Lanzarote’s volcanic vistas and landscapes have often been described as lunar and other worldly. And the producers of the new series of the BBC TV classic Doctor Who most obviously agree – as they have just finished shooting a new Time Lord tale on the island, making liberal use of the dramatic scenery in and around the Timanfaya Volcano Park, the island’s most popular visitor attraction.
Lanzarote’s volcanic region occupies about one quarter of the island’s total land mass and was created by violent eruptions in the 1730’s. Now in geological terms this means that the resulting landscapes are still virtually brand new and pristine, as erosion has had little chance to soften the twisted lava flows and dramatic shapes created by these fiery events. All of which means that Lanzarote is in fact a real natural for the makers of futuristic or science fiction movies, as evidenced by the filming of classics such as One Million Years BC and Krull in years gone by.
Indeed, as ardent fans of the show will know this isn’t even the first time that the Doctor has visited the planet Sarn – which was Lanzarote’s ‘stage name’ in a previous episode, aptly entitled Planet of Fire Part One, that was filmed here way back in 1984, starring Peter Davison as the 5th Time Lord.
During this 80’s episode the Doctor travels with his faithful sidekick Turlough to investigate the source of a signal thought to be emanating from the planet Trion, which ultimately draws them to Sarn/Lanzarote. And according to production sources on the show the Doctor is visiting the scene of this previous adventure once again, although there have apparently been some disturbing developments since his last visit (sounds familiar – perhaps they are referring to the slew of illegally built hotels in nearby Playa Blanca!).
Either way, the local tourist board are reportedly delighted with this latest publicity coup, not least as Doctor Who is a real favourite in the UK, which is the island´s largest tourist market. The new episode will of course star Peter Capaldi, the latest Time Lord, along with sidekick Jenna Louise Coleman and is expected to be screened in late summer or early autumn.
Doctor Who is now in its eighth series and has been a regular favourite on British TV screens since 1964. The show is also popular in Spain, where it is better known as Doctor Misterioso.