Showing posts from January, 2024

Hitchhiking in Lanzarote. From Punta Mujeres to Famara

We woke up in a sleepy fishing village on the north-east coast of Lanzarote. Our couchsurfing host had kindly offered us a cozy room in his house in Punta Mujeres. We thanked him for his hospitality and packed our bags. Our destination for the day was Famara, a surfers' paradise on the opposite side of the island. There we had found a host on Trustroots, a hospitality exchange website that reminded us of the old days of couchsurfing, when it was more about community than business. As we always do, we chose our favorite means of transportation - hitchhiking . It's not only faster sometimes than public transport, but also more adventurous. You never know how your day will unfold, who you'll meet on the road and what stories you'll get out of the experience. Our first ride was with a familiar face. We had seen that guy the day before in the harbor, walking his white fluffy dog. She was so popular among the kids in town, we could tell her owner was a kind person. He was

Hiking the GR131 on Lanzarote. From Orzola to Uga

Day 1. Orzola - Ermita de las Nieves Distance 18 km, Elevation gain 900 m, Elevation loss 300 m, Camping spot 29°06′23.59″N, 13°31′41.26″W The morning weather forecast warned us of a fierce wind that would soon sweep the island. Gusts up to 70 km/hr. We didn't hesitate. We packed our bags and set off from Orzola around 8:30. The weather was still ideal for hiking, with a cool haze that softened the sun. We walked along the road, marveled by the contrast between the dormant volcanoes and the restless ocean. We soon left the asphalt behind and entered the trails that wound between the elegant wineries and the modest orchards in the black soil. We felt the presence of the mighty Corona volcano and her smaller kin, our silent guardians. The air was arid like in the desert but tinged with salt. We reached Haria and took a short break. We refilled our bottles with tap water in the Centro Cultural and chilled under the shade of the towering trees in the boulevard. (Side note: we brou

Lanzarote 2024. Orzola. Dramatic sunrise. Meeting a hippie friend.

We began our Lanzarote adventure in Orzola, a charming village on the island’s northernmost point. When we arrived, its whitewashed houses, kissed by the ocean’s salty spray, sparkled in the fading light. Orzola was once a humble fishing village, but now it attracts visitors who come to board a ferry to the nearby island of Graciosa. Also, the GR131 hiking trail starts here, which was the reason why we decided to stay in Orzola. Despite the windy and gray weather the next day, we woke up early and headed out to chase the sunrise from the eastern shore. We were rewarded with a spectacular sight. The sun emerged from behind the clouds, smiling at us with a warm glow. We saw it as a sign of the successful journey we would embark on in a couple of days. Before we set off on our hike, however, we had to meet our legendary nomad friend Simon and his faithful dog Paddy. Simon had been a globetrotter for most of his life. In the seventies, he hopped on a hippy bus from London to India - and

Gran Canaria 2024. Sleeping in the airport. Unexpected Airbnb experience. Bandama volcano hike.

Our winter adventure started with a night at the Las Palmas de Gran Canaria airport, where we planned to stay after arriving late. We had slept there once before, in March 2019, when we snuggled on the cozy benches of a friendly cafe. This time, however, we faced a different challenge: the airport was supposed to close from midnight to 4 AM, and everyone had to vacate the premises. The information clerk hinted that the security guards might turn a blind eye and let us stay, but we couldn’t be sure. We spotted some homeless people who looked like they had made the airport their nightly shelter. They were not bothered by the closing hours, and seemed to enjoy the meager comfort of the place. We realized luck was on our side, when we heard that a flight to Fuerteventura was canceled due to strong winds. The airport staff was busy dealing with the frustrated passengers, and we were left to find our own spot. Unfortunately, the only seats available were the hard chairs of a closed bistro.