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San Jacinto, Nicaragua

Boiling Mud Pools of San Jacinto

Volcanic activity causes small pools of super-heated mud to boil furiously. 

Volcano Telica remains one of the most popular attractions for visitors to Nicaragua, not just for its gigantic lava-filled crater, but also for its stunning views over the ocean and the neighboring volcanoes. But nearby, in the small town of San Jacinto, is a lesser-known volcanic artifact.

In this area geothermal activity causes small pools of super-heated mud to boil furiously. The local community has marked some paths with rocks and provided an information board, but otherwise, the area, known as Los Hervideros, is left completely natural.

As with many volcanic environments, the raw open wound caused by the mud pools is in stark contrast with the rich landscape. Here the setting is a lush, green, tropical dry forest.

The volcanic energy of Los Hervideros is so reliable and strong that one of Nicaragua’s two geothermal electric plants is found in the same town. The plant is not open to visitors, but the pipes carrying hot water can be see after a 5-minute walk through the woods.

Know Before You Go

León offers hiking tours to camp at the crater of Telica, but only a couple include San Jacinto, so check before going whether your company will take you there.By public bus take any bus to San Isidro for about $0.50 (don't take the bus to Telica, as this does not come near San Jacinto or the volcano) and ask to get off at the Hervideros de San Jacinto ("air-bee-DAIR-oss de SAN Ha-SIN-to") about 35 minutes later. Walk down the path on your left for one minute to reach the entrance.The entry fee is currently $2 for adults. The location is accessible to almost everybody - including supervised children.