The Canary Islands is a paradise composed of seven islands which features dunes, lava fields, volcanoes, beaches of different colors, to green forests, parks, ancient architecture, centuries-old churches and so much more. Just thinking of all these, I wanted to buy a plane ticket and go on an adventure.
Being a Canary Islands fan and writing about it at canaryislandsinfo.co.uk, what I wanted was to experience all that the Canary Islands has to offer. I didn’t want to just explore one Island. I wanted to go and travel to the other islands too.
These were all the thoughts running through my head when I booked my plane ticket to Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and started my itinerary of hopping between three islands of the Canaries.
Upon arriving, the first thing I did was to go to my hotel room, eat dinner and sleep. Unfortunately, I was too excited about tomorrow that I couldn’t sleep. I just couldn’t believe I’m finally in my dream destination, the Canary Islands. That night, I had only about 4 hours of sleep.
By the time I woke up, I was so hyper that I decided to just skip breakfast. Go on and walk around the ancient town of Vegueta. The centuries-old architecture was a sight to see! I went to the Cathedral of Santa Ana, and it was divine. I’ve never seen such a beautiful cathedral in my entire life. There were beautiful paintings around the cathedral, and the tower gave such a great view of the island that I never wanted to leave.
While I was on my way down from the tower, I met another traveler who’s on a solo backpacking journey around the Canary Islands. He was on his way to the Casa de Colon mansion. Since we were both headed to the same place, we talked while we were on the way. He then told me that he came from the Tenerife Islands. His goal is to stay for a month on each island and soak in everything that it has to offer. The Las Palmas de Gran Canaria was his 4th island.
Meeting such a peculiar stranger gave me the courage to go ahead and check the other islands. We were both happily chatting away when we arrived at Casa de Colon. The mansion was where Christopher Columbus resided whenever he would visit the islands. Inside, there was an exceptional ceiling design and its architecture. The way the building was made was so spectacular that it would leave you wondering how they built such a beauty.
Bidding each other goodbye, my newly found friend told me of the long and wide golden sand of Playa de las Canteras. I took a mental note of his advice.
On the second day, I decided to go and check out Playa de las Canteras. True enough, the beach was long and golden. During my visit, the beach was not too crowded. There were cafes and restaurants by the sidewalk. I went to find myself a beautiful place to soak up the sun. Playa de las Canteras has such a fantastic view that as the hours go by, more and more people come to enjoy its splendor. I decided to wait for the sunset. By then time it came, I saw the most beautiful sunset that I have ever seen in my entire life. It was the kind of sunset that I couldn’t look away from, and no amount of pictures could capture its essence.
After two days of staying in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, I decided to go check out the neighboring island, Tenerife.
I decided to go check out the island of Tenerife next since I wanted to see the famous Mt. Teide and stroll around the town of La Laguna. Getting to Tenerife was a bit tricky. I had two options to take the plane or the ferry. I opted to take the ferry for some reasons. First, it’s cheaper and second; it’s more fun looking out the ocean.
I went on to book a ticket with the Fred Olsen ferry because it has the most number of frequencies going between the two islands. I got my ticket from https://www.fredolsen.es. For an 80-minute ride, the trip starts from Puerto de Agaete to Tenerife’s dock in Santa Cruz.
Descending from the ferry, I took the opportunity to go around Santa Cruz. My first stop was the Plaza de Espana. Well known for being the biggest piazza in the Canaries, the plaza was redesigned in 2008 by Swiss architects De Meuron and Herzog. I was at a loss for words when I saw the huge Monumento de Los Caidos on the square’s center. It was shaped like a cross and commemorates the early 20th century victims of the Spanish Civil War. The most amazing things that I saw in this plaza were the enormous wading pool and a striking fountain at the center. This area is great for photo ops and people watching. I stayed here for an hour enjoying the surroundings.
The next day, I went to explore the UNESCO World Heritage Site, La Laguna. The place is the first ever city to be established in the Canary Islands, and it was the former city of Tenerife. La Laguna was a sight to behold; there were centuries old mansions that still looked beautiful despite being longstanding. The city even has Neoclassical and Renaissance churches. Walking down its streets lined with historic buildings just made my trip even better. I was impressed with how all the ancient architecture were preserved and taken care of that they’re still standing strong until today.
Lastly, during my last day on the island, I got up early to queue at the cable car to get to Mt. Teide’s peak. I arrived at 8:30 am on the site, and the first cable car designated to go up was still at 9 am. After almost like an eternity, I finally boarded the cable car. There were about 35 of us in it. The ride to the top took us almost 8 minutes. The cable car came to a stop at its upper station. An amazing view greeted me right away. The mountains landscape was so wide and stunning that I felt like I was a small ant stepping on its land. I then proceeded to go up to the summit but felt bummed when I found out that you had to get a permit in advance to be able to go up to the peak. The permit is free by the way. Disappointed, I decided to enjoy what near the peak could offer. I soaked in the surrounding landscapes, and when it was time to descend, I had no regrets whatsoever. I just promised myself to come back and see the beauty that the summit will offer.
My final island of choice to complete my three-island hopping experience was La Palma. From my hotel room, I took a taxi to the Los Cristianos harbor and purchased my ticket on the site. Though you have the option to book a ferry ticket online, the harbor also sells some tickets just in case you forgot. I hurriedly got on the Fred Olsen ferry because I just love traveling by sea. Just as my previous ferry ride, I went around exploring. The ferry has some shops, and if you have a car, it has sufficient space for your vehicle.
Finally, after two hours, I set foot on La Palma nicknamed as the “Pretty Island” and listed by UNESCO as a World Biosphere Reserve. What I wanted to do here on this island was to go stargazing. La Palma Island has strict light pollution laws that allow star enthusiasts to have a clear view of the skies at night. The island offers such a great view of the skies that it even earned the Starlight Reserve status. Now, who wouldn’t be excited about stargazing after knowing all of that? I know I am beyond excited to just look up and gaze up to vast universe.
I quickly checked in my hotel. After dinner, I was planning on going on a stroll around Cancajos’ seaside boardwalk to get a view of the stars when I bumped into a family of 4 who was planning on driving to the Mirador Llano del Jable. After a few small talks, they insisted I go with them when they found out I was going out to stargaze. They told me how the Mirador Llano del Jable is a sweet spot for a fantastic view of the Milky Way since they come to the island every year to stargaze. I couldn’t resist such a tempting offer, so I accepted.
By the time we reached the viewpoint, I was speechless at the view presented before me. Just as what my companions told me, the view here is astounding! I felt my legs shake as I was taking in the incredible panorama of the sky. With my handy Sky Map phone application, which I downloaded a few hours ago. I found Pegasus.
We stayed at the viewpoint for hours. I, later on, found out that the family I went with loved the stars so much that they travel around the world looking for great places to view the skies. I had so much fun laughing and talking with these people until we decided it was time to call it a night.
If you’re on your laptop thinking if it’s possible to go island hopping in the Canaries, I’m here to answer you a big YES. It is possible. I was able to do it and you can too. My experience of visiting three islands is one of the best so far. Who knows when it’s your turn to get to this island, you can complete all seven.
Jarno is the mind behind canaryislandsinfo.co.uk. He loves to travel and goes on exploring around the world. It was love at first sight when he first visited the Canary Islands. Ever since then, he visits the churches, sits by the plazas, learns from the locals, eats at street food stalls and restaurants, and checks out the museums and galleries. His fascinations of the Canaries lead him to pursue the goal of telling the world about its beauty, rich history, vibrant culture and its warm people.