The best landscapes in the Canary Islands
December 4, 2018
by Coralie Levieuge
7 islands! But which one to visit? Indeed it’s hard, they are all very peculiar. Then why don’t you visit several or maybe all of them? I can give you two good reasons to convince you. First of all, the connections between the islands are very easy, either by plane to meet with the volcanoes above the sea clouds, or by ferry, so you can have a glance at the dolphins playing in the waves. And then I am going to reveal you the most beautiful landscapes you can find on each island. You can trust me, I spent 2 years hiking these volcanic jewels but be careful, some of these spots are for adventurers, you need to deserve them, put on your best shoes and don’t forget to take some water.
You will know exactly where you need to go after reading this, making your choice according to your preferences and the way you like to travel. The Canary Islands are perfect for those who want to connect with nature, to take up a challenge by crossing deserts, volcanoes and enchanted forests; but also for those who are seeking relaxation and sun.
The biggest of the archipelago with the most diversified landscapes
You could walk through the mystic forest of Anaga in the north and admire how the clouds dance between the twisted trees. Then you could go down on a black sand beach. A lot of Guachinches (local restaurants) would feed you well between your excursions, I suggest you try the carne de cabra (goat meat). You could also climb the Teide of course, since it is Spain’s highest mountain, or visit its national park. But for those who want a special day, I recommend you to go to a small village called San Jose de Los Llanos and have a little hike to this beautiful point of view (see picture). From there you can either come back or keep on walking and circle the Chinyero, the last volcano to erupt on the island in 1909. Even if it is not as high as the Teide, you will understand its strength while crossing its impressive lava flow. (Hike: Pr TF 43.1 – 4.3km until the point of view and add approx. 5 km for the circle around the volcano)
The greener of all the islands
If you are a nature lover, this little paradise is for you. To enjoy it at best, take the hike from el Cedro, in the middle of the island in direction of Hermigua. You will cross the beautiful Laurisilva forest, admire the best views of the Teide as Tenerife and La Gomera are very close and arrive later in this valley where palm trees, cactus and agaves live in harmony on these terrace cultivations. You can reach the village and then climb up to El Cedro again following another way, the hike is circular. You will walk near ponds and appreciate the reflexion of the mountains and its vegetation, and just before arriving at the end of your journey, a high waterfall will surprise you. When you’ll get to the end of the hike, reward yourself with one of the delicious meals they prepare at the restaurant La Vista, my recommendation is the sopa de berros (watercress soup).
The most volcanic one
Lanzarote possesses probably the most beautiful volcanic landscapes and it has been marvellously well preserved. The island wears an artistic soul thanks to the artist Cesar Manrique, who has perfectly integrated his architectural works to the landscape. He designed a lot of monuments everywhere such as gardens, museums, concert hall and the restaurant of the Timanfaya National Park, where you absolutely have to go. The only way to “visit” the park it is to take the bus at the entrance since any other access is not allowed. The bus will take you through the volcanic hills and make some stops so you can appreciate special rock formations. Sure, we all would have preferred to explore this by ourselves but, thanks to these measures, we are able to enjoy an unharmed scenery.
To enjoy the colours of these mountains, you can take the Ruta de los volcanes (the volcanos road) from El Pilar to Fuencaliente to walk down or the contrary to walk up for the bravest ones (approx 20km). Surrounded by the ocean, you will be able to walk on the side of craters and admire colourful dome-shaped mountains. When you get to Fuencaliente, don’t miss the salt manufacturing.
The most tranquil
If you want to escape from civilisation and retreat for a couple of days, El Hierro is your heaven. It’s very hard to choose which part of the island is my favourite but I would say that La Frontera has a special atmosphere. So many natural swimming pools there, either created by volcanic stones or by humans, they are perfect to enjoy a peaceful sunset.
The arid island with the most beautiful beaches
Do you need a relaxed moment on an idyllic beach with white sand and turquoise water? Fuerteventura is the perfect destination for you. The area of the Corralejo National Park is a very good option, no need to hike to this spot, very easy to access. You will be surrounded by white dunes and from there you can enjoy the view of the tiny island of Lobos in the north. You can actually take a boat to visit it in one day and walk through the cute craters, probably the smallest I’ve ever seen.
The rival of Tenerife
The island has a very beautiful capital, which is the biggest of the entire archipelago. If you like city trips you have to visit Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. Enjoy the historic centre, the very long beach and the cultural events. When it comes to the landscapes, the most peculiar part of the island is the dunes of Maspalomas. The contrast with the sand and the towns and mountains surrounding it is breath-taking. You can have a walk there and imagine yourself in a desert for a moment.
Leave a Comment...
January 4, 2019
With your advice I\'m discovering a new journey, a new world. I must say that I am Spanish and yes, I had gone to the Canary Islands, but I had never been to the Canary Islands, I only knew that there was a volcano, beaches and good weather. Now I know that if I return, I will not be on a beach, I will be in a land full of magic and places that deserve to be discovered. Thank you Coralie.
January 4, 2019
Espectacular el reportaje que has enviado y una interesante y bonita experiencia de vida
January 4, 2019
This is a perfect encapsulation of the essence of each of the islands - now I just need to convince my family to visit the Canaries. Do you know if any of the islands is better for scuba or for surfing/bodysurfing than the others?
January 18, 2019
I had a great time in El Hierro observing colourful fishes and I\'ve surfed in Tenerife, Anaga is great for this! But I think Fuerteventura might be a good option for you. You can surf and do bodyboard there and also scuba dive since the water is very clear and there are nice fishes too.
Hope you can convince your family ;-)