Leon & the Botanic Gardens
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Approximately 5½ hours
After a relaxing 90-minute drive from Corinto, you will arrive at León University. The origins of this higher learning facility date back to the early 19th century -- it is the second-oldest university in Central America and was the last one founded under the Spanish colonists. During 1970s, intellectuals and the students played a key role fighting the Somoza dictatorship.
Since the 1990s, the University has been involved in several projects, including opening the first botanic garden in Central America. The garden’s mission is to protect the vegetation of tropical dry forest ecosystem. Its creation is the result of the financial support by the Norwegian Government, the hard work of a scientific crew from the Costa Rican National Biodiversity Institute and Nicaraguan scientists. This 30-acre garden seeks to safeguard some of its most iconic species, including 1,200 plant species and 80 species of birds. As you walk the 2½-mile trail through the garden, you will see the different groups of plants, trees and vegetation from the tropical dry forest and the savanna.
At the end of your visit, you will have some free time to explore on your own.
End your day with a stop at León’s Central Park, where the cathedral and main market are located.
Travel time to León is approximately 1¼ hours each way. Not advisable for guests with mobility limitations.