Why go to La Palma?
The port is filled with cute cobbled streets and a scattering of cafes, restaurants, bars and craft shops
Traffic can be busy around the immediate port area
There's beauty to be found in port and further out for those looking to explore the island's volcanic terrain
La Palma Cruise Port Facilities?
The port is unpretentious and uncommercialized, which is a nice way of saying there's no reason to hang around. It offers a cafe and a car rental office. The marina has a few bars, a cafe, an ATM and free Wi-Fi.
Good to Know?
Traffic is busy as you walk into Santa Cruz from the port gates; you need to cross several junctions. Although there are crossings, traffic seems to come from all directions, so be cautious and alert.
On Foot: Most ships offer free shuttle buses from the small cruise terminal to the main port gates; from there, it is a five-minute stroll into town.
By Bus: Buses operate around the island from Avenida de Bajamar. For a couple of euros, you can buy a return ticket to the nearest beach, Playa de los Cancajos, which lies about three miles to the south.
By Taxi: Taxis are a good way to travel on the island, though most are pricey. A taxi from the port (just outside the terminal) to the beach costs around 20 euros one way -- this is more reliable than buses if you're on a tight schedule. For an island tour, budget around 35 euros for an hour or so, depending on your negotiation skills (establish the fare in advance).
By Car: If your ship is in port for a long time, you could consider hiring a car at Autos la Palma on Avenida Maritima. It's not recommended on a short cruise call because the roads are winding, mountainous and slow to negotiate.
Currency & Best Way to Get Money?
The currency is the euro. See www.oanda.com or www.xe.com for conversion rates.
Spanish is spoken, and many residents speak at least a smattering of English, but it could be worth investing in a phrase book if you're heading off on your own.