So.. I started writing this blogpost on the plane back home from this trip because I didn’t want to finish it a month after the trip.. we’re almost 9 months later now 🙂 story of my life but HERE IT FINALLY IS.
Normally I don’t mind a busy schedule at all, but since we only got 3,5 days off (flights included) we decided to plan enough time to relax in between.
So, one amazing island, three days, let’s go!!
You definitely need a car when you want to get around the island. It mostly takes about 20 minutes to get from one place (must-see) to another but the bus could take a while and isn’t always available, which is a bummer if you only have 4 days to spend.
We rented our car with Cicar and everything was super well organised. It only took us a few minutes to get our car once we arrived at the airport. We rented the car for 3 days (3x24hours) and paid €68, insurance included. Not bad, right? We practically drove around all day and only had to pay €25 for gas for the entire trip. Cheap af!
Overall, the weather is extremely nice in Lanzarote since it almost never rains. We went there in the beginning of May and though we didn’t have a whole lot of sunshine all day, it was still warm enough to get some serious swimming done. But don’t let them fool you (like they did me). Even when the sun is shining.. you’ll be surprised at the coastlines with a lot of wind. I suggest taking a little jacket or scarf with you when visiting some of the must-sees like Timanfaya.
Where to stay
We stayed in a hostel, La santa House in a little town called (guess what..) La Santa. I really, really recommend staying there since we had the best time. The owner was so friendly. The house itself was extremely clean and, not to forget, had an amazing pool. You can choose to stay in a dorm room like we did (€62,70 for 3 nights) or get a private room.
La Santa itself is perfectly situated in the middle of the island. It has an amazing surf beach nearby and has a few little restaurants if you don’t want to go far to grab some food. There’s a supermarket on walking distance from the hostel where you can find almost everything you need.
You can also choose to stay in Puerto del Carmen since this is the most touristic city on the island where you got a long sand beach, a lot of bars, restaurants and hotels but as I said, it’s only a 20 minute drive from la santa and as always I do prefer the less touristic, more authentic places.
Must – See discount
Through the Cact Lanzarote Tourist Centres you can buy a combo ticket for almost all must-see’s which saves you up till €10,55. We didn’t do this (oops) but kind of regretted it afterwards.
We arrived two hours late due to a strike in France which delayed our flight (yayy) but once we arrived on the island, everything went super smooth. We picked up our car, started driving to our hostel and were immediately ready to be amazed by the breathtaking views (read: only white houses, black soil and a lot of cacti ) around us.
Since it was already 9pm when settled in our hostel, we decided to just grab something to eat on the mainstreet in La Santa. We quickly bumped into a local café called Yemaya Bistro Bar. Don’t expect to get everything you find on the menu but the chef made us his special and it was exquisite.
Afterwards we drank some local beers with a few people we met in our hostel. We still had to plan everything for the next three days so this was probably a good moment to do so.
DAY 1 – SOUTH
Since we had 2 full days to explore the island, we decided to take on the southern part of the island first, while leaving enough room to relax and take on the rest of the island the next day.
We left our hostel early in the morning and instead of driving directly to the Timanfaya National Park we took a little detour and headed for the bumpy (but beautiful) road along the beach. Let me tell you.. totally worth it! It was the perfect scenic route to just clear you head and enjoy the beauty of nature. If you want to know which road we took, spot the blue line on the map below.
El Golfo – El lago verde
The name itself says it all! Along the remains of this volcanic cone you’ll find a little path which leads you to a very small green/yellowish lagoon. We didn’t know what to think of it really as it kinda looks like a chemical pond that is ready to let go of some lab monsters any moment now (aaah, the fantasy). Nonetheless this area and the little city of El Golfo definitely is worth taking this detour.
Well, this one really just is a trip to another planet. The volcanic landscapes you pass by are breathtaking. It really is a shame that you have to do this by tour bus but on the other hand it’s nice to know they do their utmost best to preserve this element of the island.
Enough sightseeing for one day! We decided to head all the way South to relax the rest of the afternoon with a nice picknick and hopefully soak up a bit of sun. And we did!! We we’re lucky not many people had the same plan as we did because it was amazingly calm at such a beautiful place. One of the reasons why may have to do something with the road that leads you there. A bumpy ride into the middle of nowhere is definitely an understatement. So after grabbing a little bite on the beach (we bought some bread with brie and ham in a local store) and melting away under the burning sun, we decided to go for a little swim. A little swim it was because the water was so damn cold. But hey, s*ck it up and dive in.
La Bodega el Grifo
Turned out the day wasn’t over after all. Around 5pm we decided to head back towards our hostel and stop by a one of the many wineries to start our apero the right way! Since we heard such good things of this winery, which is also one of the eldest winery in Spain, we decided to make a quick stop here. Unfortunately we only arrived at La bodega El Grifo at 5.30pm with only half an hour left before closing time so it was too late to get a tour. We then got two options: a) come back the next day to do the tour (which was hard since we wanted to see the northern part of the island the next day) or b) “you get half an hour to ‘take the tour’ and see the museum yourselves and 15min afterwards to finish your included wines before we close the doors” You can take a guess for which option we went 🙂
Once back in our hostel we planned a cosy night in with the group. We all headed out for the supermarket at the end of our street and grabbed a whole lot of pasta, veggies and yes.. more wine. Some fixed the appetizers, we prepared the main dish and we all ended up spending the whole night in the garden with some nice music and drinks talking about everyone’s plans before heading upstairs and falling asleep within the second.
DAY 2 – NORTH
Sunny day ahead according to google.. but not really. It turned out to be the greyest day ever? Quick breakfast at the poolside of our hostel and ready to conquer the Northern part of the island today.
Fundacion César Manrique
I got one word for this man.. Wauw! This ‘museum’ is just so impressive and what makes it even more beautiful is that it reminds you of all the amazing things this man has accomplished around the island. I can now tell you all about it but if you do decide to some touristic activities, just visit this monument and the place will speak for itself.
Jameos del agua
As opposed to what we heared, Simon and I both experienced this wasn’t that great of a ‘wauw’ factor. Afterwards we realised this was probably due to the cloudy weather that day. We did get a lovely coffee on it’s terrace though and I think it’s a magical scenery to dine if you have the chance. So if you can.. get this one on your itinerary on a sunny day.. you’ll understand why.
Cueva de los Verdes
Keeping it ‘brief and no pics’ on this one.. It might look like a regular cave tour but it’s really a absolute must-do with an unexpected turn of events. Try not to read (look for photos) too much about this place so you don’t bump into any spoilers.
Mirador del Rio
While driving up there it felt like driving towards heaven. The clouds where this low that we were driving through them. As I said before, the weather conditions weren’t perfect but since we were on this side of the island now, we decided to take the chance. No luck.. once we arrived at the top, they told us there was no reason for us to get to the viewpoint since the clouds blocked literally everything and thus, they would be closing soon. A little disappointed we headed back south to find a lunch spot when suddenly, by looking to our right, we came across this amazing view. It was the same view you would see in Mirador del Rio.. but now for free.. without any tourists. We parked the car on the left side at a little inlet and had our lunch with this most gorgeous view. How to get there? First, just drive to Mirador del rio. When you’re headed back down from there, take the right turn down and just keep driving until you bump into this view.
Casa César Manrique
Do not expect it to be as beautiful as Fundacion César Manrique but I can imagine that this is a paradise for architects/interior designers. You can’t take any pictures, but it was interesting to learn a bit more about his life and influences which led him to create these amazing projects around the island.
Jardin de Cactus
Before heading all the way back down, we just had one more stop on the list. And it was so worth it. As you already can imagine, you see cacti all over the island but never this many, this big and all in one place. Once again.. way to go, Cesar. Since the sun showed up on our way trough the garden, we took the time to enjoy a glass of wine on their terrace and just soak it all in.. the sun and the wine that is.
As we took the West route back to our hostel we decided to stop at Famara Beach since we actually really wanted to do some surfing before going back to our hostel and this place was the most recommended by everyone. The beach itself was really quiet.. but very windy! Turned out the waves weren’t that great for surfing, so we decided to just watch the others struggle and enjoyed some music on the rocky beach before heading back. A quick shower, some touch ups and we were ready to head for Puerto del Carmen for our last evening in Lanzarote.
Puerto Del Carmen
Puerto Del Carmen, aka the capital of the island, really just was the typical Spanish beach city full of tourists you imagine. We went to a ‘painful for the eyes’ Italian restaurant which actually wasn’t at all Italian but luckily not expensive either. We got some drinks at a nice cocktail bar along the beach side and then headed straight up to Ruta 66. Honestly THE place to be if you want to go out for some drinks and fun with brits in costume, all drunk af.
Since we went out in Puerto del Carmen, we decided to let the hangover kick in and relaxed by the pool for a few hours with a extensive breakfast. Initially we had to check out by 10am but it wasn’t at all a problem for the landlord to stay in the hostel till the afternoon to just enjoy the poolside a little bit longer before heading for the airport.
Puerto Del Carmen Beach
Everything packed and stored in the car, we decided to get the most out of the sunny weather and headed for the beach in Puerto Del Carmen since it was only a 10 minute drive from the Airport and we had to return our car by 4pm.
The beach itself was really quiet, so it was amazing to just relax and spend the afternoon there. Long live the off tourist season. After some serious sunbathing and before heading back to the car we decided to get just one more snack on the pier. We came across this typical tourist bar (forgot the name) but the food was unbelievably cheap and they just had the best hangover smoothies. Believe me, it’s worth strolling the beachwalk for.
Afterwards we got to return our car to Cicar in under 10 minutes and were very sorry that we didn’t have a flight delay and got to spend a few more hours in Lanzarote.
If you after all this decide to visit Lanzarote (you really should btw), I’m happy to help with any more questions.
Now let’s get that Philippines blogpost going!
Lots of kisses x