the streets of granada radiate out from parque colón which is granada’s central park.
rising up like a golden wedding cake that towers over the bustling square, the cateral de granada is the most prominent of all of granada’s churches. it’s probably the most photographed building in granada and is featured in countless photos across the vast interwebs.
like many of the churches and buildings in granada few have survived from their 16th century origins. in fact, one of the city’s unfortunate encounters with american self-styled dictator william walker left much of granada in fiery ruins when he abandoned it in the mid 19th century. and of course, being nestled in a volcanic region automatically means constant rebuilding. when i visited the cathedral it looked to be undergoing considerate spiffing up as you can see from the murals being painted on the ceilings of its vast interior.
in its colonial past, granada was a rich & powerful city thusly named LA GRAN SULTANA DEL GRAN LAGO. of course, this meant it also was a magnet for pirates who easily reached the city from the shores of lake nicaragua.
during the gold rush era, adventurous souls were ferried overland by steamboat and stagecoach from the carribean to the pacific on their way to california. imagine that!
there are statues. plaques, and memorials to villains and heroes which can be seen all around the verdant parque central.
this plaque above is of the beloved nicaraguan poet, writer, and innovator ruben dario who lived and died a century ago.
unlike other parques or jardins in the central districts of colonial cities i’ve visited, the one in granada has ample tables and chairs in addition to the benches!
under a dense canopy of ficus, mango, poinciana, and palm trees the comfy wooden chairs provide perfect places to linger.
there are several fine hotels across the street from the park with incredible courtyards lush with banana trees, palms, tile floors. one can’t help but think about the stark contrast between the rich and poor.
somehow everyone goes about their business.
below an homage to motherhood…
the street vendors have been very low-key. one can actually sit in the park and watch the world go by without being accosted by one sales pitch after another.
last night i went for a stroll through the streets. i headed towards parque central intent on seeing the glass trees lit up. the nights are breezy and the warm air feels extraordinary. i found a little restaurant with big wooden tables and leather-bottomed chairs. how nice to sit and watch the world going by from my perch just off the main square. the pink and white lights twinkling in the distance.
there are few decorations, just these interesting glass trees, and a few lights hung here and there. as i mentioned in my last post, the best decorations are the ones you see through the open doors of the nicaraguan’s homes as you pass in the evenings (and day!).
today’s adventures had me touring the isletas on lake nicaragua. julio arrived early to whisk me away. you know how i love boat rides.
a marching band just pulled up on my stoop where they’ve set up shop!!! gotta run! see you soon!