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GEOGRAPHY

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nicaragua landforms

Nicaragua is geographically divided into three major areas, including the Pacific Ocean Lowlands and Lakes, the Central Highlands and the Caribbean Lowlands.

The Pacific Lowlands extend from the Gulf of Fonseca to its border with Costa Rica; the sandy beaches here are fronted by a long chain (or row) of young, coned-shaped volcanoes, some active.

Two large freshwater lakes (Managua and Nicaragua) sit along the eastern rift of the volcanoes; both surrounded by rich, volcanic-soil plains. Lake Nicaragua's Ometepe Island is home to two volcanoes, Madras and (active) Conception.

The Central Highlands are a rugged terrain of forested mountains punctuated by deep valleys. The eastern edges of those highlands are covered by rain forests that slope gently into the Caribbean Lowlands, a flat expanse of savanna-like land that flows into the bays, lagoons, jungles and salt marshes of the Caribbean Sea (Mosquito Coast).

Nicaragua is a water-rich country with dozens of rivers and hundreds of small streams; the most significant rivers include the Coco, Escondido, Rio Grande and San Juan.