Last-minute guide to the Canary Islands, with half-term package deals and amazing places to stay

Tenerife

Why go?

Like Majorca and Ibiza before it, Tenerife is finally succeeding in shedding its tacky chrysalis, and morphing into a sophisticated destination happy to hold its own in the company of high spenders, gastronomes and choosy golfers. That’s not to say the ‘old Tenerife’ has met its maker, it just self-perpetuates in the background while Michelin muscles into the restaurant scene, chic beach clubs claim bucket-and-spade territory, and boutique boltholes provide windows to the previously bypassed and greener side of the island. Most holidaymakers head to the south-western resorts of Los Cristianos, Playa de las Americas and Costa Adeje where the bulk of the island’s holiday accommodation is located.

• Read the full guide to Tenerife

Who’s flying there?

The following offer direct flights departing Saturday October 24 and returning Saturday October 31. Ryanair flies return from London Stansted from £26, from Manchester from £91, and from Bristol from £20; easyJet flies return from London airports from £92 and from Manchester from £119.

The best hotels, still with availability

Luxury

Rates provided by

Booking.com

Budget

Rates provided by

Booking.com

Package options

Southall Travel (0208 705 0086) offers a seven-night holiday staying at the 4* Paradise Park Fun Lifestyle Hotel in Los Cristianos for £297 (£1118 for a family of four). Price includes return flights from London Gatwick Airport on 24 Oct and seven nights’ accommodation on a half-board basis.

Fuerteventura

Why go?

Golden drifts of sand, like fine-spun silk, ripple towards the sparkling shores of Fuerteventura. Goats are herded across arid plains dotted with windmills and long-dead volcanoes, scarred and deformed, pierce the cloudless sky. Just 50 miles from Saharan Africa, the island has a breathtaking, barren beauty. Despite the volcanic terrain, it has some of the best beaches in the Canary Islands – miles and miles of largely deserted sand. Guaranteed sunshine and negligible rain make it a great year-round destination, and there is no time difference after the four-hour flight. 

Who’s flying there?

The following offer direct flights departing Saturday October 24 and returning Saturday October 31. Ryanair flies return from London Stansted from £26 and from Manchester from £45; easyJet flies return from London Gatwick from £103 and from Bristol from £143.

The best hotels, still with availability

Luxury

Rates provided by

Booking.com

 

Budget

Rates provided by

Booking.com

Package options

Away Holidays (0208 705 0107) offers a luxury seven-night holiday staying at the 5* Gran Hotel Bahia Real in the popular resort of Corralejo for £446 (£1784 for a family of four). Price includes return flights from London Gatwick Airport on 24 Oct and seven nights’ accommodation on a bed and breakfast basis.  

Lanzarote

Why go?

Lanzarote’s history is as turbulent as the sweep of volcanoes that forged it and today still spectacularly dominate one of Macaronesia’s most dramatic islands, whose entirety is a Unesco Biosphere Reserve. Legends swirl around of daring adventurers and scheming pirates, through to marauding Berbers and conquering Spaniards. Since the 1960s affordable jet travel has brought a wave of new arrivals to the beach resorts of Puerto del Carmen, Costa Teguise and Playa Blanca. All over the island, you see the influence of the visionary artist, architect and environmentalist César Manrique, who saved Lanzarote from the ravages of rampant development. His extraordinary creations accentuate the unique geology of the island and are now its main tourist attractions. His legacy is an island where style and design very much accompany substance, whether you are reclining in one of the bountiful vineyards with a glass of superb Malvasia, enjoying boat fresh seafood in an oceanfront restaurant or just lazing on one of Lanzarote’s shimmering necklace of sandy beaches.

• Read the full guide to Lanzarote

Who’s flying there?

The following offer direct flights departing Saturday October 24 and returning Saturday October 31. British Airways flies return from London Heathrow from £75; Ryanair flies return from Manchester from £52 and from Bristol from £20; easyJet flies return from London Gatwick from £100, from Manchester from £108 and from Bristol from £127.

The best hotels, still with availability

Luxury 

Rates provided by

Booking.com

Budget 

Rates provided by

Booking.com

Package options

Southall Travel (0208 705 0086) offers a seven-night beach holiday staying at the 4* Hotel Sol Lanzarote in Los Cristianos in Puerto del Carme for £355 (£1118 for a family of four). Price includes return flights from London Gatwick Airport on 24 Oct and seven nights’ accommodation on a half-board basis.

Gran Canaria

Why go?

Forever in the enormous shadow of its neighbour to the west, Tenerife, Gran Canaria is nonetheless never so eclipsed that it cannot provide temperatures around the 20 degrees mark as autumn makes the rest of Europe shiver. In truth, the third-largest Canary Island is a fabulous destination. The capital Las Palmas offers elegant culture at its Centro Atlantico de Arte Moderno – but saves its best for the beach in the shape of Playa de las Canteras.

Who’s flying there?

The following offer direct flights departing Saturday October 24 and returning Saturday October 31. British Airways flies return from London Heathrow from £159; Ryanair flies return from London Stansted  from £60; easyJet flies return from London Gatwick from £113 and from Bristol from £131.

The best hotels, still with availability 

Luxury

Rates provided by

Booking.com

Budget 

Rates provided by

Booking.com

Package options

Lastminute.com offers a seven-night stay at the 4* Labranda Playa Bonita on a half-board basis for £539pp, departing October 25. Flights are included. 

La Palma

Why go?

The Spanish know La Palma as La Isla Bonita: “The Pretty Island”. And she is indeed a beauty. Plentiful panoramas represent one good reason to visit: of volcanic cones and rocky barrancos (ravines), lush forests, terraced hillsides studded with rainbow hamlets, craggy coastlines and the limitless, cobalt Atlantic. You’ll find another two at the end of your legs. Because walking is the big draw on the north-westernmost Canary Island: laced with more than 600 miles of waymarked footpaths, it’s a treat for trekkers. 

Who’s flying there?

There are no direct flights departing Saturday October 24 and returning Saturday October 31. Iberia offers flights on the above dates with a short stopover in Madrid from £307.

The best hotels, still with availability? 

Budget

Rates provided by

Booking.com

Package options

Lastminute.com offers a seven-night 4* H10 Taburiente Playa stay with breakfast and flights included from £649pp. Departing October 24. 

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