There are so many great things to do in Playa Blanca, in Lanzarote, that I’m going back again in 2024! If you’re wondering what to do in Playa Blanca, I’ve narrowed down some of the best activities to make your holiday the best it can be…
Welcome to the enchanting coastal haven of Playa Blanca, nestled on the sun-kissed shores of Lanzarote. With its azure waters, pristine beaches, and laid-back vibe, this charming town is a paradise for travellers seeking a perfect blend of relaxation and adventure. From exploring volcanic landscapes to savouring mouthwatering local cuisine, there’s no shortage of delightful activities to enjoy here.
In this guide, I’ll take you on a journey through the best things to do in Playa Blanca town, uncovering hidden gems, insider tips, and unforgettable experiences that will make your visit truly exceptional. Whether you’re a sun worshipper, an explorer, or a food enthusiast, Playa Blanca has something special in store for you. So, let’s dive in and discover the magic of this coastal gem.
About Playa Blanca, Lanzarote
Translating literally to ‘White Beach’, Playa Blanca is a picture-postcard beach town on the southern coast of Lanzarote. Although it’s one of the more popular tourist spots in the Canary Islands, Playa Blanca is known for its slower pace of life compared to clubbing hotspots like Playa Carmen.
Wondering what to do in Playa Blanca town? Well, it’s a calm resort town, with plenty to see and do beyond simply sunbathe, rotate, repeat (although tempting). From watersports to shopping, and beach hopping to hiking, Playa Blanca has something for all ages and all types of travellers.
Playa Blanca is also a great base for exploring Lanzarote, with plenty of hotel options (including Lanzarote adults only hotels) and day trips (see below) to be had. Discover your bucket list of things to do while in Playa Blanca here, as well as the best shops, trips and beaches.
History of Playa Blanca Town
Playa Blanca started as a small fishing village, serving as a port that connected Lanzarote with Fuerteventura. While it has seen significant development over the last few decades, transforming into a popular tourist destination, you’ll still find low-rise, whitewashed buildings and historic landmarks. It really is a blend of old and new, with dazzling, luxury yachts, a modern marina and international hotels and restaurants, mixed together with a fortress, volcanic craters and the old town.
Situated on the southernmost tip of Lanzarote, Playa Blanca is at the easternmost of Spain’s Canary Islands, located off the coast of West Africa. The town extends around a natural bay, flanked by rugged mountains on one side and the Atlantic Ocean on the other, creating a natural shelter that keeps things warm and sunny almost year-round.
In December, the average temperature is 22°C, which is somewhat of a drastic change from 7°C here in the UK!
Another envious detail; Playa Blanca is characterised by so many stunning beaches. Nearby are the Papagayo beaches, which are secluded coves set against cliffs. They’re the kind of beaches you’d find on the front cover of travel brochures or computer desktop backgrounds. The town of Playa Blanca itself stretches around a natural bay, with a gently sloping landscape that offers breathtaking views of the sea, the neighbouring island of Fuerteventura, and the Isla de Lobos.
The Best Things to Do in Playa Blanca
Here are some things you can do in Playa Blanca…
1. Visit the Playa Blanca beaches
Ok I thought I’d get the obvious choice out there first. You can’t not spend a day (or week) at the beaches in Playa Blanca. They’re the perfect combination of (black) and golden sands, clear waters and stunning backdrops. Popular beaches close to Playa Blanca include Playa Dorada, Playa Flamingo, and Playa Blanca town itself.
The town is known for its pristine beaches, and there are several to choose from. Here are some of the top beaches in Playa Blanca:
Among the best and most popular beaches of Playa Blanca, is Playa Dorada. This is translated as ‘golden beach’ due to its extensive golden sandy stretch, which makes it perfect for soaking up the sun or beach sports.
The waters here are calm and shallow, offering an ideal environment for both confident swimmers and those just looking for a leisurely paddle. It’s a beach that truly ticks all the boxes for a day of sun, sea, and sand.
Playa Flamingo is a stunning Playa Blanca beach with soft, golden sand and crystal-clear waters. But the beach isn’t just about natural beauty – you’re also well-catered for with a variety of amenities nearby.
Fancy a beach-side lunch or a refreshing cocktail?
You’ll find plenty of restaurants and bars just a short stroll away. Also useful if you have kids who get hungry or need somewhere to shelter from the sun every now and then.
A bit off the beaten path, the Papagayo Beaches are a series of secluded, unspoiled beaches that offer a more tranquil experience. Each beach is a small cove surrounded by natural beauty, making them ideal for those seeking a bit of peace and quiet. The waters here are as clear as you can imagine, providing a fantastic spot for snorkelling or simply enjoying the stunning undersea view.
These beaches are located just outside of Playa Blanca and are some of the most beautiful on the island. You can hike or bike to the beaches or take a water taxi from the Marina Rubicón. They’re located in Los Ajaches Natural Park, so you’ll get to see lots of natural beauty.
Speaking of natural beauty, you may spot some nudists too if you go to Caleta del Congrio, one of the Papagayo beaches.
A beach so stunning the town shares the same name; Playa Blanca is a small, sheltered cove providing a cosy and calm beach experience. With its gentle waters, it’s particularly family-friendly and great for families with young children looking to enjoy a safe day at the seaside. It’s the heart of the town and a place that carries the local vibe in every grain of sand.
Playa del Afre
Playa del Afre is a less frequented but equally spectacular beach in Playa Blanca. The beach offers impressive views of the coastline and the nearby island of Fuerteventura, providing a beautiful backdrop for a day at the beach. While it may not be as bustling as some of the other Playa Blanca beaches, its tranquillity and natural beauty make it well worth a visit. It’s the perfect spot for those seeking a bit of solitude and a connection with nature.
2. Stroll down Marina Rubicón
Marina Rubicón is home to many shops, restaurants, and cafes. You can take a stroll along the boardwalk, browse the shops, or enjoy a meal with a sea view. If you enjoy looking at all the fancy yachts too, this is the place you want to be.
Definitely one of the best things to do in Playa Blanca Lanzarote!
3. Take a boat trip
Speaking of yachts and boats, one of the best things to do in Playa Blanca is go on a boat trip. There’s lots of different boat trips from Marina Rubicón, including trips to the nearby island of Fuerteventura, dolphin and whale watching trips, and sunset cruises. They’re well worth it and pretty budget-friendly. For example, there are ferries from Playa Blanca to Fuerteventura for less than €20, or you could go to nearby island Lobos on a dolphin watching boat trip for around €65-70.
When I was there last I took a boat trip from Playa Blanca Lanzarote port to the port in Corralejo, on Fuertaventura. I did this Lanzarote day trip with GetYourGuide, but I’d actually recommend you do it independently as the transfer time to the port was RIDICULOUS! We jumped in a taxi on the way back as it was so awful (over an hour for a 5-minute journey!)
I loved Fuerteventura though, and would love to do a holiday there one day. The impressive landscapes and beautiful coastline were just incredible. Visit the Corralejo Dunes Natural Park, a sprawling expanse of sand dunes that stretch to the sea. The island is also known for its goat cheese, or queso majorero. Don’t miss the opportunity to try this local delicacy and learn about its making process.
We saw the dunes, chilled at a beach bar, and hung around on the seafront.
It was wonderful!
4. Explore the Timanfaya National Park
One of the things you must do – especially if you’ve rented a car – is visit Timanfaya National Park. The volcanic park is located about a 30-minute drive from Playa Blanca, and features one active volcano, Timanfaya.
At the park, there’s plenty of things to do like walking the volcanic trail, go on a camel ride, visit the fire mountains and much more. Prices are currently €12 for adults and €6 for children (aged between 7 and 12). This is one of the top Playa Blanca activities to do while you’re in Lanzarote.
Map of Playa Blanc, from lct
5. Visit the underwater museum Museo Atlántico
Lanzarote has some of the best scuba diving spots in the world, and Playa Blanca is no exception. You can take a diving trip and explore the underwater world and fantastic marine life. But one of the best activities unique to Playa Blanca is Museo Atlántico; a famous dive spot with sculpture. It’s within Lanzarote’s UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve.
Alternatively, go diving in Montana Amarilla, another fantastic and equally captivating dive spot in Playa Blanca.
6. Learn about pirates at the Castillo de las Coloradas
This 18th-century fortress Castillo de las Coloradas stands tall against the stunning backdrop of the Atlantic Ocean. Here you’ll get to see breathtaking views of the surrounding coastline, making it a great shot if you love photography. Within Castillo de las Coloradas, you’ll find ancient cannons and discover the island’s history of thwarting pirate attacks.
This is a great thing to do in Playa Blanca if you’re with the family, and you can finish the day by strolling along the nearby beach of Colorades to top it all off.
7. Hike mountains, coasts or volcanos
There are several hiking trails in the area, which takes you to the top of a volcanic mountain for stunning views of the coastline. One popular trail is the Montaña Roja hike, which takes you to the summit of the iconic Red Mountain. The trail provides panoramic views of the coast and neighbouring islands, and takes about an hour to complete.
Another option is the Los Ajaches Natural Park trail. This ancient volcanic range offers various routes of varying difficulties, so you can choose one suitable to your level (or just what you’re in the mood for that day). This trail winds through rocky terrain, hidden beaches, and offers breathtaking vistas of the Atlantic Ocean.
If you’re up for a longer trek, the Lanzarote GR 131 trail provides an opportunity to cross the entire island. Starting from the northernmost point of Lanzarote, the trail winds its way through diverse terrains, volcanic landscapes, and charming villages, offering a comprehensive exploration of the island’s beauty. This is quite obviously one for more advanced hikers.
8. Sip wine at Bodega Rubicón
Pay a visit to Bodega Rubicón, a charming winery nestled in the heart of Lanzarote’s wine region. It’s about a 20-minute drive from Playa Blanca town, so definitely doable.
Take a guided tour of the vineyards and learn about the unique cultivation techniques used on the island’s volcanic soil. You’ll get to sample Lanzarote’s best wines in tasting sessions, and most likely buy a bottle to take back afterwards. This is one of the best Playa Blanca attractions for any bon viveurs!
9. Feast on the local cuisine
Playa Blanca is home to many fantastic restaurants serving traditional Canarian dishes such as papas arrugadas, fresh fish, and mojo sauce. Don’t forget to try some of the local wines as well if you’ve not filled your cup (or wine glass) at the Bodega Rubicón.
If you’re looking for things to do in Playa Blanca at night, eating is the obvious choice!
10. Shopping in Playa Blanca
Fancy a bit of retail therapy in Playa Blanca? Well, you’re in for a treat! This place is a shopping paradise, full to the brim with charming boutiques and swanky shops selling everything from souvenirs and designer clobber to sparkling jewels and the latest gadgets.
Right, where should you start shopping in Playa Blanca?
Get yourself over to Centro Comercial Papagayo. This big shopping centre has everything you could possibly need. From a jam-packed supermarket and a handy pharmacy to a swarm of fashion outlets and souvenir shops, you’ll find it hard to leave empty-handed.
Fancy a stroll? Take a wander down Avenida de Canarias. It’s the heart of Playa Blanca, with shops, cafes, and restaurants galore! From snazzy beachwear to unique handicrafts, there’s something for everyone.
Don’t forget to explore the charming old town streets too! Calle Limones is a lively pedestrian street known for its chic boutique shops, buzzing bars, and fantastic restaurants. And just around the corner is Calle Correillo, where you’ll find an array of quirky shops, from souvenir spots to glitzy jewellery stores and trendy fashion boutiques.
Playa Blanca is a great place to go shopping if you know where – whether you’re a bargain hunter or a luxury lover. With so many shopping options, you’re bound to find whatever you’re looking for without spending a fortune too!
11. Do a day trip from Playa Blanca
Although you’ll find plenty of things to do in Playa Blanca, it’s sometimes nice to explore a bit. From island hopping to natural beauty spots to clubbing cities, here are 5 great day trips you can do from Playa Blanca!
La Graciosa Island
La Graciosa, located north of Lanzarote, is the smallest inhabited island in the Canary Archipelago. With a ferry trip of approximately half an hour from Órzola in Lanzarote, it’s an easy and scenic escape from the busier parts of Lanzarote. This tiny paradise is car-free, contributing to a laid-back, leisurely ambience. The island’s sandy streets lead to serene beaches such as Playa de las Conchas and Playa La Cocina, known for their tranquil beauty and crystal-clear waters. Engage in a spot of snorkelling, hiking, or simply basking in the sun.
Puerto del Carmen
This bustling resort town is just a short drive from Playa Blanca Lanzarote and is perfect for those looking for a lively atmosphere. The town boasts a beautiful beachfront promenade lined with shops, restaurants, and bars, making it a popular spot for both day-trippers and night owls. Don’t miss the Old Town harbour, where you can enjoy traditional seafood dishes as you admire the local fishing boats. For a more immersive experience, the Rancho Texas Lanzarote Park offers wildlife encounters and pool areas for families.
A mere 2km channel separates Fuerteventura from the untouched Lobos Island, a small islet declared a nature reserve. Visitors can take a ferry from Corralejo in Fuerteventura, with the journey taking around fifteen minutes. The island is a haven for birdwatchers, home to over 130 species of birds. The walking trails offer spectacular views, with the island’s lighthouse, Faro de Lobos, being a popular destination. The pristine beaches of Playa de la Concha and Playa de las Lapas provide perfect spots for snorkelling and swimming.
Cueva de los Verdes (Green Caves)
A journey to the centre of the earth might not be possible, but a trip to Cueva de los Verdes is the next best thing. A half-hour drive from Playa Blanca, these spectacular caves were formed around 3,000 years ago by a volcanic eruption. The guided tour will lead you through a fascinating underground world, with incredible formations and an eerie lake. The cave’s natural acoustics have been put to good use, with concerts occasionally held inside, providing a truly unique musical experience.
Getting to and around Playa Blanca
It’s easy to get around the Playa Blanca attractions – taxis are easy to hail, simple to use, and cheap too.
Playa Blanca is about 35km from Lanzarote Airport (ACE). Various airport transfer services are available, including shuttles, private cars, and taxis. A pre-booked shuttle bus service costs around €10-€20 per person and takes about 45 minutes, so they say, but took us at the Hotel Gran Castillo Tagoro in Playa Blanca over an hour and a half (it was awful!).
Private transfer services are a bit pricier at around €40-€50 for a four-seater car, but they offer the advantage of avoiding waiting time at the airport (totally worth it, this is how we came back). Taxis from the airport to Playa Blanca cost around €50-€60 and typically take 30-40 minutes.
Taxis are a convenient option for getting around Playa Blanca, especially for shorter distances. The initial fare is around €3, with an additional cost of about €1 per kilometre travelled. Taxis are usually metered, and most drivers speak English, making it a relatively easy mode of transport.
Playa Blanca has a decent local bus service, which connects to other areas like Puerto del Carmen and Arrecife. The bus fare is approximately €2-€4 per trip, depending on the distance. Though buses are the most economical option, the service might not be as frequent or as punctual as in larger cities. A timetable can be found at the local tourist information offices or online.
Hiring a car is a good option if you’re planning to explore Lanzarote beyond Playa Blanca. A compact car typically costs around €20-€30 per day, including insurance. Remember that you need to have a valid driving licence.
Car hire companies often offer the convenience of picking up and dropping off the car at the airport. But keep in mind that parking in Playa Blanca can be challenging during peak season, so it’s always handy if your accommodation has allocated parking.
There’s a ferry service from Playa Blanca to the nearby island of Fuerteventura, with several crossings per day. The journey takes around 30 minutes, and a return ticket costs about €40 for an adult. It’s a convenient way to explore another Canary Island if you have the time. This was one of my favourite Playa Blanca things to do when I visited.
Finally, Playa Blanca itself is quite compact, and many of the attractions are within walking distance from each other. The seafront promenade stretches along the coastline and provides a pleasant walk with views over the sea, beaches, and shops. Walking is free, environmentally friendly, and often the best way to discover hidden gems in the town.
Things to do in Playa Blanca
Playa Blanca in Lanzarote is more than just a pretty beach town; it’s a treasure trove of hidden gems. So, whether you’re indulging in mouthwatering seafood at that secret local haunt, finding the best spots for sunset views, or navigating the charming backstreets, you’re in for a real treat.
So go ahead, savour the local flavours, soak up the sunshine, and dive into the rich culture of this coastal paradise.
Enjoy your Playa Blanca escapade!