua's tourism revolution: this is the year to visit

Nicaragua's tourism revolution: this is the year to visit

Nicaragua is fast becoming the must-visit Central American nation. Sarah Gilbert tells us why you need to explore this fascinating country before the crowds and…

18 Aug 2015 • Sarah Gilbert insert_drive_file Article
Great journeys – as chosen by you

Great journeys – as chosen by you

A bus ride through the Ladakh Range, India Whether you love travelling by planes, trains or automobiles, we all have fond memories of at least one particular j…

04 Sep 2014 • Lottie Gross camera_alt Gallery
The travel bucket list

The travel bucket list

If you’re after unforgettable experiences to add to your travel bucket list, look no further. With some help from our authors, editors and other travel expert…

08 Feb 2013 • Tim Chester insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month