The Canary Islands certainly are a cluster of Spain’s most popular and renowned Islands, commonly tainted with misconceptions of being a paradise for booze fuelled, beach obsessed Lanzarote Uk youth. However this archipelago actually has a great deal to offer and discovering the real Canary Islands suggests a vastly different outlook on Canary culture.
The Canary Islands are group of Spanish islands situated just off the north coast of Africa. Because of their location they are subject to equatorial weather conditions, which gives them the added advantage of almost guaranteed sunshine 365 days a year. They have a long and complex history, with evidence of Neolithic settlements across the islands. The Canaries have also been visited or invaded by a number of races including the Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Arabs, Europeans and Portuguese. Each invader has left remnants of their culture behind, reflected in the eclectic cuisine, architecture and numerous festivals of the islands today.
For those looking to incorporate a natural angle into their sun holidays, the Canary Islands are filled with fascinating and unusual both on, below the l and wildlife. There are four national parks, two of which have been declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. The other two are recognised as World Biosphere Sites, reflecting their ecological importance. These are regularly visited by tourists on nature trek holidays, where they can see over 600 endemic species of flowers, birds like the Blue Chaffinch (photo) and Tenerife Ringlet and animals including geckos and the El Hierro Giant Lizard.
On the island of Tenerife which usually is both Canary Islands’ and Spain’s most populous island, it is a major tourist destination, with over 12 million visitors per year. The volcanic nature of the islands have created several â€˜natural beaches’ manufactured from fine dark shingle or sand which provide a few of the Canary beaches a unique look.
This island is known for its fun nightclubs and bars. There are many golf courses you can enjoy playing golf in. You can also go scuba diving because the waters are clear and the reefs are very beautiful here.
The island’s very own sport – Canarian wrestling comes from the history of the â€˜Guanches’; the island’s original inhabitants. It is thought that the sport originated around 1420, however only a few of these early rules and techniques have survived to modern times. The sport became part of the islands’ folklore, usually being fought at celebrations or local festivals. It is said to be one of the earliest defined kinds of wrestling. You can still find matches being held in some Canarian towns today.
Take the diving trip of a lifetime in the Canary Islands and you might be fortunate enough to get a glance of one of the largest hard-shelled turtles in the world – the endangered Loggerhead Turtle. Adult males reach approximately three feet long and have a lifespan of 47-67 years.
In the old town of Puerto de la Cruz you will find the impressive natural salt water swimming pools designed by the famous architect/landscaper Cesar Manrique. The breath-taking Lido Martianez includes 7 pools, changing facilities, subtropical trees and plants, a huge fountain, a jacuzzi, playground equipment, restaurants, and even an underground dance hall and casino.