See the beauty of an untouched landscape in this volcanic wonderland.
The Canary Islands are synonymous with volcanoes. The islands originally formed through volcanic activity millions of years ago and have been erupting occasionally ever since. In the Canary Islands, taking a trip to a volcano is as essential as taking a trip on the Tube if you visit London!
The largest historical eruption took place from 1730-36 flowing all the way to the West coast, destroying villages along the way and forming the Montañas del Fuego (Fire Mountains) that form the basis of the Timanfaya National Park.
Whilst the landscape is often compared to the Moon or Mars, it’s actually a much better representation of what the Earth would have looked like billions of years ago when it was still forming.
It’s a stark yet colourful vista and on Lanzarote is particularly well preserved. This is mostly thanks to Cesar Manrique who designed the optimum route through the rocky terrain to the top. Outside of this route, it’s mostly untouched by humans and so is much less eroded than on other islands.
Getting to the Top
Instead of walking up, something you’re thankfully not allowed to do, you have two options. You can take the coach from the entrance which has a 30-minute ride showcasing the best aspects of the park. There are opportunities to get out and take pictures at various points along the way.
If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous you can take a camel to the top. It may be much slower but it can be a lot of fun!
At the top you’ll be greeted by some spectacular theatrics designed to demonstrate quite how incredible volcanoes are. Brush is thrown into a pit where it instantly catches fire, whilst water is poured into a hole only to be ejected seconds later as steam. Hardly surprising as the temperature is 600-800 degrees just a few metres below the surface!
El Diablo Restaurant
Perhaps the very best demonstration of the power of volcanoes is the restaurant. It serves traditional Canarian style food with the fish and meat grilled over a large permanent BBQ-style hole in the ground that’s powered by nothing more than the Earth!
The building is also a sight to behold as it was, naturally, designed by Manrique to show off the mountains as you enjoy your food. Its glass walls offer a stunning panorama to make a truly spectacular dining experience.
Volcan Grill Tour
El Diablo restaurant closes at 3pm making it hard to take in the stunning sunset from the highest point on the Island. Recently, the Volcan Grill Tour has started operating every Tuesday evening. Picking you up at your hotel, it takes you by coach to the National Park then up through the winding road to the top where you enjoy all-inclusive food and drink. The cost is €50 for adults and €25 for children and is almost worth it for the sunset alone!
Tickets & Opening Hours
Entry to the Timanfaya National Park costs €8 for adults and €4 for children. This includes the coach to the top. Camel rides cost €12. The National Park is open for general admission from 10-6. El Diablo restaurant closes at 3pm though, so if you want to eat then get there early enough.