Arrecife is the capital of the island and from here it is easy to get about the island, either by public transport or by taxi. It is located just north of the airport.
Arrecife is quite a large bustling place with a wide range of shops and offices but we found that parking under the Gran Hotel, the tall one in the photograph wasn't a problem so it is ideal for a shopping trip, as it has the international shops that you would expect in a busy capital city.
Apart from shops it has a nice beach called El Reducto where you can take a break.
Arrecife has a small Castle, San Gabriel Castle, constructed originally in 1573 made from wood which lasted until 1586 when it suffered an attack from the sea and was destroyed by fire. It was rebuilt in stone as it stands today, the walls were reinforced and two batteries put on top and a bell tower to sound the alarm when necessary. Also the addition of a drawbridge and cobbled road connecting it to Arrecife, called Puente de las Bolas (Bridge of the Balls) was made. It was so named as it has two columns to hold the drawbridge that have round balls on the top. The castle now contains a museum.
Close to this Castle is the Tourist Information Office which is a pretty round wooden building which you can see to the right in the photograph. The staff are very friendly and helpful
There is a further castle, the Castle of San JosÚ set to defend the harbour, which is now an art gallery and restaurant. We didn't get a chance to visit that yet.
The main festival is on the 25th.of August, San GinÚs.
Arrecife View with tourist information office to the right of the image
Arrecife Castle, San Gabriel
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Beach at Arrecife
Puente de las Bolas
Arrecife Gran Hotel