Lanzarote by buggy, a plan for the most venturesome travellers
The privileged climate of the Canary archipelago and the impressive volcanic landscape of Lanzarote make exploring the island by buggy an ideal plan. On the one hand, you will be able to access areas that are impossible to reach by car. On the other hand, and thanks to the speed these vehicles are able to reach, you will be able to see more tourist attractions in less time. If you are one of those people in search of an adrenaline rush, start your engine. Beautiful white villages, threatening volcanoes, tracks side by side with the Atlantic Ocean… Lanzarote is waiting for you. Are you going to miss it?
But… what is a buggy?
A buggy is a vehicle designed to travel across any type of terrain, including cross-country routes, sandy areas and all type of beaches. This is the reason why it is common to find them in coastal and desert areas, the types of landscape that characterise Lanzarote.
The term “buggy” (also known as “dune buggy” or “beach buggy”) is a diminutive of the English word bug. In fact, the first buggies where made using the basis of the Volkswagen Beetle.
These vehicles are characterised by their light chassis and open roof. On the other hand, the wheels are of a considerable size allowing them to act as off-road vehicles. The speed they are able to reach depends on the model. Buggies with 250 cc are able to reach a maximum speed of 40 or 50 kph (24 or 31 mph), while the ones with an engine of 500 cc can reach 70 or 80 kph (43 or 49 mph).
These vehicles are quite easy to drive, as you only have to control the steering wheel, the accelerator and brakes and two gears: forward and reverse. However, it is essential to have a driver’s license to drive one. There are some companies on the island that offer the possibility of you not having to drive, as you can ride as a passenger with the guide. It is a great alternative for those who do not have a driver’s license and want to experience travelling across Lanzarote by buggy.
If you are not familiar with this type of vehicle and confuse them with go-karts or quad bikes, you must know that buggies reach faster speeds than go-karts and are more suitable for exploring Lanzarote’s natural environment. As opposed to quad bikes, buggies are safer, as their centre of gravity is closer to the ground, which reduces the possibility of it tipping over. These are the reasons why a buggy is the better alternative to travel across different tracks and paths of the island of volcanoes.
Routes by buggy in Lanzarote
In recent years, several companies have promoted exploring Lanzarote by buggy. Thus, the current offer includes routes for everyone’s taste, from those that pass through pretty villages with little white houses, such as Tías or Tahíche, to those that allow you to see some of the most beautiful beaches of the island, such as Papagayo or Famara, the latter famous amongst surfers for its big waves and the impressive cliff Risco de Famara in the background. Furthermore, other itineraries take the traveller to some of the most iconic places of Lanzarote, such as the vine plantations of La Geria or the volcanic scenery of Timanfaya.
As for its duration, there are short routes that take less than one hour. However, we recommend opting for the standard itineraries, which take around 3 hours, as you will be able to better explore the heart of the island, without having to rush back to the starting point. Some companies also offer 5 hour tours, which although being more expensive and take up most of your day, allow you to practically travel across the island from south to north, an experience that will allow you to fully understand the island’s geography.
Furthermore, the itineraries are tailored to different levels. Therefore, those who are more familiar with driving a buggy will be able to choose more demanding routes, while those who have never driven one before will not have anything to worry about, as there are routes tailored to their needs, starting on asphalt roads and after getting used to it, on dirt tracks. In any case, the companies provide a guide that will accompany you during the journey and run through the basic driving instructions at the beginning of the activity. The guides know the territory perfectly and point out which are the areas where you can increase speed and where you should be cautious.
If you are determined to drive a buggy in Lanzarote, we recommend that you wear comfortable clothes, closed shoes and sunglasses. It is also a good idea to take a scarf in your backpack to cover your face, as the island has areas with lots of sand, and the dust lifted up by the vehicles or the wind can be quite annoying. If you take part in this activity during the winter season, we recommend that you wear warm clothes, as it can get quite cold travelling at high speeds in an open vehicle, even in the Canary Islands.
If you are with friends or with your partner, travelling across Lanzarote by buggy is the perfect plan to discover landscapes that will stick in your memory for a very long time. Have an adrenaline experience!