The biggest of the Canary Islands, (tho' still only 100 x 30kms) Fuerte is practically a desert island with more and longer beaches than the other Canaries though there's usually a stiff breeze around.
Fuerteventura's target-market is families and couples on holiday rather than party-hard singles, swingers or gays, offering them extensive white sand beaches awash with a wide variety of watersports and some inland activities if they need a break from the shore (e.g. off road motorbikes, quad bikes or wild 4x4 rides), followed by comfortable, laid-back evenings and a good night's sleep.
This is not the place to participate in all-night raves.
One word of warning though, there are plenty of naturalists outside the resorts, especially in the south and they're not
penned into specific nudist zones, so don't go there if free willies may be embarrassing to you or your family!
Fuerteventura's climate is even drier than the other islands in the Canaries archipelago, sunny but windy most of the time, with a N/NE cooling wind in the summer that all varieties of surfers and even sunbathers enjoy depending on their choice of beach.
Average minimum temperature in January 17C, average maximum in August 25C.
Morro Jable old town beach.
- Puerto del Rosario, Fuerte's capital, is one of the more animated and attractive towns on the island, particularly the waterfront in the evenings for drinks and dinner and the town centre later for live music - even classical or ballet - and dancing. Naturally the town is straddled with beaches and ferries run from here to Gran Canaria and Lanzarote.
- Betancuria is a tranquil old whitewashed town surrounded by bald hills and infiltrated by palm trees, with a 17thC church, a couple of museums and very few tourists, a place harking back to the days when nobody cared about beaches.
- Corralejo, the island's primary tourist resort in the north is expanding quickly but has retained some of its original style, along with its convenient, white town beach, harbour and sand dunes rolling away to the east. All the usual beach and night facilities are there, plus glass-bottom boats, off-road motorcycle hire, mountainbiking and jeep safaris. Just outside Corralejo is a massive but rather featureless series white sand beaches, Grandes Playas.
- Caleta de Fuste, centre-east coast, is a busy and purpose-built tourist town with shopping complex and multi-screen cinema, a golf course and a man-made, protected beach. The town is efficient but lacks soul or culture.
- Costa Calma is another purpose-built beach resort adjacent to one of Fuerte's biggest beaches, light and clean.
- Morro Jable, a southern tourist town catering to mainly German visitors is 100km from the airport and ballooning in size, though it still retains an old village and port. The beaches here are vast, 35 km by one estimate!
An artistic wind-break on one of Sotavento's beaches.
- Windsurfing and kiteboarding are so perfect here that the world championship takes place annually (mid August) in Sotavento, Jandia. Beginners can learn in the security of Caleta de Fuste while more experienced will find great spots all over the island though the west coast gets bigger waves. Corralejo Bay is popular.
- Surfing is best in north Fuerteventura between and around Corralejo and El Cotillo or off the west coast. If hiring a motor to get to the breaks then opt for a full-insurance 4x4 as the roads will demand serious wheels.
Sailing, yachts and catamarans are for hire but Fuerte offers few protective little coves for overnight parking so this form of wind-powered transport is not so popular.
- Scuba diving, lessons, shore or boat dives are widely available; the water's warm and the eco-system vibrant and colourful.
- Game Fishing
or regular coastal fishing yield good catches.
- Golf addicts will find four excellent courses including the Costa Caleta which hosted the Spanish Open in 2004.
- Fuerteventura inland is more like a North African desert
than Europe so it's only appropriate that camel safaris lurch and groan around the dusty tracks, overtaken speedily by off-road motorcycle tours, jeep tours, quad-bike tours and whatever they will think of next to empty the tourist wallet.
- The Baku Water Park in Corralejo is fairly new and diverse in its entertainment.
- The Oasis Park in La Lajita (Costa Calma) is the Fuerte's Zoo and Botanic Gardens with over 200 species of wild things and camel rides.
Typically bleak interior landscape, Fuerteventura.
Hikes here on Fuerte are less-than-ideal but best in the cooler winter months. It's not that the temperature gets very hot in the summer, it's more that the interior of the island has little shade or water and captures/radiates heat so walking is a very dusty and dehydrating activity.
Some of the more popular walks are on very pleasant and newly created coastal paths while the southern mountains - such as Pico de la Zarza - offer some different views and even vegetation.
Villas on Playa de Sotavento de Jandia, Fuerteventura.
The island is loaded with beaches, many huge, many white and more man-made strands are on the way. Naturists/nudists - particularly north Europeans - like to fly their naked credentials here, there, and everywhere.
Some best beaches are:
- Corralejo town beaches are small but excellent for family use as they are easy to reach, safe, near facilities and not exposed to naturists!
- Corralejo Grandes Playas to the south of the town are a mass of sand dunes, part of the Dune Natural Park, a long walk or a short bus ride that cater to all tastes but especially surfers - board, wind or kite.
- Playa Blanca, a white beach adjacent to Puerto del Rosario enjoys low surf, life guards and no nudists.
- Caleta del Fuste, a man-made, gently shelving, protected beach with all the usual water-toys is family-friendly and Willy Free.
Playa de Jandia at Morro Jable - wide beige sands, plenty of watersports and beautifully backed by the Jandia mountains.
- Sotavento, a huge gently shelving strand becomes limited in space when the tide is in but sand-blasted when the tide is out. It a terrific spot for wind and kite surfing.
- Costa Calma, a better section of the Playa de Sotavento, is a large beach of firm brown sand, cleaned regularly and life-guarded but lacking much in the way of compact facilities.
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