Municipality of Las Palmas, Santa Cruz de Tenerife
Canarian Spanish,
Flight time
4 hours and 30 minutes from the UK
time difference
UTC/GMT +0 hours
best time to go

Introducing Canary Islands

A holiday to the Canary Islands is like an adventure to the farthest flung corner of the Spanish territories but just a stone throw’s away from North Western Africa’s coastline; a real mix of cultures yet a cluster of islands offering seclusion, dreamy coastlines and a unique culture so you feel like it’s a whole destination of its own. Gran Canaria, Tenerife, Lanzarote, Fuerteventura, La Palma and La Gomera; islands far from the rest of Spain’s mainland and Balearics, they offer something a little bit different from the norm. For some, it’s the paradisiacal beaches and 5 star luxury resorts that really draw them into the Canaries dream; for others, it’s the dramatic volcanic landscapes and the promise of endless nature trails across the islands’ stunning national parks that really makes it; but for most, it’s simply not what they might expect from a Spanish destination. Full of surprising sights, intriguing topography and mind-blowing views at sunrise and sunset, the Canary Islands is a fantastic holiday alternative to islands in the heart of the Med.

Due to its proximity to the equator, the Canaries offers a fantastic winter destination as well as a busy summer destination. But if you want warm, balmy weather without all the tourist crowds, you have to visit between March and May or from September to November. From its famous black and white sandy beaches to its luxury golf and spa hotels, outstanding dive spots to awesome surf, and from the subtropical walking trails and volcanic landscapes of Timanfaya to the tumbling waterfalls of La Palma, there seems to be something for just about everyone. A gorgeous romantic destination and a perfect family island all the same; and with just as much forest as there is coastline, as many geysers as there are white sand beaches, and as much Spanish surrealist art as there are tapas bars, everyone is set to have an unforgettable time.


The Canaries makes a great family holiday destination because hot weather is almost always guaranteed and it’s the perfect place for out of season travel or out of school term holidays. Not only do the islands promise a pleasing climate pretty much all year round, but there’s so much diversity in the landscape, thus plenty to do both in and out of the water, either away from or close to the coast. Some of the best beaches to explore with kids include Puerto Rico Beach in Gran Canaria, Fanabe in Tenerife, La Guirra in Fuerteventura, Charco Verde in La Palma, and Las Cucharas Beach in Lanzarote.


Food on the Canary Islands is known as Canarian cuisine and is well known for its tasty tapas dishes, including the most famous dish of Tenerife, the Papas Arrugadas wrinkled potatoes. Other than the delicious tapas dishes available, the basis of Canarian cuisine is very much centred around fish, fresh vegetables and fresh fruit, with meat often being consumed in stews. Other typical dishes of the Canary Islands include slow cooked Caldereta (goat or lamb in sauce) and Sancocho Canario (salted fish served with Mojo Verde salsa). Must try desserts are Bienmesabe (a rum and honey cake) and Platanos Fritos (fried bananas).

History and Culture

It is believed that the first inhabitants of the islands were the Gaunches in 1000 BC before European explorers came to explore the islands in the 1st Century AD. In the 15th Century, the Castilians started to colonize and over the course of the century, the islands would suffer numerous pirate attacks. By the 18th Century, the economy began to boom and by the 20th Century, the Canaries were granted autonomous rule within Spain. Today, the dialect spoken on the islands is similar to that in Southern Spain but there are also language influences from South America as well as the Caribbean due to emigration back in the 18th and 19th Century.

Resorts in Canary Islands

Top Locations in Canary Islands

Gran Canaria
Gran Canaria is one of the more popular islands in the Canaries, best known for its white sand beaches and beautifully clear waters – making it a great place for scuba diving, snorkelling and many other water sports. It’s a wonderful family destination and it’s also one of the best islands for nightlife too. Read more
The biggest of the islands, Tenerife is perhaps the better known holiday destination in the Canaries. It’s adored for its fabulous beaches – with sand ranging from yellow to black – and gorgeous family friendly resorts, but it’s also home to Mt. Teide, one of the world’s biggest volcanoes. There are also a number of attractions which are suitable for families travelling with children, including Siam Adventure Park, Loro Parque Zoo, and Parque García Sanabria Botanical Gardens. Read more
Another traveller favourite, the island of Lanzarote is best known for its wild, arid landscape and unique volcanic topography. Other than its bizarre subtropical-desert climate and strange land formations of red, brown and golden hues, this destination is also loved by beach lovers and divers who revel in the crystal clear waters. Read more
If it’s dreamy white sand beaches you’re after, Fuerteventura will very much resemble the perfect beach paradise for couples, honeymooners, or even families who just want to get some much needed R&R. The nightlife isn’t lacking either for those who need some evening stimulation and there’s plenty to do for kids including Baku Water Park, Dolphin Safari, Oasis Park & La Lajita Zoo, Submarine Safari and a wide choice of beaches which are all safe and child-friendly. Read more
La Palma
La Palma is one of the smaller and perhaps lesser known islands of the main Canary Islands. So if you’re looking for a Canaries holiday that’s a bit more off the beaten track, this is a great destination. But just because you’re avoiding the bustling tourist crowds of the bigger islands doesn’t mean you’ll be stuck for things to do. The beaches are glorious and there are plenty of cool attractions / things to do including the Marine Reserve in the South, La Zarza Cultural Park, the old colonial capital of Santa Cruz, hiking at La Palma’s highest peak of Roque De Los Muchachos, whale watching in the North, shopping in El Paso or dining along the seafront at Los Cancajos Beach.

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