Lanzarote is characterized by a subtropical climate and numerous volcanoes that have shaped the landscape. The Jameos del Agua are the fruit of this last element. This name defines a section of a volcanic tunnel with an opening caused by the partial collapse of the roof.
The Jameos del Agua consist of three rooms - the "Jameo chico" (the entrance door to the gallery), the "Jameo Grande" and the "Jameo de la Cazuela" - and are one of Lanzarote' s must-see attractions on your itinerary.
1. Organized excursion to the Jameos del Agua
If you are staying less than a week on the island - for example, four days in Lanzarote - and want to make the most of it, this is the ideal option.
Guided tours are not limited to the Jameos del Agua: they include them in more extensive routes that will keep you busy for a whole day. Here are the main ones.
El Golfo, Timanfaya and Jameos del Agua
A route that combines volcanic landscapes with the tranquility of the Jameos del Agua. The itinerary touches the following points:
- El Golfo, a fishing village known for the nearby beach called Charco de los Clicos. This tiny stretch of coastline is characterized by a deep green lake a few meters from the ocean. It owes its name to some small mollusks that used to live in the pond and are now extinct
- Timanfaya National Park, 51 square kilometers covering 25 volcanoes. The bus route departs from the Visitor Center and passes by lava fields, craters and mountains that look like something out of Mars. The symbol of this place, the Devil of Timanfaya, has been designed by César Manrique
- Jameos del Agua
- Duration: about 10 hours
- Price: about 60 €.
Route of César Manrique
César Manrique was the most important Canarian artist of all times. He was born in Arrecife, trained at the Academy of San Fernando (Madrid) and lived for a few years in New York.
However, he never lost his roots with his island, so much so that he returned definitively to Lanzarote in the seventies. Here he made some very original works and this tour touches on the main ones:
- Monumento al Campesino, a sculpture built with a series of water tanks from ships. It is both a tribute and a warning about the importance of water, a good as precious as scarce in Lanzarote
- Jameos del Agua
- Cactus Garden, the last work done by Manrique on the island. Before his intervention, in this place there was a quarry used to extract volcanic ashes
- Mirador del Río, a panoramic viewpoint overlooking the channel that divides Lanzarote from La Graciosa, the smallest inhabited island of the archipelago. If you feel like visiting it, I advise you to read the article about day trips to La Graciosa from Lanzarote
- Fundación César Manrique, the old house of the artist turned into a museum. César Manrique settled here after his time in the Big Apple. If you are familiar with any of his works, it is because they were made by Joan Miró, Pedro González or Pablo Picasso
- Duration: approximately 8 hours
- Price: about 60 €.
Lagomar, Jameos del Agua and Aloe Vera Farm
The excursion that runs through the north of Lanzarote. It brings together some natural attractions of great interest:
- La Geria, the wine-growing area in the center-south of the island, not far from the Timanfaya National Park. The vines grow in small holes in the volcanic soil. It is a lunar landscape that will surprise you. If you feel like going back, I recommend you take a look at the website of Bodega Geria
- Monumento al Campesino,
- Lagomar, the cave house that belonged to Omar Sharif. The actor who played Lawrence of Arabia fell in love with the residence and decided to buy it. Shortly after, he lost it in a bridge game. It is a unique place that blends perfectly with nature
- Jameos del Agua,
- Finca de aloe vera. The cultivation of this plant represents an important income for the island's economy. It was known and used since pre-Hispanic times and nowadays it is cultivated following the most modern methods. In this stage you will know which ones and have the opportunity to buy products made with aloe from Lanzarote
- Mirador de los Helechos, one of the best on the island
- Fundación César Manrique, the good artist's retreat. It is usually optional, I recommend you read the details carefully
- Duration: about 10 hours
- Price: about 40 €.
2. Rent a car
Whether you are staying in the south of Lanzarote or near Arrecife, you can reach the Jameos del Agua along the main roads of the island (LZ-2 and LZ-1) in a northerly direction (Arrecife if you start from Playa Blanca, Órzola from the capital).
Once you have passed the town of Punta Mujeres, you will have to leave the highway and take the detour to the LZ-204 road.
Renting a car is a good way to visit "the Hawaii of Europe". Reaching the best hiking trails in Lanzarote and the most secluded beaches is easier. You will not be dependent on public transport schedules and the reduced price of gasoline is another incentive.
3. Scooter for rent
It is a good way to travel around the island. Parking is easier as well as the consumption of gasoline (in any case, it is cheaper than in the mainland). I leave you a few options to get your means of transport:
- La Esquina de la Moto (Avenida de las Playas 57 - Puerto del Carmen)
- Moto & Bike Lanzarote (Avenida Archipiélago 7, local 4, Centro Comercial Lanzarote Park - Playa Blanca)
- Rental Motor Bike (several locations, you find all the info on the official website)
- Scootoff (Calle Almirante Boado 10 - Arrecife)
Not the most comfortable option but it depends on your location. Some popular tourist destinations are quite close to the Jameos de Agua and a short guagua (as they call the bus in the Canary Islands) is enough.
- If you are staying in Arrecife, Tahiche, Guatiza, Órzola, Arrieta or Punta Mujeres, you can reach the volcanic cave with bus 9. Please note that the trip can be a bit long, especially if your starting point is Arrecife. In this case, it takes about 50 minutes
- In case you have opted for a hotel, house or B&B in Yé, Máguez or Haría (in the interior of the northern area), you also have this option. You will have to take two lines: the 26 to Arrieta and then the 9 to Jameos del Agua
- If your summer residence is in Playa Blanca (on the southern coast), you can reach your destination by changing lines. First, you will have to take the 60 from Estación Sur (Avenida de las Canarias 5). Once you get off in Arrecife (Andenes Estación de Guaguas), you will only have to take the already mentioned line 9. Also in this case, the route is very long: just under 3 hours. The bus goes to many towns and villages (La Hoya, Yaiza, Tías, Playa Honda, etc.)
. In any case, you can find more detailed information at Intercity Bus, Lanzarote's transport company. You can pay for the tickets once on board but only cash or a transport voucher is accepted.
How to book an excursion to the Jameos de Agua
It is very simple: everything is done online. No need to wait until you are in Lanzarote, you can book in advance to secure your place.
In the unlikely event of errors and unforeseen events, you have at your disposal the customer service that will help you to solve any issue.
What are the advantages of taking a guided tour vs. visiting the Jameos de Agua on my own?
First of all, if you stay only 3 days in Lanzarote and you don't feel like renting a car, you are not obliged to give up this excursion. A bus route is cheap and, before arriving to Jameos de Agua, it touches the main tourist areas: Costa Teguise, Puerto del Carmen, Playa Blanca, etc.
If that's not enough, there are combo packages that include wine tastings, hop-on hop-off tickets and more. In short, you will only have to pay for lunch and any activity that is not expressly indicated in the program of each tour.
Are there restaurants near the Jameos del Agua?
Inside the attraction itself is a restaurant set in a spectacular setting: an "open-roofed" cave decorated with succulents and other plants.
Its menu is varied and includes vegetarian options, typical Canarian recipes, children's menu and a good wine list.
If you travel on your own you can drive to Punta Mujeres or Arrieta. The trip takes a maximum of 10 minutes. In these two locations I recommend the following restaurants:
- El Pisquito, a simple bar overlooking the sea (Calle la Noria 6 - Arrieta)
- Restaurante Tahoyo, cheap, tasty and with a nice terrace (Calle Pared del Agua 14 - Punta Mujeres)
- El Amanecer, where fresh fish is king (Calle la Garita, 46 - Arrieta)
- El Charcón, located in an iconic little red brick house facing the sea. They specialize in Canarian food (Calle el Charcón 13 - Arrieta).
Why is it advisable to make an excursion to the Jameos del Agua?
The answer is simple: because it is an authentic prodigy of nature. In a few words, a "jameo" is a tube created by a volcanic eruption and that has lost its roof (or at least a part of it). They are magical places that collect subway waters creating a very unique environment.
At the same time, it is worth seeing the Jameos de Agua de Lanzarote because they show that nature can be perfectly integrated with human constructions. It is safe to say that this is the main legacy of the Lanzarote artist.
Which are the villages I should not miss in Lanzarote?
White houses and palm trees are a constant feature of the island's landscape. However, some localities stand out from the average:
- Yaiza, one of the best preserved villages in the whole archipelago. It can be the ideal starting point for the Timanfaya National Park. If you love motors, you will be pleased to know that in August the Yaiza Sprint Rally is held. Find all the information on the website of the town hall
- Tinajo, on the east coast of the island. Its white houses stand out among the volcanic landscape creating a very suggestive contrast. From here you can start the ascent to the Volcán del Cuervo. If you like surfing, you can find good waves at the nearby beach of La Santa
- San Bartolomé, where the Monumento al Campesino (Monument to the Peasant) is located. One of its attractions is the Tanit Museum (Calle Constitución 1) that preserves the ethnographic heritage of Lanzarote. The ticket costs about 5 €
- Femés, at the foot of the Ajaches Massif. In the fifteenth century was the first capital of the Archipelago
- Teguise, one of the first populations of the Canary Islands. If you are looking for some handicrafts as souvenirs, you can buy them at the flea market. It is held every Sunday from 9:00 to 14:00. A few kilometers from the city center is the water park of Lanzarote (Avenida del Golf s/n)
- Arrecife, the capital of Lanzarote. Unfortunately, many tourists do not include it in their itineraries and in my opinion it is a mistake. Its most emblematic point is the Charco de San Ginés, a pool connected to the open sea. It is the mooring place for fishing boats and small rowing boats. On the heights, it is worth visiting the Castillo de San José.
Are there other attractions nearby?
Yes, a few minutes from the Jameos de Agua are other landmarks of Lanzarote:
- Cueva de los Verdes, the lava tube of La Corona Volcano. In the past, the locals took refuge here to flee from pirate attacks. You can visit it by buying tickets on the official website
- Playa de los Caletones, a series of coves dotted with black rocks. This volcanic landscape is characterized by shallow waters. It has a parking lot nearby and therefore can be easily reached by car. For more ideas, I recommend you to read the post about the best beaches in Lanzarote
- Cueva de los Siete Lagos, the favorite destination of speleologists. It can only be visited with an expert guide. Excursions are not very frequent but you can ask once on the island
- The stretch of coast near Los Jameos del Agua is perfect for windsurfing. The trade winds guarantee regular waves.
Tips for an excursion to the Jameos de Agua
At any time of the year, and especially in summer, I recommend wearing a hat and sunglasses to protect yourself from the glare and heat. In addition, here are some other useful tips:
- Although we are talking about a lagoon or small pool, you can not swim in the Jameos del Agua
- It is a very delicate natural environment and therefore, do not throw coins in the ponds, pools, etc.
- Unfortunately, you can not access with strollers. However, children under 7 years old enter for free
- Parking is free
- Wear comfortable shoes, the ground is volcanic is uneven
- If you want to visit the place on your own, you should know that it opens at 10:00 and closes at 17:00 (every day). During the summer the opening hours are longer: it opens also from 19:00 to 23:00
- Inside the enclosure there is a free Wi-Fi connection