Lanzarote is the place to visit if you love volcanic scenery and stunning natural sights. While Tenerife also has a volcano park, with Lanzarote you don't need to go anywhere to enjoy the beauty - just saunter out of Playa Blanca towards Playa Papagayo and prepare to be amazed - on the one side you have the unspoilt golden sand beaches and on the other side the deserty-volcanic landscapes with clouds tracing shadows along the mountains. I could sit there all day and enjoy the views.
But you can see even more if you go to the Timanfaya National Park, which offers some stunning landscapes. Read on for more details on what you can get up to on Lanzarote.
Playa Blanca is not the biggest resort on Lanzarote and, when it comes to nightlife, it is pretty quiet. What it can offer though is the beautiful Marina Rubicon, which has a market on twice a week. The market is quite the thing (when I say 'the thing', it means busfuls of tourists get taken there), so it gets rather crowded. If you choose to visit the marina outside the market times, you will be met with a rather upmarket atmosphere and some lovely boutiques to browse and cafes to relax in.
Another benefit of staying in Playa Blanca is the proximity to the stunning Papagayo beaches. Choose a hotel on the east side of town and the first one, Playa Mujeres, will be just a short stroll away. The beaches are unspoilt - that does mean there are no facilities like parasols, sun loungers, toilets or cafes, so come prepared.
Everyone loves beautiful sunsets and Playa Blanca can deliver them in abundance! With our hotel located right by the sea we were able to enjoy stunning views every night.
Finally, you can easily hop on a ferry and visit the neighbouring island of Fuerteventura. You can either go for one of the big ferries (Fred Olsen or Naviera Armas) or save some money and take one of the smaller tourist boats (do be aware though that if it gets choppy you'll really feel it on the smaller boat, so may not be suited for the easily seasick people; this is coming from personal experience...). You might also want to look at tour options, as we didn't find much to do in Corralejo.
Playa Blanca to Punto del Papagayo hike
If you enjoy a hike, then walking from the edge of Playa Blanca to Punto del Papagayo may be just the thing to undertake during your stay on Lanzarote. From the edge of Playa Blanca, it will take you about an hour to get to Punto del Papagayo, but one of the best things about this hike is being able to make a rest stop on a beach and maybe even take a dip at multiple points during the hike. The views are great all along the route.
The hike is not too difficult, but bear in mind there are several climbs and descents while the terrain varies from rocky to sandy. In spite of the appeal of wearing flip flops on the beachy parts of the hikes, I would recommend wearing trainers or something comfy that covers your toes to save them from scrapes or injuries.
Also stock up on water and bear in mind that the only place that sells food on the route after you depart Playa Blanca will be by the very last beach. The only other traces of civilisation you will encounter are parking lots.
Timanfaya National Park
Timanfaya National Park is an absolute must see on Lanzarote - if you can only visit one place, make it this! You will drive through beautiful volcanic landscapes to get there, so have your camera ready! When you arrive, you will have to disembark, as you can only go through the national park by their bus to avoid people stealing rocks and damaging the area.
They do a geysir show and there is also a restaurant where food is cooked over volcanic heat - certainly a different kind of experience! The restaurant also has great views over the national park. NB! If you are doing an organised bus tour of the island, you will not have time to eat at the restaurant, so if you do want to give the food a try, you will have to make your own arrangements later. If you are interested in our experience of visiting the restaurant by taxi, you can read about it in the blog (click here to go to post).
El Golfo Green Lake
The Green Lake is located in a half eroded volcano crater on the coast of Lanzarote. The unusual green colour comes from the minerals and micro-organisms contained in the lake.
It is quite small, so it won't take you long to see it, but you can go for a nice stroll around and in the area and admire the stunning volcanic walls and perhaps head to the village of El Golfo.
Jameos del Agua
If I had to describe Jameos del Agua with one word I would struggle - it is a site of natural beauty with a lake and little albino crabs living in it, yes, but it also has a swimming pool (not sure if that is ever open for swimming, it wasn't on our visit), a bar (same as the swimming pool was not staffed during our visit) and an auditorium. It is certainly a very unique place!
Lanzarote Travel Video
Photos are great, but for those looking for more, this is our first attempt at creating travel videos. This video is shot in and around Playa Blanca and has views over the the town, sea and Fuerteventura, Marina Rubicon and Papagayo beaches.