Where can you travel...
Updated 30th March:
Both the Balearic and Canary islands have declared their intention to set up a travel corridor with the UK in good time for the summer season, and Spain's tourism minister floated May 19th as a likely date for trips to resume.
The EU very recently signed off on vaccine passports - including for the UK - to allow tourism to resume this summer, so the prospects of a Spanish break this year are looking good.
The Balearic Islands are keen to welcome the return of tourists and have said that they would be happy to test the introduction of the green corridor between Spain and the UK.
So if you're planning a trip to the Balearic Islands this summer, here are your choices:
Mallorca (or you might know it as Majorca) is definitely the most popular of the islands - with its sheltered coves, sandy beaches and perfectly turquoise waters. The island has a lot to offer, no matter what type of holiday you're looking for.
If you prefer the city scene then you can't go wrong with a trip to Palma, the capital of the island. We recommend you spend a day wandering the maze-like streets of the Old Town and stop off at the La Seu cathedral.
Heading on a family holiday? Then head to Alcudia and Cala Bona - these are the most popular areas for a family getaway. Here you'll find excellent beaches, plus waterparks to keep the kids entertained.
Of course Majorca is also quite a popular party scene, with revellers heading to Magaluf (we won't mention its more seedy nickname!). But things being as they are, we aren't sure there'll be the same nightlife scene it's usually famous for this summer.
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Menorca is a popular spot for families, as it moves at a much slower pace than Mallorca. Though you may head to one of the popular beach resorts, such as Cala'n Forcat, Punta Prima, Cala'n Bosch and Santo Tomas, it's also worth taking some time to explore the capital Mahón as it has a rich history and some interesting old architecture to admire.
If you hear the word Ibiza then we are sure certain things come to mind - it is after all one of the party destinations in Europe. That being said, if you step away from the nightlife scene Ibiza actually has a lot to offer for non partygoers. If you head to the north of the island, around Puerto San Miguel, you'll find a much more laidback scene. With beautiful countryside to explore, with hidden caves, walking trails and of course excellent beaches.
Want to get a little more off the beaten track? Then catch a flight to Ibiza but then head by ferry to Formentera. Here you'll find smaller independently owned hotels and true relaxation. Spend your time relaxing on the beach, and cool off in the sparkling waters with a spot of snorkelling. There's not a lot to do here, but really isn't that the appeal?
The Canary Islands are one of, if not the most, popular destinations for UK holidaymakers. So it is no surprise that the Canaries will want to welcome tourists back as soon as they can.
So if you're planning a trip to the Canary Islands this summer, here are your choices:
Tenerife is the most popular Canary Island among British travellers, and is particularly well-loved as a family destination. It has a reputation for being a little on the 'touristy' side, but this means it's geared up for welcoming families with children in tow, who will appreciate the ease with which it's possible to enjoy all that Tenerife has to offer: great beaches, water parks and fascinating historic sites, such as the Pyramids of Güímar: a mysterious group of ancient structures built from the island's native lava stone.
Lanzarote's size and popularity have made it particularly well-equipped for holidaymakers, yet it has shunned the high-rise architecture of its similar-sized neighbours. Lanzarote provides superb opportunities for discovering the moon-like volcanic landscape that make the Canary Islands unique as a European destination, and it suits travellers of all types: you can have a wonderful family holiday, spa break, eco tour, watersports adventure or beach break in Lanzarote, all just four hours away from the UK.
Fuerteventura is a fine destination for beach-lovers, as its coastline is blessed with white sand that suits surfers and sun-worshippers alike. The resorts of Corralejo and Caleta De Fuste offer easy access to some of the best beaches, while the entire Southwestern region of the island is taken up by Jandia Playa - a designated nature reserve and beautiful beach in its own right.
Fuerteventura is also the closest Canary island to North Africa, so mild to hot weather is more or less guaranteed whenever you choose to visit: temperatures here have rarely been known to fall below 16 degrees even in winter. The only potential snag in the island's record as a great beach destination is its reputation for strong winds (from which the island takes its name). But if you're a watersports fan hoping to catch some waves, this aspect will cause no concern.
With a thriving club and bar scene alongside its stunning natural heritage Gran Canaria is a place of huge contrasts, making it ideal for those seeking a voyage of discovery. Party animals should head to the Playa de Ingles for non-stop nightlife, while those seeking a quieter holiday on this extraordinary island will love Puerto de Mogan and San Agustin. Prepare to get active, and leave the car behind to experience what the island has to offer first-hand: many visitors choose to explore Gran Canaria by bike.
La Palma is one of the smallest of the archipelago, and is probably the best Canary Island for those who want to experience the impeccable natural beauty of the islands without the hustle and bustle of the larger resorts. In stark contrast with the barren terrain of Lanzarote and the desert sands of Gran Canaria, La Palma is a very green island, covered in lush vegetation.
There is a thriving eco-tourism scene here, with a wealth of wildlife walks to help you enjoy the breathtaking fauna in all its glory. This is also a popular choice for hikers, many of whom attempt to tackle the lofty El Roque de los Muchachos trail every year.
El Hierro is the smallest of the Canary Islands, but many of its visitors are far more interested in the clear blue sea that surrounds the island than the land itself. The island is a diver's paradise, with several world-class facilities dotted around the coastline, accessible to experts and beginners alike. The underwater scenery looks out of this world, with volcanic peaks, lush vegetation and a dazzling variety of fish.
La Gomera is the second smallest of the islands, and it's a nature lover's paradise. The island is a designated UNESCO world biosphere reserve - spend your days hiking the scenic trails and through the ancient laurel forests. This island is a far cry from the tourism of Tenerife, so if you're looking for something more laidback and in touch with nature then this is the place.
The main tourist spots in mainland Spain, especially on the southern coast, are keen to see tourists back for the summer. Moch of the rest of mainland Spain, especially the cities, is more concerned about the ongoing pandemic and getting out of the consequent restrictions. It's likely therefore that the islands will see tourists return before the mainland, and if the experiment is successful, and Spain ready for visitors, we may be able to go to the Costa del Sol again later in the year.
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