The definitive guide to visit La Graciosa

La Graciosa, the eighth island of the Canary Islands, hides an earthly paradise, unknown to many and loved by all who visit it. 

With an extension of 29 km², it is the largest of the ‘Chinijo’ Archipielago islands, which in Conejero, or Lanzarote slang, means tiny.

Other than that, it is also the only inhabited island, with just over six hundred inhabitants registered all year round, although in high season it can triple its population. 

Together with Alegranza, Montaña Clara, Roque del Este, and Roque del Oeste, they make up this small redoubt of wild nature that is home to the largest marine reserve in Europe, with more than 700 km² and a broad biological diversity that it is home to many different creatures, from algae to seabirds, making this marine reserve also, a Special Protection Area for Birds. 

All this makes this miniature archipelago an area of high ecological sensitivity, something to consider before coming. 

Whether it’s a day trip, a weekend break or a relaxing holiday lasting several days, in La Graciosa you’ll find much more than just sun and sand. 

What should you know before visiting La Graciosa?

The most important thing we have already told you: coming to La Graciosa means being within a protected environmental zone, so the most important thing is that your stay here generates the minimum impact.

That being said, let’s continue.

The capital of La Graciosa is Caleta de Sebo.

We’ll call it a capital -although there is another charming village a bit further north- but the reality, is that it is a small urban center where most of the houses and essential services for life are concentrated. It is also home to the only port on the island, receiving numerous tourists every day.

What was once a small fishing village has now become a place where people seek for the tranquility and disconnection that this small island has to offer.

What strikes the visitor who lands on La Graciosa for the first time is that there are no paved roads anywhere on the island. This apparently minor detail gives much more charisma to an island that strives between tradition and comfort demanded by the tourism industry.

If there are no paved roads, there are no cars either. At least not as expected in a capital city, no matter its size.

Arriving at La Graciosa means getting used to the idea that if you want to get around, you can only do so in three ways: by foot, by bicycle or in a 4×4 taxi. You should never rent a car or drive around on your own as the conservation of the environment is seriously taken into account here. 

Apart from that, in the town you will find a couple of supermarkets, restaurants serving typical food, cafés, flats, bike rental shops, a 4×4 taxi service, a pharmacy, a police station, a school and even a camping area. Although you can pay by credit card in most of the establishments, we recommend that you take cash with you, as there is only one ATM on the whole island.

About six kilometres to the north, we find Pedro Barba, the second biggest population centre of La Graciosa, which has remained as a peaceful and disconnected refuge for the privileged.

Privileged because only a few can enjoy the opportunity to stay in one of its magnificent houses.

With a small pier and a charming beach, Pedro Barba offers a peaceful location equal to that of any paradise.

Here you will only hear the waves, the songs of the birds that nest around the area, while staring at the starry sky. For any other service, you must go to Caleta de Sebo. 

How to get to La Graciosa?

We’ve already told you everything you need to know before arriving to the island, now we’ll tell you how to get there.

The only way to get to La Graciosa is by boat from the port of Órzola, in the north of Lanzarote. 

So, if you are coming from outside Lanzarote, the first thing you have to do is get to the this island. Its airport has direct connections with several European and Spanish cities and with most of the Canary Islands.

From here, you must travel to Órzola, the northernmost town, which connects the two islands by comfortable ferries. Bear in mind that the only vehicle you can take on board is a bicycle. 

Romero Lines offers an extensive service schedule, with modern boats covering the 3.8 nautical miles between the two ports in approximately 30 minutes.

You can buy your tickets on their website or directly at the office located in the port of Órzola or Caleta de Sebo, but we recommend that you buy them in advance so that you don’t lose your seat.

Where to stay in La Graciosa?

You have arrived at your destination.

And you realise that this place is a dream come true and you want to spend several days here. Well, if you’re planning to improvise, we’re sorry to tell you that you can’t do this in La Graciosa. 

There is such a high demand for accommodation that you must book months in advance to be able to enjoy a few days on this marvellous island, since the hotel accommodation options are limited and, as you get closer to the day of your trip, the prices increase considerably.

Several groups of flats and houses have been adapted as holiday homes, so on platforms such as Booking or Air BnB you’re bound to find the ideal place to spend your days off.

Where to eat in La Graciosa?

If you’re going on a trip around the island, the best thing to do is to go to the supermarkets in the village to buy sandwiches, but if you’re more of a “table d’hôte” type of person, there are several restaurants where you can enjoy fresh and traditional Canarian food. 

In addition, some of these restaurants are surrounded by incredible views of the Risco de Famara.

For breakfast or an afternoon snack there are cafés and bakeries with terraces where you can enjoy a tasty latte in the open air.

What to visit?

This depends on how long you are planning to stay on the island. 

If your visit is just one day visit and you don’t want to miss anything, the best thing to do is to hire a 4×4 tour, which will take you around the most emblematic spots of the island in minutes, so you can make the most of your short stay.

Obviously, this immediacy comes at an extra cost and it all depends on the type of excursion or trip you book.

You will be informed about prices when you arrive at the island, and it is the locals themselves who will guide you on this adventure. 

And although you can see almost the whole island in a day by car, the must-sees are: Las Conchas beach, Pedro Barba and La Cocina beach, although this last one is best if you can visit it by boat. 

Make the most of it when you arrive, or before catching your return boat, to take a walk around Caleta de Sebo and soak up its seafaring essence.

A swim in one of its coves is a must on this day. The southern coves are the best for swimming, while the northern ones are perfect for a good snapshot, as the sea tends to be wildest on this part of the coast.

You can also hire a bike and take a closer look at this natural wonder.

It is not a very steep island, so you will be able to do it without major complications. However, you must bear in mind that the landscape is wild and you can find certain sandy areas that make it difficult to advance.

Even so, by taking the first boat in the morning and the last boat back, you can do a circular route that takes you past Pedro Barba, Amber beach, Las Conchas beach and back to Caleta de Sebo.

To do this route, it is highly recommended that you take enough water for the whole day, food, sunscreen, a hat and suitable clothing for cycling on unpaved roads. 

It will also allow you to take a break for lunch, have a swim and, if you feel like it, climb Montaña Bermeja, the volcanic cone that presides over Las Conchas beach, to contemplate the views of the neighbouring islets. 

A real paradise just a few minutes’ climb away. 

Another option is to take a route through the southern part of the island, leaving Caleta de Sebo and arriving at Montaña Amarilla. 

On the way you will pass by La Francesa beach and La Cocina beach, some fantastic coves for swimming, snorkelling, sunbathing and relaxing. 

If, on the other hand, you are staying for several days, take it easy. 

Do some walking or cycling routes and then you can repeat your visits in a 4×4, so you can get to your favourite places quickly and make the most of every spot on this incredible island.

How to move?

Well, we gave you a bit of a spoiler in the previous point, but in case you missed it, we’ll remind you again, which always comes in handy. 

Arriving at La Graciosa is like going back in time, travelling to an era where there is no clock, the roads are unpaved and there are almost, almost no motor vehicles. 

For this reason, the easiest way to get around the island is by foot or by bike. 

In Caleta de Sebo you will find several companies that rent mountain bikes, fatbikes or even electric bikes. 

But if pedalling isn’t your thing, you’re in luck.

Although we have said that there are hardly any vehicles, the truth is that you can actually find them. With a few exceptions.

The only vehicles allowed on the island are the locals’ vehicles, mostly 4x4s, which are hired as a taxi service to anyone who wants to visit the island in record time. 

They’re not comfortable, but very effective, and considering the roads are rough and bumpy, it’s better to be effective than comfortable. 

Now that you know how to get around La Graciosa, the only thing left to do is to choose what to visit and how. 

To do this, we are going to recommend some routes so that you can choose the ones you like best and organise your trip so that you don’t miss anything.


Caleta de Sebo - La Cocina Beach

This route is perfect for walking, as you border the coast and can stop at any time to refresh yourself. 

It is a route of just over 6 km and lasts an hour and a half. 

If you prefer to do it by bike, you will reduce the duration of the trip to 20 minutes, bearing in mind that there are sandy areas that make it difficult to cycle and you may have to walk certain distances. 

Either way, it will be worth the effort.


Visiting the town of Pedro Barba, the second largest in La Graciosa, has a prize: its peacefulness.

If the island is already a place of calm, Pedro Barba is a whole new level. 

You can get there by bike along a 6.8 km route in just over 20 minutes, or you can walk along the coast. 

The second option may take a little longer, but you can visit the Barranco de los Conejos ravine and take a swim at the beach.

When you get to Pedro Barba, wander through its streets, go to its little pier and relax on its beach with its flat, crystal-clear waters. A real treat for your senses.


Las Conchas Beach - Amber Beach

To visit these beaches, we recommend that you follow a circular route and pass through several significant spots around the island.

Our main recommendation is that you do it by bike, as it is a route of about 18 km and lasts an average of one hour without stops. 

With this in mind, you can take a break whenever you want to admire the landscape. 

The good thing about this route is that you decide where to start, whether to go first to Pedro Barba or whether this is the last stop before returning to Caleta de Sebo. 

Our recommendation is that you start by going to Pedro Barba, then continue north until you reach the beach of Amber and then take the detour that takes you to the beach of Las Conchas. 

Once here, you can leave your bike in the car park and head up to Montaña Bermeja to admire the views or go to the beach and splash your feet. 

Remember that bathing here is not recommended because of the strong sea currents and because there is no lifeguard service. 

Take extreme precautions. 

From now on, all you have to do is return to Caleta de Sebo to finish your route.


La Cocina Beach

This beach can be visited in several ways: along the south coast or by taking an alternative route around the coasts on the other side of the island. 

For this second option, we recommend cycling. 

It’s a 6.2km round trip, 22 minutes each way. Walking will take you an hour and a quarter each way. 

Along this area you will pass through a rocky coastline full of life. If you stop you can admire the seagulls and shearwaters, among other seabirds. 

When you reach the Playa de la Cocina beach you can take a dip in its serene waters or go up to Montaña Amarilla to enjoy the panoramic views of the Risco de Famara or see the rest of the Chinijo Archipelago in the distance. 

To return you have two options, do the same route back or ride your bike along a stretch of sand and continue along the beaches of La Francesa and El Salado until you reach Caleta de Sebo.

Important dates you should know before coming to La Graciosa.

Although La Graciosa is the smallest of the Canary Islands, it has very important events on which there is such a large influx of people that there is no free accommodation, and it is almost impossible to get a seat on the boat for the day. 

You must take these dates into account, both if you want to attend these events, or whether you want to avoid them, therefore, take note of when the island fills up with locals and foreigners wanting to celebrate.

Fiestas of El Carmen.

In July, La Graciosa pays tribute to its patron saint, the Virgen del Carmen, with various festivities and popular events: concerts, village festivals, Canarian traditional wrestling. 

The main celebration is on the 16th of July, when the island’s boats set sail in a festive sea parade. 

If you want to come and celebrate this important day like everyone else, check the calendar of events so that you don’t miss out on anything.

River crossing.

In mid-October, one of the most famous sporting events is held: the swimming crossing between the islands of Lanzarote and La Graciosa. 

This race, which is only suitable for experts, takes place in El Río, which is the stretch of water that separates both islands, and which receives its name because of the currents that originate here, which are so strong that it seems to be a river following its course. 

With more than 30 editions under its belt, there are many participants who year after year set off from the beach Bajo el Risco, in Lanzarote, ready to swim the 2,600 metres that separate the start from the finish line. 

But few manage to reach Caleta de Sebo.

The race is so intense that the organisers have very strict time limits and, from the moment the first swimmer reaches the finish line, the rest have one hour to complete it. 

There is great expectation at the arrival port, where the support boats are constantly dropping off the swimmers who deviate from the course and finally give up the race, but not before having struggled against the current to reach their destination.

The entire competition takes place in La Graciosa: collection of bib numbers, warm-up, swimmers pick-up to take them to the starting line, finish line and subsequent celebration. 

If swimming is your thing, this is your sporting event in La Graciosa.


Carnival is one of the most important festivals amongst the Canary Islanders and in La Graciosa they enjoy it like no other. 

With an extensive events calendar, experiencing carnival on the eighth island is a real treat. 

So don’t miss it.

New Year's Eve.

If you want to spend a different New Year’s Eve, La Graciosa is your destination. 

Forget heels and suits with ties, because here you won’t need them. Of course, there is no shortage of good food, grapes and music, but you will also have the opportunity to experience the peacefulness that this seaside town transmits. 

Welcome the New Year in an original way in the Chinijo Archipelago.

To bear in mind before arriving at La Graciosa.

Visiting La Graciosa is not just about wandering around, it’s about being a conscious visitor aware of your surroundings. 

You are in a protected area, for apart from being the largest marine reserve in Europe and a Special Protection Area for Birds, it is also part of the Biosphere Reserve of Lanzarote and the Chinijo Archipelago.

And what does all this mean?

Very simple, come, visit, enjoy, observe, but don’t damage the ecosystem. Don’t take sand or stones with you. Don’t disturb the birds or animals you find on your trips and, most importantly: take your rubbish with you!

Don’t leave any trace in your path except your footprints in the sand. 

By the way, did we mention that there is a camping area on La Graciosa?

Well, yes, it is located at Salado beach and in order to camp there you must ask for permission and follow certain rules, as you will be in a protected area. Although it is currently closed until further notice, on this website you can find all the information you need to know to apply for your camping licence.

Best time to visit La Graciosa.

Although every season is a good option when visiting La Graciosa, as winters are mild and summers are pleasant, there are always better months. 

In winter the temperatures are pleasant, but don’t forget that the island is close to the African coast, and temperatures can drop quite a bit at night while the wind coming off the ocean is cool and humid. Rain is rare and not abundant. 

During summer, the trade winds blow hard and keep the temperature cool, but the wind can be uncomfortable for cycling or hiking. 

The best time of year is undoubtedly September and October, when the summer is over, the wind slows down and the sun is still warm enough to make you want to swim in the turquoise waters.

What not to miss in La Graciosa

In this post we told you everything you can do in La Graciosa, but if you really want to live an unparalleled experience, you must do it from the sea. 

This island is historically a place of sailors and fishermen, so you can’t miss the opportunity to experience La Graciosa from a boat. 

Líneas Romero offers several excursions in which you can sail on a luxury catamaran, take a trip along its most iconic beaches aboard a boat with an underwater view or observe the marine life by snorkelling with this excursion. 

Any of these are perfect for a day at sea, with food, drink and water sports such as kayaking and snorkelling.

This article has been written with all our love for Lanzarote. We hope you enjoy your visit to La Graciosa as much as we have enjoyed writing this section.

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