- Canary Islands
- Where to stay
- Things To Do
- Best Tours
If you're planning a trip to Lanzarote and you want to go out and explore (which you definitely should do), then read our list of the best things to do on the island.
Although it is one of the smaller islands in terms of size, Lanzarote is actually one of the most popular Canary Islands among foreign visitors, so there are plenty of things to do and activities for the entire family.
There are 3 big resorts in Lanzarote and since the island is so small, you can easily visit all of them, especially if you have a rental car (but you can also do it by using the local buses).
Puerto del Carmen is the largest and most popular resort in Lanzarote.
It's a great place for nightlife, as there are plenty of bars, restaurants and clubs that stay open until the early morning hours.
Puerto del Carmen also has several great beaches, shops and activities for kids, so it's good for a family holiday also, especially the Matagorda area. The town is situated close to the airport, so it's extremely easy to get here, by bus, taxi or car. Since it's situated very centrally on the island, it's easy to make daily excursions on your own or with tour companies.
One of the rising resorts in Lanzarote, great for families with young kids, as there are many activities around. The largest waterpark on the island is right in Costa Teguise and there are also many hotels with kids clubs so that mom and dad can also have a proper holiday. Playa de las Cucharas is known as one of the best beaches in Lanzarote, although a bit windier compared with the beaches in other resorts.
Situated in the very south of Lanzarote, Playa Blanca is a bit quieter compared to Puerto del Carmen, but it's got great beaches and many attractions nearby.
Playa Blanca also has a large marina from where you can take a lot of boat trips, including the ferry to Fuerteventura, if you're curious to spend a day in Corralejo.
If you don't want to rent a car and drive on the island on your own, you always have the option of going on an organized tour, which will show you the highlights on the island.
The main points of interest in Lanzarote are all included in this tour: Timanfaya National Park (bus ride through the volcanic landscape), Jameos del Agua, Haria Valley (or the valley of the 1000 palms) and many more interesting places, like Monumento del Campesino.
This is a really comprehensive tour and also one of the most popular tours in Lanzarote, which will surely make you fall in love with the beauty of this charming volcanic island. The tour is recommended especially for first-time visitors to Lanzarote who want to discover and see as much as possible in one day.
What to do in Lanzarote for a fun family day: visit the animal parks and water parks
Ranchos Texas is the only animal park in Lanzarote, with a wild west theme and it's a great attraction for both kids and adults.
The park is situated very close to Puerto del Carmen and it's easy to get to by taxi or shuttle bus.
You can spend an entire day looking at the animals and the shows and in the evenings they have a western night, where you can party like you are in Texas.
Aqualava Waterpark is located in the Playa Blanca resort and although fairly small if you compare it to Siam Park for example, it can provide a day of family fun, featuring the only saltwater wave pool in Lanzarote.
Aqualava is a great place to visit in Lanzarote especially for families with kids, since they have attractions for all ages, including also a lazy river, which is also popular with adults.
If you'd have to choose just one place to visit in Lanzarote (but I personally don't know why you'd do that), it should be Timanfaya National Park and the bus trip around the volcanoes, to see the crater and learn more information about the volcanic of Lanzarote.
Also, even if you don't have lunch at the restaurant located at the car park, you should go inside to see their barbecue where the chicken is cooked using the heat coming from the volcano.
The green lagoon or the Green Lake appears in many photos when you look for info about Lanzarote and it's really a place you should see with your own eyes. The color looks different depending on the moment of the day and the light outside, but no matter when you do, it's interesting to admire the lake and the ocean so close together.
Los Hervideros is usually paired as a visit with El Golfo and it's one of the best places where you can see the force of the ocean around the island of Lanzarote. The best time to visit is when it's high tide, to see the full force of the currents and waves, as this side of the coast will show you the wild nature of Lanzarote, very different from the vibe you get in the resorts.
Mirador del Rio offers the most breathtaking views in Lanzarote, overlooking the island of La Graciosa. Take care to go up there on a sunny day, otherwise, you won't see much.
You have to visit Jameos del Agua to understand more about Cesar Manrique's vision for Lanzarote. With it's lake filled with albino crabs and its unique concert hall, Jameos del Agua is one of the best places to visit in Lanzarote.
By visiting the Green Caves or Cueva de los Verdes in Spanish you get the opportunity to go inside a lava tube that has solidified after the various eruptions that have taken place in Lanzarote. The cave is visited with a guided tour that lasts for one hour and it's really interesting to learn about the island's volcanic history.
An entire garden, filled with different types of cacti, offering also great views of the ocean. It's a nice activity for an hour or two, especially on a more cloudy day when you don't feel like being on the beach.
The Cactus Garden (Jardin de Cactus) is also the brainchild of Lanzarote's famous César Manrique, so the place brings together the volcanic nature of the island with a collection of cacti, making for an interesting place to visit while in Lanzarote.
Situated inside a protected area, Papagayo beach is probably the most famous beach in Lanzarote and the one that you see on all the postcards. Go there to see the most beautiful turquoise waters but remember to take something to drink and eat with you, as there are no shops inside this natural park, although there is a restaurant overlooking the beach.
If you don't have a rental car or you simply don't want to drive all the way there, you can hop on a catamaran cruise, which also includes lunch and unlimited drinks and it's a fun way to see the beaches of Costa de Papagayo, while stopping to swim and snorkel along the way.
Famara beach is any surfer's dream and the place to come if you want to start surfing. Also, come visit to see the most amazing sunsets in Lanzarote and to enjoy a meal with fresh fish at one of the small local restaurants.
Each year, between the months of February and March, Lanzarote and the rest of the Canary Islands celebrate Carnival season. There's a party everywhere from Puerto del Carmen, Playa Blanca, Costa Teguise, Arrecife and even La Graciosa. If you're visiting at that time, do read more about the carnival in Lanzarote.
After seeing La Graciosa from Mirador del Rio you'll definitely wish to see it with your own eyes from up close. The island has very few residents and most of them live there only during the summer months. There are no asphalt roads and you rent a bike if you want to explore the island and enjoy its beauty. Playa de la Francesa and Playa de las Conchas are the best beaches on La Graciosa, just remember to take your sunscreen as there's no place to hide from the sun.
Haria is a typical Canarian village, situated in the valley known as the Valley of 1000 palms.
This is actually the greenest part of Lanzarote, compared to the arid aspect the rest of the island has. You can stop for a short walk in Haria or maybe come on Saturday to visit the local market. Here's a list of things to do in Haria.
Teguise was the capital of Lanzarote before Arrecife, so it's a small town full of historic buildings and significance.
Teguise is a sleepy town during the weekdays and only comes alive on Sunday, when it's a big market day. If you want to explore more around the town, you can come during the other days and walk around to find out more about the history of Lanzarote.
The market in Teguise takes place every Sunday and it gets visitors from all over the island.
There are hundreds of stalls, with handmade objects, clothes, food and even the usual fake bags and watches. There's something for everyone, just take care of your purse and haggle the price before you buy something.
Teguise market is the largest market in Lanzarote and probably the largest in the Canary Islands.
Explore the north of Lanzarote on a unique and adrenaline-pumping tour.
Enjoy a small group of a maximum of 5 buggies, starting from Costa Teguise and visiting places like the old quarries of Guatiza, Los Cocoteros and reaching Lanzarote's highest point, Peñas del Chache.
La Geria is the valley where the wine region of Lanzarote is located and a visit here will give you the opportunity to sample various types of wines produced on the island. Being the driver while on a wine tour may be a pretty bad experience for the one behind the wheel, so in this case, a tour would be more suitable, so everyone will be able to have a taste.
Watch the sunset over the Atlantic Ocean by embarking on a 2.5-hour cruise aboard a modern and super-fast boat. There's also a good chance of seeing dolphins and other types of marine life during your trip, which is always exciting.
The cruise includes champagne and complimentary pastries, served by the professional crew while you enjoy watching the sunset over the ocean.
Arrecife is the capital of Lanzarote and it's located very close to the airport and it's easy to get there either by car or by bus.
Although it's not the most exciting thing to see in Lanzarote, it can give you an idea in regards to local life beyond the tourist resorts. And they do have some pretty places like Charco San Gines and or Playa del Reducto. You can read further about the best things to do in Arrecife if you do decide to visit..
If you want to shop while on holiday in Lanzarote, a good idea is to visit the local markets. Every town and resort has at least one market day and you can read all about markets in Lanzarote if you want to know more. You'll find everything from authentic craft products, to souvenirs and knock-offs like sunglasses and clothing. Teguise has the largest market on the island, but the one in Playa Blanca is in a nice location, in the marina, and some of the stalls move from one market to another, so you can find similar products between all markets.
If you've already visited Timanfaya National Park with the bus tour and you'd like to explore even further, you can go on one of the walking tours organized by the authority that has the park into administration. There are several guided walks available and you need to book online in advance.
If maybe you are curious about Fuerteventura, why not pop over and visit for the day? It is very easy to cross from Lanzarote to Fuerteventura on board of the ferry, and afterward, you can spend the entire day either in Corralejo, or you can take a quick taxi to Corralejo Natural Park, see the sand dunes and the amazing beaches, before heading back again to Lanzarote in the evening.
The famous Spanish César Manrique was originally from Lanzarote, so a lot of the main attractions in Lanzarote are his creation, showing us today the vision he had for his island in terms of blending design and functionality with respect for the environment and the surrounding natural space.
The location where the Foundation is now used to be Cesar Manrique's home for twenty years, between 1968 and 1988, and the house offers truly a unique experience, as it sits on a 30,000 sqm plot, and it combines modern elements of design with old traditional architecture, specific to Lanzarote.
If you're staying in Puerto del Carmen, one of the island's most popular resorts, we highly recommend the walk to Puerto Calero, which can be completed in under one hour one way.
If you've done it all and think there's nothing more to discover on the island...think again! Here's a list of secret places in Lanzarote to add to your list of places to see.
Located inside the Fortress Santa Barbara, the Pirate Museum can prove to be an interesting experience for adults and children as well.
The Pirate Museum is located next to the Villa de Teguise and boasts spectacular views of the ocean and the island.
Lanzarote is a great place to visit with the family and you should check out our list of things to do with kids in Lanzarote in order to plan some fun days for the little ones.