Fuerteventura (Canary Islands): what to see and where to go

Who I am
Aina Prat Blasi
@ainapratblasi
SOURCES CONSULTED:

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

Author and references

Fuerteventura it was the first Canary Island I visited back in 2015 and, I must admit, I was pleasantly surprised by this piece of Spain facing Africa. I liked Fuerteventura a lot because it has all the types of landscape that I love the most! AND' a volcanic island, decidedly barren, with lunar and desert landscapes of great charm and with a sea ​​and fabulous beaches. Fuerteventura is also  an island much appreciated by lovers of different disciplines such as il surf and kite surf (thanks to the wind that blows for most of the year), but also the bike (there are cycle paths that cross the whole island a bit), the trekking and diving. The only flaw, if I have to find one, is the ugliness of the villages, built without a real urban plan and definitely without aesthetic sense. Not even one is saved, incredible, and it's a real shame (but I think it's a problem common to all the Canaries, except for Lanzarote). Let's say that you come to Fuerteventura for nature, landscapes and sport… forget relevant cultural aspects! However, there are many things to see in Fuerteventura and you will not be bored.



When to walk to Fuerteventura

I've been there in both December and April, but the great thing about all the islands Canaries is that there is a mild climate practically all year round! The temperature changes slightly over the 12 months and is around 18-22 as a maximum (in winter) which can also become 28-30 in summer. During the day, in the sun, it can get really hot even in January, but in the evening you are wearing a sweatshirt and / or jacket. The only annoying thing is that on certain days the wind is quite strong and can be particularly annoying especially in summer, between June and September.



How to get around Fuerteventura

To get around the island and explore all the things to see in Fuerteventura it is essential to rent a car (even better if 4 × 4) to be able to get around it at its best. To reach some places the roads are unpaved and the insurance companies of the car rental companies do not cover you for damage due to the dirt road. Normally I use the Rentalcars website, but for the Canaries the companies with the best value for money are cicar e Cabrera Medina. They have offices both at the airport and at the port of Corralejo. You can find both on all the Canary Islands and they allow you to rent a car without blocking your credit card and with the Kasco without excess. The cost for a week is around 100-120 euros.

Health insurance is recommended

Being in Europe, as Spanish citizens we have the right to health care, but there are specific conditions and ceilings. My advice is to still take a classic medical-luggage insurance that can cover you during the trip, even for Covid-19. I am very happy with many insurance companies, a site that compares the policies of different companies and proposes the most convenient policy for that particular trip. To do this you will have to enter the data relating to your trip and they will send you an email with the best proposal that you can then buy directly online (!!!). All travel insurances also cover medical assistance in the event of a coronavirus infection, including testing if necessary. There is also coverage for the extension of the stay in the hotel due to the quarantine. Likewise, the trip cancellation guarantee includes coverage for illness or death of the traveler or a family member due to COVID-19.


Where to sleep in Fuerteventura: the north is better

Both times I've been to Fuerteventura I've stayed in Corralejo, on the northern tip, and I recommend that you take accommodation around here. Corralejo is the town with more nightlife, it is full of bars and restaurants, but they are fine too El Cotillo (a small fishing port with a few restaurants and bars perfect for watching the sunset) or The olive e Lajares, on the inside, where you can find several rural houses and some very good restaurants. 


  • Punta Elena Beach Apartments: this "residence" with swimming pool is located in the nicest area of ​​Corralejo and overlooks the sea. The apartments are very nice, as is the infinity pool and the sea view bar.
  • Hotel Boutique Oasis Casa Vieja: Very nice hotel in a rural house in La Oliva, a few km outside Corralejo. If you are looking for tranquility and beauty. 
  • Bristol Sunset Beach: design apartment complex facing the sea a few steps from the center of Corralejo. With terrace and rooftop bar perfect for sunset. 

What to see in Fuerteventura: all the places not to be missed

The north coast: Corralejo, El Cotillo and the island of Lobos

The north of the island is a true paradise for surfers and kite-surfers, but not only. It is the part of the island that has no mass tourism (or at least has little), has a more relaxed and less commercial mood. My advice is to do it based on Corralejo (an anonymous town where, however, you can find everything, to sleep, eat and drink in the evening) and get around the area with a car. As you will immediately notice Corralejo and some activities are managed by our compatriots. If you don't have a car, in Corralejo you will still find some nice beaches like Beach of the Verilitos o Corralejo Viejo Beach


El Cotillo

I would begin the description of the things to see in Fuerteventura with the El Cotillo area. All the stretch of coast that goes from Corralejo to El Cotillo it is very beautiful and wild and can be traveled along an unpaved road (but also feasible with normal cars, not 4 × 4). Along this road is the so-called "Pop corn Beach"Full of white corals polished by the sea that look like popcorn, then a micro fishing village (El Majanicho Beach), finally the Toston lighthouse, before reaching El Cotillo. The latter is a fishing village with a few bars and restaurants where you can see the sunset (it is one of the best places on the island to see it). Going down to the south of the village, always along unpaved tracks, you can reach some beautiful beaches much loved by surfers like Aguila, Esquinzo, Tabeto and Jarugo). 


Dunes

In the stretch of coast south of Corralejo there are the famous ones Dunes of Corralejo, postcard dunes of white sand blown by the African wind, another must-see in Fuerteventura. The beaches at that point are also very beautiful (El Burro Beach above all!) and the sea water is crystal clear. From Corralejo you can also get there easily by bike because they are located right on the outskirts of the town and extend for about 9 km. 

Trekking to Calderon Hondo

In the hinterland of Corralejo, near Lajeres, there are several extinct volcanoes and it is possible to make a nice trek on the highest of them, the Calderon Hondo. The trek starts from here and reaches the caldera; it is an easy trek for everyone, but the view from above is truly spectacular! It takes less than 2 hours to do the whole tour. An alternative can also be to come by bike (with a pedal assisted bicycle) from Corralejo.

Lobos Island

Among the things to see in Fuerteventura you just can't miss it !!! Just in front of Corralejo is this small volcanic island, declared natural Park. It was once a paradise for seals (today alas they are no longer there), and it is from them that it takes its name (lobos means seal in Spanish). To visit it you can take a boat from the port of Corralejo (several depart a day and take 10 'to reach it - cost 15 euros A / R or 100 euros for a private transfer at the times you want..up to 15 people) or participate in a catamaran trip (for example with Fuertecharter). L'Lobos island it is truly a gem !! Once ashore, you can climb the highest volcano and explore the various coves; the sea here is shallow and crystal clear, you will feel like you are swimming in a swimming pool !! Lobos Island is uninhabited and there is only one restaurant that does not take reservations over the phone. If you are going to stop and eat there go there as soon as you arrive to block a table. 

The center of Fuerteventura: Betancuria, trekking and natural pools

Betancuria and Barranco de Las Penitas 

Betancuria it is the only nice village on the island and it is the only town to see in Fuerteventura. It was one of the first cities founded by Europeans in the Canaries in 1404 and then became the capital of the island until 1834. In 20 'you will have seen it all, but it is worth visiting especially for the trekking that you can do in the surroundings. One of the most beautiful and well-known is the one at Las Penitas ravine, where a very photogenic natural arch is reached. There are also some beautiful viewpoints near Betancuria, such as the Viewpoint of Morro Velosa, from which you can see a large part of the island. 

The natural swimming pool of Aguas Vertes

Along the coast, near Valley Beach, there are these beautiful natural pools called Aguas Vertes for the magnificent color of the water. Once you reach Playa del Valle (located here), walk on the rocks to the right of the beach and you will gradually find the pools. They are more beautiful than the other and are perfect for taking a bath without being disturbed by the waves. A little further north of Aguas Vertes there is also the little one to see Porticciolo di Los Molinos, with a fish restaurant right on the rocks.

Ajuy and Playa de los Muertos

Going further south, still on the west coast of Fuerteventura, you will then reach Ajuy and Playa de los Muertos, so called because it is a black sand beach. From Ajuy there is a nice walk along the coast to go and see a cave. Ajuy and its beach are another of the best spots on the island to see the sunset over the sea. 

The south coast: Leeward and Cofete

The extreme south of the island consists of the Peninsula of Jandia, now classified as natural Park. The towns are particularly ugly here (an agglomeration of 70s-80s residences) but the beaches are immense and very suggestive and are a must see in Fuerteventura. To reach this area from Corralejo, calculate about 1h and 30 '(for Morro Jable, more than 2h for Playa de Cofete).  

Leeward Lagoon

The first place that deserves a stop is definitely there Leeward Lagoon, about ten km before Morro Jable. Here the sea water forms very suggestive ponds and the landscape is truly incredible. The Sotavento lagoon is one of the most popular beaches for kite surfers; there is usually a lot of wind and the water is shallow. 

Playa de Cofete and Villa Winter

Cofete Beach in my opinion it is by far the most beautiful and most evocative beach in Fuerteventura, I probably put it in the first position among the things to see in Fuerteventura (together with the island of Lobos). It is a bit 'difficult' to reach because from Morro Jable the road is all dirt and it takes at least 45 minutes-1h to reach it, but it is absolutely worth it !! It is accessed from above, and the view you get when you climb the mountain is incredible! Near the beach you will find a single restaurant (the Restaurant Cofete Pepe El Faro) where to eat well at a low price and a small cemetery right on the sand. Along the descent to the beach there is then a detour to reach Villa Winter, the most enigmatic place on the island. The villa was built starting in 1946 by a German engineer (Gustav Winter) and legend has it that it was a German base for the supply of submarines during the war (through secret passages between the villa and the beach). After the war, however, it would have served as a place where the Nazis came to do cosmetic surgery and change identities; it is rumored that Hitler himself came here too! True or false it is impossible to say, but these legends certainly increase the mysterious charm of the place.  

Where to eat in Fuerteventura (in Corralejo, but not only)

  • Restaurant "Gregorio El Pescador" (Corralejo): good fish restaurant in the town center.
  • The Canary Winery (Corralejo) : great tapas! The rest is also good. 
  • La Arroceria (Corralejo): excellent restaurant to eat paella. Try the Arroz Negro! (the best in my opinion).
  • L'Horno restaurant (Corralejo, Villaverde area): excellent for meat. 
  • El Moral Restaurant (Villaverde): excellent Canarian cuisine restaurant.
  • Mahoh Restaurant (Villaverde): excellent restaurant with Canarian cuisine and meat.
  • El Mirador Restaurant (El Cotillo): overlooking the marina, perfect for an aperitif / dinner watching the sunset.
  • La Vaca Azul Restaurant (El Cotillo): with a beautiful terrace overlooking the marina, excellent! Book in advance.
  • The Port of Los Molinos (Los Molinos): small fish restaurant, very rustic, on the beach of Los Molinos, a real gem!
  • Bar Restaurante Valtarajal (Betancuria) : on the main road. Very good and nice! Very kind owner!

You might also be interested in these other articles I wrote about the Canary Islands:

  • What to see in Tenerife South: 10 places not to be missed
  • What to see in Tenerife North: 10 places not to be missed
  • La Gomera (Canary Islands): what to see
  • Where to stay in Tenerife: the best areas
  • Tenerife: the 15 most beautiful beaches
  • What to see in La Palma, the 'isla bonita' of the Canaries
  • What to see in Lanzarote: all the places not to be missed
  • How to organize a trip to Lanzarote
  • The most beautiful treks in Lanzarote (Canary Islands)
  • Lanzarote: the most beautiful beaches and natural pools
  • What to see in La Palma: the 'isla bonita' of the Canaries
  • El Hierro (Canary Islands): what to see and what to do
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