Arrecife is the capital city of Lanzarote, a picturesque and dynamic island in Spain’s idyllic Canary Islands. You’ll find a laid-back Mediterranean vibe throughout the compact city, from the alluring sandy beach and high-fashion boutiques to the casual bars and sun-drenched beachfront promenade.
Things to do in Arrecife
Begin your Arrecife holiday by taking a journey through the local history at the Castle of San Jose. The 18th-century fortified castle once defended the city from invading pirates, but is now home to the International Museum of Contemporary Art. Inside you can admire art exhibits from the late 1900s, including sculptures, kinetic art and geometric abstraction. Wander the grounds to see the preserved drawbridge, turrets and barrel vaulted rooms.
The golden sands and clear-blue waters of Reducto Beach offer a great spot for sunbathing, some leisurely swimming or beach games. Tall palm trees sit alongside the beach’s promenade, where you’ll find waterfront bars pairing local beer and wine with freshly-caught seafood.
Are you interested in Arrecife’s ancient structures? You can see a variety of sites without venturing far, including the Castle of San Gabriel, which occupies its own landlocked island and overlooks the North Atlantic Ocean. Afterwards, visit San Gines, a Catholic church that’s built on the site of a 16th-century hermitage.
If you need a break, kick back on the grass at the waterfront Parque Municipal, where you’ll find walking paths and a children’s playground. The Statue of Heraclio Niz Mesa stands at one end, while cafes and bakeries sit just across the road. Wander deeper into town to find a wealth of shops, including women’s fashion at Cay Ville Lanzarote and jewellery at Joyeria Maria Elena.
Getting around Arrecife
Arrecife is easily reached by flying into Lanzarote Airport, which is under 10 minutes’ drive from town. There’s limited street parking, so it’s best to use the local buses or catch taxis.