9 reasons to visit the family island of Lanzarote
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Officially part of Spain, Lanzarote is actually much closer to the coast of West Africa. The easternmost of the Canary Islands, this volcanic island is a popular holiday destination all year round, thanks to its sunny climate, warm temperatures and stunning scenery. Beloved by beach lovers and hikers, the island’s laid-back resorts, golden sands and plenty of activities also make it a big hit with families. Here are nine destinations and experiences that will make Lanzarote the perfect island for your family vacation.
Lanzarote has several coastal destinations particularly suitable for families. Playa Blanca in the south of the island is a charming, laid-back town with traditional low-rise architecture and typical Canarian whitewashed houses. The town has an attractive marina and numerous restaurants, supermarkets and bars, as well as several attractive beaches. The gently sloping main beach in the center of town is quite compact and can get quite crowded. Playa Dorada, a short walk east, offers a larger expanse of golden sand with shallow waters and a choice of restaurants nearby.
A ten minute drive from Playa Blanca, you will arrive at the beautiful unspoiled beach of Papagayo, one of the five sandy coves located in the Ajaches Natural Park. This protected wilderness area has pristine white sand and marvelous turquoise waters. There are few facilities in the unspoiled landscape of Papagayo, so bring a picnic, plenty of water, and a parasol.
Puerto del Carmen
Puerto Del Carmen, on the east coast, is a bustling, bustling resort town and the island’s main entertainment hub. Playa Grande is an expansive Blue Flag beach with beautiful golden sand and calm seas. Behind the beach, the wide promenade runs along the seaside resort, lined with numerous shops, bars, clubs and restaurants.
North of Arrecife, the capital of Lanzarote, Costa Teguise is a traditional, family-friendly resort with a choice of four beautiful beaches, water parks, playgrounds and restaurants. If you’re feeling dizzy, take a look at the indoor climbing wall. Enjoy a plethora of water activities such as snorkeling, windsurfing, diving and kayaking, or rent a bike and explore the coast and inland.
A trip to Timanfaya National Park is a must for new visitors to Lanzarote. This amazing and unique lunar terrain is the result of repeated volcanic eruptions over the centuries. Take a seat by the window on a very enjoyable bus tour, which winds dizzyingly through ancient lava fields. You will pass huge ancient craters and stunning rock formations in a fascinating landscape. Then, enjoy a camel ride through the sands at the park border and channel your inner Lawrence of Arabia.
Ride in a yellow submarine
Observe fish and marine life in their natural environment on a trip in a yellow submarine. On a 1-hour excursion from Puerto Calero, your ship plunges 100 feet below the surface, passing wrecks before landing on the ocean floor. Large windows in the purpose-built submarine allow you to enjoy a close-up with life under the waves.
The island’s largest water park, Aquapark, offers all the usual water fun, plus a paintball field and an immersive cinema. Aqualava de Playa Blanca is a smaller, volcano-themed water park ideal for young children, with several slides, a man-made river, a saltwater wave pool, and an octopus that spurts out of the water.
Rancho Texas Wildlife Park
Watch sea lion and bird of prey shows at this wildlife park near Costa Teguise. Paddle a kayak through the Indian Village, cool off in the paddling pool, and watch cowboy lasso demonstrations. Meet the residents of the park, including dolphins, armadillos, tigers, pumas, and Nile crocodiles.
Learn to surf
To the northwest of the island lies the spectacular seaside resort of Famara. This wind-blown five-kilometer stretch of pristine white sand backed by looming cliffs is a great access point for surfing and windsurfing. Several surf schools offer lessons for children and adults for all levels, including beginners.
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