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  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 1 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    The second-poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, Nicaragua nevertheless is determined to exploit its location and environmental treasures to create a tourist trade rivaling that of any destination in the region. Pictured here, the view from the roof of Leon's cathedral, which was built in 1529. Photos by Arnie Weissmann; posted April 3, 2012

  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 2 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    Horse-drawn wagons -- and volcanoes -- are a common sight in Nicaragua.

  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 3 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    Ziplining on Mombacho volcano.

  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 4 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    The colonial-style El Convento Hotel in Leon has a formal courtyard.

  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 5 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    The beach at Aqua Wellness, where crowds are not an issue.

  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 6 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    The Santiago crater at Masaya National Park.

  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 7 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    Volcano-boarding down Cerro Negro.

  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 8 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    Hiking below the rim of Mombacho.

  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 9 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    The restored Cathedral on Granada's main square.

  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 10 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    A restaurant-lined pedestrian street draws Granada's tourists each evening.

  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 11 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    Daniel Ortega and Hugo Chavez embrace on a billboard.

  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 12 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    A street in central Leon, which was recently named a Unesco World Heritage Site.

  • Nicaragua: On the verge - 13 of 13

    Nicaragua: On the verge

    The Cathedral in the colonial city of Leon.

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