Autumn is a perfect time to escape somewhere far away from your hometown in order to forget about business mail or study deadlines, feel the last warmth of the sun on your skin and jump from the rock into the ocean. And Canary Islands getaway is a total match here with its mild climate throughout the year!
The first question concerning Canarias is predictable: “Which island should I choose? There are 7 of them”. And the most popular choice here is well-known Tenerife – it seems that this island is adapted for tourists to the maximum extent with its infrastructure, activities, hotels, tours and private guides, shopping centers and car renting services available 24/7.
However, my choice fell on an island that lies off the beaten tourist track – Fuerteventura. I have to start with saying that it should not be included in your list of “to-go” places if during your holidays you prefer visiting galleries, shopping all day long, going to fancy restaurants or taking pictures of some historical sights.
It is for people who are in search of undiscovered places and who want to feel unity with nature! If you seek it – read on, as I am going to share some tips about the island and its culture, as well as must-things to try before you return home.
Let’s start! Here is a list of 5 core things to do during your vacation:
1. Rent a car and drive across the island
It is 100 kilometers long and 31 kilometers wide, so one day is more than enough for such activity. Be ready that at first sight, the island looks like a solid desert – no trees, no bushes, no grass! But later you will notice how mountains are replaced with ocean and absolutely dry land changes into small areas of tropical plantings.
By the way, did you know that the island was declared a biosphere reserve by UNESCO? Even this scientific and cultural organization promises you beautiful views, exotic plants, and volcanic sand :)
2. Pop into the small coastal city that you’ll find during your car ride
To say the truth, they all look exactly the same – with white two-floored detached houses, cactuses and aloe at the front yard, mosaic as the decoration of the facades, palm trees and cheerful locals who come out and greet you with loud “Hola!”. It is interesting that every house has its own unique name created by an owner and written at the facade, like “House of Sun”, for example.
3. Discover the best beaches in the world
The most popular and, as a result, the most crowded one – Corralejo – can be found in the north of the island, but I recommend you to head south to find some privacy and peace.
My top 3 beaches are:
1. Tarajalejo beach with incredible black volcanic sand that shines in the sun like glitter. Only a bunch of locals can be found along this bay, but be ready that you will not find any sunbeds and sunshades here.
2. Costa Calma is a large (and noisy) bay of approximately 1.5 km length. It is also located on the way to the botanical garden and zoo, so you can combine both activities and visit them too.
3. Jandía (Morro Jable). This is a quintessential Fuerteventura beach with soft, light-coloured sand, clean and shallow sea. And it is almost 21 kilometers long, can you imagine? And a good starting point for hiking, but read further :)
4. Go hiking
For sure, Fuerteventura’s 150 and more beaches are a big draw and probably the reason you booked a holiday on the island. However, there is so much more to see from above! Follow my example and try to conquer the highest point of the island – Pico de la Zarza. It will suit amateur hikers as it is not challenging, but I recommend you to go there in the morning when the temperature is not so high. A bottle of water, pair of sneakers, a hat and a fully charged camera will be your best friends during the ascent.
5. Look at the lighthouse on the edge of the island and have a glass of sangria or take a snack at the beach bar located nearby
This edge of the island with its almost 270-degree view is the perfect place to watch the sunset!
The cuisine is basic due to the customs and climate conditions. Fuerteventura shares this simplicity with the other Canary Islands, and similarly to them, uses a large quantity of fish. Don’t hesitate and also order tapas, shrimps or paella. And sangria is a must here too! In case you don’t know, it is a beverage that consists of red wine and chopped fruits (like lemon and orange).
What are some other reasons to go to Fuerteventura?
Watersport, especially surfing! The island has many schools and courses dedicated to teaching these sports, as the wind and temperatures here are suitable for surfing all year round, especially in the western part of the island (some worldwide known surf schools are located near La Pared).
Car camping is common here due to good roads and specially equipped carparks. Head out on your rustic road trip and discover all destinations the island can offer.
Food and services are quite cheap here (I am not taking into account the expensive hotels). For example, a dinner for two at a local restaurant can cost you less than 15 euros and bus for the distance of 15-20 kilometers – 3 euros.
Have I convinced you that this place is worthy of a visit? I believe that pictures have told you more than all these words!
Now it is time to go and book your tickets!