Nicaragua is divided up into 15 departments or cities and 2 self-governing regions, or autonomous communities. Each department is further sub-divided into smaller municipalities for the purposes of administration. For a more detailed information about the 17 cities, please check out my Blog as I will go though them one by one.

The departments (cities) of Nicaragua are:

Boaco is comprised of six municipalities. It is located in central Nicaragua and is a very productive agricultural region dominated by beef and milk production.

Carazo is in the central pacific region of Nicaragua and most of the department is more than 700 meters above sea level. It is known for its eco-tourism and string cultural traditions.

Chinandega is in the north eastern corner of Nicaragua on the Pacific coast. It contains Nicaragua’s highest volcano: San Cristóbal.

Chontales is just south of the centre of Nicaragua and to the east of Lake Nicaragua. It has vast plains and high mountains.

Esteli is in the cooler northern part of Nicaragua and where the tobacco industry is centered.

Granada is on the central Pacific side and is home to the oldest city in Nicaragua, also called Granada.

Jinotega is in the north of Nicaragua and features high mountains, deep valleys, and coffee plantations. It also features the largest natural reserve in Nicaragua.

León borders the Pacific Ocean and is to the north west of Nicaragua. It features beautiful beaches and the lovely colonial city of León.

Madriz is in the north of Nicaragua and is the centre for rosquilla production, arts and crafts, and coffee.

Managua is on the central Pacific side of Nicaragua and is the home of the nation’s capital city, Managua.

Masaya lies on the Pacific side of Nicaragua, between Managua and Granada, and is known for its strong folklore and artistic traditions.

Matagalpa is a mountainous area to the north of Nicaragua. It is famous for its coffee production.

Nueva Segovia is also a mountainous region to the far north of Nicaragua. It features high mountains, hot springs, waterfalls, and coffee plantations.

Rivas lies on the south western Pacific coast of Nicaragua and is becoming very well known as a surfing paradise as well as an eco-tourism destination.

Rio San Juan is to the central / south eastern corner of Nicaragua and is an area strongly associated with sports fishing.

The two autonomous regions are:

Región Autónoma del Atlántico Norte
Región Autónoma del Atlántico Sur

Both of the Atlantic autonomous regions lie on the Caribbean stretch of coastline and are generally considered to be the poorest and most deprived areas of Nicaragua.