Exploring Lanzarote Canary islands

The Canary Islands and Lanzarote

Lanzarote, one of the enchanting Canary Islands off the coast of northwestern Africa, is renowned for its unique volcanic landscapes, pristine beaches, and year-round warm climate. Despite its proximity to Africa, Lanzarote is part of Spain. This island, shaped by volcanic eruptions, boasts a rugged yet captivating beauty that draws visitors from around the world. As the fourth-largest island in the Canary archipelago, Lanzarote offers a blend of natural wonders, cultural heritage, and a commitment to sustainable tourism that makes it a perfect destination for eco-conscious travelers.

Sustainable Travel in Lanzarote: A UNESCO Biosphere Reserve

Sustainability is at the heart of Lanzarote’s tourism model. The island has been a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve since 1993, recognizing its efforts to harmonize tourism with environmental conservation. This commitment to sustainability is evident in the island’s transportation options, accommodations, and activities designed to minimize ecological impact.

Key initiatives include strict land use planning to prevent overdevelopment, extensive recycling and waste management programs, and the promotion of renewable energy sources. The island also prioritizes eco-friendly tourism activities, such as cycling and hiking, and supports local organic agriculture. These measures ensure that Lanzarote’s natural beauty and biodiversity are preserved for future generations while fostering a sustainable tourism industry.

Optimal Travel Seasons and Climate in Lanzarote

The best time to travel to Lanzarote is during the spring (March to May) and autumn (September to November) months. During these periods, the weather is pleasantly warm, with temperatures ranging from 20°C to 26°C (68°F to 79°F), making it ideal for outdoor activities and exploration.

Lanzarote’s climate is mild and stable throughout the year, characterized by warm summers with temperatures averaging around 25°C to 29°C (77°F to 84°F) and mild winters with temperatures between 14°C and 21°C (57°F to 70°F). The island experiences minimal rainfall, ensuring sunny days and clear skies for most of the year, perfect for enjoying its stunning landscapes and coastal beauty.

I visited in April and found the days and nights to be a bit chilly, so I recommend bringing a light jacket for added comfort. Additionally, due to Lanzarote’s open landscape, shade is scarce, so be prepared for exposure to the sun during your adventures.

Eco-Friendly Commute

For those looking to explore Lanzarote sustainably, cycling and eco-friendly car rentals offer fantastic options. The island’s varied terrain, from flat coastal roads to challenging mountainous routes, caters to experienced cyclists seeking adventure and scenic beauty.

Cycling allows travelers to immerse themselves in the island’s natural splendor while reducing their carbon footprint. Bike rentals are widely available, with numerous cycling routes showcasing volcanic landscapes, charming villages, and stunning coastlines. However, it’s essential to note that due to the island’s rugged terrain and shared roadways with cars, cycling in Lanzarote is best suited for experienced bikers.

Hiking trails in Lanzarote

1. Path of the Gracioseros:

Discover the enchanting Path of the Gracioseros, a hidden treasure tucked away in the heart of Lanzarote, offering an unforgettable adventure. Start your journey from the charming town of Ye. Follow the paved path as you leave behind the hustle and bustle, descending the majestic Risco de Famara.

The trail, lasting about 45 minutes, is a bit challenging with steep slopes and scattered stones, so be sure to wear sturdy shoes and be prepared for a bit of a workout. Along the way, soak in the stunning views of the Chinijo archipelago, with the picturesque island of La Graciosa in the distance. Finally, when you reach the peaceful shores, take a moment to bask in the untouched beauty of the secluded beach, with its soft sand and inviting turquoise waters. Don’t forget to bring plenty of water and snacks, and make sure your phone is charged for this immersive journey into Lanzarote’s natural wonders.

2. Caldera Blanca and La Caldereta:

Explore the awe-inspiring Caldera Blanca and La Caldereta, two of the most striking volcanic wonders in Lanzarote. Rising over 450 meters high with a crater stretching 1,200 meters in diameter, Caldera Blanca is a sight to behold, nestled in the municipality of Tinajo. The journey to reach this volcanic marvel spans approximately 10 kilometers and takes around four hours to complete.

Begin your adventure from a convenient parking area along the dirt road known as “Camino del Cráter,” near the Ermita de los Dolores. The trail kicks off with a scenic trek of just over 1 kilometer, winding through a mesmerizing landscape of solidified lava until you reach La Caldereta, a smaller neighboring volcano. Continuing along the path, you’ll eventually arrive at the base of the renowned Caldera. The ascent poses minimal technical challenges, offering breathtaking views of the stark contrast between the white volcanic rock and the surrounding sea of black lava.

While the initial part of the route is relatively easy and suitable for most fitness levels, more adventurous hikers can opt to circumnavigate the crater to the left, reaching the volcano’s highest point and enjoying panoramic vistas of Timanfaya National Park. However, caution is advised, particularly in windy conditions, and it’s best to tackle this section of the trail during fair weather, ensuring a safe and enjoyable ascent. Take your time, savor the scenery, and remember to secure your footing as you embark on this unforgettable volcanic adventure in Lanzarote.

3. Volcano Monte Corona

Montaña Corona isn’t just about stunning views; it’s a key player in creating two of Lanzarote’s coolest spots, Cueva de los Verdes and Jameos del Agua. About 4,000 years ago, when this volcano blew its top, the lava made its way underground, forming these awesome cave systems.

To start your hike, head to Yé village and park by the church. Then, follow the path through fields of grapevines, where local farmers work hard to grow their crops, protecting them from the island’s strong winds. As you get closer to the volcano, the scenery changes, and you might spot some palm trees. When you reach the volcano’s edge, prepare to be amazed—it’s different from any other volcano on the island, with a deep crater that’s hard to capture in photos.

We didn’t try going all the way around, but you might be able to according to the map. For the way back, you can either go the same way or try a circular route, but be warned—the circular path is tougher, with prickly plants and not much to see. Overall, if you’re up for an adventure off the beaten path, Montaña Corona is a great pick, offering surprising beauty without too much difficulty, and it’s a less mainstream hike to boot.

4. Tremesana Route from Yaiza

Embark on an unforgettable adventure through the Tremesana Route, one of the finest volcano hikes in Lanzarote. This scenic trail winds through the spectacular landscapes of Timanfaya National Park, offering a unique glimpse into the island’s volcanic history. To join this guided hike, you must make a reservation in advance through the park’s website, as spots are limited. However, the hike itself is free of charge and begins at the Mancha Blanca Visitor Center, where you’ll board a van to reach the trailhead. The path is well-maintained, making it suitable for families with children.

Along the way, you’ll traverse vibrant lava fields and ancient volcanoes, while your knowledgeable guide shares insights into the island’s tumultuous geological past and the local community’s resilient adaptation to volcanic activity. This leisurely hike spans approximately 1.9 miles and takes around 3 hours to complete, offering ample opportunities to immerse yourself in Lanzarote’s rich cultural heritage and geological wonders. With its easy difficulty level and informative commentary, the Tremesana Route promises an enriching outdoor experience for adventurers of all ages.

5. A Seaside Stroll from El Golfo

If you’re into seaside strolls, the Coastal Route from El Golfo offers an enchanting hike along the shores of Lanzarote. Known as the Ruta del Litoral, this coastal trail traverses the scenic landscapes of Timanfaya National Park. While you can embark on this hike independently, reserving a spot with a park ranger allows for a guided experience, highlighting the area’s natural wonders. Starting from the charming fishing village of El Golfo, near the picturesque Charco de los Clicos beach, you’ll find a convenient parking lot to leave your car. I suggest exploring this coastal gem before or after your hike.

The trail itself is well-signposted, guiding you through diverse volcanic terrain against the backdrop of turquoise waters and dramatic cliffs. Upon reaching the end of the hike, you’ll be greeted by Playa del Paso, a striking black sand beach with powerful waves crashing against the shore. Arriving here before sunset offers the opportunity to witness one of Lanzarote’s most breathtaking natural spectacles. With a distance of approximately 4.3 miles and a duration of around 3 hours, this easy-level hike promises a delightful seaside adventure, perfect for exploring Lanzarote’s coastal beauty at a leisurely pace.

Timafaya Lanzarote

Essential Exploration and Sustainable Activities

1. Timanfaya National Park:

Immerse yourself in the otherworldly landscapes of Timanfaya National Park, where ancient volcanic eruptions have sculpted a surreal terrain of lava fields and craters. Don’t forget to purchase your tickets in advance to ensure seamless entry. If you opt for the bus tour, secure a seat on the right side for optimal views of the park’s mesmerizing geological wonders and the raw power of nature in action.

2. Exploring Caves and Lava Tubes:

The island’s volcanic activity has sculpted captivating geological wonders, including caves and lava tubes. Cueva de los Verdes and Jameos del Agua are two must-visit sites, offering insight into Lanzarote’s volcanic history and sustainable management practices to preserve their natural beauty.

3. The Fundación César Manrique:

A cornerstone of Lanzarote’s cultural landscape, the Fundación César Manrique is a tribute to the island’s most renowned artist. Through sustainable architectural designs and art, Manrique seamlessly integrated his work with Lanzarote’s natural environment, leaving an indelible mark on the island’s artistic and ecological identity.

4. La Geria Vineyard Region:

Discover the unique winemaking traditions of Lanzarote in the La Geria Vineyard Region. Amidst the stark volcanic landscape, vineyards thrive in volcanic ash pits known as “zocos,” producing distinctive wines cherished for their quality and character. Take a tour of the vineyards, sample local wines, and learn about the innovative techniques used to cultivate grapes in this volcanic terrain.

“Tele-” Restaurants: Nurturing Community Through Affordable Dining

As sustainable travelers, we prioritize supporting local businesses, recognizing the economic and cultural benefits they bring to communities. In Lanzarote, one such example is the ‘tele-‘ restaurant. These unique culinary establishments, mandated by local regulations, ensure residents have access to affordable and nutritious meals while fostering a sense of community.

Originating from the Spanish word ‘televisión,’ these eateries began as places where locals could gather to enjoy a meal while watching television. Today, ‘tele-‘ restaurants serve as beloved community hubs, offering homemade dishes featuring traditional Canarian cuisine crafted from locally sourced ingredients. With reasonable prices and a welcoming atmosphere, these establishments cater to a wide range of diners, contributing to their popularity among both locals and visitors alike.

Staying Green: Sustainable Accommodations

Lanzarote offers a variety of eco-friendly accommodations. Many hotels and resorts on the island are committed to sustainable practices, such as using renewable energy, implementing water conservation measures, and offering locally sourced food. Staying in eco-lodges or agritourism accommodations also provides an authentic and environmentally friendly experience. Below are a few that we recommend for you to consider:

La Isla y el Mar, Hotel Boutique Lanzarote
La Isla y el Mar Hote Boutigue

1. La Isla y el Mar, Hotel Boutique

La Isla y el Mar, Hotel Boutique, offers a luxurious retreat infused with tranquility and sustainability. This boutique hotel exudes contemporary elegance, with its sleek design and harmonious blend of natural elements. Guests are welcomed into spacious and stylish accommodations, where modern comforts meet eco-conscious amenities.

From the tranquil outdoor pool area surrounded by lush gardens to the rooftop terrace boasting panoramic views of the island’s volcanic scenery, every aspect of La Isla y el Mar invites relaxation and rejuvenation. With a commitment to sustainability, the hotel implements eco-friendly practices throughout its operations, ensuring a guilt-free indulgence for discerning travelers seeking both luxury and environmental responsibility.

Plus Fariones Apartmentos Lanzarotes
Plus Fariones Apartmentos

2. Plus Fariones Apartamentos

Located just 200 meters from Playa Grande beach in Puerto del Carmen, Plus Fariones Apartamentos offers a perfect blend of comfort and convenience. Surrounded by subtropical gardens, this complex features two outdoor swimming pools, two terraces (one with a hot tub), and ample space to unwind.

The apartments are each equipped with a balcony or terrace, a full kitchen, and a cozy living area. The on-site bar-cafeteria and restaurant offer delicious dining options, including a daily buffet breakfast, while live entertainment adds to the lively atmosphere. Families will appreciate the children’s play area and the heated outdoor swimming pool available in winter. With 24-hour reception and car/bicycle rental services.

H10 suites Lanzarote Garden
H10 Suites Lanzarote Gardens Lanzarote

3. H10 Suites Lanzarote Gardens

Nestled just a stone’s throw away from Playa de las Cucharas Beach, H10 Suites Lanzarote Gardens offers an idyllic retreat with an array of amenities. Boasting two swimming pools and a children’s pool complete with slides. The accommodation options include suites with kitchenettes and living rooms, as well as bungalows featuring fully equipped kitchens and spacious living areas, all complemented by private balconies or terraces.

The hotel provides a tennis court and the H10 Daisy Club, offering engaging activities for children of various ages. Indulge in delectable buffet meals at the hotel’s restaurant, which also hosts themed buffets three times a week. Unwind with music at the lounge bar or savor snacks by the pool at the convenient snack bar. 

Villa Nueva
Villa Nueva Lanzarote

4. Villa Nueva

I chose to stay at Villa Nueva during my time in Lanzarote, and it proved to be a delightful choice. Situated in the quiet side of the island, in the village of Mala, Villa Nueva offers a serene retreat with easy access to Puerto del Carmen, Playa Blanca, and Costa Teguise. The accommodations feature a terrace, dining area, and a cozy seating area with a satellite flat-screen TV. Each unit includes a kitchen equipped with a refrigerator, stovetop, and coffee machine, ensuring a comfortable stay.

Towels and bed linen are provided for convenience. While the property is not officially certified for sustainability, the owners practice excellent environmental stewardship. The owner is very friendly, adding a personal touch to the experience. Villa Nueva offers free private parking and is conveniently located 21 km from Arrecife Airport.

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