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Aug 26

Lanzarote is for Everyone (Including the physically challenged).

Lanzarote is for everyone.
(Including the physically challenged)

 

There really are so many different ways to enjoy Lanzarote, and it is true that Lanzarote is for everyone, including the physically challenged. Whether you want a quiet time, breathtaking scenery, water sports, lively clubs and bars, access to the islands rich historical heritage, art and culture, the island really does cater for all tastes and all age groups.

It is great to see that increasingly the island has improved its provision for those who are physically challenged and who are so often restricted when, with a little thoughtful planning they do not need to be.
Club la Santa is host to all kind of sports enthusiasts, for example, and that includes those with physical difficulties. Groups of riders on their specially adapted road bikes can often be seen around the island. But, if you are not particularly sporty, whether you need specially adapted accommodation or just a bit of help and consideration you can now get access to the island and its attractions more readily.

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It used to be the case that if you needed wheelchair assistance at the airport the staff were only allowed to push you to the carousel and so you had to be accompanied or fit enough to retrieve your own bags and walk through from arrivals. Now there is a super team of special staff, that you can book in advance, who will bring you from the plane, get your bags for you and take you through to your ongoing transport. At the end of your stay you can also book them to take you through to departures and onto the plane. It could not be easier and especially for individuals wanting to travel alone it has made it possible and stress free.

You can now rent most things, from wheel chairs to bath boards from one of several hire companies who provide a very comprehensive range of items. So you do not have to bring absolutely everything with you that you need.

People like the car park attendants at the sites of special interest on the island have always been helpful and sympathetic to the elderly or physically challenged in my experience. That slope on the car park at Timanfaya needs a team to push a wheel chair up it if you cannot find a space near the top. But if you explain the difficulty they will always let you drive up.

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Fifteen years ago I don’t think there was a wheelchair ramp anywhere on the island! True, some of them are a bit steep but they are at least there now.
I wonder if everyone who might need them is aware that some of the local buses now have a wheel chair lift? Do visitors realise that if they have a parking badge, usually known as ‘Blue Badge’ they can bring it on holiday with them and use it here as well as at home? As we are somewhat geographically removed from Europe some people, it seems, do not realise that, and, again the police are extremely helpful in assisting you to find a suitable space.
So if you want to travel with assistance or bring someone on holiday to the island who might need help there is no need to be put off or nervous. If you live on the island and want to bring an elderly or disabled relative over to visit do ask around and you will probably be pleasantly surprised at the help and facilities available.

Sue Almond

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