Beautiful Famara beach, with its spectacular cliff backdrop, has been labelled as one of the best beaches in Europe. This is true to some extent, as a surf and kitesurfing Mecca, though it’s not perhaps the best choice for those who want to spend a quiet day sunbathing or a dip in gentle waters! There are some dangerous currents here, making it unsafe for bathers, with lifeguards making sure that only those wearing fins are in the water.
Located on Lanzarote’s North-west coast, Famara’s 5Km long beach stretches between the fishing village known as Caleta de Famara, past the Famara bungalow urbanisation, to the base of the impressive cliffs of Famara (Peñas del Chache). The beach looks out towards the Chinijo Archipelago, with views of the small island of La Graciosa, Alegranza and Montaña Clara.
Famara offers year-round surfing and body boarding and although the best waves can be found in the winter, there is plenty of surf throughout the year. The centre of the bay receives most of the swell, with the south being a little more gentle. Seasoned surfers and boarders head to the northern section which can be much faster, but comes with strong and dangerous rips. Famara is also one of the most popular locations in Lanzarote for Kitesurfing – especially during the summer when the trade winds are at their most consistent. If you fancy giving either sport a try, then there are a number of surf and kite surfing shops and schools in the area, offering everything from board and equipment hire through to 10 day residential surf courses.
If you plan to catch some rays, head to a zucco (horseshoe shaped stone shelter), as these provide respite from the wind. While swimming at Famara is not recommended, you can still take a dip to cool off – just don´t head out too far. The waves, along with very strong side-shore drifts and currents make it dangerous and everyone is encouraged to be vigilant at this beach.
Caleta de Famara, the old-fashioned Canarian fishing village, sits alongside the southern end of the beach. The unpaved streets covered in drifting sand, offers a glimpse into what the island was like before the arrival of mass tourism. Although small, there are a number of cafes, mini markets and seafood restaurants, some of which open out onto the seafront with (in my opinion) the best views from any restaurant in Lanzarote. Make sure you book in advance, especially during busy weekends in the summer, as these restaurants are very popular with local families.
For more adrenaline-filled sports, the nearby Risco de Famara offers a great location for hangliding and parasailing. Or, if you prefer to be a spectator, then the nearby San Juan beach plays host to the 6-star La Santa Pro world surfing championship every October.
During Autumn, the sun sets right into the sea and the views from the beach really are superb. If you can, plan your day to include this, as it really is worthwhile.
Getting to Famara
When entering Famara from the LZ-30, do take care as there is usually sand on the road. You can also access Famara via La Santa on a new road. It makes a great journey to come one way and leave the other, as you get the chance to see different scenery each way.
If you are staying Costa Teguise, the number 31 and 33 buses offer direct connections to Famara, otherwise you will need to catch a connecting bus from Arrecife Bus Station. Click here for bus timetables.