Most travellers have their favourite locations when it comes to a beach holiday, but with little wonder, Canary Island holidays tend to be a favourite paradise destination for so many adventurous these days.
We’ve created this special page within the site to advise visitors on what to expect and look forward to when visiting the Canary Islands for a holiday. While including great info on finding cheap deals to Canaries, this page is also ideal for giving you that initial inspiration you need to start planning your warm trip away!
Winter sun, busy resorts, ‘cheap and cheerful’ holidays – that’s what people think they know about Canary Islands holidays. And, definitely, if that’s what you’re looking for, you’ll still find plenty of these in the tourist centres of Tenerife, Gran Canaria and Lanzarote.
However, increasingly nowadays, it’s possible to find so much more on these sometimes surprisingly beautiful islands perched just 71 miles off the coast of Africa. There is so much more to Canary Islands holidays.
There are seven major islands in this volcanically formed archipelago, ranging from Lanzarote and Fuerteventura in the east to Hierro and La Palma in the west. The nearer the island is to the African coast, the hotter and drier it will be. Despite their reputation as beach destinations, the islands are all quite mountainous – indeed, Spain’s highest mountain, Teide, looms above Tenerife – the third biggest volcano in the world.
The most populated, and largest, of the Canaries are Gran Canaria and Tenerife and, although they – like all the islands – have their own special atmosphere, they are perhaps the most similar. Both have greener, wetter northern areas, mountainous interiors with delightful, attractive little villages tucked away, and then enormous modern resorts in the south, appealing both to young holidaymakers and families.
It’s also increasingly common for older people to come and spend their winters here – Christmas on the beach has its attractions! Both islands, in recent years, have managed to broaden their appeal to tourists and now offer good quality rural tourism and, additionally, both now have a large number of truly superb hotels offering luxurious accommodation, if that‘s what you‘re searching for. This has greatly broadened the appeal of Canary Island holidays.
The all year round good weather of the islands, which led to them often being known as the ’Fortunate Isles’, means that walkers, climbers, golfers as well as water sport lovers and sun seekers are attracted to both. The capital cities of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and Santa Cruz de Tenerife are themselves typically bustling Spanish centres, with some magnificent buildings – the spectacular beachside theatre in Santa Cruz and Las Palmas‘s imposing cathedral, for example – and, in the case of Las Palmas, one of the world’s very best city beaches, Las Canteras.
Of the three western islands of La Palma, Hierro and La Gomera, only La Palma has regular charter flights from the United Kingdom. There are, however, excellent ferry services between all the islands as well as the frequent connections offered by Binter Airways.
Not for nothing is La Palma called ‘La Isla Bonita’; it has to be one of the world’s most scenic spots. Although only about 31 miles long and 15 miles wide, the island is a paradise for nature lovers with spectacular mountain walks amongst the abundant flora and fauna.
For those people who remember the television documentary about the tidal wave that might drown New York caused by La Palma’s volcanic eruption, you can walk round the rim of the still-active volcano and visit the scientific monitoring centre.
Lanzarote and Fuerteventura are the places for the real water sports enthusiasts. Windsurfers, kite boarders, canoeists, surfers and divers flock here all year long. Lanzarote, with its moon-like interior, black volcanic sand beaches and amazingly constructed César Manrique buildings, is almost like another planet compared with La Palma – but it has an eerie beauty to it.
Fuerteventura has not only the best sandy beaches in the Canaries, but amongst the best anywhere. The drive north from the airport to the main resort of Corralejo takes you past some breathtaking beaches.
The great attraction of Canary Island holidays still remains that visitors can find year round sun without having to fly on a long haul flight. With regular charter and scheduled flights from all over the United Kingdom, taking little over four hours, they remain a great place to escape to, whatever kind of holiday you‘re looking for.
‘The Canary Islands are like a book, those who do not know them only read the first page’.