The earliest records of Arrecife date from the fifteenth century when it was a small fishing settlement. The name, given then as Arrecifes, refers to the black volcanic reefs behind which boats could hide, protected from sudden pirate attacks.
In 1964 Arrecife became the site of Lanzarote‘s first sea-water desalination plant, which is still operational today.
Despite being a working town, Arrecife is a pleasant place to explore with many of its attractions (except for Castillo de San José) within walking distance. It has a long white sandy beach and promenade for a relaxing swim or walk. Venturing eastward from the beach, the Charco de San Ginés lagoon encircled by whitewashed buildings, and the church of the same name are equally pleasing. If these aren’t enough, there are two castles waiting to be explored.
Castillo de San José (castle)
Originally built between 1774 and 1779 on the orders of King Carlos III, this castle has evolved into a museum of contemporary art- Museo Internacional de Contemporáneo (MIAC). In the beginning, the Castillo de San José was built for military purposes; located on top of a cliff meant it was crucial in defending Arrecife from pirates and other attackers.
Arrecife is a vibrant, cosmopolitan, full of culture and history located slightly east of central Lanzarote. The name derives from the Spanish for reef and refers to the volcanic rock formations that lie out to sea and protect the picturesque harbour.
If you are looking for a day out to shop, experience some culture and take in the sights and landmarks of a sophisticated metropolis before retreating back to the comfort of your hotel, then Arrecife is for you. It may be a good idea to check out the Centro Insular de Cultura El Almacén, a cultural centre filled with various exhibitions.
Arrecife also has its own beach, Playa del Reducto, with golden sand and tepid, tranquil waters. A lovely promenade runs all the way from this area to the city’s second beach, Playa del Cable, which is 1.25 miles (2 kilometres) further west.
Aslo home to the newest Marina to be built in Lanzarote Marinas Lanzarote well worth the visit with a great night scene