Lanzarote, the northernmost of the Canary islands, is an ideal destination for families, nature lovers, sun-seekers and sports enthusiasts whatever the season.
1 Year-round destination
Lanzarote is the perfect year-round destination, attracting visitors during the winter who enjoy temperatures of between 16 and 23C. Spending Christmas Day in the mid-20s C is a memorable experience. While, in the springtime, the landscape can burst into colour overnight as dormant wildflower shoots come to life.
Lanzarote is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, with the Timanfaya National Park renowned around the world. The island is a popular stop for migrant birds during the spring, but regular inhabitants are the main attraction for birdwatchers, including the houbara bustard, Eleonora’s falcon and barbary falcon. The salt flats of Janubio is another protected area for birds in Lanzarote, with intense migratory activity during the spring.
Lanzarote is perfect for hiking, cycling, water sports and open-water swimming. It’s possible to rent bikes or book a guided cycling tour of the island. Open-water swimming is popular, as the water temperature rarely dips below 18C. The east coast has the best open water swimming, especially near Puerto del Carmen and Playa Blanca. Sailing, windsurfing and kitesurfing are also popular, especially in the resort of Costa Teguise.
4 Volcanic landscapes
Lanzarote’s volcanic landscapes have been the backdrop to a number of adverts as well as serving as a training ground for astronauts from the European Space Agency. The island is known as ‘the island of 1000 volcanoes’. The Timanfaya volcano is the only active volcano in Lanzarote. It’s possible to visit the spectacular crater of Volcan del Cuervo. One of the highest volcanoes is the Montaña Blanca, with an unusual pale white volcanic cone.
5 Food and wine
Lanzarote’s volcanic landscape has created unusual and sort-after wines. One of the best is the Malyasia Volcanica grape – an aromatic white wine, highly regarded among wine lovers for its quality. It’s possible to visit wineries, such as the wine region of Le Geria.
Food-wise, everything on the island is fresh and local. Visitors can enjoy fish, cheeses and papas con mojos (potatoes with mojo sauce). The Sunday farmers’ market in Mancha Blanca, Tinajo, is a popular tourist attraction, where visitors can try goats cheese and white wine.
Many of Lanzarote’s beaches are perfect for families, as they are protected from waves and currents. Discover the small coves on the Papagayo coastline, the shallow calm waters of La Santa lagoon, or head to golden beaches in Playa Blanca, the southernmost resort. Sun worshippers can also explore Playa Chica in the resort of Puerto del Carmen.
Meanwhile, Famara beach is a vibrant surf village nestled into magnificent cliffs. Or, for unspoilt beaches, the tiny village-island of La Graciosa, just to the north.
There are festivals throughout the year.
The Quemao Class brings together the best surfers in the world, taking place sometime between November and March. Others include the Lanzarote Film Festival, Classical Music Festival and Dia de Canaries, which is celebrated each year on 30 May. Every 5 January, the Three Kings Parade takes place, when the three kings from the east are welcomed each year.
One of Lanzarote’s most famous sons was the artist César Manrique, who left a large part of his artistic legacy in the island, such as Los Jameos del Agua, one of the most visited tourist attractions on the island and the Mirador del Río.
In addition to Manrique’s attractions, visitors can also enjoy The Centres of Art, Culture and Tourism (CACT), while Almacen is home to the creative avant-garde of the Canary Islands and the Casa Amarilla immerses people in the island’s history.
To find out more, and to see a great selection of hotels, visit Youtravel.com