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Exploring Arrecife - Lanzarote's Capital

Jun 1, 11:06 am

Arrecife has been the official capital of Lanzarote since 1852 assuming the mantle from the historic town of Teguise. And is today home to around 45,000 residents and an abundance of interesting attractions, including its very own town centre beach.
Museum of International and Contemporary Art

If you’re planning a break here on Lanzarote then the capital city of Arrecife is well worth exploring. Whilst it doesn’t boast an enormous amount of historic buildings (you´re better off visiting Teguise for these) there is still an organic heart to the city in and around the Charco de San Gines area, where tourists can enjoy the inland lagoon known affectionately as The Puddle and the old buildings close to the church, which is also the venue for the weekly market which takes place here very Saturday.

El Charco is also a great place for a leisurely stroll and a bite to eat, as there are a number of good bars and restaurants here, including the local favourite Casa Ginory, which serves inexpensive sea food.

The city is home to two castles, both of which now house museums. The Castillo de San Jose on the outskirts of the city is home to the Museum of International and Contemporary Art, which features a small exhibition of leading Canarian artists such as César Manrique and Pancho Lasso. Whilst the Castillo de San Gabriel has recently been reopened as a musem dedicated to the history of Arrecife, providing tourists with the opportunity to learn more about the isdland capital.

Probably the best know landmark in the capital is the Arrecife Gran Hotel, as this is the only high rise building on Lanzarote. Sneaked up by developers during the 1980´s this edifice stood empty for many years and became something of an eyesore. Until the local government reached the pragmatic decision to turn it into a luxury hotel. It´s well worth taking a trip up to the rooftop swimming pool and bar area where you can enjoy some of the best views of the island. The Arrecife Gran sits right next door to the excellent palm fringed beach beach, Playa del Reducto, which is a real favourite with locals.

Getting to the capital on public transport is easy as there are regular bus services running into Arrecife from all of the main resorts. Hop on and off at the stop by the beach and enjoy the short stroll into the centre of town. If you´re driving then the easiest places to park are on the rough ground close to El Charco and in the underground car park beneath the Arrecife Gran.




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