The Pirate Museum


Housed within the historic walls of Castillo Santa Barbara, which stands sentinel like over the former island capital of Teguise, The Pirate Museum offers a fascinating insight into the buccaneers and privateers who plagued the island’s shores during the 16th and 17th centuries.

The Canary Islands were once a vital staging post between the Spanish mainland and its growing empire in the New World, fuelled by the Trade Winds which blow through the archipelago from April to August Spanish galleons once plied this route, transporting slaves from Africa and returning laden with gold and silver.

As a result the Canaries were of enormous tactical importance during the seafaring age of empire, attracting the attentions of some of England’s best known nautical heroes, such as Raleigh, Drake and Nelson – who even lost his arm during a famous engagement just off the coast of Tenerife.

The Castillo Santa Barbra, atop Mount Guanapay, was originally constructed as a lookout post, providing terrified islanders with advanced warning of impending pirate raids. So it is especially fitting that it is now home to the Pirate Museum, which chronicles this fascinating period in history.

The exhibition space is divided into two halls, with the first dedicated to the history of Teguise, which was one of the first settlements established in the Canaries by the Spanish conquistadors in the 1400’sd and which soon became the island’s administrative hub, until this mantle was passed onto Arrecife in the 1850’s. Whilst the second hall focuses on the main period of pirate raids here on Lanzarote between 1551 and 1618 and is a real treasure trove of artifacts and information.

Opening Times

Daily from 10.00 to 16.00

Admission €3.00 Adults, €1.80 Children