Nicaragua Population, People, Languages and Religions

By | January 21, 2022

Nicaragua Country Overview

Where is Nicaragua located? Nicaragua is a Central American country bordering the Caribbean Sea to the east. The time zone map places countries into world time zones based on their location within degrees of longitude. On this map, Nicaragua is in a time zone called “Central Standard Time” because of its proximity to the Caribbean. There is a standard difference of 6 hours to Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). The time difference is such that Nicaragua is 6 hours earlier than indicated by the world clock (UTC-6). This difference stays the same throughout the year as there is no daylight saving time change.

Bordering Countries of Nicaragua

According to abbreviationfinder, Nicaragua is a Central American country located in the region known as Mesoamerica. It is bordered by Honduras to the north, the Caribbean Sea to the east, Costa Rica to the south and Pacific Ocean to the west. The total area of Nicaragua is 119,990 square kilometers with a population of around 6.5 million people. Spanish is the official language of Nicaragua.

The bordering countries of Nicaragua are Honduras and Costa Rica. Honduras borders Nicaragua on its northern side and this border has been in place since 1838 when both countries were part of Central America before it was dissolved in 1841. In terms of economic ties, Honduras exports coffee and bananas to Nicaragua while also importing food products from them.

Costa Rica borders Nicaragua on its southern side and this border has been in place since 1824 when both countries declared their independence from Spain during that same year. There are strong cultural ties between both countries due to their shared history as well as close economic links due to their proximity. In terms of trade, Costa Rica imports food products from Nicaragua while also exporting machinery and manufactured goods back to them.

Nicaragua has strong diplomatic ties with both its bordering countries which have helped maintain peace in the region for many years now. Both countries have also signed several agreements such as those related to transportation, environment protection and investment promotion which have helped strengthen their relationship even further.

In conclusion, both Honduras and Costa Rica are important bordering countries for Nicaragua due to their close economic ties as well as shared culture and history which helps maintain peace in this region of Central America.

Nicaragua National Flag

Population Distribution

As of 2023, the latest population of Nicaragua is 6,203,441, based on our calculation of the current data from UN (United Nations).

Total population 6,203,441
Population growth rate 0.96%
Birth rate 17.70 births per 1,000 people
Life expectancy
Overall life expectancy 72.45 years
Men life expectancy 70.32 years
Women life expectancy 74.68 years
Age structure
0-14 years 26.65%
15-64 years 67.90%
65 years and above 5.46%
Median age 24.70 years
Gender ratio (Male to Female) 0.96
Population density 47.58 residents per km²
Urbanization 57.30%
70% European-indigenous, 18% European, 9% African origin, 4% indigenous (especially Miskito, Chorotega-Nahua-Mange)
Catholics (Roman Catholic) 85%, Protestants
Human Development Index (HDI) 0.651
HDI ranking 126th out of 194

People in Nicaragua

Most Nicaraguans are descendants of relationships between Spaniards and indigenous peoples. 69 percent of the population are among them. 17 percent are white, mostly descendants of Spaniards. 9 percent are of African origin. They live mainly on the Caribbean coast.

5 percent belong to the indigenous peoples. They also live in the east of the country. The largest group among them are the Miskito, who also live across the border in Honduras. Smaller peoples are the Mayangna (Sumo) in the northeast and the Rama on the southern Caribbean coast. There are only about 900 Rama left, most of them live on the island of Rama Cay. The Mayangna still number about 2000 people. The Chorotega still number 750 people.

Many Nicaraguans have left their country in the hope of better working and living conditions. It is estimated that one million people live outside their country. Most of them emigrated to Costa Rica, the second largest group lives in the USA.

  • Children: Every woman in Nicaragua has an average of 1.8 children. With us, every woman has an average of 1.4 children. So the families in Nicaragua are a bit bigger than ours. A quarter of the population (25 percent) is under 14 years old. In Germany, that’s only 13 percent.
  • City and Country: Slightly more than half of the population (59 percent) of Nicaragua live in cities. More and more people are drawn there in the hope of finding work. This is called rural exodus.

Languages in Nicaragua

Spanish is the official language in Nicaragua. 95 percent of the population speaks Spanish. From the Spanish (Castilian) spoken in Spain, however, Spanish in Nicaragua differs in a number of ways. For “you” one says vos instead of do. It’s called Voseo. In Nicaragua, it has completely supplanted tu.

And while in Spain the c is usually pronounced like an English th, i.e. between the teeth (as in through), in Nicaragua (and throughout Latin America) the c is pronounced like a sharp s (as in see, that’s why this pronunciation is called Seseo).

A special feature in Nicaragua is that syllables and words that end in p or t are usually pronounced in English loanwords, such as k, e.g. Internet such as Internec or laptop such as Lactoc. There are also a number of words that one would not understand in Spain, for example pofi for friend (instead of amigo). The Nicaraguans mostly call their language Español and not Castellano (see also under Spain).

What languages ​​are there besides Spanish?

Creole English is also widely spoken on the Caribbean coast.

2.2 percent of the population speaks Miskito. Miskito belongs to the Misumalpan language family. It is easy to learn: all words are stressed on the first syllable, there is no plural (plural), nouns have no gender (no “der, die, das”), there are only three vowels (a, i and u) and the vocabulary is small.

The Rama language is dying out, as only around 20 elderly people speak it. The Mayangna language is similar.

Religions in Nicaragua

Soon after the Spanish conquest, missionaries came to convert the indigenous population to the Catholic faith. Today 47 percent of the population are Catholic. 37 percent are Protestants. The Miskito and Rama mostly belong to the Moravian Brethren, an evangelical free church. They were evangelized in the 18th century. Around 9 percent do not profess any faith. 7 percent have a different belief.