To end my experience visiting the Tourist Centers of the Island, I have approached to the Mirador del Río in the North of the Island, and then, to the Garden of Cactus, in Guatiza. The first thing is to reach the northern part of the island. I like to vary the route whenever I can so as not to miss the different landscapes that such a small island can offer you.
The Mirador del Río
As the first Center of the day to visit I have chosen the Mirador del Río. What better way to start the day than to enjoy the beautiful views that its privileged situation gives us. Located at the top of the Risco de Famara, the building conceived by César Manrique is a clear example of the harmony that the artist pursued throughout his life integrating naturally the building with its surroundings. When we arrived at the parking area we found a large sculpture, the hallmark of Manrique, which welcomes us to the Mirador del Río, covered with volcanic stone and integrated into the cliff.
Upon entering we find walls of pristine whiteness and hardwood floors in a corridor decorated with ceramic from the island. The corridor opens onto a large living room with large windows in which visitor rest and enjoy the views while eating something.
The living room is very nice, both for a having a drink and to sit on the sofa for a while while you look through the windows. But there is more: the best, without doubt, is the outside where we can enjoy the wonderful views of the Chinijo Archipelago with the island of La Graciosa in the foreground.
The balcony outside is also covered with volcanic stone, and if you stay long enough you can surely see some of the different birds that nest on the cliff. In my case I could see a couple of crows and a hawk in full hunting.
You can also access the upper part by a spiral staircase that is in the living room and that passes through the souvenir shop, full of memories of our visit to the island, to climb to the roof of the viewpoint. There we have another point to enjoy the views that the viewpoint offers us. To our back we have a magnificent view of the Volcano of the Crown.
After enjoying the views of the Mirador del Río, the last stop awaits us, the Cacti Garden of Guatiza. Among cacti fields we find the Cacti Garden, with a giant metal cactus pointing to the place, it has no loss.
The Cacti Garden
We are facing another of the works of César Marique: a large garden built in volcanic stone with terraces on several levels and more than 450 different types of cacti belonging to all parts of the world. Upon entering, as we go down the stairs we find a gigantic 8-meter cactus. The cobbled paths create a pleasant walk that meanders among the largest cacti and stone structures of reddish tones.
In the middle of the garden there is a pond which is born from the waterfall formed by the mouth of a singular stone monster and populated by colored tents.
An old mill, which was used to grind grain, dominates the stamp from above. You can visit it and the photo from there is beautiful.
Before leaving the Garden, I took the opportunity to eat something in the restaurant. Some potatoes wrinkled with mojo and, if you dare, a cactus burger – it sounds strange but it’s good.
A perfect place if you like plants and photography, cacti are ideal for making some very beautiful and different photographs.
Undoubtedly, the Mirador del Río and the Jardín de Cactus are two places to visit that you should not miss when you travel to Lanzarote.