Iglesia Parroquial de San Pedro, 1 block east of the central plaza, is a beautiful but worn-down cathedral with dark stains over its white walls and gilded ledges, along with two very impressive bell towers. It was built in the 18th century and has an interesting mix of architecture styles, with a colonial facade up front and a dome at the rear bearing a colorful fresco that depicts Catholicism conducting a sea battle with secularism and communism and, of course, triumphing. Mass is held here every evening at 6pm. Open hours are daily 7 to 11am and 5 to 8pm. Admission is free. Another interesting church to see is the Iglesia de San Francisco, 4 blocks west of Parque Central. Beneath it is a secret tunnel that runs to the city's plaza. The church is open daily from 7 to 11:30am and 5:30 to 8pm. Admission is free.
The town's museum, the Museo de Historia y Antropología (3 blocks north of the Iglesia de San Francisco; tel. 505/2563-3708) has an interesting collection of pre-Columbian artifacts. The building itself is beautiful, with a low, tiled roof and a grassy courtyard. It is a former plantation house that played an important role during the Battle of Rivas, during which William Walker briefly took hold of it. It also has an early published poem by the poet Rubén Darío. The museum is open daily 9am to noon and 2 until 5pm. Admission is C22 adults, C11 children under 16.
Biblioteca Pública de Rivas is the local library and the town's oldest building, with the bullet wounds to prove it. It is open Monday to Friday from 9am to 1pm and 3 to 7pm. Rivas Cemetery is a great place to catch a sunset and wander among some ornate graves of important national figures. It's a pleasant stroll southeast of the town.
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