The second largest of the Canary Islands, Fuerteventura was declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 2009. Here you’ll find some of the best beaches in the Canary Islands, varied volcanic landscapes and a fabulous foodie scene. With its pristine beaches, quiet laid-back villages and perfect year-round weather, Fuerteventura offers escapism. Its plethora of beaches, large and small, provide a simple and relaxing beach holiday so you can easily rest and recharge. Look beyond its beaches however, and you’ll find a thrilling range of activities, from watersports to historic shipwrecks. With so many things to do in Fuerteventura we’ve put together the best attractions to help you plan your trip.
Top Things to do in Fuerteventura
1. Laze on the beaches
Fuerteventura is home to some of Europe’s most impressive stretches of sand. With soft sands from white to gold and waters a stunning shade of teal, a day on the beach is no doubt the best thing to do in Fuerteventura. Although it has often been hailed as the windy island, many beaches now have man made wind shelters making them ever more enjoyable. Here are some of the best beaches in Fuerteventura
Stretching 11km along the north coast, Corralejo is best known for its shapeshifting sand dunes and views out to Isla de Lobos. You’ll find this beach is always peaceful, clean and well maintained as it’s protected within a national park.
Playa de Cofete
This remote beach is well worth the hair-raising drive to get there as breathtaking scenery and an edge-of-the-world feel awaits. The waters here are wilder making them more suitable for surfers than swimmers, but the beach itself is a great place to enjoy serenity. You’ll also find Villa Winter located here.
Playa el Castillo
Playa el Castillo is a horseshoe shaped bay in Caleta de Fuste. Its calm waters and sheltered feel make it excellent for families and light swimmers.
Approximately 4km long this lovely beach boasts white sand and clear waters. The gentle waves and soft sands make it excellent for relaxing.
2.Try some watersports
Fuerteventura is legendary amongst watersports enthusiasts due to many of its beaches benefiting from superb waves and great conditions for kitesurfing and surfers. There are also many calmer beaches providing opportunities for jet skiing, paddle boarding, snorkelling and many more water sports. Throughout the island are sports centres offering classes and tuition for all sports, at all levels such as sailing, scuba diving, catamaran, water skiing and much more.
3. Discover the many things to do in Corralejo
Corralejo and its sand dunes are undoubtably Fuerteventura’s top attraction. Located on the northern tip of the island, this 11km long stretch has been a national park since 2002. Well maintained and scarcely crowded, the dunes are a great place to relax and uncover a plethora of indigenous animals. As well as relaxing on the dunes there are many things to do in Corralejo including jeep safaris, aquapark, restaurants, cafes and a wonderful selection of bars.
4. Take the ferry to Isla de lobos
Opposite Corralejo and just 10 minutes by ferry, Isla de Lobos is a small island with a plethora of plants, indigenous animals and stunning landscapes to explore. With 13km of coastline you can walk, explore, or simply relax on its wonderful beaches, gazing back at Fuerteventura. The last inhabitants were the lighthouse keeper and his family who left once this became automated in the 60’s making the lighthouse well worth a visit. Its uninhabited feel and volcanic caldera certainly provide enough beauty to occupy hours.
View to Isla de Lobos from Fuerteventura
5. Explore Betancuria
This charming interior village nestled in a valley was founded in 1405 and originally intended to protect inhabitants from intruders. It was tragically destroyed in 1593 before being rebuilt and becoming the island’s capital until 1834. Here you’ll find quaint low-rise buildings made of volcanic stone and palm tree lined cobbled streets in which to wander. A day trip here offers museums, restaurants, cafes, souvenir shops and beautiful buildings such as the Santa Maria 17th century church; or you can simply absorb the slow pace of life.
6. Spend the day at Oasis park – things to do for families
Fuerteventura offers many things to do for families, the most popular of which is a day trip to Oasis Park. One of the Canary Islands’ largest zoos, the park is home to fascinating animals and wonderful botanical gardens with an impressive cactus collection. The park is also dedicated to conservation of wildlife and biodiversity making it a great place to learn. Open Monday to Sunday 9am – 6pm. Zoo entrance from 35€ per adult and 20.50€ per child. Camel safari 12€ per adult and 8€per child.
Fuerteventura’s Acua Water Park offers another great day out for families. The park in Corralejo offers plenty of water slides, pools and restaurants as well as kids clubs and relaxation areas.
7. Go Jurassic at Cuevas Ajuy
Cuevas Ajuy are a collection of coastal caves formed over millions of years. These Jurassic style caves display several layers of rock types and unique shapes made by solidified lava. The caves are the oldest rock formation in the Canary Island and once a secret hideout for pirates. The caves are now a great place for a brisk afternoon walk and an exciting exploration opportunity for geology enthusiasts.
8. Shop for souvenirs in a local market – shopping in Fuerteventura
The best part of any Canary Islands holiday is shopping in wonderful local markets, and Fuerteventura is no exception. Mercado de Los Tradiciones is the most popular market in Fuerteventura and hosted in a unique location at Colonels house in La Oliva. Buy homemade jams, organic produce, Majorero cheese and locally made souvenirs (runs Tuesday and Friday 10am – 2pm). There is also a more low-key market hosted at Acua Park car park in Corralejo which operates Tuesday and Friday 9am – 2pm.
For additional shopping in Fuerteventura there are some fantastic shopping centres in many of the resorts. Centro Commercial Atlantico Fuerteventura in Caleta de Fuste is one of the largest offering popular clothing brands.
9. Taste the local Majorero cheese
Rumour has it there are more goats than people in Fuerteventura, whether you believe it or not, the goat’s cheese here is second to none. Nearly as protected as France’s champagne, it is the only place you can find this wonderful cheese. You can find it in many local shops and restaurants who often serve it grilled with a little honey – perfection!
To take your cheese obsession a little further, a visit to the museum of cheese where Majorero is made, is one of the best things to do in Fuerteventura. The museum shows how the cheese is produced as well as giving a fascinating insight in to the island’s history. There’s also a pretty windmill and tranquil botanical garden making for an excellent photo opportunity. Open 9.30am – 5pm.
10. Go for a hike
Fuerteventura is blessed with plenty of natural beauty and hiking is a rewarding way to experience it. You’ll find 86 hiking trails which include volcanic paths, coastal trails and hikes to stunning view points. Popular walks in Fuerteventura include the 8km trek from Corralejo to Lajaras through volcanic terrain, the challenging hike up to Pico de La Zarza (the island’s highest point), and the ramble up to Mirador Morro Velosa viewpoint. Trails are well marked with coloured stripes rated by GR (great routes), PR (small routes) and SL (local Trails). With special permission you can also climb the sacred Montana de Tindaya. It is the oldest mountain on the Canary Islands and considered sacred by the indigenous Majorero people.
More Fuerteventura attractions – unusual things to do in Fuerteventura
This intriguing building, located on Cofete beach, is worth visiting for the stunning views from its watchtower. Shrouded in mystery, the building was rumoured to have been a secret Nazi base, although this is not confirmed. Built by German engineer Gustav Winter in 1937, the building houses a winding network of cellars, a watchtower and terrace where stunning views await. The villa is now privately owned, and visits need to be pre-arranged.
Finca Canarias Aloe Vera
One of the more unique things to do in Fuerteventura, a visit to Finca Canarias is a memorable experience. The plantation at Gran Tarajal is home to over 4000 Aloe plants, hundreds of cacti and various olive trees. A guided tour will display the farming methods used to grow the plants as well as the factory processes to make it into wellness products and skincare. The gift shop offers a huge array of skin care products all organically and naturally produced. Open Monday – Saturday 9am – 6pm. Official website.
Poblado de la Atalayita
Poblado de la Atalayita is an archaeological site located in the Pozo Negro valley. The large site showcases preserved aboriginal houses which were built in to caves. There are now around 115 building remains with more still to be uncovered. The site offers a fascinating insight in to the history and anthropology of Fuerteventura and the Mahos natives. The site itself is open to public visitors and you can freely walk around. There is a visitor centre offering a great source of information and a useful insight in to how residents would have lived. Visitor centre open 10am – 6pm Tuesday to Saturday.
Natural swimming pools are a great place to relax in a natural environment. These pools are formed by seawater flooding in to natural rock formations usually created by volcanic activity. As the water is constantly recycled the waters are always, clear, clean and refreshing. The surrounding rocks are also a great place to dry off and catch the sun. Most of these natural pools now have man made steps and walkways to make visiting much accessible.
For any naval enthusiasts the shipwreck of SS America is a real treat. Built in 1940 by naval architect William Francis Gibbs, this ocean liner ran aground during a fierce storm in 1994 where it found its resting place on Playa de Garcey beach on Fuerteventura’s west coast. Only a small section of the bow remains, and this can only be visited during low tide, but a fascinating site to behold.
This lovely 18th century hacienda was declared a site of cultural interest in 1985 and one of the best free things to do in Fuerteventura. Once a home to military officials it is now the longest preserved home on the island and a truly beautiful building. Located in La Oliva, it houses an historic exhibit and a market every Tuesday and Friday with a tempting art gallery just a short walk away (Case Mane).
Casa Mane art gallery
For art lovers, this wonderful gallery houses an exceptional collection of Canary Islands’ art. That includes paintings, photography, pottery and sculptures both old and new. Open Monday to Friday 10am – 5pm, Saturdays 10am – 2pm. Official website.
Where is Fuerteventura?
Fuerteventura is an Atlantic island located 100km off the west coast of Africa. It is situated just south of Lanzarote which is the north eastern most Canary Island.
Why visit Fuerteventura?
With year-round sunshine guaranteed and truly stunning beaches, Fuerteventura is a prefect destination for an effortless and relaxing beach holiday. It offers some superb hotels in which to relax and a wide range of things to do for those who like to be more active.
Best time to visit Fuerteventura
Fuerteventura enjoys a year-round climate much like the other Canary Islands so is great to visit at any time. The winds tend to be milder from October to December and the hottest months to visit are July and August.
Where to stay in Fuerteventura
Fuerteventura’s most luxury hotel, Atlantis Bahia Real is situated on a sheltered beachfront close to Corralejo. The hotel is praised for its exquisite dining, exceptional 5* service and luxurious guestrooms.View Hotel
A great option for families and couples alike, the Sheraton Fuerteventura is a great base to explore the island or simply a wonderful place to relax. With its wealth of 5* facilities, family friendly amenities and oceanfront location it is a luxury retreat indeed.View Hotel
For a more boutique experience, with just 54 rooms the XQ El Palacete offers a wonderfully intimate feel. Situated on a superb beachfront and just a short walk away from the fishing village of Morro Jable, the hotel is exceptional for a relaxing stay in Fuerteventura.View Hotel
For adults only, the Barcelo Corralejo Bay offers modern design and a range of facilities for a sophisticated holiday in Fuerteventura. This hotel boasts a fantastic location near the centre of Corralejo.View Hotel
What are your favourite things to do in Fuerteventura? We’d love to hear from you, get in touch in the comments below.