October 12, 2012 – January 16, 2013

The Canary Islands are an archipelago belonging to Spain, and the islands are one of Spain’s autonomous communities.  They are located off the northwest coast of Africa. 

There are thirteen islands:  Tenerife, Fuerteventura, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, La Palma, La Gomera, El Hierro, La Graciosa, Alegranza, Isla de Lobos, Montana Clara, Roque del Este, and Roque del Oeste.  These are volcanic islands, and some volcanoes remain active.  Together the islands are comprised of 2,893 square miles. 

The islands are arranged in a mostly east-west direction, and this causes them to have different exposure to the usual northeast trade winds.  Consequently, some of the islands are dry and others wet.  The western islands are influenced by the moist gulf stream, and they are well vegetated.  The eastern islands have a drier climate more similar to nearby Africa.

However, all of the islands have nice beaches and a mostly pleasant sub-tropical climate.  They have become a popular tourist destination, and they draw more than 12 million visitors annually.  

Their population is more than two million.  That population is more than 85% Spaniards and mostly Catholic. 

We made landfall in the Canary Islands on Lanzarote – the easternmost island.  We had planned to visit at least one more island – La Palma – but the weather dictated otherwise.  Lanzarote was the only island we visited.

Come with us to Lanzarote.