The Canary Islands is a self-governing destination of Spain situated just off the southern shore of Morocco, 100 kilometres (62 miles) west of its southern frontier. Rising volcanoes, ancient sites, rich pine jungles, lunar scenery, sandy bays and miles of Sahara-type mounds. Yes, there is another world past the Canaries' beachfront retreats.
It is this very variety of countryside, combined with those foreseeable sunny days, that makes outdoor pursuits so approachable and diverse. Trek the signposted pathways that go across the islands, varying from winding tracks to mountain hikes; scuba dive in alluring warm waters, admiring the nearly 350 kinds of fish (and the peculiar shipwreck); or fill up the excitement by mounting the wind and the waves – kitesurfing, windsurfing and surfing are all huge here. Slow down the stride with camel trips, games of golf, horse hikes and boat tours.
The Canary Islands possesses near-ideal year-round climates, which means even if it’s summer or winter you could appreciate the exciting and diverse countryside here that you normally have to traverse many mainlands to encounter. Be amazed at the subtropical plant life of La Gomera’s national park, the pine-jungled summits in Gran Canaria’s hilly centrals or the plummeting waterfalls of La Palma. Then compare all this elegance with the remarkable infertile plateaus bordering Tenerife’s El Teide, the dreamlike play of colours of Lanzarote’s lava areas and Fuerteventura’s never ending pastures, dotted with cacti, scrub and plenty of goats.
The most evident place to unwind is on a beach, and there are lots of options: from the silky rolling mounds in Fuerteventura to the broad curves of golden sand in Tenerife.
While the Canary Islands might not possess the invasion of museums in Spain’s large mainland metropolises, there is lots to drive art and culture lovers here.
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