The rough Atlantic Ocean and the volcanic orography of the area have formed these exotic natural seawater pools that are of many different shapes and colours. The best pools are accessed by the abandoned hotel that has been in ruins for about thirty years. It is best to avoid bathing in the pools that are located very close to the coast.
Sheltered from the wind and far from the area where the waves break near the coastline, a safe area for a dip. The sensation of diving into these natural pools is sublime.
The marvellous natural pools of Los Charcones are found in the southwest of Lanzarote, less than two kilometres north of the Pechiguera Lighthouse, in Playa Blanca. The constant violent nature of the Atlantic Ocean in this coastal area along with the volcanic orography has luckily resulted in natural saltwater pools.
The location is a rustic setting, a barren plain that is apparently of little interest. However on approaching the coast from a small ridge (about 10 metres high), you will find a valley of lava that is sprinkled with some spectacular pools.
The pools are all different shapes and colours. You will see that some are very attractive but have little depth and others are an attractive mixture of blue and turquoise tones. There are also other larger pools that are perfect, spacious and deep, located near to an abandoned hotel in ruins. The only good thing about this embarrassing eyesore is that it serves as a landmark to find these magical pools which are located at the foot of the building.
Getting there can be difficult
Reaching this cove has its inconveniencies. You can get there on foot from the Pechiguera Lighthouse (more or less an hour) or by car by bordering Montaña Roja in the tourist centre of Playa Blanca. From the tarmac road, once you have reached the ruins of the building you should take a dirt track that zig zags and is uncomfortable due to the potholes. Park next to the abandoned hotel and walk in the direction of the coast and after a short distance, less than twenty metres, you will find yourself in front of the first lot of natural pools. You will have to climb down the small cliff with great care. It is advisable to wear adequate footwear.
Getting comfortable can be a challenge. It is worth taking your time to find a spot and the volcanic mantle where the rocks are smoother. The pools that are situated about fifty or sixty metres to the south of the hotel are larger and have more depth.
With regard to the ferocity of the ocean in the southwest of Lanzarote it is better not to tempt your luck and avoid bathing in the open sea. There is however a wide margin between the pools and the sea. If this is what you would like to do, there are many other beaches and coves in Playa Blanca where you can spend the day with children.
The difficulty in accessing the pools means that Los Charcones is quite a desolate area, it is rare that you coincide with more than twenty people at the same time. The area has a mystical air that is conducive to nudism. This unusual sensation of plunging into the pools and emerging surrounded by the brutal volcanic landscape means that it is a dip in the sea that you will never forget.
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