The Mirador del Río is located at 479 metres above sea level, in the north of Lanzarote island. At the beginning, this place belonged to the Spanish government. Due to its strategic position it had been an old artillery and military position. It was known as “Batería del Rio”, and its main goal was protect the dominant during the war with United States for Cuba`s sovereignty at the end of the 19th century. In the area still remainders of the old bunkers that were used during the war.
At the beginning of the 70s, the artist from Lanzarote, César Manrique, created project to build a building in the area. He designed an spectacular viewpoint in the slope of the Famara Cliff, a building that becomes camouflage with the surroundings and it goes unnoticed. The work was done by Eduardo Cáceres and Jesús Soto and its opening was in 1973.
From the viewpoint you can contemplate one of the best panoramic views of Lanzarote and the area that comprises the Chinijo Archipelago: the Graciosa island, Montaña Clara, Alegranza, Roque del Este and Roque del Oeste. And also, the hillsides of Famara cliff and the old salt mines that are on the coastline of the “river”(the strait between Lanzarote and La Graciosa island is known as the river.). From the viewpoint we also see the coast of the Caleta de Famara and the area of “el jable” of Soo.
This is one of the most symbolic works of the artist from Lanzarote. There, he demonstrated one more time his main goal: that art and nature can go hand by hand. The surroundings, where the viewpoint is situated, are declared protected natural area.
The main entrance to the viewpoint is headed by a sculpture of Manrique. Made with wrought iron, this represent a fish and a bird as an allegory of the nature that predominates the landscape: the water and the air.
The building is made in stone and wood, and highlights the white colour indoor. In the big hall there are oval large windows that illuminates the whole room and are situated in front if the sea. These windows are called “The eyes of the viewpoint”. Near to the windows there are different sculptures of Manrique and some typical decoratives details of the artist. Outside we find a corridor that surround the building and a terrace situated in the upper side where we can access using the spiral stair.
In the building there are a coffee-bar and a gift shop where you can buy a souvenir from the island.
RECOMMENDATIONS: The views from the indoor worth a visit. If you let us give you an advice, have a coffee while you enjoy the landscape it will be a unique and unforgettable experience. With no doubt, the viewpoint, Mirador del Río, should be in your must-visit list of Lanzarote.