Holidays to Matagorda give you Lanzarote in soft focus. Here, it’s all about low-key days on the beach and laid-back nights strolling along the seafront.
A place of character
Matagorda is a 5-minute drive from Puerto del Carmen, where Lanzarote is at its biggest and loudest. But this gentle giant has worked hard to avoid being swallowed up by the heavyweight next door. It’s got a unique character all of its own. You can expect a low-rise resort with a great beach line-up, and bars and restaurants where the volume’s turned to low. Everything clusters around the town’s wide promenade, which traces 6 kilometres of toasted sands.
Blue Flag beaches
Matagorda Beach is one of a trio of Blue Flag-flying swathes on Lanzarote’s east coast, close to the airport. It’s a great buckets-and-spades-meet-watersports playground. The bar-lined promenade behind the front runs all the way to Los Pocillos – another monster beach that’s popular with the windsurfing crowd. Completing the hat trick, Playa Grande is Puerto del Carmen’s main patch of sand. You can walk to all 3 within 30 minutes.
Some of the island’s most popular attractions are just down the road. The closest is Rancho Texas Lanzarote Park, 10 minutes away. It packs in tigers, crocodiles, and shows starring birds of prey and sea lions. Not only that, it’s a recreation of the American Wild West, complete with tepees in an Indian village where kids pan for gold. Elsewhere, submarine trips run out of the marina at Puerto Calero, 15 minutes’ drive from Matagorda.
Close to Arrecife
If culture’s your thing, you’re 11 kilometres from the island’s capital, Arrecife. It’s a busy port and tax-free haven for shoppers, but it’s also got plenty of history up its sleeve. Make the old fishermen's houses around the saltwater lagoon your first stop. Then work outwards to the Archaeological Museum at San Gabriel Castle and the old quarter’s pretty San Gines church. Elsewhere, new shakes hands with old in the contemporary art museum housed in the 18th-century San José castle.
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