The slopes of the rather lovely RESERVA NACIONAL VOLCÁN MOMBACHO are home to one of only two cloudforests in Nicaragua’s Pacific region (the other is at Volcán Maderas on Isla de Ometepe). The reserve is run by the Fundación Cocibolca (mombacho.org), whose interesting research station and visitors’ centre at the volcano’s summit acts as the centre for the study and protection of the reserve’s flora and fauna – which includes three species of monkey, 22 species of reptile, 87 species of orchid, 175 species of bird and some fifty thousand species of insect. The air is noticeably cooler up here, the views of the lakes and volcanoes around are tremendous, and several trails skirt the four craters at the top of the volcano.

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