Holidays give us the perfect opportunity to have new experiences and create memories that money simply cannot buy.
Lanzarote is an outdoor paradise offering something for everyone: for those who like to play it safe, the adventurers as well as the adrenaline junkies. And with its warm all-year-round climate, awesome scenery and vibrant sea life, you couldn’t choose a better backdrop for those wonderful outdoor experiences.
Explore Lanzarote’s underwater world with Sea Trek
Sea Trek is an activity that you can only experience in two European dive centres. Native Diving in Costa Teguise is one of them, so off I went to give this a try. It’s always good to book in advance as group sizes are limited. I booked my ticket online through Touristticket.
Myself and the other three in my group were kitted out with our wetsuits. Our instructor gave us a short theory class, explaining how the equipment works and instructions for the activity.
Step outside your comfort zone
We walked down onto the golden sands of Playa de Jabillo and its inviting turquoise waters. As we chatted, I discovered that the three other group members were a little nervous: the first suffered from asthma, the second from claustrophobia and the third couldn’t swim at all. All of them were plucking up courage to challenge themselves to something new.
The helmets are similar to the old diving helmets, with an oxygen tube leading to a tank on the surface of the water. They were quite heavy, so the instructor placed them on our heads while we kneeled waist-high in the water. They sit on your shoulders but are open at the bottom. Air is heavier than oxygen, so no water gets in. You just breathe normally, stay upright and walk like an astronaut on the moon!
Walking under the sea
We walked slowly on our knees until we reached a depth of about two meters, before standing up. The water was crystal clear, and I was amazed how many fish were swimming so close to the beach. The instructor found a range of weird and wonderful creatures like long-legged starfish, sea cucumbers and sea urchins and we were able to hold them, before he returned them to their habitat.
Anyone can do it
Everyone in the group enjoyed the Sea Trek and all of their fears dissipated. It’s a wonderful way to discover Lanzarote’s underwater world and suitable for anyone aged 8 years and over. It’s perfect for those who don’t feel confident enough to go diving.
Native Diving even has a special underwater wheelchair for those with reduced mobility. According to José, the expressions of joy on their faces makes it especially worthwhile.
Enjoy spectacular Lanzarote views with parasailing
Fly like a bird
Parasailing is where you are harnessed into a seat and towed along in the sky from a boat. I’d hear exciting stories of gliding through the sky with amazing views and I wanted to try it for myself.
You can try this in several of Lanzarote’s main resorts. The nearest to me was Paracraft Lanzarote in Playa Chica, based on a small harbour just next to the resort of Puerto del Carmen.
Speeding away from the coast
The boats take up to 10 people at a time, and you usually go up in pairs. Once we were all kited out with our life jackets, the motorboat set off to sea. It was a gorgeous afternoon and I felt so energised by the sun and the sea breeze.
Once we were a few miles offshore, one-by-one the pairs were strapped in and rose slowly into the air. You could see by their faces that this was going to be fun.
Lanzarote from above
As there were only nine aboard this time, I got lucky in being able to go up alone. As I rose higher, the boat became smaller and I was finally gliding through the air at a height of 100m.
The winds were light, and I was surprised how quiet and peaceful it was up there. And of course, this was one of those moments that calls for an obligatory selfie.
Spectacular panoramic views
Parasailing in Lanzarote gives you the rare opportunity to see the landscape from an entirely different perspective. You have privileged 360°-degree views: the vast Atlantic Ocean to one side and Lanzarote’s white houses to the other, against a dramatic volcanic backdrop.
As usual, all good things come to end too soon, but I will never forget the wonderful sensation I experienced. Highly recommended!
Baptism dive in Lanzarote
Learning the basics
Lanzarote is home to Europe’s largest marine reserve, so you couldn’t find a better place to try out diving. I signed up with a friend for a beginners’ dive (baptism) with La Santa Diving at Club La Santa. You can sign up with them even if you’re not staying there, although there are numerous other dive schools on the island.
Into the sea
We first had an initial theory and pool lesson with Johnny at Club La Santa, who carefully explained everything we needed to know about our equipment, equalizing, hand signals and other essential information.
Then we were off to Playa Chica for our first sea dive, where we would walk into the sea from the beach. I felt a little overdressed in my wetsuit as we walked through the sun worshippers, but I would later learn why I needed it so much.
Richard, our instructor, took us waist-deep into the sea. He ensured we were comfortable in our masks and our breathing and explained what we were going to do. He had such a reassuring manner that we felt immediately at ease.
A visit to another world
Soon we were out of the main beach area and swimming around rocky headlands which were teeming with life. Playa Chica has a special natural light: the colour of the water was sublime, and it really is as blue as it looks! Underwater visibility in Lanzarote can reach up to 40 metres and the water is among the clearest in the world.
We saw all kinds so many different kinds of fauna, that didn’t seem to be bothered by our presence at all: barracudas, groupers, parrot fish, damselfish, sea breams, a seahorse, a sea cow, cuttlefish, octopus and sea cucumbers; and an angel shark that had hidden itself so well in the sand that we hardly noticed it. My favourite of all was the colourful ornate wrasse (see photo).
The most difficult part of the day for me was resisting the urge to talk underwater. I had to content myself with pointing at all the beautiful creatures and trying to communicate with my eyes.
We went up to a depth of 12 metres and I started to feel chilly after about an hour – even with a 5 mm wetsuit. We made our way back to the shore and popped up into the human world once more. I must admit I was a little sad, I think I prefer the underwater world after all.