“Discovered” only in 2006, Somoto ’s best swimming hole permits you to float through limpid, cool pools penned between the lush vegetation of the canyon walls, home to cliff bats and rare birds. The deep pools are separated by shallow sections and so preclude boating. Rather, spend all day splashing from pool to pool. Bring a picnic and plastic bags to keep things dry.
This is possible as a day trip from Estelí , though it’s nearly three hours each way to get there and the last express bus back to Estelí leaves at 3:30 p.m. Catch a bus to Somoto, then another to El Espino (every 45 minutes or so), getting off at centrada para Cañon de Somoto (25 minutes from Somoto).
About 200 meters down the path is a gate and cabin, with guides who can offer you anything from a 5–6 hour guided hike ($20) to a rented inner tube for floating the canyon ($6). See www.namancambretours.com  for more, as this destination is evolving fast.