The Canary Islands is a collection of beautiful islands, famous as a holiday destination for sun, sea and sand throughout the summer months! Whether you want to stretch out on the beach and relax or explore the stunning Mediterranean island countryside, the Canary Islands promise an unforgettable holiday for all ages.
The weather is consistently beautiful in the Canaries; if you're looking for an off-peak holiday, you'll find that average temperatures only ever get as low as 20C around January and February, while in the peak of summer it settles at a comfortable 28C. It's the ultimate year-round destination, ideal for a last-minute break!
Flights to the Canary Islands will land in either Tenerife or Gran Canaria, depending on where you choose to stay. It's a hugely popular destination for holidaymakers across Europe, and you'll find plenty of flights heading to the islands every day.
Once you get into the Canaries, travelling across the islands is relatively simple. Ferries can take you between the islands and out to the smaller reserves and uninhabited regions, as well as around the perimeter of the larger islands. You can also catch a bus, the most common method of transport around the islands, or drive to really explore the undiscovered wilderness.
The Canary Islands are made up of six main islands, each with its own charm. The most famous for its beaches is Fuerteventura, a windsurfer's paradise promising a consistent breeze and spectacular beaches offering space for a wide variety of water sports.
If you'd rather paddle and swim in the sea, you may find the seas around Fuertaventura a little rough, especially for children. Instead, head to Lanzarote, where you'll find a vast number of gentle beaches and plenty of beachside attractions including a water park and Guinate Park, a fun zoo by the sea for all ages.
Those seeking a more glamorous atmosphere and a thriving party scene should check out the beaches of Gran Canaria. This is where the region's top nightclubs are situated, right on the beachfront, and the soft golden sands provide the perfect setting for an afternoon lying in the sun with a refreshing cocktail!
The Canary Islands offer more than just beaches - there's a wealth of nature and wildlife to explore, as well as a rich cultural background to discover within the capital cities. Walkers will find an endless amount of sights, most notably on the beautiful La Gomera, also referred to as the Magic Isle. Alongside the stunning national parks and beautiful carpets of flowers in spring, sightseers should head to San Sebastian, the largest city of the island, to explore the port and tower.
Lanzarote's Timanfaya National Park is also worth exploring thanks to its volcanic landscape and underground lava tunnels. You'll get the chance to see what life would have been like for the first settlers in the Canaries, at the Agricola museum, which documents the typical lifestyle of early farming families living off the land. Take a hike around the region or hire bicycles to see even more of the beautifully-preserved wildlife in this park.
If urban exploration is your thing, there's nowhere better for history than the city of Las Palmas, one of two joint Canary capital cities. Visit the Catedral de Santa Ana, a stunning cathedral that looms high on the Las Palmas skyline with beautiful interior architecture and several centuries of history within its walls. The Alfredo Kraus Auditorium is also worth exploring for the building alone, although if you have time stopping for a classical show will leave you with unforgettable memories!
The second capital city of the Canary Islands is Santa Cruz, on Tenerife. While the main attractions here are by far the beaches and nightlife, you can head over tto the neighbouring Las Gaviotas and enjoy the black sand beaches, or visit the Parque García Sanabria, a beautiful urban park with fountains and architectural structures.
You can expect plenty of seafood and Spanish cuisine in the Canary Islands, whether you opt for lunch at a beachside café or a fancy night out at one of the cities' top restaurants. The local food is a mix of Spanish, Latin and African, so expect fish, tapas and the locally-grown plantain bananas, as well as warming spices, silky palm honey and meat stews. Look out for mousse de gofio, a delicious local dessert made from honey, grain flour and baked plantain.
The nightlife across the islands is legendary, and you're certain to find the right bar or club for your group regardless of where you're staying. The Canary Islands have a huge club scene, particularly in Tenerife, so head to Santa Cruz for 24-hour nightclubs and an evening of dancing and revelry. Don't miss the local favourite drink, either - the Ron Miel honeyed rum definitely can't be missed during a night out in the city!
There are plenty of spots in the Canary Islands for an afternoon of shopping, whether you're looking for local souvenirs or an outfit for a night on the tiles. Head to Santa Cruz de Tenerife for some of the Canaries' best markets, including the fantastic Mercado de Nuestra Señora de África, where you'll find tantalising produce, local honeys and wines and deliciously fresh breads. If you'd rather find the designer outlets, make your way down to Calle Castillo, Santa Cruz's main shopping street. Here you'll be spoilt for choice with both Spanish and international designer wear on offer among the cafés and boutiques.
While kids will love the beaches, you might want to spend a few days exploring the cities instead. Shopping might be a little to heavy-going for them after a while but thankfully the Canary Islands appreciate their sunshine and there's a wealth of parks to spend the day in for a fun day out with the whole family. Visit the fantastic Loro Parque in Tenerife, home to parrots, dolphins, tigers and flamingos, as well as the world's largest penguinarium!
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