The largest of the Central American republics, Nicargua lies between Honduras and Costa Rica, which form its northern and southern boundaries respectively, and extends from the Caribbean Sea in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west. Its area, which is still undetermined due to incomplete surveys, is generally estimated at 150,000 square kilometres, or 5,398 square miles.
Nicaragua's population of over 1800,000 is largely agricultural and concentrated in the western third of the country, particularly in the small section near the Pacific coast that stretches from the town of Chinandega, north to the city of Granada and Lake Nicaragua to the south.
The main products of Nicaragua are: coffee, cotton, meat, wood, gold, oil refining products, sugar, sesame seeds, corn, rice, beans, flour.
Nicaragua has advanced from a coffee monoculture economy to a more balanced and diversified economy based mainly on cotton, beef and coffee. In the manufacturing sector, private enterprise has resorted to meeting the demands of countries in raw materials, coffee, with soluble coffee, which has been successful in quality markets in the US and Europe.
The capital, Managua, on the inter-American highway, is a frequent starting point for tourists. With the Xolothan Lake and the National Palace, with its government offices, as well as the Presidential Palace and the National Museum. In the northwest corner of the city are the Acahualinca man tracks, believed to be the oldest human tracks in Latin America. And to the south, on the steep cliffs of Lake Asososca, colourful hieroglyphs date from pre-Columbian times.