Lanzarote, a Spanish island, is the easternmost of the autonomous Canary Islands, in the Atlantic Ocean, approximately 125 km (78 mi) off the coast of Africa and 1,000 km (621 mi) from the Iberian Peninsula. Covering 845.9 square kilometers (327 sq mi), it is the fourth largest of the islands. The first recorded name for the island, given by Angelino Dulcert, was Insula de Lanzarotus Marocelus, after the Genoese navigator Lancelotto Malocello, from which the modern name is derived. The island's name in the native language was Tyterogaka or Tytheroygaka, which may mean "one that is all ochre" (referring to the island's predominant colour).
The Canary Islands name bring up the mental image of little yellow birds sitting in the tree tops chirping, however you will never see one when you are here.
The reason is that the name Canary Islands has actually been lost in translation, and actually refers to another animal. The Roman naturalist Pliny the Elder in the first century of our era wrote that the king of Mauritania sent a dispatch to the fabulous Fortunate Islands which were in the Dark Ocean, beyond the Pillars of Hercules (the Strait of Gibraltar). In one of them they found a fierce breed of dog (can, canis in Latin) and therefore called "Insula Canaria" or the island of dogs. The legendary dogs from the Canary Islands are the emblematic figures that hold the shield of the Canary Islands.
Lanzarote’s ruggedness belies the natural beauty that can be found under the sea
Lanzarote, is one of the seven Canary Islands, located in the far North of the Archipelago. Geographically belonging to Africa, the Canaries are a remote part of Spain, just 120 km off the African coast. Due to its privileged climatic conditions with moderate air and water temperatures, the island of Lanzarote is an all year round holiday destination. The excellent quality of its waters and the beauty of the well maintained beaches offer great opportunities for excellent diving and snorkeling, any kind of other watersports, sunbathing and chilling out on the beach.
The fact that fishing has been restricted to very limited areas around the island, Lanzarote has become a real divers paradise during the last couple of years. You will find perfect conditions for great diving combined with relaxed or exciting family holidays.
The image of Lanzarote is mainly influenced by two factors: on the one hand its volcanic origin which is impressively shown in Timanfaya National Park, also called the fire mountains, which have been declared Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in 1994. The fire mountains are a must on your sightseeing schedule for your Lanzarote holidays.
The second important factor is the influence of Cesar Manrique, the famous Spanish artist, architect, sculptor and environmentalist (born: 24.04.1919, died 25.09.1992) who is responsible for the mass tourism on Lanzarote being held within certain limits. His work focused on preserving Lanzarotes cultural and scenic identity and he understood his art as a close harmonic link between the human being and nature. An outstanding example for this philosophy can be seen in his former house which now hosts his own foundation “Fundación César Manrique”, as well as in the caves of “Jameos del Agua”.
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