Arrecife is the capital of Lanzarote, and many who visit the island forget that this city is worth a visit during the holidays. Here you will find a little more modern version of Lanzarote, a bustling port city of about 50,000 inhabitants, which is about half of those living on the island. Arrecife has great beaches, lots of green areas, cozy promenades, a vibrant nightlife and many opportunities for different kind of shopping.
As Arrecife already was built long before César Manrique began to shape the development elsewhere on the island, the capital don't have so many elements of the artist's works. But this is a typical small city, where many residents work in the tourist areas either north or south of the city. You will not find as many high buildings here, which may be common in other Spanish cities, but more of the low buildings that characterize Lanzarote.
Arrecife has the largest fishing port in the Canary Islands, and that was the reason in 1852 that the city was designated as the capital of the island, after Teguise. Castillo San Gabriel is over 400 years old fortress used to defend against pirates. The same applies to Castillo San Jose. Both are now converted into museums. The magnificent church of San Ginés built with volcanic stone, is also worth a visit. There are also 2 markets, one with fruit and vegetables, and a fish market.
From the church down to the sea you come to a large square. This site stands out from the rest of Arrecife, because this is the only part of the city César Manrique has put his stamp on. Here is a nice place to end today's experiences. You see a variety of bars, restaurants, souvenir shops, lots of palm trees and a beautiful view of many of the small boats bobbing in the sea off the beach. Enjoy your holidays to Arrecife and Lanzarote!