Lanzarote tourist attractions

Administered by Spain but cast adrift from African shores, Lanzarote’s tourist attractions are dazzling.

Beach babies and outdoor adventurers will fall for Lanzarote in a heartbeat. This Spanish island is actually much closer to the African coast than anywhere in Europe, with year-round glorious weather to prove it. Lanzarote sightseeing means stunning beaches, unforgettable volcanic landscapes and some fabulous and iconic art and architecture. The only danger is you may never want to leave.

  1. Teguise
  2. Timanfaya National Park
  3. Fundación César Manrique
  4. Cueva de los Verdes
  5. Puerto del Carmen
  6. Cactus Garden
  7. La Geria

1. Teguise

If you’ve a penchant for history, come to Teguise, the first colonial capital of Lanzarote. It was built in the centre of the island in the hope that this would guard it from swashbuckling pirates (it didn’t). A visit here is rewarded with pretty colonial buildings with traditional Canarian balconies and charming courtyards. The simple pleasures are the ones to enjoy here: take a saunter through the cobbled streets at your own - read: slow - pace.

Best for: Charming colonial architecture

Don’t miss: Sunday is market day in Teguise, when the whole town is taken over with a colourful array of bustling stalls. Line your pockets and look out for aloe vera products, ceramics and woven goods.

2. Timanfaya National Park

Otherworldly Timanfaya National Park is something to behold. The volcanic landscape remains active to this day, so you can handle volcanic soil and ogle at spurting geysers. Film buffs may recognize the park from scenes in Clash of the Titans - even if you haven’t seen it, you’ll appreciate how cinematic your surroundings are. Take it all in from atop a camel - these animals have been brought over to Lanzarote from Northern Africa for hundreds of years. Beware: these ships of the desert are known to spit.

Best for: Awesome landscapes

Don’t miss: The Salinas de Janubia, salt flats created during 1730 volcanic eruptions in the park.

3. Fundación César Manrique

The Fundación César Manrique is a splendid museum and gallery in what was the artist’s home, with murals, paintings, ceramics and views over the eerie volcanic landscape from huge windows. Everything is white, from the paths and walls outside to the gleaming interior. This isn’t a massive surprise on an island where there are strict colour rules for building: materials and paints for external surfaces in Lanzarote are only available in brown, green and blue, the designated colours for wood-work on white buildings. As for the art - the main event - you'll find plenty of Manrique’s own paintings, ceramics and sketches, as well as works by heavyweights Picasso and Miró.

Best for: Fans of art and architecture

Don’t miss: The huge abstract mural in the garden is one of Lanzarote’s most iconic sights.

4. Cueva de los Verdes

Hands down one of the best Lanzarote tourist attractions, the Cueva de los Verdes once provided a hiding spot for locals when marauding pirates came to town. The shapes on the cave walls and ceilings - formed by solidified lava and enhanced by discreet lighting - really are something to write home about.

Best for: Going underground

Don’t miss: The acoustics in the auditorium are spectacular. Concerts are something held down here - catch one if you can!

5. Puerto del Carmen

There’s a reason Puerto del Carmen is the most popular resort on Lanzarote: simply put, it offers some of the island’s best beaches. Playa Grande and Playa de los Pocillos, and the less popular Playa Matagorda - closest to the airport - extend eastwards for 6km from the little fishing harbour that was the heart of the original village. There’s everything you’d expect and more: golden sands, sunbeds, bright umbrellas - plus banana boats, pedalos, beach cafés and glorious waters. Oh, and did we mention the fresh-fish restaurants? Sublime.

Best for: Beachside relaxation

Don’t miss: Night owls will want to stay after hours for the clutch of late-night bars and clubs that stretch up the coast.

6. Cactus Garden

One of César Manrique’s last projects was the creation of the Cactus Garden, a headline act on the line-up of Lanzarote attractions. Its resident plants are a far cry from the little spikey plants that punctuate the shelves of hipster bedrooms: some of the cacti here are humongous - with more than 4500 plants representing some 450 different species, they come in all shapes and sizes. Add in a stunning volcanic backdrop (actually a disused quarry) and you’ve got something really special. There are plenty of places to stay in the area - search from our Lanzarote holidays

Best for: Anyone crazy about cacti

Don’t miss: The on-site café is the perfect spot to take in your surroundings with some tapas and a refreshing drink.

7. La Geria

If a fine alcoholic tipple is up your street, don’t miss La Geria, where grapes are grown in the volcanic soil. Visiting a bodega is an essential stop on any trip to Lanzarote - try Bodega El Grifo where you can sample wine and explore the museum. The landscape in the region is characterized by coiled lava and vineyards, where the vines growing in the picón (cinders) are planted within semicircles of volcanic rocks to stop the soil blowing away in the strong winds.

Best for: Drinking it in

Don’t miss: Take a tasty souvenir home with you - all the bodegas will sell wine by the bottle.

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