Teguise: white heritage and mahogany crosses in the old capital of Lanzarote

This is an article about Teguise town, one of the most important historic towns all over Canary Islands, Spain.

Teguise is the largest municipality on the island, reaching both East and West coasts. Teguise town was the old capital of Lanzarote from the first half of XV Century to the second half of the XIX century (year 1852). Since then, it lost practically all the parcels of power in Arrecife favor. It was the first most important civil and urban settlement in Canary Islands. Check our recommended round trip along Lanzarote Island.

Teguise is white like all the other towns on Lanzarote Island. It is clean, organized, safe and over all cute. Very beautiful. Immediately, the visitor gets the impression of being in a kind of important historic town, since every location in town seems to be surrounded by white historic monumental houses.  

Teguise has no lack of heritage in landmarks. Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe is the main church and dates from the 16th century. It is located in the centre of town and, although it has been subsequently renovated due to frequent fires, its neo-Gothic style remained untouched.

Spínola Palace is one more of the good examples of historic architecture. It is located in the main square and dates from the 18th century. It was known as the House of the Inquisitors, for having hosted an Inquisition court. Later it had belonged to great lords and families and used as a dwelling for centuries.

Besides the concrete spots the best you can do in town is to take a stroll around, getting lost along the white street and do not miss small details. There are historic green gates and wooden windows with an additional smaller window embedded. Nice streets like Calle Los Árboles with very strange shaped trees or Callejón de la Sangre with its bloody legendary history. Moreover, our favourite detail: you can spot crosses on the streets, almost leaning against the walls that you play to hunt.

The crosses of Teguise are illustrious witnesses of the town’s history. Originally there were 14, although the half of those were destroyed by time. Currently now, there are still seven survivor original ones made out of mahogany and seven more new restored. The elders who lived in the town remember how important these crosses were in the daily life, since, located in the main points of the town; they were main references of festive and religious events. In old days on the day of the Via Crucis, the owners of the closest houses to a cross set up a small altar in a room facing the street and that was the place where the local priest prayed as a stopover of the catholic procession. Today, locals still put flowers on the crosses on the important celebrations.

Teguise is as well a vivid town and every sunday they set a very famous street market in Constitution Square. In town, there some nice bars to have a drink under the sun admiring the white shinning buildings. Since the village is touristic, even being far from the coast, many of them are ruled by foreigners and they prepare international fashion drinks and snacks. If you want to stay on the local food we can recommend Ikarus y Acatife.

If you have time, we believe would be a nice idea to stick around, take your time to enjoy and stay for the night. There are not many options in town, since all on the island is one hour driving by car and plenty of people prefer to stay near the beach. There some appartments to rent you can easily find on booking.com or, if you are looking for a hotel, the best option is Hotel Boutique Palacio Ico.

Nearby, we can find Santa Barbara Castle, which is nowadays the Piracy Museum. You can find also Cesar Manrique Foundation, for those ones interested in the most famous artist from Lanzarote, and close to Teguise too, the amazing Cactus Garden created by him.

Leave a Reply