Fuerteventura is one of the islands that makes up the Canary Islands (Spanish: Las Islas Canarias). It is the second largest island of the Canaries to Tenerife, with population around 106,000. Fuerteventura is located south of Lanzarote, the two islands are 11 km apart.
The island is about 100 km long and 30 km wide. The mountains (of volcanic origin) in the north reach a height of up to 700 m above sea level (Maxorata). The highest peak is in the south - peninsula of Jandía, the Pico de la Zarza (807 m).
Fuerteventura is divided into six historical municipalities (though most tourist areas are fairly recent):
- 1 Puerto del Rosario. The capital on the east coast, with airport to the south. The community area stretches to the west coast, few tourist attractions are in the area.
- 2 La Oliva. Covers the whole north of the island, but still it's quite small. Isla de Lobos is also part of the municipality. Known for Corralejo, Villaverde, El Cotillo and Parque Holandes
- 3 Betancuria. The former capital, it's a favorite excursion destination - combined with Valles de Santa Inés and Vega de Río Palmas.
- 4 Antigua. With Caleta de Fuste
- 5 Tuineje. With Gran Tarajal
- 6 Pájara. The south peninsula, with the tourist centers Costa Calma and Morro Jable. Contains natural park Jandía, small and remote Cofete and Villa Winter.
- 7 Caleta de Fuste — a popular destination on the island for British tourists and expatriates, and for golfers from mainland Europe due to its two courses just outside the town
- 8 Corralejo
- 9 Ajuy — The small fishing village on the west coast is always worth a visit and not overcrowded. Here one can visit the caves of Ajuy, but the rocks are already very worth seeing. There is also the black sand beach. There is plenty of parking for cars. Also, a small restaurant is here - with friendly service, simple Spanish food and drinks. Swimming is not too recommended here - after a few meters of beach it gets very deep and there are strong currents. However, you can just lie in the still shallow waters and get a refreshment from the Atlantic.
A small village in the south (west coast of it), Jandia peninsula. It has nothing to do with the tourist harbours on the rest of the south coast. It is an hour of drive on a narrow, winding and very bumpy gravel road with relatively heavy traffic - if you have a car; without it, there is infrequent bus service (on the same road). It's not very big, but has a bar.
Franco had a military restricted area here, from which he pursued his interests in Africa. Nearby is also the 1 Villa Winter, which is named after the name of the builder (Gustav Winter), surrounded by many legends. There is a (somewhat creepy) private museum in the villa with voluntary entrance fee.
There is a very wide beach with not so many people. In the vicinity are a lot of beautiful landscapes.
At south-east coast, German-oriented. The right place for relaxation without stress. The town of Costa Calma is located outside of the tourist town. There are only a few houses. In the tourist resort of Costa Calma everything revolves around the tourist.
Eternally long yellow sand beaches mark the place, inviting for long walks. In the area of the village itself, they are guarded and quite cramped. To the south it becomes less sandy. Here the surfers and the kite surfers share their area. The waves and wind are always certain here.
West from Corralejo. It is a small place that has been the focus of tourism for only a few years. The individual life has not yet fused very much with the tourist. This is ideal for individual tourists.
The tourist buses also pass El Cotillo. The destination is the fortress of the old fishing village, where lime was burnt in the past. From the tower it was seen whether pirates were approaching the island. In the fortress, art pictures are exhibited. For a glimpse of El Cotillio this stop is enough. But the place has offers next to the fortress too. In the small Cotillo there are surprisingly many good restaurants (especially Canarian and Italian cuisine).
The place has a lot of peculiarities. From the fortress one has a beautiful view of the coasts to the north and south. The lagoon beach in the north towards lighthouses is suitable for families with small children. In the south the waves roll harder to the beach.
Hourly bus from Corralejo to El Cotillo is available. The direct bus connection with Puerto del Rosario is much rarer. It is best to visit the place with a rental car. No problem for parking.
A purely tourist artificial village, bordering Morro Jable. Jandia consists only of hotels, shops, bars and restaurants. The village has a small zoo.
The most important asset of Jandia is the beach. From Morro Jable, the beach with bright yellow sand stretches far east. There are beach sections that are guarded (with rent couches, bars and fast food), but also sections where you are very alone.
In the direction of Morro Jable the waves can hardly be felt. Going east, the waves become stronger. At the corner, where it goes northwards, a rock divides the beach; high waves can be enjoyed there.
The main street is also the shopping street. All are located in the north of the street, so you always have a view of the sea.
On Thursday, the African market takes place on the market square of Jandia.
The village begins with the harbour. There is a daily ferry service to Las Palmas; approx. 3½ hours. Morro Jable can not be reached directly from the port, a rock wall blocks the path.
Morro Jable rises up the mountain. Here are the people who work in the Jandia hotels. From the port you have to go up the mountain, then down to the village centre. The town centre has not yet been taken over by tourists and there is something to do until late night.
The capital of the southern province, but it's just a small village in the middle of the island.
The town is worth seeing to get a glimpse of the life of the locals. You can enjou some Spanish cuisine or coffee "Leche y Leche", which is an espresso on which one puts sweet condensed milk.
The church in the centre has a nice portal. Aztec art can be visited here. There is a lot of speculation as to how these works have emerged, the most plausible being a monk came home rich after the trip to South America and donated this portal.
Fuerteventura is a volcanic island, in some places untouched but in others heavily developed for tourism. "Fuerteventura" roughly translates to "strong winds" or Fuerte (Strong) Ventura (Venture).
Several ferries run between 1 Puerto del Rosario and Tenerife, Grand Canaria, Lanzarote.
Car and foot-passenger ferries sail roughly hourly from Playa Blanca on Lanzarote to Corallejo near the north tip, taking 30 min.
It plays host to a mix of scheduled flights from national operators such as:
Being a tourist destination there are also numerous charter operators flying into the airport. These include:
- TUI Airways
The airport has only one runway and 5 boarding bridges but is still undergoing expansion. It handles around 45,000 flights and 5 million passengers per year.
A hire car is the best option for discovering the remote wilderness regions, and numerous car rental companies are available.
Rental companies (always compare!):
- AutoReisen – Only available in the Canary Islands. Cheap, reliable and no deposit; from €9/day. Though, apparently not very well known and not listed on the common price comparison websites. Pickup and drop-off only at the airports.
- Avis, Europcar, Thrifty, Hertz, Enterprice – Probably not worth the extra money, unless you have a membership thing or get a good discount.
- Cabrera Medina – Around 20 branches all over the island, though not all are always open.
- CICAR – Similar to Cabrera Medina.
- Goldcar, Dollar, Interrent – Not worth the stress—they are well known for ripping off their customers.
- PaylessCar – Affordable and good.
- PlusCar Rent a Car – Conditions are similar to AutoReisen — sometimes cheaper, sometimes more expensive. Likewise no deposit.
- TopCar – From €12/day, but many people complain about consecutively being charged for fuel and cleaning. Deposit: €500.
The bus lines from Puerto del Rosalio (via airport) to Correlejo, Caleta de Fuste, Morro del Jable and Cotillo are easy to handle, cheap and very reliable (timetables). It is extremely easy to get from Correlejo to the sand dune beaches south of town.
Renting a mountain bike is a great way to see the island. There are many bike paths that run parallel to the main roads and many well-marked trails
Important centres of tourism are Jandia and Costa Calma on the south, and Corralejo on the north.
- Beaches: There are many guarded ones, but you can also find secluded ones (by driving a little and then being alone on a kilometer long beach). Many colours are "available": white, yellow, black...
- Surfing: In the summer, Fuerteventura is the first choice for wind and kite surfers in Europe. Ideal weather and wind conditions bring in lots of sports enthusiasts (wind and kite surfing). There are regular international competitions at Playa de Sotavento, where tourists can also watch the most spectacular jumps.
- Swimming: The waves sizes also differ, and there are places with virtually no waves, but also places where the waves are so violent that it is advised against bathing.
- Go into the mountains to see how the locals survived on this arid island over the centuries.
- Discover the strong connections with the countries of South America. Learn a few words like GuaGua (wah wah - "bus").
- Hotel Costa Caleta, Avenida Alcalde Juan Ramón Soto Morales, s/n 35610 Castillo Caleta de Fuste, ☏ .
- Atalaya de la Rosa del Taro, ☏ . Is in a quiet inland area 13 km from the capital It's a small, traditional, restored house for two or three people, sun-wind energy and recycled water, reused for the plants. It has a bedroom, a kitchen-living room with fridge and CD-radio-cassette, a bathroom and a terrace with panoramic views. The house is situated far from the tourist resorts, but very well linked. The nearest beach is ten minutes drive away.
- Casa de la Burra, ☏ , email@example.com. The most isolated of the urban centres, this small but welcoming house for two persons are a green retreat with solar energy for the sanitary hot water and biological purification of residual waters used for watering. A quiet retreat far away from the hustle and bustle of the holiday resorts.
- Fraggle Roca, 53 Castillo Mar (opposite the San Jorge hotel), ☏ . Sea view from upstairs bedroom balcony. One bedroomed duplex in the town centre of Caleta de Fuste. Close to everything, the beaches, the restaurants, the bars. 10 min taxi (approx €10) from the airport. Caleta is popular with families and couples, quieter than other resorts. sleeps 3 Adults or 2 adults and 2 children. Includes twin beds, sofa bed, washing machine, microwave, British TV, air-con in the bedroom. Communal pool.
- Hesperia Bristol Playa, Urbanizacion Lago de Bristol, 1, ☏ . This beautiful resort is on a white-sandy beach. It is a short distance from the Dunas National Park, and offers 185 apartments, swimming pools and tennis courts. Rooms from €30.
- [dead link] Oasis Jandia Golf, Barranco de Vinamar, La Mancha, Jandia, 35625, ☏ , firstname.lastname@example.org. Right on a 18 hole golf course, and good views views of Barranco de Vinamar.
- Villa La Isla Bonita, Fuerteventura Golf Club, ☏ , email@example.com. Private villas on Fuerteventura Golf Club near the town of Caleta de Fustes. Each villa offers luxurious spacious 3 bedroom accommodation with private heated swimming pool.