The San Francisco Convent is both an active Catholic church and a museum with historic photographs, culturally important paintings, and statues from the Zapatera Island archaeological site on Lake Nicaragua. With a history dating back to 1529, it's among the oldest churches in Nicaragua and remains one of Granada’s most memorable sights.
Thanks to its central location, the San Francisco Convent (Convento San Francisco) is an easy-to-visit Granada landmark. Climb the stairs leading up to the church for a view of the local street scene, snap photos in front of the elegant cream and garnet facade, or pay a small entry fee to check out the church’s interior and attached museum. To hear the whole history behind the church—which includes multiple fires and pirate attacks—go as part of a Granada sightseeing tour; some even include round-trip transit from Managua.
Things to Know Before You Go
- The San Francisco Convent is a must for art and history lovers.
- This attraction is not wheelchair accessible.
- Plan to spend less than an hour visiting.
- If short on time, you can visit on a day trip from Managua.
How to Get There
The San Francisco Convent and Museum is located on Calle Cervantes, just a few blocks from Granada’s central plaza. Plan to walk or grab one of the city’s plentiful taxis.
When to Get There
The convent is open Monday through Friday from 8am to 4pm and on weekends from 9am to 4pm. Keep in mind that this is an active church with regular services, too.
A History of Survival
The San Francisco Convent has survived pirate raids, fires, and William Walker's infamous 1856 siege of Granada. Though the convent has been rebuilt a few times, it has always stood on the same site.