Just 60 miles from the coast of Morocco, Fuerteventura is the longest and least known of the Canary Islands. It is popular for its 150 miles of beaches, windsurfing, kite boarding and year-round sunshine. Yet most of inland Fuerteventura remains untouched by tourism.
Hotels in Fuerteventura's beach resorts are mostly three- and four-star rated, family friendly and have swimming pools, kids' clubs and evening entertainment. There is also a wide range of self-catering apartments. The old port beach at Corralejo on the north-eastern part of the island is small, sheltered and is popular with both tourists and locals. The larger beaches south of the old port have all the amenities for anyone wanting to spend the day at the seaside. There are lots of activities, from wind surfing to kite boarding.
El Cotillo is a growing resort on the north-west coast of Fuerteventura. It's just around the northern tip of the island from Corralejo. Originally, El Cotillo was a small fishing village around an old harbour. The beaches here are large, sandy and almost deserted. The best places for swimming are to the north of El Cotillo, where coral reefs and volcanic lava have built a barrier against the strong ocean waves, leaving a quiet lagoon. There are villas, apartments and hotels in both coastal and rural locations. This is still an unspoilt part of Fuerteventura.
Costa Caleta is just six miles south of the airport and a 30-minute drive from Corralejo. Tree-lined streets lead to the main Caleta beach. This is another growing resort but there are areas of calm and the streets outside of the central restaurant area are quiet. There are new golf courses, diving centres and a lively nightlife with international cuisine. In addition to 3- and 4-star hotels, there is a wide range of villas and apartments that can sleep up to 10 people.
Costa Antigua is an extension of Caleta, just along the coast. There are new golf courses, multi-screen cinemas showing mostly Spanish-language films and a bowling alley. With its central location, this is one of the best places from which to explore the island in a hired car. The discount hotels along the beach here are very good value for budget travellers.
Fuerteventura's longest beaches are at the southern peninsula at Jandia, especially the resort of Costa Calma. One of the Jandia beaches, Playa de Sotavento, lies on the leeward side of the wind. The coastal sand builds up to form a spit that encloses a lagoon.
Tarajalejo is a growing tourist town just north of Costa Calma. This is a calm place and is ideal for families with children or adults seeking privacy. There's accommodation in well-tended flats in private houses, annexes to private houses, or individual holiday homes.
Inland Fuerteventura has many windmills and white-washed houses. There are picturesque churches and village markets where you can see handicrafts such as lace making. Volcanic rocks over large parts of the countryside give it the look of a moon-style landscape.
Betancuria is in the central-western area of the island. It is a three-village municipality of which Betancuria is the largest. It was founded by Norman invaders. Most of the region consists of a protected nature reserve, the Betancuria Rural Park, which has lush vegetation that contrasts with extraordinary geological and geomorphologic sights. This is the area to hire a rural cottage, or find a last-minute budget deal in an inn or bed and breakfast. There are golfing resorts for the more sports-minded.
Most of the Fuerteventura hotels are owned by Spanish chains such as H10, Hesperia, Nunez, Ruiz Hoteles, Sirenis, Viva, Barcelo, Tyrp, Sol Melia, NH Hoteles, AC Hoteles and Abba Hoteles. The best holiday deals can be found as packages.
Top three attractions
Parque Natural de Corralejo
Enjoy a day relaxing in the beautiful scenery of Parque Natural de Corralejo. Stunning stretches of golden sands fringed by sand dunes make this the perfect spot for a little time out and R&R.
Cueva del Llano
An exciting trip into this volcanic lava tube takes you deep underground. You'll be able to find out how the tube was formed and visit the museum above the cave.
Deep sea fishing
Departing from Corralejo harbour, a deep sea fishing trip will take you to the best spots nearby. You can look forward to enjoying your catch for lunch - it doesn't come much fresher than that!
Corralejo Carnival; March: Get ready to party at Corralejo's colourful carnival. Music, dancing and extravagant floats take to the streets, so get your dancing shoes on and join in the revelry!
Fuerteventura Music Festival; June/July; El Cotillo: This musical extravaganza attracts big-name bands and musicians, and visitors can enjoy a number of musical events and outdoor concerts.
International Kite Festival; November; Corralejo: During the Kite Festival the sky is littered with weird and wonderful brightly coloured kites on Playa Del Burro. Competitions run throughout the fun-filled family day out, but it's worth attending just for the spectacle.
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