Lanzarote attracted more than 3 million tourists in 2019 and with an average year-round temperature of 22C, short flights from anywhere in Europe and world-class beaches, it’s not surprising, is it?
But does Lanzarote, the easternmost island of the Canary Islands, have more to offer families than just beaches? Well, yes!
Not so long ago BritMums flew out to investigate with Turismo Lanzarote and invited along some family travel bloggers to join us. Between the 6 of us (Jen from Jenography, Susanna from Modern Mother, Lisa from Travel Loving Family, Carrie from Flying with a Baby, Helen from Actually Mummy and Sarah from Extraordinary Chaos), we took thousands of photos, hours of video footage and pages upon pages of notes! Below we share our favourite activities through articles, videos and social media posts. (Note: Due to COVID-19, check all attractions and destinations for openings and restrictions.)
What to do your first day in Lanzarote
We flew into Arrecife airport and headed straight to the gorgeous Castillo de San Jose for an absolutely fabulous lunch overlooking the harbour and Atlantic and sculptures of horses created by Jason de Caires Taylor.
Our dessert was calorific but incredibly tasty!
Visit the Jardin de Cactus
Our next stop was Jardin de Cactus. Created by the islands late legendary artist and architect, César Manrique. It’s a fascinating place to explore over 4,500 specimens of cacti. We visited towards the end of the day and were treated to an amazing sunset which you can see over on Sarah’s review of the gardens.
Hotel Grand Teguise Playa – reviews
We then checked into our rather posh hotel, Hotel Grand Teguise Playa, a 320 room hotel with stunning views over the swimming pools, Playa del Jubilo beach and the Atlantic Ocean. The lobby and premium rooms certainly had the wow factor as shown in this review post by Susanna and in the video below by Helen.
Visiting Timanfaya National Park with kids
Our first day was spent exploring the island’s vast volcanic landscape at Timanfaya National Park. We rode over the volcanic dunes, saw geysers shoot water vapor high in the air. It was certainly a bumpy ride and one we will not forget for a very long time.
We rode camels over the dunes then visited the Timanfaya Visitor Centre.
Great for younger kids: At the visitor centre you can learn more about volcanoes and experience a simulation of a volcano erupting — exciting and a bit noisy!
Great for Insta kids: You can walk out over the lava fields at the centre on a boardwalk. This is a great place to take dramatic pictures while learning about the importance of protecting these fields.
Great for kids of all ages: We ended up by the El Diablo restaurant where a ranger let us hold volcanic ash that was still hot! The ash looks like small pebbles and you have to bounce it between your hands to ‘hold’ it because of the high temperature. Stick your hand in a crack between the rocks and feel the heat. Watch the geysers from the pressure that builds underground. This is absolutely a top stop for anyone visiting Lanzarote.
The El Diablo Restaurant in Lanzarote’s Timanfaya National Park
The El Diablo Restaurant was just one of the many incredible restaurants we dined at whilst visiting the island. Here, the food is cooked over a deep pit that leads to the heat below. That is to say, a volcano cooks your food.
Check out this guide by Sarah’s recommendations to 5 Unique Restaurants, Lanzarote for more restaurant recommendations including a restaurant in a lava tube and dining under the stars at an open air cinema.
Explore Cueva de los Verdes underground tunnels
Our afternoon was spent at Cueva de los Verdes exploring some of the vast networks of tunnels and caves carved through the cooling lava rock by red-hot lava streams. We found it fascinating to walk through the rabbit warren of tunnels, and caverns caused by gas bubble explosions.
The caves really are a ‘hidden wonder;’ used as a hiding place in the 17th century to avoid capture and enslavement by pirates.Helen from Actually Mummy
‘They now house an underground concert stage you’d never imagine was there, and more than a few surprises. I won’t say more than this as I don’t want to spoil the biggest surprise of all, but trust me, it’s worth a visit!‘ writes Helen in her post Volcanoes in Lanzarote: Best Day Ever!
Visiting water park Aqua Park Costa Teguise
After a fun and busy first day you would have thought we’d be ready to chill out on the beaches for our second day but the tourist board had more fun planned! Our morning was spent once again acting like big kids, this time at the Aqua Park Costa Teguise…
Visiting Rancho Texas in Lanzarote
A Texas-themed After racing each other down slides and enjoying a swim we headed to Rancho Texas, a zoo and water park which puts on several shows daily featuring birds of prey, sea lions, dolphins and cockatoos. Both of these parks and all the other attractions we visited can be seen below in Lisa’s video featuring the best attractions for families in Lanzarote).
It’s fair to say that our group discovered that the volcanic island of Lanzarote has so much more to offer tourists than beaches! Susanna summarises the must see attractions in this helpful post – 10 things to do in Lanzarote – that’s not lazing on a beach! Jen shares her 10 favourite activities on the island and Lisa shares her recommendations in this round-up – 15 fun things to do in Lanzarote with kids.
If you are looking for help in planning a trip to Lanzarote check out Carrie’s comprehensive 7 day Itinerary for a family holiday in Lanzarote and her Lanzarote Family Holiday Tips. And finally, if you’ve been to Lanzarote before and have the ‘been there, done that, got the t-shirt’ attitude you’ll change your mind when you read this post – Reacquainting myself with Lanzarote – Ten years on.
Our final tip for a holiday to Lanzarote? Forget being nice to the kids and make sure you nab the window seat, the bird’s eye views of the island are truly spectacular…