El Güegüense

Also known as El Macho Ratón (the Macho Mouse), it is a 16th century play/ballet that celebrates an old wise man who makes fun of the Spanish conquistadores. It began as street theater performed by the native Indians in the presence of the foreign occupiers as a way of ridiculing them without their realizing it. The dance is still performed annually in the streets of the town Diriamba, and recently, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization officially declared it a “Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.”


Generally speaking, soccer is the most popular sport in Latin American countries (and in most countries around the globe, as well). But in Nicaragua, béisbol (baseball) is also very popular. The U.S. Marines, who occupied the country for roughly 2 decades, introduced the sport in the early 1900s. While reading the sports section of a Nicaraguan newspaper, you won’t have trouble understanding many of the terms used in the game: jonrón (home run), inning, el bate (the bat), and un wild pitch. The pitcher Dennis Martinez is the first and most famous Nicaraguan to have played in the U.S. major leagues.

Ruben Dario

Nicaraguans are very proud of Ruben Dario (1867-1967), a Nicaraguan poet who became one of the most famous poets of the Spanish language in this hemisphere. He was known as the “Father of the Modernism”. One of his famous books was Azul. He inspired successive generations of writers in Nicaragua, so that now Nicaragua probably has more famous authors and poets per capita than any other Latin American country, and there is a saying that, “Every Nicaraguan is a poet until proven otherwise.”