and Castillo de Santa Barbara
For my money,
Teguise (not to be confused with Costa Teguise), in the island’s centre,
is the nicest town on the island – or at least it is if you avoid the
Sunday market - which I always have! It was the old capital of the island
until 1852, before it was usurped by Arrecife. It has a tranquil charm,
cobbled streets and is a lovely place just to wander about. It is designated
as an Architectural Historic Site.
It has an
impressive church, Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe overlooking a
In Teguise is the
museum at the Palacio Spinola (see below),
the restored house of a wealthy nobleman. This is well worth visiting.
Carved shutters cover the windows to keep it cool and the interior is a mix
of rooms, passageways and patios. The admission charge is small.
Find La Bodeguita
Del Medio bar in the Plaza Clavijo y Fajardo. This is a very atmospheric bar
with some interesting artefacts upstairs. More to the point, you can get a
very reasonable lunch and English is spoken.
Castillo de Santa
Bárbara sits on Mount Guanapay, overlooking Teguise. This used to house a fascinating Emigrants Museum
telling the story of mass emigration of
Lanzaroteños to the Americas, between the 17th and 19th centuries. Some of
it was enforced and some was from choice because of severe water shortages
on Lanzarote and the destruction of farmland due to major volcanic activity.
Only desalination of sea water today permits the tourism industry to thrive.
I revisited in 2015, to find it is now all about various invasions of
Lanzarote by all the main seafaring nations' pirates at various times.
There are great
views over Teguise from the castle battlements.
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