Arrecife, Lanzarote, Canary Islands
Boasting a clean beach, promenade and parks as well as all the shopping, nightlife, hustle and bustle you would expect in a lively port city.
A pleasant promenade runs along the seafront from the picturesque inland lagoon, known as El Charco, past the main shopping areas to the wide sands of Playa del Reducto. If you continue to walk along the coastal path, out of the city, you will come to the quiet beach at El Cable.
At El Charco you can stroll around the lagoon, which harbours small boats, stopping for lunch in one of the water-side cafes.
Things to Do
Historic sights of interest are the attractive 17th century Church of San Gines, near the Artisan Market, the 18th century Castillo de San Jose and the 16th century Castillo de San Gabriel. The Castillo de San Jose, located between the lagoon and the ferry port, houses the International Museum of Contemporary Art as well as a restaurant where you can enjoy an evening meal overlooking the Bay of Naos. The Castillo de San Gabriel houses a history museum and is located on a small island which can be reached via a cobblestone walkway or the Puente de la Bolas (bridge), both of which lead out from the promenade.
The Fiesta de San Gines, celebrating the patron saint, takes place over several days in August and features sporting and cultural events around El Charco lagoon as well as a spectacular firework display on the beach. Another colourful event is the Corpus Christi fiesta, held in June and, of course, there is an annual Carnival.
Out and About
Arrecife is the capital of Lanzarote and being home to around half of the island's residents is perfect for experiencing everyday life in a modern working town.
Between the lagoon and the international branded shops on the Calle Real, you can browse the stalls at the Artisan Market. The market is held each morning (except Sunday) and is a great place for buying fresh local produce and handicrafts. There is a further market, on Wednesdays, at the Parque Jose Ramirez Cerda.
Strolling south from the lagoon and along the promenade you will find a children's playground and the Jose Ramirez Cerda Park where you will see the bandstand, housing the tourist information office; large lawned gardens and finally, the long, sweeping golden sands of Playa del Reducto beach.
Places of interest just outside of Arrecife which you might like to visit include the splendid gardens and art gallery at the Cesar Manrique Foundation in Tahiche (9km). At the Timanfaya National Park (30km) you can take a guided coach tour or camel safari through the volcanic landscapes and enjoy panoramic views.
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