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Introducing Jinotega

Hidden in a cat’s eye of a valley, the City of Mists is enclosed on all sides by mountains dappled in cloud forests, crowned with granite ridges and pocked with deep gorges.

While coffee tourism percolates in Matagalpa, Jinotega, which brims with adventure and promise, still sees far more foreign-aid workers than tourists. So walk these cobbled streets, visit nearby Lago de Apanás and hike into the misty mountains, where you can harvest coffee with locals and stroll through primary forest. Just make sure to get to Cerro La Cruz on a clear day to glimpse the cat’s eye in all her jade glory.

That City of Mists moniker is no joke. The average temperature is just 20°C (68°F) and the town can get 2600mm of rain annually. Bring rain gear and a fleece for the cool evenings.