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Unearthing the Wild Beauty of Lanzarote

Authored by Charlotte Richardson

Lanzarote holidays have developed a reputation as a cheap and cheerful escape, a home from home in the sun almost, but there is so much more to the island than that.

With a beautiful, wild volcanic landscape, a stunning national park, black sandy beaches and underground caves, the next time you are booking a trip head to Lanzarote for a holiday that is full of surprises.

Timanfaya National Park

Perhaps one of the most famous tourist attractions in Lanzarote, this volcanic landscape is well worth a visit.

The tour begins with a bus ride around the park, upon disembarking your guide will then demonstrate the intensity of the heat below ground (the onsite restaurant, El Diablo, actually utilizes this heat to grill your food) and, for the brave of heart, a journey to the top will be rewarded with fabulous views of the lava flows across the area.

A great day out for any nature enthusiasts!

Playa de Papagayo

Lanzarote may be famed for its volcanic, black sandy beaches, however Playa de Papagayo, albeit a trek, is well worth a visit. You would be forgiven for thinking you were in the Caribbean, with its perfect white sand and azure waters.

This is a great spot for any snorkelers; the crystal clear waters provide the perfect opportunity to observe the diverse aquatic life below.

Fundación César Manrique

Photo CC by dr_zoidberg

An homage not only to César Manrique but modern art as a whole, this home looks more like some kind of evil genius’ lair.

Built in a lava bubble, over several floors, the building includes a multitude of interesting features and pieces of his artwork and sculptures, as well as magnificent views of the volcanic landscapes, making this a must-see for any art lover (or James Bond fan).

Cueva de Los Verdes

Photo CC by Macnolete

An underground labyrinth of caves, Cueva de Los Verdes is the perfect place to go and escape the midday sun. A guided tour will provide you with all the information you could need about lava tunnels and volcanos, while any geology buffs will love the different coloured rock formations and the places where the molten lava has been carved into the rock.

The surprise at the end of the tour ensures you will definitely not want to miss out on this sight.

Volcanic Vineyards

When Lanzarote’s volcanos erupted in the 18th century and all the lush greenery was turned black by a thick layer of ash, every farmer thought they had lost their livelihood. However, many soon discovered that volcanic soil is actually perfect for a select type of plants: grapes.

Not only did the vines receive vital nutrients from the volcanic material, the ash also provided a layer of insulation to regulate the soil’s temperature. Even if you’re not a wine fan, the landscape alone makes for some fantastic views; the spots of bright green dotting the black landscape are very striking. The wine itself doesn’t normally make it out of the Canary Islands, so it is quite difficult to track down.

However, El Grifo produces some fabulous, pale green, dry white wines, with slight floral notes. Similar in taste to typical Italian wines like Pinot Grigio, it makes a great accompaniment to some authentic, locally-produced tapas!

Photo CC by exfordy

So don’t believe the hype. While Lanzarote may have fully embraced the tourist trade, there are still many wonderful natural sights to see in this unique, rugged landscape.

Be sure to visit any of our top 5 sights for a holiday unlike any other!

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Bio: Charlotte Richardson decided after leaving University that she was never going to be happy with the 9-5 so she packed up and flew to Spain, where she now lives in Barcelona teaching English to local businessmen and blogging in her spare time.

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