Category: Islands (Page 1 of 2)

Winter Or Summer, Tenerife Is Always A Great Place For A Holiday

 

What kind of holiday do you prefer — the bustling action and palpable excitement of the tourist season, or the peace and quiet of an off-season trip? Do you need to escape the biting cold or searing heat of your native town for a more moderate Tenerife weather?

Whatever your motivations (and timetable), Tenerife in the Canary Islands can give you the dream vacation you seek, summer or winter. Let’s examine some of the benefits you can enjoy from each scheduling option.

las teresitas beach

Las Teresitas Beach


Winter Tourist Season

It only makes sense that November through March represent peak months for Tenerife’s winter tourist trade. After all, how many places allow people to sun themselves on the beach, go sailing, or take a comfortable dip in the ocean at this time of year? The Canary Islands are famous for their mild, calm, sunny winters with average temperatures of 59 degrees Fahrenheit. So if you love the water, sand and sky, ditch the snowshoes and book a flight for Tenerife.

If you get homesick for a nice chill, you can always visit Teide National Park and make your way up Mount Teide for a more bracing taste of wintertime beauty. If your holiday includes December 25th, you can even take in the annual Christmas concert by the Tenerife Symphony Orchestra. Last but not least, if you make landfall in February or March, there’s a good chance that you’ll see at least one spectacular local carnival.

Your next winter vacation could look like this.

Summer Tourist Season

Tourist season heats up once again — this time literally — in May, with peak activity in August as many locals take time off for their annual summer holiday. Summers in Tenerife continue to attract sun worshipers who enjoy this site’s combination of outdoor recreation and gorgeous oceanside scenery.

Summertime temperatures here average a comfortable 75.2 degrees Fahrenheit, making it an ideal place for, say, overheated Texans or Arizonians to come and cool off. If you seek more intellectual stimulation from your natural surroundings, check out the Ethnographic Park and investigate the mysterious, ancient step pyramids and historical/cultural museum at Guimar. In mid-August you can experience the Festival of the Lady of Candelaria, the Islands’ patron saint.

Teide

Mount Teide

Off-Season Fun

Many travellers prefer to avoid the crowds (and the prices) of peak tourist months in favor of a more restful experience with more affordable travel options. Some simply can’t schedule their vacation time to overlap with the busiest times of the year in the Canary Islands. Never fear, though, because Tenerife’s many attractions continue to dazzle and inspire visitors even during the off season — or what passes for an off season here, anyway.

The favorable climate continues to prove a blessing for lovers of the outdoors, and you may encounter some special events that might get lost in the shuffle during busier periods. You’ll generally find lower airfare and hotel prices during the spring months, with the notable exception of Easter, an enormously popular time for family getaways coinciding with school breaks.

September may herald an end to holiday fun for the main body of tourists — but not necessarily for you and your family! You can usually find remarkable deals on air travel and accommodations from September to the beginning of December, so bargain hunters will want to take advantage as their schedules permit.

Temperatures are pleasant enough to watch whales and dolphins frolic off the island’s southwest coast most days of the year, all year round. Stick around for the Festival of Saint Andrew, in which new wines are traditionally opened and enjoyed, on November 29th and 30th.

There’s something to be said for tradition.

As you can see, Tenerife welcomes all comers at all times of year. You really can’t pick a wrong time to come here, so check your calendar and book your flight to fun!

 

 

Top 5 Beach Alternatives In Tenerife

The Canary Islands darling, Tenerife, is famous for its great weather and even better beaches. But that’s not all the island has to offer. The island boasts of a stunning natural landscape and fully utilises it to great effect. If sunbathing on a beach all day isn’t your thing, read on and find out more about what fun activities Tenerife has to offer.

Make sure you also take a look at this Tenerife Forum for some more info and check out some of these popular Tenerife excursions for great days out.

 

Mount Teide

Mount Teide


Safari Tour

One way to explore Tenerife’s gorgeous scenery is a safari tour. These excursions out into the wild are perfect for any amateur photographers in the group. Visit different regions, shoot the stunning natural landscape and learn more about the island.

Personal Safari tours are also available and offer much more freedom, smaller groups and therefore a better experience with no need to fight for a good photo opportunity! For a truly unique experience, drive around the island on a quad bike or sit back and relax in a chauffeur driven jeep. These vehicles allow you to go through forests and climb mountains via rocky terrain and trails to gain a spectacular panoramic view.


Whale and Dolphin Watching
Humans aren’t the only ones who enjoy swimming in the Atlantic Ocean you know. Little known to visitors to the island, Tenerife is one of the best places in Europe to watch whales and dolphins in their natural habitat. There are around 25 species to watch in their playground including bottle nose dolphins and pilot whales. Not only that, many species of birds & turtles will also be around to say hello!

Excursion boats range from catamarans like Lady Shelley which offers views of the sea bottom to a sailing boat which mirrors the one seen in Peter Pan!

Pilot Whales

Pilot Whales


Teide National Park

You’ll be hard pressed to find a national park more impressive than Teide National Park. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the park revolves around the islands volcano, Mount Teide.

The volcano is considered to be the third tallest volcanic structure and offers unrivalled panoramic views across the island. It’s a great way to stretch your legs and get some fresh air whilst admiring the wonderful rock formations, complemented by a blue sky backdrop. It’s also a wonderful place to eat alfresco in nature’s surroundings.


Bob Diving

We’ve all heard of scuba diving, but have you come across bob diving? If you think or found scuba diving too strenuous, bob diving gives you all the pleasure of exploring the sea without feeling exhausted half way through.

Bob diving involves using an underwater scooter which powers through the water and does all the hard work while you sit and admire all that’s around you. The scooter is like something straight out of a James Bond film! Other benefits include a window which allows you to peer out with a clear view and no breathing apparatus to contend with – reducing your intake of salty water!

 


Medieval Night at Castillo San Miguel

Those glued to the beach won’t notice Tenerife is surrounded by gorgeous architecture. Just walk along the historic streets of the old town and be charmed by the cathedrals or visit the dazzling modern structures such as The Auditorio de Tenerife. While Castillo San Miguel doesn’t date back to the medieval times (it was purposely built as an attraction), there’s no denying it’s still an impressive building.

Step back into a forgotten time and get lost in a night of realistic medieval competitions. You’ll be caught up in the moment as you enter the castle full of armour, swords and scrolls and be greeted by the Count and Countess.

The authentic experience is carried throughout into the Tournament Hall as you dine on a Medieval banquet and cheer for your knight in shining armour.

*We’ve added one more activity to this list which brings the number up to six beach alternative activities.

 

Horse Riding
One of the best ways to see the rugged landscape and incredible views of the island is by doing it the old fashioned way, by horse power.

Not only that but you can get a great tan; is a great workout for the core muscles of the body that strengthen your posture, and is a very relaxing and calming experience.

For horse riding in Tenerife, we recommend Ulla who runs a horse riding school in the south of the island.

 

tenerife horse riding

 

The weather in Tenerife is usually excellent with most days being bright and sunny for your excursions.

More information from this selection of premium Tenerife blogs hand picked just for you.

 

Walking tours in the Balearic region

The Balearics are a wonderful collection of islands, nestled in the Mediterranean, and known for their sunny climate and crystal clear waters.

Ibiza, Minorca, Majorca and Formentera are four of the biggest islands in the Balearics and are popular with tourists all year round.

Unsurprisingly perhaps, traditional beach holidays rank very highly amongst tourists visiting the region but if you fancy a more active holiday, or simply want to see more of the breath-taking countryside that can be found on the islands you might want to consider a walking tour.

You don’t need to be a hardened hiker to enjoy this type of holiday; there’s plenty available for all types of ability and experience.

We run down some of the best walking tours in the Balearics to whet your appetite for what you could find.

Majorca – the Classic Trek
The pretty island of Majorca, also referred to as Mallorca, is a popular hot-spot for holidaymakers wanting to lap up the warm weather during the day and hit the nightlife when the sun goes down. But for those willing to take a walk on the wild side, there’s a whole island simply waiting to be discovered.

Majorca has a wide and varied landscape and in the north, a brow of mountains stand guard over the island, forming the backbone of the tiny landmass. There are many day excursions and walking tours which visit this region, but one of the most enjoyable is the six day Classic Trek.

A grade B tour, anyone who is in reasonably good condition and can cope with undulating terrain should be able to manage the demands without any difficulties. However, walking boots rather than trainers are recommended for this route.

The tour starts in the quaint village of Valldemossa, buried in the mountains and gradually treks north reaching the Archdukes Pathway. The climb up is made well worth it by the spectacular panoramic views of the coast, before you slowly make your descent into Deia for the night.

 

Valldemossa

Valldemossa is ideal as part of your Majorcan walking tour. Image Source

The next day sees an old fisherman’s trail followed, through wild olive groves which provide the perfect backdrop for some unique holiday snaps. Moving on to Soller via tram before walking for 6-8 hours to reach Tossals Mountain Refuge is the next leg, moving through some picturesque mountain hamlets en route. This pathway involves walking through some tunnels and offers a very remote experience in the mountains.

The final two days include a stay at the island’s famous Lluc Monastery, often considered the true heartbeat of Mallorca. The tour finishes with a walk down the side of the Puig Tomir Mountain and into the hustle and bustle of Pollensa Square.

A tour which offers views of pretty villages, remote mountaintop refuges plus plenty of stunning scenery along the way, it’s little wonder you need to book this in advance to get a place.

Ibiza – not just for clubbers
In recent years, the White Isle has gained a reputation for being the place to go to party but whilst this may be true, there is so much more to Ibiza than just throbbing dance music.

Venture away from the lights of the main tourist areas and you will find a small island filled with beautiful countryside and tranquil bays.

There are many tours available which take in the sights and sounds of Ibiza but one walking holiday with a difference is the Around Island trip.

A two week holiday which includes some rest days, the tour is designed for all levels of ability but most of all aims to allow everyone the chance to reconnect with nature by experiencing the peace of the natural world.

During this tour, no hotels are stayed in – other than on the two rest nights – and meals are cooked and enjoyed over a campfire, allowing the group to chat and really get to know each other. This kind of holiday provides plenty of opportunities to mix as well as contemplate the serenity so you could return with a very different perspective as well as some new friends!

All food and drink is supplied but you will need to bring your own rucksack, tent and sleeping bag. The itinerary is rather more relaxed and will depend on the weather conditions and the fitness of the group. All that is guaranteed is that the tour will take in the whole island, providing phenomenal views and outstanding scenery. Although around 15-30km will be covered each day, the emphasis is very much on quality of the experience rather than speed to make sure everyone gets what they want from the tour.

Minorca – the hidden isle
Despite being amongst the four largest Balearic Islands, Minorca remains somewhat of a mystery to many holidaymakers.

A green and lush island with beautiful scenery and landscapes to explore, Minorca provides the perfect backdrop for a walking tour and where better to start than the interestingly-named Path of Horses.

More than 116 miles in length, the Path traverses through many different types of scenery en route including some of the towns on the island, as well as rugged cliff-top seascapes and tiny secluded bays and beaches.

Menorca

Try visiting Platja de Binigaus, Menorca, it’s convenient for many Menorcan walks. Image Source

Minorca whilst offering gently undulating countryside has far less heavy climbing than its island brothers, and as such walkers following the Path of Horses will have far fewer ascents to make. On the entire route, there are just two sections marked as ‘difficult’ whilst nine are graded as ‘middle’ and a further nine as ‘easy’.

No-one is entirely sure of the origins of the Path of Horses but studies have shown that it dates back many centuries at least. The route now passes by not just beautiful coastal areas, but also encounters sudden valleys exploding with flowers and prehistoric monuments and fossils. A track which runs around the periphery of the island, the Path of Horses shows walkers Minorca at its best, offering up many of its secret treasures such as lush green woodland and hidden coves.

Conclusion
The above three examples are just three of the many walking tours which can be found in the Balearics. All of the islands have their own particular characteristics from precipitous mountain peaks to sandy bays and shady olive groves. Take some time away from the sun lounger and enjoy the Balearics at their best; you are guaranteed to see a completely different side of the island!

Bio:

Sally Vandiver is the owner of a range of Menorca villas and highly knowedgeable about villa rentals in this region.

 

Sailing On A Boat Through The Spanish Islands

sailing boatHave you ever been to Spain on a boating vacation? Most people love going to Spain on a complete family package because the destination offers activities for everyone but a sailing or yachting holiday gives you a chance to see the Spanish isles in a whole new light.

There are plenty of islands worth visiting with the Canary Islands and Balearic Islands being the most popular. When you sail along the lovely picturesque views of the island, you’ll relish the sense of peace and calmness that settles over you.

It is the perfect break to take to wash away those work blues and really allows you to let go of it all.

The Canary Islands

There are seven main islands and several smaller ones in the archipelago that form the Canary Islands. The seven big islands are Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, Tenerife, Fuerteventura, La Palma, La Gomera, and El Hierro.

Though they belong to Spain, these islands are closer to Africa than mainland Europe. You can hire a boat and move from one island to another is an enchanting experience because each island is entirely unique in its own right.
The territory, the nature, the landscape, the culture and more is so different.

The islands are popular with beach goers but also offer an incredible insight into Spanish colonialism and the blend of African and European cultures (and cuisine) makes for an enchanting escape.

You can enjoy the exotic nature and breathtaking lanscape these volcanic islands have to offer. The volcanoes, the rugged cliffs, the lush greenery of the pine forests, the variation of black and white sandy beaches all offer the perfect setting for a fantastic vacation.

You can take your pick of black, golden or heavenly white sandy beaches to experience the incredible variety of many beaches on the islands. The climate can vary also depending on the island and the altitude and boasts several micro climates all within short distances of each other.

In addition, sailing, jet skiing, scuba diving and snorkelling are some of the best activities that you can do while cruising the Canary Islands and makes for an adventurous holiday where you can follow wild dolphins and swim with turtles and rays.

As for the cuisine, you can moor your boat near coastal restaurants and savour the local recipes and delicacies.

The Balearic Islands

Much closer to mainland Spain, the Balearic Islands are amongst the Mediterranean’s finest – offering everything from wild clubbing nights to relaxed medieval towns.

The main islands are Majorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera and a sailing holiday gives you a great opportunity to experience each island’s unique offerings. Ibiza is world renowned for its beaches and its lively clubbing scene and is the perfect place to moor for a big party.

Majorca and Menorca offer incredible family fun and beautiful medieval cities to explore. From Mallorca cathedral and Ibiza castle to the cliff tops of El Vedra, the islands offer unparalleled natural beauty and a memorable adventure.

The Mediterranean is fantastic for anyone who wants a very gentle and laid back holiday and the range of activities on the islands makes it a treat for all the family, whether you want family fun water parks or romantic sunsets.

Fuerteventura – A Holiday Paradise

Fuerteventura BeachThe sub tropical Island of Fuerteventura is arguably the most beautiful and stunning of the Canary Island chain. Fantastic beaches, picturesque and diverse landscapes and golden sandy beaches have made Fuerteventura a popular holiday hotspot.

Sun lovers from all over the globe flock to Fuerteventura to lap up the long sunny days that are synonymous with the islands fantastic all year round climate.
The Island has a coastline that stretches for more than 120 miles ( 193 kms ) and boasts of more than 100 pristine beaches which are perfect for a myriad of water sports activities such as windsurfing, kite surfing, sports fishing and water skiing.

The two most popular tourist resorts on Fuerteventura are located at opposite ends of the Island. The Northern coast is home to Correlejo, popular with visitors who love its white sandy beaches and superb tourism facilities. Then down on the southern tip is the stylish resort of Morro Jable, which also offers some of the best surfing conditions on the island.

A great way to explore this stunning Island is by car hire which is readily available and very easy to book onlne. Renting a car will give you complete freedom to drive around at your leisure, stopping over whenever you wish to explore the best resorts and beaches the island has to offer. Booking early can bag you a huge discount of up to 15% so it’s worth considering this option.

Correlejo is a harbour village located on the northern tip of Fuerteventura. The town is surrounded by some fine blue flag beaches including Playa del Pozo, Playa del Medano, Playa de Viejo and not forgetting the sheltered ( playa la Clavellina ) which is a safe, family friendly beach used by both tourists and locals alike.

Fishing for supper from the harbour walls is popular and worth a try. There are plenty of yachts and other pleasure craft in the harbour and it’s here that the ferry services to Lanzarote are located. There are a few booths around where you can book family fishing a boat trips if you want to be a bit more adventurous.

The Costa Calma ( the calm coast ) is located some 80km south of the airport on the edge of the Jandia national park.
It became a popular tourist destination in the mid 1980s drawn by the incredible long white sandy beaches for which it is famous. The beach runs from the Costa Calma to Morro Jable in the southern tip some 12 miles away and has become very popular with holiday makers from all over Europe.

There is also an excellent choice of accommodation available ranging from cheap hotels to a wide selection of great value all inclusive holiday resorts which will suit all tastes and budgets.

With that in mind, the hotels are not located on the shoreline being built away from the beaches but their elevated positioning offers spectacular views over the sea and surrounding vicinity.

There are some nice shopping centres, plenty of restaurants affording diverse cuisines, small bars and cafeterias to keep everyone happy.
Finally, if you like the local market scene, then why not venture out to one of them as they are held every Sunday and who knows, perhaps you might just pick up a great bargain.

As you can see, the island has so much to offer and is just waiting to be explored.

 

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