Most of this tour is spent in the coach. But the landscape and history are interesting and there are opportunities for photos. Demos of the geisers and hot stones are a bit contrived, but fascinating nonetheless. Long queues at the entrance to the National Park meant that our tour was rather hurried once we had gained entry
This was the most outstanding port and excursion in our trip, and itself would be worth the entire trip. Words cannot describe what the visit to Timanfaya National Park means. Maybe John Glen (the astronaut) is the one who best described it: "It looks just like the moon". Go and check it for yourself.
Again, we went on the ship's 'Best of Lazarote all day tour costing $129 (ÃÂ£86). On the way to our first stop our guide told us that the coach had to be changed because the air conditioning was not working. We were taken to the Mirador del Rio, a building designed by Cesar Manrique, where you can view the nearby island of La Graciosa and purchase refreshments, postcards, etc, etc. I am not sure how much time we spent there but it was a very long time and we were all getting very restless. When we finally were allowed to leave, it was back on the old coach which took us to visit Jameous del Agua where the replacement coach was waiting. Jameos del Agua is a partially open cave designed by Cesar Manrique comprising of a subterranean pool and concert hall and an exhibition. It is worth visiting. For lunch we stopped at the truly awful "restaurant" in Mancha Bianca for lunch (included in the price). The dining room comprised of several long tables with benches and on each table there was a carafe of very cold vinegary red wine which had seen better days and some water (between 4) and oranges and apples for dessert. We helped ourselves to what could be starters [there were no salad items, cold meat, etc] whilst others just piled on most things onto one plate. We then hit the problem that there was nobody interested in taking away our plates so we left them with the uneaten bits of what we thought could just be starters on a side table and helped ourselves to clean plates and what certainly looked like the main courses which were equally as bad as the starters. Everyone complained about the quality of the food and wine available and how badly it compared to the restaurant in Tenerife. After lunch we were taken to the visitor's centre in the Timanfaya National park where learnt more about volcanoes and lava (more than we really needed or wanted!). We also witnessed three demonstrations of geothermal energy which were certainly worthwhile seeing. Our final stop was at a vineyard where we were given a glass of red or dry white or sweet white to taste. We opted for a glass of cheap and nasty dry white wine. sample. Thankfully it was only a very small glass!! One of our group tried the sweet white wine and asked for a second glass and was refused. Nobody bought any wine or asked to try something better. While our guide in Tenerife waffled on and on about ecosystems, our guide in Lanzarote waffled on and on about lava rocks and, of course, with many repeats. The only release was the recorded audio commentary courtesy of the replacement coach which, although was about volcanos and lava rock, was far more interesting than our guide's attempts to fill up the time. Again, we would have liked to have seen more of the coastal resorts which would have been possible if the tour had not spent so much time at each stop and if the ship had spent more time in Lanzarote instead of leaving at 6 pm.
We took the local authority-run shuttle to and from Malaga (you need to pay but only a token amount). We did not go on ship excursions because we have seen the places to be visited before. Instead we spent a pleasant morning and afternoon walking round the town. We visited the Cathedral where we opted for the audio commentary, walked round the Castle of Gibralfaro and the Alcazaba and the indoor market.
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