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Der Playa de Las Conchas auf Graciosa, Bild: Nido Huebl / shutterstock

La Graciosa – the eighth Canary Island

La Graciosa – Visit the smallest inhabited island in the Canary Islands, which received its status as the eighth Canary Island in November 2018. Even the journey to the island, which is located off the northern tip of Lanzarote, is a great experience. It is part of the Chinijo Archipelago Natural Park and is a paradise for those seeking relaxation. Soak up the sun on miles of secluded beaches or enjoy sporting activities such as hiking and cycling.

There is only one paved road at the port of Caleta del Sebo, everything else is sandy tracks. For overnight stays, there are apartments, guesthouses and a campsite to choose from. There are a few restaurants and bars at the harbour, supermarkets and services such as bicycle rental are also available.

Your journey to La Graciosa – a special experience

You can only get to the small island from Lanzarote . The ferries start in the picturesque fishing village of Orzola in the north. There are regular connections, the ferries take bicycles and surfboards, but no cars. You can reach the port town of Orzola by bus or taxi. During the crossing, imposing rock formations and cliffs can be admired. At the northern tip of Lanzarote is the Mirador del Rio viewpoint, designed by the Canarian artist and architect Cesar Manrique. Upon arrival of the ferry, you can enjoy the view of the picturesque port of Caleta del Sebo. Flat white houses with blue-painted doors and shutters characterize the image of the quaint place. The rest of the island consists of sand-colored hills and long sandy beaches.

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Dream beaches await you on the small Canary Island

On the northwest side of La Graciosa stretches the 500-meter-long Playa de las Conchas, which was the 500-meter-long Playa de las Conchas. His ship was stuck between rocks and offshore mini-islands. The beach offers plenty of space for sun worshippers, but you should note that there are no restaurants, sanitary facilities or lifeguards. In strong winds, the surf is strong and there are high waves.

Montana Bermeja, La Graciosa
Montana Bermeja, Image: Bernard Barroso / shutterstock

Strong currents are another reason for a bathing ban. You can enjoy a great view of Playa de las Conchas and the two offshore islets of Isla Alegranza and Montana Clara from Montana Bermeja, the red mountain. For day visitors, the local beach of Caleta del Sebo or Playa Francesa, 2 km away, are ideal. The small beach at Baranco de los Conejo offers peace and seclusion, because only walkers pass there on their way to Pedro Barba, the second town on the island.

The Marine Protected Area of the Chinijo Archipelago

La Graciosa is located in the middle of the marine reserve of the Chinijo archipelago, the largest of its kind in Europe. It is made up of the islands of La Graciosa, Alegranza, Montaña Clara, Roque del Oeste or del Infierno, Roque del Este and the Risco de Famara. It was established in 1995 with the aim of ensuring the sustainable use of fisheries resources. The marine fauna of this area is one of the most varied and biodiverse in the Canary Islands. Many species of seabirds are also at home here, as they have a good food base in the waters. Therefore, the park was also named a bird sanctuary (ZEPA). Among the rare species are the ospreys and the frigate petrel. The largest population is the Cory’s Shearwater, with the largest colony in Spain.

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Excursion tips for your holiday on La Graciosa

Caleta del Sebo, La Graciosa
Street in Caleta del Sebo, Image: szmuli / shutterstock

In Caleta del Sebo , it is worth visiting the small Chinijo Museum, which provides interesting facts about the marine reserve. You can also learn about aloe and salt production. If you want to explore the island by bike, you will find paths that lead to special corners of this charming landscape. However, you should be experienced in cycling, because there are only sandy slopes, no asphalt paths. Hiking is also possible on La Graciosa, but the volcanic rocks give your tour an adventurous ambience.

Some are covered with lichens, which brings variety to the otherwise barren landscape. The plains and mountains shine in a wide variety of colors depending on the position of the sun, ranging from earthy tones to red or green. The sand, some of which comes from the Sahara, provides a unique desert feeling. A special experience is a boat trip to the Islotes, which are the mini islands of the marine reserve. Look forward to dreamlike, unspoiled-looking beaches and a species-rich underwater world that you can explore while snorkeling. The small islands with their partially dried gorse bushes will remind you of Western movies.