Thursday, 8 December 2011

Lanzarote

You probably don't notice anymore when I don't blog as the gaps are getting bigger but this last gap has been for a pleasurable purpose.  DH and I have just had a holiday to the Canary Islands onboard P&O's ship Arcadia.  I have never been to the Canaries before and I didn't know what to expect but I have been pleasantly surprised.  We visited Madeira and 4 of the Canary Islands and it was wonderful to be in some lovely bright and warm sunshine. 

The highlight of the whole trip for me was a tour we took on Lanzarote.  I had always thought of Lanzarote as being a resort destination for a rowdy holiday, I had not appreciated what a fascinating place it is.  The tour we took was focussed on the influence of Cesar Manrique, an artist and sculptor who was born on the island and who had a great influence over the island's development and growth.  The first stop was Jameos del Agua a restaurant and concert venue built in a volcanic bubble.  To begin with Jameos del Agua sits in a surreal landscape of volcanic rock covered in succulents giving the appearance of anthills.


The lobster is one of Manrique's sculptures which pepper the island.  On arrival you go down a curving staircase into a fabulous grotto.  Grotto only goes part way to describing the scene before you and the atmosphere it conjours up.  I have never walked down inside a volcano before so all the different colours and lava formations were fascinating.  






The entire place imbued a feeling of peace and calm, maybe because of the gentle music playing and the sound of birds singing, or because of the greenery all around. 








Once you are down on the floor of the volcanic bubble you are surprised by the view through to a neighbouring bubble via a volcanic tube and a beautiful pool of water.  The water is a beautiful turquoise and is the home of thousands of tiny white blind crabs no bigger than my finger nail.







All the tiny white specks above are crabs.  They are unique to this location.  Although there is hardly any rain on Lanzarote water dripped through the rock into the pool at one side. 

When you can bear to tear yourself away from the first cavern and walk along the narrow walkway you come up another sequence of stairs through a beautiful garden and out into another roofless volcanic bubble and into this stunning garden and pool.  The pool is deceptively deep and the blue and white colours sparkled in the clear light.  




All too soon we were taken onto  the next location connected with Manrique, the Manrique Foundation which had previously been Manrique's home.  

 
More of this location another time.  I took a lot of video so I'll try and load a bit on here if I can.

11 comments:

imac said...

I remember - I wanna go again.

Sue said...

I went to an amazing guitar concert at Jameos del Agua which involved catching a bus with all the locals from our hotel in Arrecife. It was quite an adventure. The acoustics were superb, we'd already visited on a holiday tour but the concert was an independent adventure. The island really does merit a holiday to itself, there is so much to see. Glad you loved it too. Sounds like you picked a good tour to go on.

ju-north said...

Lovely pics! Must put it on my list of places to visit!

Heather said...

Your sunny holiday will have set you up for the winter hopefully. Such a stunning location and wonderful photos. I love the sculptures too. Looking forward to seeing more.

Angela said...

Oh Julie I'm envious. In the past we have visited Tenerife many times between September and November to avoid the heat and crowds. Like you we enjoyed learning all about the people and the history of the island. We haven't been to any of the other islands but after reading your post I feel I must bring it to Neils attention.I'm pleased you managed to find the time for a great break you deserve it.

sandra wyman said...

Envy envy envy - especially as another friend has just come back from Teneriffe looking a thousand times better than she did before she went! Hope you are similarly transformed!

underatopazsky said...

Looks fantastic, and the volcanic stuff is fascinating.

sweetypie said...

oh, I am so jealous!!!

Gina said...

That sounds like a lovely holiday Julie.

mrsnesbitt said...

Blown away!

Timaree said...

Wow, very interesting. That would be a wonderful experience. The water in the natural and manmade pools looked so clear. Love the pictures you took.