Grill on a volcano in Timanfaya

Timanfaya Timanfaya Creative Common BY-ND

Not without reason, Lanzarote is called the Island of Volcanoes. It includes approx. 300 craters, what's more, visitors to the island can enjoy a unique cuisine prepared on a volcanic grill.

The legendary phoenix arose from the ashes. One of the Canary Islands, Lanzarotte, proved that you can go one step further and use the destructive element as an advantage. In the eighteenth century, the area was torn by powerful shocks, then was burned by millions of cubic meters of volcanic lava, which wiped out a large part of life on the island, just within few years. Today in this area extends a very unique Timanfaya National Park, also known as Mountain of Fire (Montañas del Fuego). Every year it’s visited by more than 1.5 million people.

A walk through Mordor

You may say that the park is beautiful... Well, it's a subjective question because it’s difficult to speak of a typical landscape of the national park. On the web you can meet up with a comparison of Timanfaya to Mordor from "Lord of the Rings". It’s not hard to guess why, when seeing the colors of the landscape based on reds and browns.

Inside the park, you can sign up for one of the touring coach tours - Ruta de los Volcanes. Tourists can get to the islet Hilario, where they can leave the car in the parking lot, and then, after entering the bus, will go at the meeting with the Mountains of Fire.

During the free tours organized by the administration of the park, you can learn how the fancifully jagged coastline of the national park was created and see the volcano. You should book the place no earlier than 2 months before the trip. Sightseeing can be done only with a guide, in Spanish or English-speaking groups consisting of a maximum of 8-10 people.

You can follow one of two routes - coastal or the one leading to the volcano. To be able to participate in the trip, you should have a full athletic footwear (trekking shoes on the trail along the coast), water or isotonic drinks. It’s also recommended to wear appropriate headgear and take sunscreen.

You should come 15 minutes before the trip with ID and reservation number.

Grill in the Mountains of Fire

On one of the volcanic cones there’s a vantage point and restaurant El Diablo, where you can eat food cooked on the volcanic grill. The menu includes, among others, fish dishes, grilled pork and sweet potatoes. Prices, what is not particularly surprising in such a place, are quite exaggerated.

On the occasion of the trip to Lanzarote it’s worth getting acquaint with the taste of local wine. The oldest winery on the island dates back to the eighteenth century, and the vines grow in the gravel that’s a remnant of volcanic eruptions. Single bushes grow in holes surrounded by rocks, which is supposed to protect it against the wind. Plants don’t need watering – they draw moisture from the gravel, which collects it in the night and gives it back in the day.

Another liquor worth tasting is famous drink consisting of rum with whipped cream, cinnamon and honey.

Campsite at the volcano

In the period from 30th of May to 30th of September you can visit Camping of Papagayo. Its offer is, mildly speaking, quite modest – it provides basic services such as access to showers and the possibility of cleaning chemical toilets. It may look more like a parking lot than a campsite, and is complemented by a bit gloomy, barren landscape. Prices start at approx. 7 euros for owners of motorhomes and cars with caravans, and those who opt for a tent pay 4 euros.

To be able to stay overnight at the campsite, you must get the permission in Registro General in Cabildo de Lanzarote.

You cannot forget the original beauty of Timanfaya Park. Besides, there's no reason to do so - it’s beautiful in its own, unique way. In 1993, UNESCO recognized the area as a biosphere reserve. If someone chooses to go to Lanzarote, then he should necessarily visit this place.

Translation: Karolina Strzałkowska

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