Which island to choose for your vacation in the Canaries?

croisière observation baleines Tenerife

Not sure which island to choose for your vacation in the Canaries? Here’s our guide to the most beautiful Canary Islands!

The Canary Islands lie off the coasts of Africa and Morocco. While almost all of them boast beautiful volcanic landscapes, national parks and superb beaches, each has its own personality. Fuerteventura is known for its winds, ideal for windsurfing and kitesurfing, Gran Canaria for its cultural heritage and Tenerife for its exceptional hiking.

Not sure which island to choose for your vacation in the Canaries? In this article, we present each of them with their specific characteristics. So you can easily choose the most suitable one for your future dream trip.

1. Versatile Tenerife

plage tenerife location bateau - île canaries

Photo credit: Shutterstock – Balate Dorin

Tenerife is the largest and most populous of the Canary Islands. It is also the most versatile of the Canary Islands. It has something for everyone, whatever their tastes.

In particular, you’ll find the superb volcanic landscapes for which the island is famous. Tenerife is an excellent destination for hikers. You can climb to the top of the Teide volcano, explore its national parks or survey its coastline. Although often inaccessible, the island also boasts some magnificent beaches: Tacoronte, Taganana and Playa Antequera.

Last but not least, culture buffs will be delighted by historic towns such as Santa Cruz de Tenerife, ideal for party-goers, or La Candelaria and Los Cristianos. All in all, Tenerife is a hiker’s paradise, but will appeal to all profiles.

2. Dynamic Gran Canaria

gran canaria

Photo credit : Alltrails

The second most populous island in the archipelago, Gran Canaria, like Tenerife, is a versatile island. It does, however, have a few special features that add to its charm. First of all, it’s home to Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, the archipelago’s most populous city. With this city comes an incredible cultural and historical heritage. Travelers will also appreciate the city’s dynamism, with typical restaurants and numerous bars where they can enjoy a drink after dark. Gran Canaria is a superb destination for gastronomy, culture and partying.

A vast biosphere reserve, Gran Canaria is also considered a miniature continent thanks to the diversity of its landscapes and climates. It’s the perfect destination for hikers and lovers of sublime landscapes. It also offers a good balance for travellers wishing to combine relaxing vacations, nightlife and cultural visits.

3. Volcanic Lanzarote

Le Mirador de Montana Ganada randonnees lanzarote - île canaries

Photo credit : Alltrails

Lanzarote is undoubtedly the most volcanic of all the Canary Islands. Also recognized as a biosphere reserve by UNESCO, it is home to the magnificent Timanfaya National Park, one of the island’s main attractions. In this park, you can admire superb lunar landscapes, dotted with impressive craters.

But the island of Lanzarote isn’t all extinct volcanoes. You’ll find plenty of beaches, some of them black sand, where you can bask and enjoy a delicious moment of idleness. It’s an ideal destination for relaxing, swimming and strolling. We also recommend it to families for a peaceful, relaxing vacation in an incredible setting.

4. Sporty Fuerteventura

Kite-Surf Fuerteventura

Photo credit: Shutterstock – NicoElNino

Fuerteventura is an incredible destination for water sports enthusiasts, especially wind sports. There are superb spots for kitesurfing, windsurfing and surfing. Travelers will be spoilt for choice when it comes to beaches. Some, such as Corralejo and Costa Calma, are popular with sports enthusiasts. Others are ideal for swimming and sunbathing, such as Playa de Gran Tarajal or the impressive Playa de Garcey.

Fuerteventura is renowned for its beautiful beaches and natural coves. You’ll also enjoy incredible landscapes, typical of the Canary Islands. We recommend it to all budding sports enthusiasts, but also to families and travelers looking for a charming beach destination.

5. Authentic La Palma

La Palma

Photo credit: Shutterstock – Balate Dorin

La Palma is not the island most travelers know. And it’s easy to see why: the island has very few beaches. On the other hand, it is entirely classified as a biosphere reserve by Unesco. And to top it all off, the island is criss-crossed by an impressive number of hiking trails! La Palma is a paradise for hikers.

Discover the Caldeira de Taburiente National Park and its impressive landscapes. Highly mountainous, La Palma offers superb panoramas and viewpoints for intrepid hikers ready to climb its peaks. We highly recommend it to all sports enthusiasts and nature lovers.

6. La Gomera, the choice of nature

la gomera canaries location bateau tenerife - île canaries

Photo credit: Shutterstock – Pawel Kazmierczak

La Gomera is another little-known island in the Canary archipelago. Not very touristy, it’s a very green and singular destination. La Gomera is very different from its more populated and dynamic neighbors. We recommend it to all travellers looking for a little peace, quiet and authenticity. Fortunately, you won’t get bored here.

You can visit Garajonay National Park, located in the heart of the island. The park is intriguing for its dense vegetation, mists, mountains and rocks emerging from the canopy. A special atmosphere reigns here. But La Gomera isn’t just about hiking, it’s also home to incredible diving spots, picturesque villages and small black sand beaches. There are also dolphin and whale-watching cruises. All in all, it’s an ideal destination for nature lovers!

7. Wild El Hierro

Hierro - île canaries

Photo credit: Shutterstock – Rafal Michal Gadomski

El Hierro is similar to La Gomera. Small and wild, it’s a perfect destination for hiking and nature. But what makes it so beautiful and special is that it is completely untouched by tourism. Located at the very western end of the Canary Islands, its landscapes are entirely unspoilt. The result is an exuberance of nature, with incredible panoramas along the ridges.

During your hikes, you’ll discover a wide variety of landscapes: lush, misty forests, fertile valleys, dark volcanic landscapes and steep peaks facing the Atlantic. You’ll also be able to swim, not on sandy beaches, but in beautiful natural pools. We recommend Charco Azul and La Maceta, both in La Frontera. If you’re looking for a unique Canary Islands experience, now you know where to go!