If you think of Fuerteventura, or perhaps the Canary Islands in general, I can bet that some of the first things that spring to mind are beaches, sunshine and all inclusive holiday resorts. Whilst Fuerteventura does indeed offer all three, my trip to the island last summer proved to me that actually, Fuerteventura can also provide culture and plenty to see and do.
When Holiday Gems asked me to write a post recapping my top ten things to do in Fuerteventura, I wasn’t sure where to begin. After a bit of a think, I managed to whittle down my list and here they are, my top ten things to do in Fuerteventura!
1. Go on a dive
If you’ve never been scuba-diving before and want to give it a try, Fuerteventura is the perfect place to begin. The surrounding waters provide ample diving sites, perfect for beginners, and still provide plenty of exciting marine animals to see, like seahorses, cuttlefish and if you’re lucky, sharks.
2. Explore the sand dunes
Should you need a reminder that you are only 60 miles off the cost of west Africa, head for the Parque Natural de las Dunas de Corralejo. The national park boasts the largest sand dunes of the Canary Islands, and some of the islands best beaches along its 10km coastline. With miles of near-white sand, clear turquoise waters, huge undulating dunes and a contrasting volcanic landscape, it is no surprise that this part of the island is exceptionally popular with tourists! See if you can spot the famous (although rare) bustard bird, a truly lovely site in the dunes.
3. Visit the caves at Ajuy
If you get fed up of sunbathing and are looking for something different to do, why not stop by the small fishing village of Ajuy on the island’s west coast?
Whilst the village itself is relatively attractive with whitewash buildings overlooking a black sand beach, the village is most visited because of the caves, just a short walk from the centre. The sea caves are the remains of ancient magma chambers through which lava once flowed. Legend has it that pirates used the caves to hide their loot and it is a feeling you certainly get as you explore the various chambers.
4. Visit the white beaches of Cotillo
To the north-east of Fuerteventura, you will find the rustic coastal village of El Cotillo, home to yet more fantastic beaches! To the north of the village, they extend into an endless stretch of protected white-sandy coves and calm turquoise waters, with the most popular being La Concha. However, head south along the Playa del Castillo and you will be met with wild and remote beaches, edged with dark rugged cliffs and extending out into choppy water. If you want to get off the tourist trail, head along the coast to find these hidden gems and enjoy!
5. Climb one of the mountains
The island’s volcanic landscape provides plenty of hiking opportunities if you are up early enough to avoid the scorching temperatures! Wherever you are on the island, you will find a nearby mountain, walking trail or volcanic crater to climb, and assuming you make it to the top, you can enjoy views out over the island and on a clear day across to nearby islands such as Lanzarote (in the north) and Gran Canaria (to the south-west).
6. Windsurf in Jandia
Although I didn’t make it as far south as the Jandia peninsula during my visit to Fuerteventura, I’ve been told that along with beautiful beaches, it is also a windsurfer’s paradise. The south of the island experiences stronger winds than in the normal which provide the ideal conditions for the water sport – so much so that the P.W.A. World windsurfing speed and slalom event is held here every year, attracting the crème de la crème of the windsurfing world.
7. Spend a day on Lobos
Just two kilometres off the coast is the tiny island of Lobos which can be accessed via a short 10 minute ferry journey from Corralejo. Since 1982 the entire island has a been a protected natural landscapes, with its water teeming with fish and other marine wildlife. The island is so small that it only takes couple of hours to explore, but there are many secluded beaches to enjoy and coves to wander. Make sure that you snorkel in the lagoon; bring a loaf of bread and be prepared to see more fish than you’ve ever seen before.
8. Lunch with the locals
If you’re anything like me, half the fun of going on holiday is eating lots of food! Whilst the main tourist hubs like Corralejo and Jandia offer some great restaurants, to me there is nothing better than heading off the tourist trail and having lunch where the locals eat. Some favourites of mine, whilst based in Villaverde to the north of the island, were Casa Marcos for delicious tapas, El Horno for local classics from the oven, and for lunch Mi Dulce Hogar, which has an amazing selection of sandwiches and cakes!
9. Have a drink by the beach in Corralejo
The seafront at Corralejo is the perfect place to stop and watch the world go by drink in hand. There are lots of places to chose from, so whether you want somewhere more traditional or somewhere a bit hip, you will find a bar, restaurant, or café to suit your tastes.
10. Drive through the mountains to the small village of Betancuria
If you love history, and want to see the classic side of the Canary island, Betancuria is perfect for you. The ancient capital is hidden in the mountains, and holds many small local shops, beautiful scenic views, and a really cool museum. The drive up the mountains is also really exciting, and offers some splendid scenery as you make you the ascent!
So there you have it, my top ten things to do in Fuerteventura. I decided to go for the ones that may not be the generic things to do, and are instead off the tourist trail meaning you get to see the island as something different than just a holiday haven.
Have you ever been to Fuerteventura? Is there anything else you would add to the list above? Has this list perhaps inspired you to take a trip to the Canaries? Do let me know in the comments below! Also, check out my vlog about my visit to the island, where a lot of this list is ticked off!Love V x
** This is a sponsored post but all opinions are my own