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About city What to see Gallery Where to stay

Arrecife, situated on the eastern coast of Lanzarote, is the island’s biggest city, capital, and financial and cultural centre, founded in the 19th century. Nowadays, more than half of the island’s population – around 55,000 people – live here. The city was named after the surrounding coral reefs that called arrecife in Spanish.

Arrecife has been an important trade post for centuries. Visitors instantly notice this, as they find many shopping centres and specialized shops, some of them selling souvenirs and handcrafts. Works by local craftsmen are for sale, while imported goods are available at good prices because the products shipped to the islands are taxed at a reduced rate.

Arrecife
Photo taken by big-ashb | Flickr.  Arrecife

The city attracts tourists with its shoreline and many reefs and islets formed by lava flow, which you can enjoy from the promenade. Two fortresses remind us of the city and island’s history. One of them – the Castillo de San Gabriel – is situated on a tiny rocky island connected to the mainland by a lift bridge at the point where the main commercial street – Leon y Castillo – ends. The bridge is decorated with two towers, each having a cannonball on top. This fortress was built by King Philip II in order to defend the island from North African pirates. The town’s second fortress – the Castillo de San Jose – served a similar purpose. Today, it houses the Modern Art Museum.

Arrecife
Photo taken by Paul Stephenson | Flickr.  Arrecife

Charco de San Ginés is another popular site of interest. It’s a man-made lagoon surrounded by fishing shacks. The town’s most important church, San Ginés, is located near the lagoon. An exquisite view can be seen in the evening, when the lagoon is illuminated by the setting sun.

Arrecife is a tranquil city, where most of the dwellers earn their living from both tourism and by having day jobs. Why don’t you come visit and experience the peaceful beauty of the city for yourself!

Where to stay

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