Excursion Spotlight The Cactus Garden

A peaceful and prickly place to visit

One of Lanzarote’s most popular attractions is the famous Cactus Garden (Jardin de Cactus) located north of Puerto del Carmen at Guatiza, in the heart of Lanzarote’s traditional cactus growing area. Yes, it is a little peculiar, but it’s a great celebration of all things cacti and one of the best collections in the world today.

Showcasing over 10,000 different plants, a visit to the Cactus Garden is a great excursion for the whole family and not just for green-fingered gardeners or botanists.

The Cactus Garden was built under the guidance of artist Cesar Manrique in a disused quarry which acts as a superb amphitheatre-style backdrop. Today, there are over 450 different species of 13 cactus families from around the world.

The plants have been placed thoughtfully and carefully around the garden, providing visitors with impressive, artistic views as the greens of the plants clash against the dark volcanic soil and bright blue sky.

The plant selection was the work of an eminent botanist, Estanislao Gonzales Ferrer and the collection of both cacti and succulents have been drawn together from the Canary Islands, Madagascar and America.

There are towering saguaros, spiny globes and prickly pears planted around the garden areas, terraces and levels which are linked by bridges and paved paths. In the centre is a series of water features with fish and water lilies.

The Tunera cacti attract the cochineal beetles whose crushed larvae scraped from the cactus produced the famous red food colouring – and was once a mainstay of the island’s industry. Every day at the garden you can still see a local farmer harvest the beetles to produce the colourant.

Rachel from Club Las Calas says

Manrique’s influence can be seen throughout the Cactus Garden with the cacti motif he designed placed on door handles and gates and in the sculptures such as the eight-metre high metallic sculpture in the car park and the glass ball sculpture in the curved bar area with its chunky mid-century furniture and serial staircase.

At the top of the garden is the restored Gofio windmill that used to ground Canarian cornmeal and dates back to the 19th century. The mill’s giant sails provide a shaded seating area on the terrace with views down over the gardens.

The team at the Cactus Garden has recommended some places for guests to take some great photos:

  • The 8-metre cactus at the entrance
  • The panoramic view of the garden from the entrance
  • A picture at the “asiento de la suegra” cactus is a must
  • An interesting fountain located opposite the shop
  • Manrique’s work throughout the garden
  • The mural at the coffee shop
  • Molino de Guatiza

The cactus Garden has achieved a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence and receives great reviews from visitors, many of whom visit the garden as part of the North Tour of the island. This can be arranged by the reception team at Club Las Calas.

If you would like to visit then it is open year round from 10:00 to 17:45 October to June and 09:00 to 17:45 July to September. It is also good value – entry to the garden costs: adults: 5,50 euros and children: 2,75 euros (7-12).

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To enjoy all that Puerto del Carmen and Lanzarote have to offer, book your holiday apartment at Club Las Calas today for great holiday accommodation, superb facilities, daily entertainment and a great location.

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