The Tortured Past of Coyotepe Fortress

Coyotepe Fortress has a tortured past. It isn’t noticeable when you first arrive but once you’re inside and walking through the depths of the dungeons where many political prisoners were held and tortured… Coyotepe’s ghosts will haunt you.

Coyotepe Fortress, Masaya, Nicaragua, Granada, Torture, Prison, Political Prisoners

If only walls could speak…

The fort, Fortaleza El Coyotepe, was initially built in 1893 by President Zelaya in order to stop attacks from the conservative forces and invading armies of North America from Masaya, Managua, Granada and Leon. After President Zelaya’s ruling Anastasio Somoza came into power. In 1948 Somoza ordered a dungeon to be built underneath the fort in order to hold many political prisoners; it is said that occasionally this small fortress held over 800 prisoners at one time. Many of the cells in this dungeon were crammed so full with people they could not sit or lay down… let alone go to the bathroom. There are three floors to this underground dungeon, the prisoners in the bottom floors got very little, if any, light.

Coyotepe Fortress, Bats, Torture, Dungeon, Torture Chambers, Prison, Political Prisoners

The current inhabitants of the chambers

Punishments were inflicted on the prisoners daily. Guards loved to urinate on them from above while they were chained to a wall. In my opinion, the most brutal torture was when the prisoners who were housed in the bottom dungeons for long periods of time, without light, for added agony they were blindfolded then brought outside, eyes pointed at the sun and then the blindfold was removed. This torture caused permanent blindness in some while others were killed by it.

Coyotepe Fortress, Masaya, Nicaragua, Central America, Torture, Torture Chambers, Prison, Political Prisoners

Hallways strewn with new and old graffiti

After Somoza’s reign the Sandinistas came into power and took over Coyotepe fortress. They continued torturing the prisoners. After the Sandinistas were overthrown, the fortress was handed over the Boy Scouts who finally brought peace to the grounds of Coyotepe.

Coyotepe Fortress, Masaya, Nicaragua, Fortress, Granada, Torture, Torture Chambers, Prison, Political Prisoners

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Dawn Kealing

Travel Blogger at Life, Love and Adventure
Hey! I'm a 20 something Canadian with backgrounds in Photography and Art. I'm here to bring you the most current information on travel and keep you up to date on the best adventure destinations around the world!

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