La Graciosa: A Hidden Paradise in the Atlantic Ocean
Saturday, September 3, 2016
I recently had the pleasure to spend some amazing days at one of the most unique places I have ever had the opportunity of being to. La Graciosa (whose name means “The Funny One” in Spanish) is most definitely a small paradise in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean. Located in the far northeast of the Canary Islands and part of the Chinijo Archipelago, just about 5km from neighbouring Lanzarote, this remote isle pleases not only the eye but most definitely the mind and soul with glorious golden beaches and stunning rocky landscapes with the consideration of Special Protected Areas by the Spanish State and the European Union.
In order to get to this gem of a place, you first need to pack your bags up to Lanzarote, then jump on a bus right after you land (which, let me tell you, brought shivers down my spine as the airport is located just next to the beach and you feel as you are landing on the water! Yes. No kidding here) and take a ferry from the northern port town of Órzola.
A HEAVEN ON EARTH
Once you land your feet on the isle, you realise this is no ordinary place. There are no roads to be seen and cars are relatively scarce in number, serving the main purpose of taking tourists and locals from one of the two towns – Caleta de Sebo, its capital – to the rest of the not so well-trodden areas, most of them infinite sand beaches where nudism is not something strange at all.
The second populated area – Casas de Pedro Barba – gives the beautiful impression of being some sort of a ghost town. A fisheran town with stoney white houses rented by tourists, it has a population of 2 according statistics. Legend says it was founded by a mad fisherman who wanted to move out of the capital and live alone. And he sure managed to!
La Graciosa is one of those places where absolute serenity, peace and relax can be achieved. It is definitely the perfect spot to forget about your daily routines and the dynamic city life. Life here is so simple and can only be topped by the sweetness and benevolence of locals. If you, like me, like to enjoy your trip to the fullest, feel free and rent a bike to reach those marvellous isolated beaches (downfall is, you will end up dead tired at the end of the day but it is definitely worth the struggle!). Desert flora combines with a mustard, dandellion and clay colour scheme and the clearest and bluest of waters.
A pleasant feeling of freedom is everywhere around. Mornings are calm and far from the noisy daybreaks those who live in vibrant cities are used to. Temperatures are quite high when the sky is clear and warm when it’s cloudy – but you must not get fooled as the daylight is enough for you to get a sunburn, or at least it was for me! Sun kissed skin locals mix perfectly with the influx of tourists, which was surprisingly quite high. This little isle in Spain has definitely loads to offer as even the smallest museum on earth is located here! Tourists can get to know more about the place’s flora, fauna and primary sectors of the local economy from Monday to Saturday from 10ººh to 17ººh.
A fun fact – international Spanish model Jon Kortajarena decided to spend his vacations there last week. You can check some of the stunning snaps he shared on his instagram page , which only makes me want to come back in the blink of an eye!
- Infinite relax and peace – perfect if you are not the clubbing type of person.
- Incredibly friendly locals.
- A strict pattern of pearl white houses with blue doors and windows is followed.
- A quite surprisingly high influx of tourists from Lanzarote.
- Probably one of the few places in Europe with unpaved sand roads and a selected number of cars.
- A total population of 721 inhabitants.
- Dinners outside enjoying the sunset, warm breeze and waves of the Atlantic Ocean – oh my!
- Pricey food – there are two local supermarkets where variety of food is scarce as it has to be brought from Lanzarote.
- It is absolutely recommended to go biking from one place to the other.
- Hiking the 29km2 island is a must.
In summary, this is certainly a must to add on your lust list when you are seeking pure relaxation. Have you been to La Graciosa? Or any other similar places? I’d like to hear it.
Hasta la próxima!
Love, Gratsiela x.