Objective: Endorphins! Sports to do (and watch) in Lanzarote
Lanzarote will shift your mindset, and teach you to experience sport according to Haruki Murakami’s mantra: “The only opponent you have to beat is yourself, the way you used to be.”
Forget about results and rankings: develop at your own pace, and enjoy every minute of it.
In 2019 more than 360,000 travellers chose Lanzarote ESD as their sports tourism destination. Along with our neighbour Fuerteventura and the rugged island of La Palma, we make up the Canary Islands’ three most popular islands for sportsmen and sportswomen. Why is that?
- We have an exceptional climate, with almost 365 days a year being suitable for enjoying the outdoors.
- We all know that training between four walls is not the same as training in the middle of nature. Volcanoes, beaches, seaside promenades… You choose.
- There is a wide range of sports on offer, by land, sea or air: surfing, windsurfing, kitesurfing, diving, road and mountain biking, handcycling, trekking, hang-gliding, sailing, athletics, golf…
In Lanzarote sport is experienced completely naturally. Living here will turn you into an amateur swimmer, a beginner cyclist and a long-distance walker almost without realising it.
You will have two constant companions when you do sport on Lanzarote: the sun (sunscreen and sunglasses are non-negotiable) and the wind.
Choose your own adventure
How about taking an introduction to windsurfing course in Las Cucharas, or learning to sail in one of Lanzarote’s marinas? The island’s coasts are permanently dotted with coloured sails. Here you can get to know the winds (trade winds, sirocco, southerly winds and northerly winds) and book sessions with specialised instructors. You will also learn how to use different equipment and techniques to sail with or against the tide.
Scuba diving is a transformative experience, and Lanzarote is an ideal place to do it: crystal clear waters, good visibility all year round, water at a pleasant 18-24 °C, and an incredibly diverse array of marine life. You don’t have to dive very deep to see orange coral, dark Canary damsels, groupers, anemones and old shipwrecks. Choose a diving centre, and enjoy!
Lanzarote is one of the last Atlantic strongholds of the angelshark (Squatina squatina), which lives camouflaged in the shallows near the coast. It is harmless to humans, and is in danger of extinction. Its breeding area is in Puerto del Carmen, which also happens to be one Lanzarote’s best diving areas, next to Playa Blanca, La Graciosa and Costa Teguise.
Foto: Yeray Delgado & Abigail Matín
Cycling is one of Lanzarote’s collective passions. If you like mountain biking, you will be happy to know that the island is criss-crossed by a network of routes of varying levels of difficulty. The terrain is predominately volcanic earth, sand and hard soil. Would you rather ride on a road? Whatever your preference, you will find here official maps and companies that rent out all the equipment and material you need.
Why do surf professionals refer to Lanzarote as the European Hawaii? It is all down to the famous El Quemao, a powerful left wave formed by the sea current and the volcanic rock seabed. Its tubes are truly epic. You can see this for yourself during El Quemao Class, an event that brings the best surfers in the world to the fishing village of La Santa, and pays tribute to David Infante “El Fula”. And another must-see spot for surfing and kitesurfing is undoubtedly Famara.
If you are in the mood for a day at the gym, you can visit sports centres by the beach, do some CrossFit training, or sweat it out on an elliptical trainer overlooking the sea. If you would rather practice your swing, you will feel at home at Lanzarote Golf, an 18-hole course that is just a stone’s throw away from the beach, or at Costa Teguise Golf, located at the foot of a volcano, with views over the Atlantic. Here you can also book the perfect accommodation for your golfing experience.
Specialised accommodation and events
“Besides good weather, it also has a long sporting tradition. The island knows what sport is, children grow up experiencing it, and they have an incredible amount of respect for cyclists. That makes everything a lot easier. And then the facilities are completely perfect.” Those are the words of the Galician athlete Saleta Castro on the website voyaserunironman.com, and we are not likely to disagree! 🙂
Like her, many professional athletes choose Lanzarote to train in the winter season: the triathlete Lucy Charles, Ivan Raña, Federica de Nicola, the two-time world champion Patrick Lange… Lanzarote has accommodation with specialised sports infrastructure, tailored to meet the needs of elite athletes, which will feel like true paradise for any traveller with a sporting lifestyle.
If you would like to experience the buzz of competition, check out our sports calendar and choose your dates accordingly. Regattas, night-time road races, mountain cups held on the edge of volcanoes, open water swimming, our Ironman event (which has a reputation for being the toughest in the world), running races through vineyards… Whatever kind of traveller you are, you will find the right discipline and moment for you. Come and discover what Lanzarote European Sports Destination has in store for you!