The Canary Islands, a seven-island archipelago located off the north western coast of Africa, are one of the most popular holiday destinations in Europe. And whilst many travellers head to the purpose-built holiday resorts of the major islands, there is so much more to the archipelago than chain hotels, cheap beer and typical tourist attractions.
If you’re curious about what else the islands have to offer, check out these 6 reasons to visit the Canary Islands.
6 Reasons to Visit the Canary Islands
1. They arguably have the best climate in the world
The Canary Islands are known as “The Islands of Eternal Spring” because they enjoy pleasantly warm temperatures all-year-round, rarely reaching above 32°C in summer or dropping below 15°C in winter. Combine these temperatures with more than 3,000 hours of sunshine throughout the year and these islands certainly live up to their name.
2. They have the third tallest volcano in the world
Tenerife – the largest of the Canary Islands – is home to Mount Teide. Standing tall at 3,718m above sea level (the volcano is 7,500m from its ocean floor base to its peak) this volcano is the third tallest in the world. Not only that’ but it’s also the tallest peak in Spain.
3. There are hundreds of beaches
Collectively, the Canary Islands feature more than 500 beaches, ranging from picture-perfect white sandy expanses to pristine volcanic bays and remote pebbly coves. The remote and golden Papagayo Beach in Lanzarote is one of the most beautiful in the archipelago.
4. They’re one of the few places you can see the “Mar de Nubes”
The “Mar de Nubes” literally translates as “Sea of Clouds” and is exactly what it sounds like – a thick blanket-like collection of cloud which covers the land and stretches far like the sea. The best place to admire this natural phenomenon is from high up, such as on top of Roques de Los Muchachos in La Palma.
5. The Santa Cruz carnival is the second best in the world
If you can’t make it to Rio de Janeiro, you can still experience the incredible carnival celebrations by heading to Tenerife’s capital in February. The annual Santa Cruz carnival lasts for two weeks and is made up of carnival queen elections, flamboyant parades, theatrical performances, music concerts and street parties which continue for days and nights on end. Maspalomas in Gran Canaria also boasts an amazing gay-centred carnival, complete with amazing drag queen elections.
6. The water sports are incredible
Although each of the Canary Islands holds their own when it comes to water sports, Fuerteventura is the best place to go for all kinds of wind-based water sports. The beaches here regularly hold international championship competitions for surfing, windsurfing and kitesurfing, but you can also enjoy sailing, scuba diving, kayaking and deep sports fishing in the waters off the island.
If you want to experience everything that the Canary Islands have to offer on one holiday, consider embarking on a Canary Island cruise. By visiting seven islands in one trip, you’ll be able to enjoy all the typical tourist resorts of Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote and Fuerteventura, as well as the more traditional Canarian villages of La Palma, El Hierro and La Gomera.