Spain’s volcanic Canary Islands (don’t let the volcanoes put you off) are the ultimate getaway for cyclists and holidaymakers alike! The Canary Islands’ optimal position off the coast of Africa ensures that they are sun-kissed all year round. The Sky cycling team have even made the Canaries (specifically Tenerife) their base for winter and altitude training, owing to their strategic landscape and year-round picturesque weather.
Image Credit Pretre
However, what time of year should you go? The Canaries can be sweltering hot in summer, so you may want to consider going in winter or autumn if you don’t want your Lycra to be drenched in sweat. Do bear in mind that the 2 main tourist seasons are December-January and the summer months. Visiting during these tourist seasons may inevitably see you having to cycle around drunken British people. Not that we’re stereotyping or anything.
See below for a quick rundown of potential areas to base yourself in the canaries!
Which area should I base myself in?
Gran Canaria has been frequented by the Tinkoff team in recent years, and is known for being a popular holiday destination and beach resort. Perfect if you want to chill out after a trying ride!
There’s a lot of climbing to be had here, similarly to Tenerife. Gran Canaria’s elevation goes up to an astonishing 2,000m, and brings some seriously steep and challenging hills with it. Nonetheless, you can also enjoy the stunning white beaches (with a cocktail) in your downtime. Resorts such as Playa del Inglés and Puerto Rico (not the US one) allow for some much-needed post-ride R&R. It is easy to understand why it is one of the most popular places to cycling in Spain. Have a look at the Cycle Gran Canaria website for all the best cycle routes.
Team Sky has undoubtedly boosted the popularity of Tenerife, and for good reason! The island is big enough for you to cover plenty of miles, and easily allows you to get some altitude training if you so wish!
There’s no shortage of hotels to stay in across the island, owing to its strong tourist popularity. The South of Tenerife (around Los Cristianos) also provides easy access to mountain roads leading to Teide, the island’s staggering volcano.
Fuerteventura is a designated UNESCO Biosphere reserve, which make it naturally appealing to us cyclists! Though Fuerteventura is not particularly popular with cyclists, that’s what gives it an upper hand on the competition! Explore and discover this magnificent island without bumping into many other cyclists! Fuerteventura is brilliant for those who enjoy a more adventurous and immersive cycling experience.
Lanzarote has the unique advantage of offering hotel sports resorts such as Club La Santa. These resorts offer excellent physio and coaching services, as well as numerous sporting facilities.
Lanzarote has a much more barren landscape that its neighbors, with black sandy beaches and whitewashed villages. Nonetheless, all that sun-drenched barren land is excellent for riding!