One of the departments of Nicaragua is named Matagalpa, and it is chock full o’ Volunteers. It is north of León and is fairly mountainous. This is the land and the hills that crawled with Sandinista rebels and then contra fighters for years thereafter.On a direct bus the eponymous capital is maybe only two hours away from León. I have not visited yet, but I am planning my first trip there for November. And most Volunteers, as well as some other friends that I have, absolutely love Matagalpa. They laud the food, the people, the land, the sites – absolutely everything about the department. It is filled with waterfalls, mountaintop lookouts, corn fields, and coffee farms. Matagalpa’s major export is high quality Arabica beans.
My friends love Matagalpa so much, they’ve basically talked it up to mythical proportions for me. When I think of Matagalpa, idealic sites like this comes to mind:
I’ve heard that in Matagalpa, butterflies land on your shoulder and whisper Darío poems into your ears. The markets are bountiful, the cheese is good, and you can drink fresh from the mountain springs. In an old episode of The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest that I used to watch on Cartoon Network they discover a hidden valley kingdom that is utopian. I think it was somewhere in Asia. I can’t find it on YouTube or I would post it, but again, Matagalpa comes to mind. In Matagalpa, when a bee stings you, it only tickles. There is no robbery or theft. If someone reaches into your pocket, it is only to secretly gift you with freshly made chocolates.
After a long wait, I do believe I will be setting off for Matagalpa soon. Wednesday through Friday I will be in Managua for the National Entrepreneurship Congress and Competition. Afterwards I will set out for Matagalpa with my friends who live there.