Lanzarote is an island of contrasts. The westernmost of the Canary islands stands out, not just for its average annual temperature of 21ºC, but also for its beautiful white sandy beaches and arid terrain. Sailing in Lanzarote isn’t just about sailing around the island’s beautiful landscapes, but about immersing yourself in its rich culture, wild countryside and seeing unspoilt locations, such as the nearby islet of La Graciosa, located just 1.2km north of Lanzarote.
The subtropical climate which the Canaries enjoy makes for a year-long sailing season in Lanzarote; in other words, sailing season never ends! Although it’s true that high season is from November to March, Lanzarote is still perfect for yacht enthusiasts throughout the rest of the year. The Atlantic Ocean’s temperature rarely drops below 19ºC in winter, which makes the Canarian island the perfect place for any type of nautical activities.
Magnet for sport enthusiasts
Many nautical experts believe that Lanzarote has the perfect conditions for sailing. This is because during winter, winds don’t drop. Lanzarote offers an ideal environment for both professionals and amateur sailors, with fantastic weather and tidal conditions, making this an ideal place for nautical training. Cyclists and athletes can also benefit from the mild island temperatures, making this an ideal place for land-based training too.
Prevailing winds in summer (March-October) blow mainly from the north and are most prominent on this part of the island. These winds are rather unpredictable. On the other hand, during winter and especially when there are storms, winds often blow from the south. This can make sailing difficult at times, therefore if you travel to the island at this time of the year and are a sailing novice, we recommend sticking to the northern part of the island. A wise decision which will help you to avoid these strong winds.
The tidal range in Lanzarote is around 2 metres. High tides on the island are most common in spring and autumn. The surface current in the Canaries is known as the Canary Current and is caused by winds coming from the west. This wind is slow and far reaching, and therefore does not cause problems when sailing around the island.
Belonging to one of the most popular tourist archipelagos, Lanzarote is definitely not short of marinas. Its three main marinas are Arrecife (the island’s capital), Puerto del Carmen, both situated more to the north and Playa Blanca, located on the island’s south side. These three marinas are perfect mooring locations if you decide to book a yacht charter on this beautiful Canarian island, although there are many small bays and coves dotted around the island where you can anchor your yacht. The latter is without doubt the best option for those looking for peace and quiet, as Lanzarote has an abundance of hidden and secluded spots such as these, which are just as good as any marina.
- Marina Rubicón is one of the Canary Islands’ newest marinas, and has experienced sailors available to help you berth your yacht. The marina’s features include; 500 moorings, for yachts of berth 7.0-3.5 metres, water, electricity, petrol, diesel, ramp and repair facilities. You can contact the marina on +34 928 519 012
- Puerto del Carmen went from being a small fishing village to of the Canaries’ most popular tourist destinations. The town’s marina has 50 moorings, for berth of 10.0-4.5 metres, water, electricity and fuel supplies, a 3 tonne crane and a ramp. Contact the marina on +34 928 515 018.
- Puerto de Arrecife marina has moorings, for boats of berth 10.0-3.0 metres, water, electricity and fuel supplies, a ramp and repair facilities. It also has a fishing harbour where you can dock at an old jetty. For more information, phone +34 928 814 961.
- Puerto Deportivo de Playa Blanca is one of the island’s best marinas, with high-quality modern services. Its main features are; 40 moorings, for boats of berth 6.0-1.5 metres, water, electricity and fuel supplies, a 3 tonne crane, a ramp and repair facilities. For more information call +34 928 571 540.
- The island of La Graciosa has many coves where you can anchor your boat, although one must take into account the surface currents and winds, as in very windy conditions this is not advisable. The island also has its own marina; Puerto de Caleta de Sebo, which although predominantly used for commercial shipping, as it is the only point of entry to the island from Lanzarote and to the rest of the world. However there are some spaces available for fishing and recreational vessels. For more information call +34 928 842 000.
Beaches in Lanzarote
It’s on Lanzarote’s beaches and coves where you can best see the island’s famous contrasting landscapes. White sandy beaches, with clear blue waters with a contrasting backdrop of black volcanic rocks are very common throughout the island.
- Playa del Risco de Famara: A 700 metre long white sandy and exotic beach, which is a little difficult to get to, but worth this initial obstacle. It is one of the island’s quietest beaches, ideal for those looking for peace and quiet, and a little bit of solitude.
- Playa de Arrieta: Located in the municipality of Haría, in the eponymous village of Arrieta, this beach is small, and popular amongst both locals and tourists, which can cause it to be rather busy in high season. It has many facilities, such as showers, WC and a playground for young children. This is also a great beach for surfers.
- Playas de Papagayo: Often erroneously described as one beach, this is a collection of beaches located very near to each other, and are widely regarded as the island’s most famous. The beaches are renowned for their pure white sand, clear blue waters, rocky backdrop and little coves.
Lanzarote really is the perfect destination for lovers of the sea and sailing, and anyone interested in an alternative type of holiday, with a variety of secluded spots to visit at any time of the year. This, combined with the locals’ friendly attitude to visitors, makes the Canaries’ westernmost island the perfect place to visit for your sailing holidays, with all that the famous Caribbean has to offer, within easy reach for most Europeans.