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Planning a trip to the Canaries - off the beaten path?

Planning a trip to the Canaries - off the beaten path?

Old Dec 12th, 2018, 07:41 AM
  #1  
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Planning a trip to the Canaries - off the beaten path?

Hello, I would greatly appreciate comments on this itinerary from other travellers.
We are a young at heart middle aged couple. We do NOT like all inclusive resorts and like driving around visiting villages, parks , eating & drinking staying in charming small hotels B&Bs.
Proposed Trip: March/April 12 days
Fly to Lanzarote - rent a car- Spend 4 days exploring wineries, villages, parks
Get on a ferry (with the car hopefully...?) to Fuerteventura. Spend 2 days driving down the island.
Ferry across to Gran Canaria (with car..) stay in Las Palmas, explore the island for 3/4 days
Drop the car (do-able??) and fly back to Lanzarote for one night and early flight home.
I have been told that the Canaries are beautiful despite mass tourism and we would like to discover some of that.....
Any advice on time distrubition, travel tips etc would be very useful. Thanks!
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 08:00 AM
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Off the beaten track... nah
Fuerteventura is the only place that just about allows for this. If you head south you will find the island less mobbed, but to find very quiet places you need to get out of the car and walk/cycle through the national parks and areas of scurb down there. lots of little coves with a bar and a beach. The local towns in the south tend to be for locals rather than tourists. South west beach is very much the surfers side but it is begining to geet built up by illegal properties. You'll find two plagues, lizards and chipmonks (the monks are US imports) neither are dangerous.

The other two islands are just tourist hotspots and you will go mad with boredom.

I don't know if you are from US/Can but if you are coming all this way why not go to Marrakesh in Morocco, nicer, cheaper and a bit warmer.
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 08:07 AM
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If you really want to go off the beaten path choose the smaller western islands.

I have no idea if rental companies would allow you take take a car from one island to another. Many companies operate just on one island. You would need to confirm that with the company you choose. You could get the ferry back to Lanzarote with the car from Gran Canaria.
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 08:44 AM
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Oh dear! I was evidently being too optimistic about off the beaten track.....
So do you think it will be really crowded even at the end of March/April?
Fuerteventura's little beach coves sound great and we are happy to walk but how disappointing that you think Lanzarote and GC are totally unattractive! What about those amazing looking vineyards? The markets and historic towns?
I was thinking it would be a bit like Corfu where with some planning we managed to find 3 amazing places to stay with incredible scenery and little villages, great local food etc totally different from the pubs and resorts. Perhaps I am getting the size of these islands wrong.
The reason I chose these 3 islands is that we have direct and super cheap flights from Rome (not N America!) to Lanzarote and time wise they seemed to make sense. We have been to Morocco already.
I will certainly look into ferrying back -just thought it would take too long.
Anyway lots to think about so thanks to you both!
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 08:55 AM
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There may well be quiet places in the two big islands and April is a quiet place but I struggle to see that they are very large. Yes I'd rehire as I cross from island to island. What about Portugal (north of Algarve say Alentejo).
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 10:16 AM
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Yes, they are smaller than I thought. Maybe 12 days are too many. Or we could fit in some of the Western islands as well. La Gomera appeals.
We went to Portugal a couple of years ago. Douro. Alentejo region looks lovely.
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 10:34 AM
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Originally Posted by bilboburgler View Post
You'll find two plagues, lizards and chipmonks (the monks are US imports) neither are dangerous.

.
I thought the chipmunks came from Africa? You forgot the monk parrots.

Fuerteventura is a large island. I'm not sure two days will allow you to explore a lot.

Some of the beaches north of Morro Jable are less occupied. Playa Mal nombre for example. They aren't 100% deserted but they aren't cheek to jowl. The island is way too big for that.

If you want to know what the various beaches look like


https://www.travelernick.com/2018/06...fuerteventura/

Playa Cebada is the closests to a full/busy beach.

Next to it is Playa del Matorral which is fairly large and wide. Even when it's busy you might have 10 metres between people.

From there the things tend to thin out more.
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 10:43 AM
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We can happily spend 8 days on La Palma so 12 days for those three islands is possibly a bit rushed. Gran Canaria is described as a continent in miniature it offers so many different zones.
I suggest you do some more research into what there is and what you really want to see before you book anything that can't be cancelled. There are some excellent websites out there to help, as well as plenty aimed and the sun sea sangria bunch.
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 12:08 PM
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Looking quickly at the Hertz website for Gran Canaria, it states that cars cannot be taken on the ferry. Look into taking flights between the islands.

I believe that with research you will be able to find what you are looking for. Tourism has well and truly found the major Canary Islands but there must be places off the beaten track you can explore. La Gomera and La Palma are well worth investigating.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/b...holiday-guide/

This article is a bit old, the flight information is not accurate anymore: https://www.independent.co.uk/travel...d-9831652.html
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 12:29 PM
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The beaches look lovely but in March/April I wasn't really thinking of a beach holiday. Too cold for us.
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Odin View Post
Looking quickly at the Hertz website for Gran Canaria, it states that cars cannot be taken on the ferry. Look into taking flights between the islands.

I believe that with research you will be able to find what you are looking for. Tourism has well and truly found the major Canary Islands but there must be places off the beaten track you can explore. La Gomera and La Palma are well worth investigating.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/b...holiday-guide/

This article is a bit old, the flight information is not accurate anymore: https://www.independent.co.uk/travel...d-9831652.html
Thanks, had already seen the Telegraph piece and found it inspiring. Annoying about no inter-island car rentals. Not too keen on flying except maybe to La Palma

Last edited by carrom; Dec 12th, 2018 at 12:47 PM.
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 12:40 PM
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Water will be cold in March but air temperature should be just fine for the beach.
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 06:24 PM
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Lanzarote is a unique island with its volcanoes and man-made wonders like the vineyards of La Geria.
There are only three major touristy resort areas on the island: Puerto del Carmen, Playa Blanca and Costa Teguise.. outside of these areas you still find hundreds of accomodations off the tourist trail.

Switching rental cars is no big deal as the major company of the islands, Cabrera Medina, has pick-up/drop-off locations also at the harbors.
So drop off your Lanzarote car at Playa Blanca, take the ferry to Fuerteventura, and pick up your next car at the harbor of Corralejo.

Between Fuerteventura and Gran Canaria (and between GC and Lanzarote) intra-island flights are the way to go. Binter Canarias usually has very moderately priced airfares. And you won't pay a surcharge when you rent, for example, from a harbor pick-up location at Corralejo to a drop-off location at Fuerteventura airport.
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 11:28 PM
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Off the beaten path in Canary Islands? Well...Fuerteventura, Hierro and La Palma islands, definitely. And Lanzarote is a very nice place too, youīll love it, but itīs touristy. Itīs always high season on these islands.
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Old Dec 12th, 2018, 11:59 PM
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Originally Posted by hetismij2 View Post
I have no idea if rental companies would allow you take take a car from one island to another.
We took our rental car on the ferry between Tenerife to La Gomera.

Last edited by MyriamC; Dec 13th, 2018 at 12:05 AM.
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Old Dec 13th, 2018, 12:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Traveler_Nick View Post
Fuerteventura is a large island. I'm not sure two days will allow you to explore a lot.
We spent a week there last January. I liked the island as its landscape is very varied. Four/five days would have been enough, though.
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Old Dec 13th, 2018, 04:14 AM
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Cowboy, thanks for your post. I was concerned with the waste of time of pick-up/drop off at the various ports but what you say is encouraging.
I will work on fitting in La Palma. As we are not interested in a beach holiday as such I think we will have time.
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Old Dec 13th, 2018, 04:15 AM
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Originally Posted by MyriamC View Post
We took our rental car on the ferry between Tenerife to La Gomera.
Do you remember which rental company?
Thanks!
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Old Dec 14th, 2018, 12:30 AM
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Originally Posted by carrom View Post
Do you remember which rental company?
Thanks!
It's a long time ago but I will see if I can find it.
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Old Dec 15th, 2018, 11:48 AM
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I have re-planned after noting some of your comments and it now looks like this:
Arrive Lanzarote – 3 nights winery 1 night Playa Blanca –
Catch morning ferry to Fuerteventura drive South (one night 2 days sleep in Antigua middle of the island)
Catch evening ferry to Gran Canaria – 2 nights (mainly to visit a friend and see Las Palmas and old town)
Fly to La Palma 3 nights –
Ferry to La Gomera – 1 night –
Fly back to Lanzarote and home.
We would rent a car in all these places except GC
It may seem a bit rushed but we are not looking for rest and relaxation or beach holiday as we do all that at home.
The only thing that worries me are time wasted in picking up/dropping off car and getting on/off ferries. Any feedback on this?
Also are the ferries the kind you can stay outside on and enjoy the ride or do you have to stay shut inside in a seat and get seasick?
Thanks for your comments!
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