Out of this World: Winter Sun Experiences in Lanzarote

Beyond the warmth of the Canarian sunshine and your luxurious resort, Lanzarote is an untamed and dramatic wilderness that has been shaped by volcanic eruptions of its distant past and today is simply bursting with landscapes that feel out of this world. 

With its somewhat surreal terrain of lava flow and ash, parts of Lanzarote are often compared to planet Mars. In fact, the European Space Agency trains its astronauts here, and the island was selected by NASA to practise driving lunar buggies for moon landings!  

Lanzarote is the perfect luxury holiday destination all year round, including for winter sun with its comfortably warm climate and average temperatures of 20°C from December through February!  

Your idyllic days of sun, sea and sand will be amplified as you explore the treasures of this unique Canary Island
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Astronautical Ambience in Timanfaya National Park

You’d be mad to go to Lanzarote and not take a trip into Timanfaya National Park, a seemingly desolate and somewhat eerie moonscape that was forged by cooling lava from now dormant volcanoes. The locals call this place Montañas del Fuego - the Fire Mountains

It’s easy to understand why the park was featured in the 1996 adventure fantasy film set in prehistoric times, One Million Years B.C., as well as the location of a hostile planet in the 1985 space war drama Enemy Mine, among others. 

With its massive craters of rocky earth, it’s unstable underfoot and so the main and popular coach tours are not permitted to walk around. Our advice? Go on a small group walking tour with a ranger. As there’s no shade, this is best experienced in the winter months

Visiting here is a favourite travel memory for Sovereign Luxury Travel’s Head of Commercial, Jon Hill. “It’s literally like being on a different planet! You can stop inside the park at El Diablo Restaurant with amazing panoramic views, and tuck into dishes cooked by the natural geothermal heat, or you can watch a straw burst into flames when it’s dropped into a hole at the visitor centre.”  
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Crystal Vision at Salt Pans

From bubbled barren terrain, another otherworldly experience is to be found at the Janubio Salt Pans. Waters from a natural lagoon formed by the volcanic eruptions are left to evaporate and crystallise into our favourite mealtime seasoning. Salt was an important industry in Lanzarote in the late 19th century and today the salt pans are a protected national heritage site.  

Salt is an important part of Canarian culture and is dyed vibrant colours and used in street displays to celebrate the island’s traditional Corpus Christi festival each year. Even in its natural form, the patchwork of salt flats are wonderfully picturesque with their rising white pyramids. These pile up until they are harvested by hand during the summer.  
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Thorny Bites in the Cactus Garden

Let’s now move to the prickly and imaginative world of Jardín de Cactus, a quarry-turned-garden that was the last endeavour by the illustrious Canarian architect-artist, César Manrique. Wonderfully arranged with its traversing paths, you’ll find over 1,100 cacti varieties of many shapes, sizes, spikes, and flowers from around the world. At the chic terrace café/bar, why not try a green-tinged cactus burger featuring prickly pear cactus? Out. Of. This. World! 
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Into the Dark at Los Hervidores & El Golfo

Not all the lava from the violent volcanic eruptions of the 18th century stayed on land. Los Hervidores is a rugged landscape of caves and cliffs that stretches as far as your eye can see, forged when the roving lava collided with the crashing and cool ocean waves.  

Not far away, you’ll find El Golfo, one of Lanzarote’s renowned black sand beaches. Experience pure drama as you watch the powerful Atlantic Ocean swell as it smashes into the volcanic black rocks.  

While you’re here it’s hard to miss and not be awed by the large, vibrant green crater lake right by the beach, coloured by a unique algae within its waters. For their awe-inspiring grandeur, your heart may skip a beat in these two spots. 
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Parade the Prom by Playa Blanca

Quite the opposite of black sands, discover the resort town of Playa Blanca where inviting restaurants line the harbour. 

“There’s a long promenade that you can stroll down and absorb the bustling atmosphere in the evening, while by day you can wander the pretty yacht-lined harbour of upmarket Marina Rubicón”, reveals Jon. 

You’ll find the large beach of Playa Dorada, right in front of Princesa Yaiza Suite Hotel Resort. For kids and big kids alike, there’s also Aqualava Waterpark nearby, which celebrates the volcanic landscapes, with pools that are heated geothermally and perfect for colder winter days, as well as a saltwater wave pool among the water slides, lazy river, and play structures.  
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Sail Away to Papagayo Beach

More beach bliss is to come your way at Papagayo Beach on Lanzarote’s southern coast. Tucked within Monumento Natural de Los Ajaches Park is a cluster of seven small beaches that are sheltered among craggy and bulbous lava rocks. Step onto divinely soft sands where you can safely go swimming in the warm, azure ocean waters.  

Our recommended way to reach this beach is with a private half day sailing trip on a catamaran, where along the way you can enjoy a delicious local lunch or tapas and refreshments on board, before arriving at Papagayo Beach. You can even go kayaking, snorkelling or paddling using the equipment provided! 
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Dizzying Jaunts in Lava Tubes

Lanzarote is teeming with lava tubes - underground cave systems formed when lava travels beneath the surface. At La Cueva de los Verdes, you’ll find one that was formed over 4,000 years ago and is four miles long, although only one mile is open to visitors. This section is wonderfully lit up, so that you can enjoy a spectacle of light and shadow as you wander through several connected galleries.  

Near Cueva de los Verdes is the lava tube envisioned by César Manrique, Jameos del Agua, where you’ll find an underground wonderland! There’s a cool, curvy open-top swimming pool, restaurant and bar, as well as an auditorium that hosts live music events by night. Always joining you in the cave are a cast of teeny tiny native albino crabs!
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Walk the Crater of Volcán El Cuervo

Would it be rude to come all the way to volcanic Lanzarote without going to see one up close?  

You be the judge, but that’s where our final out of this world experience comes in handy. At Volcán El Cuervo you can actually climb into the mouth of a volcano! Don’t worry though, there’s little chance of an eruption! Not only is it a fascinating way to learn about the island’s historic geology and a great holiday hike, you’ll be rewarded with the most incredible panoramic birds-eye views.

For more information, call our Personal Travel Planners on:

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