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Nicaragua Population

Population Distribution

Total population 6,203,441
Population growth rate 0.96%
Birth rate 17.70 births per 1,000 residents
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 0.96 M / F
Population density 47.58 residents per km²
Urbanization 57.30%
Cities  
Managua 1,016,744, León 164,673, Masaya 117,225, Tipitapa 115,572, Chinandega 108,659, Estelí 101,840, Ciudad Sandino 99,519, Matagalpa 97,513, Granada 96,910
Ethnicities  
70% European-indigenous, 18% European, 9% African origin, 4% indigenous (especially Miskito, Chorotega-Nahua-Mange)
Religions  
Catholics (Roman Catholic) 85%, Protestants
Human Development Index (HDI) 0.651
HDI ranking 126

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.


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