Museums on La Palma, Canary Islands

Museums on the Isla de La Palma

Whether or not you're a lover of museums, I'm sure that La Palma has a museum that will interest you!
From nautical to island history, from silk to bananas, it's all there for you to see and enjoy.

Museo Arqueologico Benahoarita, Los Llanos

Situated in the heart of Los Llanos, this large, modern and bright museum is a fascinating learning curve to discover the history of the pre-historic Benahoarites - the aborigines of La Palma.  This is where you can find a re-creation of their settlements, information about their rites and gods, about their craft skills using stone, ceramics, bones, animal skins, sea shells and wood.  Also on display are rock carvings, mummies, tools and a huge display of ceramic residues which have been collected from findings on the La Palma.
Address: Calle de Las Adelfas,3, Los Llanos de Aridane
Opening times: Mon - Fri 09.00 - 20.00hrs. Saturday 10.00 - 14.00hrs. Sunday closed
Price: there is a charge - check at reception. Pensioners free.

Museo Insular (Island Museum), Santa Cruz

Housed in an old convent, this is one amazing museum - and building!
Arranged around two quadrangles, long halls and smaller rooms, the museum houses historic exhibitions of art, sea-faring, farming tools, weaving, guitars, taxidermy of fauna and sea life on a grand scale (native birds, small animals, sharks, a turtle found at Garafia, etc,) and a beautiful library to name but a few. 
From the information plaque outside: The Franciscan monks that accompanied Alonso Fernandez de Lugo in the conquest of La Palma, after spending 15 years living in straw huts, started building a monastery in 1508 at the express wish of Queen Juana, to be the Order's headquarters in the Canary Islands.  The Castile coat of arms over the main door is a sign of their royal patronage.  The church, built in the course of the XVI and XVII has one of the first examples of Renaissance art on the islands: the Montserrat chapel, built around 1540, with its unique stone arch and wood panelled roof.   
Address: Plaza de Francisco, Santa Cruz.
Opening times: Monday to Saturday: 10.00 to 20.00 hrs. Sundays: 10.00 to 14.00 hrs
July, August & September: 10.00 to 19.30 hrs. Sundays: Closed 

Museo Naval (Naval Museum), Santa Cruz

As a stroke of genius, the Naval Museum is housed inside a full-scale replica of the 15th century Santa Maria ship as sailed by Christopher Columbus. Thanks to this museum, it demonstrates the key role that La Palma had in Atlantic navigation and its key role in the early stages of the discovery and colonisation of the New World, America. With five centuries of naval history, inside you will find a valuable collection of artefacts including nautical charts, navigational instruments, models of ships, old photos, canons, etc.
You can also have a good old clamber on deck and wonder what it was like to sail across the uncharted Atlantic in such a small vessel!
Opening times:
Monday to Friday: 10.00 to 17.00 hrs. Sat and Sun: 10.00 - 14.00hrs
Price: Non-resident 4.50€. Resident 4.00€. Under 12 free of charge.

Museo Casa Roja (Red House Museum), Mazo

La Casa Roja, dedicated to the history of the fiesta of Corpus Christi, has had a fascinating life itself.
Built around 1911, it was then turned into a hotel in 1970. In 1990, it was acquired by the Town Hall of Mazo who restored it back to its original design in between the years of 1994 and 1996. A point of interest within the building are the grand stairs made of wood.
Nowadays the Casa Roja is a museum with displays of all kinds of items, documents, illustrations, photographs and more to depict the Corpus Christi fiestas throughout the years.
It’s the only museum of its type in Spain and if you’re not on the La Palma during Corpus Christi which is held in June, then do try and visit the museum!
Upstairs is the embroidery museum, embroidery having been the main handiwork on the island for centuries. Displays include embroidered traditional costumes, table clothes, church ornaments and household items.
Location: Calle Maximiliano Pérez Díaz
Opening times:
10.00 to 14.00hrs and 15.00 to 18.00 hrs  Saturday: 11.00 to 18.00 hrs.  Sunday: 10.00 to 14.00 hrs. 

Mueseo de la Seda (Silk Museum), El Paso

The Silk Museum is not just a museum but it's where the process of making silk is kept alive right from the breeding of silk worms to weaving and embroidery. Located in a beautiful historic building in the city, it includes the Taller de las Hilanderas, where visitors can learn first-hand how these artisans work following a process that has already disappeared in the rest of Europe. Authentic hand-made works of art are produced from the old looms that still function  and can then be purchased at the museum's own store.
A beautiful gift from La Palma!
Address: Calle Manuel Taño, 4, El Paso
Open Monday to Friday, 10.00 - 14.00hrs.
Entrance fee: 3€ per person

Museo del Plátano (Banana Museum), Tazacorte

What a great idea it is to have a museum dedicated to bananas in the very area where the banana plantations are a sea of green flowing from one terrace to another!
The banana museum in Tazacorte is in the very old part of the town in an old Canarian house. This is where you can discover the history of banana production which were first introduced to La Palma in 1896 by Fyffes. Apparently this is the only museum in Europe dedicated solely to bananas.  
Even if you're a visitor to La Palma, you'll quickly realise how very important bananas are to island and its economy which is ever greater than tourism. This museum is very informative you can enjoy a complimentary banana while you look around! 
Address: Camino San Antonio, El Charco, Tazacorte
Opening times: Summer - Mon to Fri 10.00 to 13.00 and 16.00 to 18.00 hrs.  Saturday - 10.00 - 13.00hrs

La Zarza Exhibition and Rock Engravings, Garafia

La Zarza and its smaller sister, La Zarzita, is where pre-Hispanic rock engraving were found in 1941. Incredibly these were the first on the island to be found and had sat there unnoticed for approximately 500 years even though many of them of are quite large. This marked the beginning of rock research on La Palma and others finds.
The cultural park is made up of two parts, an exhibition centre which depicts how the aborigines of La Palma lived and the adjoining archaeological park, one of the most important in the Canaries. Well marked tracks lead to cave overhangs and the rock engravings, 29 in La Zarza and another 18 at nearby La Zarzita.  Nobody can say for sure what the spiral, circles, meandering or straight lines signify, but this site is of great importance.  
Address: C/ La Mata (LP-1 at 59km)
Open: Summer 11.00 - 19.00hrs. Winter 11.00 - 15.00 hrs. Monday closed
Entrance fee: 2.00 euros per person

Casa Museo del Vino (Wine Museum), Las Manchas

Inaugurated in 2011, the Wine Museum is all about getting to know the rich wine history of La Palma from the 16th century to the present day. Although vines have been grown on the island for centuries, the volcanic matter has helped considerably.
In 1993, La Palma received its DO status, the Spanish equivalent to the French appellation, and wines are now exported almost worldwide. Housed in what was originally a school, the museum also has an exhibition of artisan products and provides tourist information, wine tasting and sales. There is also a small orchard where you can see a representation of the most significant vines on the island and a traditional winery with an old wine press and hand tools.
Just across the road, you can see the Plaza Glorieta, a fantastic plaza made of mosaics.
Address: Camino del Callejón, 98, Los Cuatro Caminos, Las Manchas
Open: 09.30 - 15.00hrs. Saturday 09.30 - 14.00hrs. Sunday closed

Cueva del Tendal archaeological Musuem, San Andrés y Sauces

The Tendal Cave Archaelogical museum overlooks the ravine of San Juan and its impressive ‘cave town’ with natural caves up to 60m width and distributed on both sides of the ravine. With a total of 27 cave-homes, other caves are designed more for the travelling priest or shepherds. There are also 3 tombs and a small amount of rock engravings. These can be seen from the immense glass windows of the Musuem.
Whilst the existence of the caves has long been known, five archaeological excavations  were carried out in the 80's and findings were made relating to culture, farming and fishing. Following this, the museum was built and inaugurated in 2019. Inside the building, there is a permanent exhibition in which informative panels and interactive screens along with original archaeological items are on display.
Address: Carretara Principal (LP-1 at 19km), just south of Los Sauces
Open: Tue - Sat 10.00 - 17.00hrs. Sun and Mon  10.00 - 15.00hrs

Museo de Interpretacion del Gofio, Las Tricias, Garafia

The museum is housed in the old windmill in Las Tricias which was a working mill from at least 1908 until 1953. During this time, three generations of one family worked the windmill and naturally, the mill became an important meeting point. 
The farmers in the area of Garafia brought their grain to be ground and from that, they could make gofio, the Canarian name for flour made from roasted grains or other starchy plants. In 1945, a motor was installed to operate the mill and for 8 years either the motor or wind provided energy depending if there was wind. Eventually, only the motor was used to provide power.
The museum has a permanent exhibition which shows the historical, social and economic journey of an essential food in the Canarian town. And you can also learn, step by step, the traditional production process of gofio.
Address: Calle El Polvillo Las Tricias, Garafia
Open: Mon - Sat 10.00 - 18.00hrs. Sunday 10.00 - 16.00hrs. Public Holidays 10.30 - 14.30hrs
Price: 2.50€ per persons. 1.75 residents. Under 12's free

  • All prices and entry times are to the best of our knowledge and dated June 2020.
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