Time to wave goodbye to the majestic lands and head to the seas with no shortage of the scenic views! A cluster of volcanic islands awaits you among the far-flung territories of Spain – the wonderful Canary Islands. They are an archipelago located just off the coast of Morocco and constitutes of 7 larger islands – Lanzarote, Gran Canaria, Tenerife, La Palma, El Hierro, Fuerteventura, and La Gomera.
1. World Beyond the Canaries’ Seafront
Yet another beautiful world beyond the Canaries’ sparkling seafront resorts, the Canary Islands enjoys a wonderful subtropical climate with a constant mild temperature all year round. The lasting memories of the Lanzarote covered with volcanic dust, prehistoric sites, wonderful landscapes, lush pine forests and amazing natural attractions, make the Canary Islands a major tourist destination with over 12 million visitors taking a stroll at the majestic islands.
2. The Fiesta Celebrations in La Palma
Source: Walter Stumreich
A big and crazy fiesta awaits you at the most north-westerly island of the Canary Islands and this is exactly the place where you want to be when the event hits the streets. This unique fiesta called the Festival of the Indians, where thousands of people all dressed in white from head to toe; some represents the wealthy ones while the others are their servants. The crowd parades the streets of the tiny capital, Santa Cruz, dancing to the tunes of Latin American Music.
3. The Lasting Memories of Lanzarote
Source: Luc Viatour / www.Lucnix.be
The easternmost island of the Canary Islands is yet another fascinating yet rough ride through the island’s glorious history. This is a contrasting island with a volcanic origin born through the fiery volcanic eruptions and the solidified lava streams emerged as the result of breaking-up of the African and American continental plates. The island is home to a diverse flora and fauna and the breathtaking views on the volcanic route is a treat in itself.
4. A Great Escape on Gran Canaria
The second most populous island in the Canaries’ archipelago, the Gran Canaria is your idea of a perfect winter escape where you will find plenty of things to see and do to make your every day special. The Golden beaches at the Gran Canaria are as diverse as the wide landscapes, adorned with more than a thousand palm trees along the coastline that fills inside of you with energy.
5. Island of a Thousand Experiences
Tenerife is the largest of the Canary Islands where you can find over a thousand of things to see and do, thanks to its year-round mild climate, the lusty natural surroundings and a protected infrastructure designed for all-time fun. You can immerse in the natural vibe, sit and relax on the white sandy beaches, climb the Teide, go on a shopping spree, walk the good-old town cobbles, hike through the Tenerife’s lava fields, or enjoy whale watching.
6. The Quiet Side of the Canary Islands
A calm, quiet place with mountains and pine forest, mostly untouched by tourism, El Hierro is a self-sustained island protected with renewable energy, thanks to the Gorona del Viento hydroelectric plant. Designated as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, the island is ideally packed with natural wonders mixed with rich, diverse forests, clear waters, the steep volcanic terrains, lush vegetation, and a friendly marine ecosystem. With over 45 dive sites, El Hierro is a haven for the adventure seekers.
7. Endless Plains of the Fuerteventura Island
Declared World Biosphere Reserve by the UNESCO in 2009, Fuerteventura is yet another island of the Canaries’ archipelago with the oldest running history. Year-round sunshine, intense wind, and waves form a perfect backdrop to the island’s abstract scenic views. It has the longest and best beaches of the entire archipelago, living up to the island’s long-standing tradition of kite surfing and windsurfing.
8. Island of the Mountains
Source: Till Krech
La Gomera is one of the quieter ones among the seven Canary Islands, which enjoys a subtropical climate all year-round, thanks to its magical surreal surroundings followed by hundreds of kilometers of mysterious trails. La Gomera has 16 protected natural areas, including the popular Garajonay National Park, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Though a less frequent of the entire archipelago, Gomera is a perfect escape from the city’s hustle and bustle with dramatic beaches and palm-filled valleys forming a perfect natural setting for an island as sophisticated as the La Gomera.
9. Passion for the Sport
The extraordinary setting of the Canary Islands, the Canarian winds, and the powerful waves all year-round set just the perfect conditions to experience thrill-seeking adventure sports such as windsurfing, bodyboarding, kite surfing and diving. Put everything together and you get a safe haven for the watersports enthusiasts and adventure-seekers.
10. The Carnival of Carnivals
Source: Frank Vincentz
Carnival is enjoyed and celebrated in almost every major town in each archipelago of the seven islands, but the main carnivals are exclusive only to the capital cities. Be it the La Palma’s renowned Fiesta des Los Indianos, or the more colorful Gala Night, where the participants parade in stunning, colorful costumes adorned with feathers and rhinestones and the lights take over the busy streets all through the celebration night.
11. Night out with the Stars
Source: Bureau of Land Management
The Canary Islands archipelago is a perfect destination to enjoy night tours, thanks to its astonishingly clear skies where the lights and the clouds obscure your view of the bright stars and other celestial features. The Islands host a wide range of astronomic observatories and Starlight Reserves that make for an ideal vantage point to observe the universe up-close. The archipelago is blessed with the best conditions to observe the starry skies without any interference.
12. Relaxation and Fun
If your idea of a perfect weekend escape is of sun, sand and beach, then this is your spot. What could be the best way to just sit and relax and enjoy sunbathing than pampering yourself in a genuine outdoor spa and wellness centers that exist in abundance at the white sandy beaches of the islands. Majestic waters, clear winds and waves, and the irresistible sea breeze, and the dazzling sun hovering all year round – all the elements in one place make for an ideal setting to just sit and relax.
13. Stunning Art and Architecture
There’s more to the Canary Islands than the astonishing beaches and the beautiful landscapes. The lovely archipelago of islands may not offer the best architectural gems or the world-class historic museums, there’s enough to compel art aficionados and history buffs alike. Canarian architecture has evolved tremendously over the years, and today classic, modern design blend in harmony on the islands. Check out the canvases made by the acclaimed painter Óscar Domínguez in the hometown of Tenerife, or the Jameos del Agua, one of the many masterpieces by the artist Cesar Manrique, is hard to miss.
14. Cheese and Wines
The cheeses and wines of the Canary Islands are the most prized possessions of the Canarian culinary culture. Every area in the islands is characterized by its own wine making which changes radically, thanks to the distinctive microclimates and the change of altitudes. The sheep and the goats are the local breeds and the cows bred to produce creamy milk and cheese. Every little town and the capitals have a wide assortment of cheese and the rich flavors can be experienced in almost all the islands, which tastes sweet and sour at the same time.
15. An Illustrated Journey
The scenic views aside, there are places within the territories of the archipelago that inspire emotions in a way that’s difficult to understand and words aren’t just enough to capture the beauty of the Canary Islands. The serene vibe of the pristine beaches, the true colors of the vibrant landscapes, the feel of the ocean breeze, the essence of nature – these are the sensations which can only be felt not expressed. Your emotional journey to the Canary Islands is surely an unforgettable experience, which will be remembered for years.
The stories of the seven islands, the beauty of the majestic waters and pristine landscapes, the colors of nature, the smell of cheese and wines, the clear skies filled with stars and other celestial objects – Canary Islands is an illustrated journey worth exploring.
Have a good trip and travel!