Playa Blanca, Lanzarote
With Lanzarote fast gaining a reputation as rather an upmarket destination, Playa Blanca certainly has its part to play.
Literally translated as ‘white beach,’ Playa Blanca started out as a small fishing village near the southern-most tip of Lanzarote, and has become the second most popular resort on the island. But, even with a bustling marina, a seafront-lined with shops, bars and restaurants it still manages to retain a quiet charm. Overlooked by the dormant volcano, Montana Roja the town with its peaceful dazzlingly-white sandy bays and nearby geological wonders presents a wonderful place for the whole family to enjoy.
Playa Blanca has an understated sophistication that has recently enticed distinguished guests to its splendid shores. Maybe the smart-set have got it right!
Out and About
Marina Rubicon certainly gives Playa Blanca that stylish edge. A sea-front development of upmarket restaurants and designer boutiques overlooks a fantastic marina bursting with luxury yachts and boats, and with a market selling everything from handcrafted good to local wines on a Wednesday and Saturday, there’s every reason to visit.
For a slice of tradition, head over to the charming village of Yaiza. Situated in the foothills of the National Park of Timanfaya, it has twice won the prize for being the loveliest village in Spain. Surrounded by craters and volcanic earth there sits a pristine square with a 17th century church, pretty gardens and a selection of wonderful tapas bars. White-washed houses reminiscent of North Africa sit side by side in this enchanting little village.
For an experience you will never forget, visit Timanfaya National Park. The Montanas del Fuego (Fire Mountains) are a must-see. Created in 1730, when more than 100 volcanoes rose up and devastated the island, visitors can imagine what the earth looked like when it was first formed. In 1968 the area was declared a national park and there are various tours you can take to traverse this unforgettable landscape.
For sun-worshippers everywhere, there is Playa Blanca beach itself, a small white beach with a mix of sand and rocks. Although it is in the town it’s probably the quietest of the resort’s main beaches, with Playa Dorada to the east and Playa Flamingo to the west proving slightly more popular. But, to the east of the marina is one of the island's most amazing beaches - Papagayo. Multiple beaches and coves exhibit pure white sand and crystalline waters to take the breath away. These unspoilt beaches can be reached by water taxi from Playa Blanca and are well worth the fare.
Home to some of the best villas on the island, you’ll be spoilt for choice. With luxury villas next to the oceanfront, in upmarket residential areas close to Playa Blanca resort and its wonderful beaches, or within walking distance of the bars, restaurants and marina you just need to decide what works for you.
Whether you’re looking for a couples or a family holiday, the villas are well-appointed with internet access, barbecues for al fresco dining, a jacuzzi, and beautifully decorated with oak wood and marble floors throughout. And there’s more. Imagine a heated swimming pool with pretty terraces and stunning coastal mountain views from the comfort of your stylish villa. Sun-hat Villas & Resorts can help you make it a reality.
Things to do
If you really want to engage your children when you visit the Timanfaya National Park, opt for a camel ride. Yes, you heard right? Sitting atop a camel across the volcanic landscape of ash fields and hills of the national park is something the whole family will remember forever. Or you can take a bus or a guided hiking tour for a less-bumpy ride.
Grab a ferry to the neighbouring island of Fuerteventura, the closest island to the coast of Africa. With more than 150 beaches boasting amazing sand dunes, said to be some of the most impressive in Europe, they’re worth the twenty minute ferry ride from Playa Blanca.
The volcanoes have contributed in more ways than one can imagine to the Lanzarote we see today. Take La Geria – the island’s wine-producing area. Here the people of Lanzarote have found a way of cultivating vines in the thick layers of volcanic ash, and it has resulted in the most excellent wine. La Geria has become very popular, not only for its wine, but for the spectacular view.
Finally, El Golfo Beach, found within a half-submerged cone of a volcano should be seen. At the foot of the crater wall is Lago Verde, a striking green lagoon with a black volcanic pebble beach. You may recognise it from iconic film One Million Years B.C. when Raquel Welch appeared wearing her animal skin bikini!
Not to be missed
The volcanoes. Whether you go by camel, bus, or foot, they have to be seen to be believed. Take in one of the demonstrations performed just outside the restaurant where staff pour water down a number of holes in the ground, only for it to spout back up again a few seconds later.
If you’re a beach-lover, head on over to Papagayo Beaches and make the most of that famous Lanzarote sun...