Spain: Lanzarote, Part 1

Wow, it’s been a long time since I scribbled about travelling! Since the move to the Netherlands, travel has been less regular for sure. However, part of the motivation for moving here was ease of access to travel spots and recently my partner and I decided to escape the Dutch December (cold, wet, and grey) for a few days and hit the warmth.

Our criteria were that it had to be warm, reasonably priced, relaxing and not too commercialised and full of tourists. We took a look at the Canary Islands, and did a bit of investigating. The islands have long been a popular travel spot for northern Europeans looking to escape the cold, and so we were a little cautious in that regard. We discarded Tenerife and Gran Canaria, and eventually picked Lanzarote over Las Palmas due to flight availability.

The island most certainly attracts a lot of tourists, and therefore parts of it are set up accordingly. Luckily, it’s very easy to stay away from the resorts and overpriced shitty restaurants because there’s so much more that this island has to offer!

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This is the backyard of our first AirBnB. We chose to split our trip between the north and south of the island, instead of  staying in one place. You most definitely want a car if you’re coming here, and luckily this is one of the cheapest places in Europe to hire one; 10 Euros a day will get you a compact piece of mediocre French engineering which will do the job.

We stayed in a  small place called Tabayesco for the first few nights. Our AirBnB was choice, well located and cosy with excellent hosts Caroline and Richard who advised us on what to see (Book directly with them for a discount – http://www.casitastabayesco.com.

We spent the first day enjoying some tapas in Haria and visiting the local beach. The next day we took a short drive up the coast. The island is quite rocky as you’d expect from volcanoes, but it has loads of great scenery and different environments.

Up north, past Orzola, we got a good view of neighbouring island La Graciosa, where we decided to head to the next day.

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To get there, you take a ferry from Orzola, which costs 15 Euros for a return day trip. The ferry takes around 40 minutes and takes you to the eastern side of the island. We wanted to spend the day at the beach on the other side, Playa De Las Conchas. To get there you have three options – car, walk or bike. It’s too far to walk, and we’d be committing treason to our Dutch nationality if we picked a car over the bikes. We hired mountain bikes (10 euros) which were in desperate need of a service, but carried us 30 minutes west to this beauty of a beach.

There are loads of different hikes you can do. The photos above are taken from a hike we did up Volcan de la Corona, one of the highest volcanoes on the island at around 600 metres. It’s an easy walk that provides awesome views!

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A photo of the sunset taken from the beach at Famara, a popular surfing spot.

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On our last night before moving south, we went to Jameous del Agua. It’s a series of caves, made into an art, culture and tourism center, created by local artist and architect, César Manrique. This dude had a major influence on the planning regulations on the island, when he recognised its tourist potential and lobbied successfully to encourage sympathetic development of tourism and the restriction on high rise hotels and commercial development. There was a concert on while we were there, the acoustics in the cave were amazing.

We took off the next day down south. Keep an eye out for part 2 of this blog post, where I’ll cover off our trips to wineries and exploring more of what Lanzarote has to offer!

– Damo