A little Winter sunshine to warm your bones and some Vitamin D to set you up for the year ahead. What a nice thought, and where better than the Canary Islands, where you can lounge around on the beach even at this time of year, due to the proximity to Africa and the year round warm temperatures without having to spend 2 days of your holiday on a plane.  If you’re also a classical music buff then even better to choose the Canaries for your Winter break – sunshine and music, the perfect combination – without the long haul!

The winter sun drenched Canary Islands

A warm start to 2013

In this series of places to visit in Spain this coming January, we couldn’t miss out on one of the warmest places to spend the coldest month of the year.  The Canary Islands are the jewel in Spain’s crown – certainly so in the Winter months, when sun deprived North Europeans head South to soak  up some rays, and wisely give Jack Frost a miss.

The Islands are made up of the following, choose to visit one or all of them as an island hop, and while you catch the sun, catch a few strains of the annual Festival de Musica de Canarias too!

Click the highlighted link on each one for Spain Holiday accommodation on that island. You’ll find properties to match every size group, every budget and every taste…Choose from –

Classics in the canaries

Making Music

Running since 1985, the Canary Islands Classical Music Festival has been very successful, attracting ever growing crowds each year.  Originally planned to promote and uphold a more cultural tourism within the islands, as opposed to just a place to lie on a good beach, it certainly has achieved that and more. The festival started with concerts on just the two main islands, Gran Canaria and Tenerife, but as the event has grown more popular year on year, then the locations have spread to the other islands too.  This is the only outdoor music festival to be held in Winter.  Well, it hardly feels like Winter here in the Canaries, more like a mild Spring! Why not base yourself on one and travel to whichever concert takes your fancy, or pack light and island hop, visiting each one for a couple of nights or more. Perfect!

How do you obtain tickets?

This year is the 29th year of the festival, and it will take place through January from the 11th and up until the 15th February. Tickets are on sale now, and you may purchase them by going to www.auditoriodetenerife.com

Season tickets which cover all events will cost from 35€ to 310€, depending on concessionary discounts and of course the type of seat.

The 29th edition of the Festival

Who can you expect to see?

It’s an esteemed bill, including the following and more –

  • The London Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Marinsky Theatre Orchestra
  • The Emerson Quartet
  • The Czech Chamber Orchestra
  • The Brentano Quatet
  • Europa Galante
Lanzarote nudist beach

Lanzarote – nudist beaches are popular

The top sights on the Canary Islands

So, now you have packed your best ball gown, your white tie and tails, ad booked your tickets for the concerts.  What else can you expect to see on these islands after the show has ended? Here’s a quick guide to some of the best sights on some of the Canary Islands which you can visit as part of your sun soaked Winter break.

Gran Canaria

  • Beach lovers will love to explore the dunes of Maspalomas – feel like Lawrence of Arabia!
  • Take a day trip to Las Palmas – no just for the airport, the colonial city has some fascinating architecture and great shopping opportunities.
  • On a budget? Then take a look at this article on some FREE things to occupy you on Gran Canaria.

La Gomera –

  • Listen – the whistling language of El Silbo originated here, so be careful what you whistle!
  • Do some whale watching for a day. There are boats which will take you out for an unforgettable day.

El Hierro

  • Watch the sun go down here, a romantic fact, it’s the last place in Spain for the sun to set.
  • The beaches are appealing to Naturists and skin divers.

Tenerife a Top Holiday Destination.

Tenerife –

Fuerteventura –

  • Surfing and windsurfers will be at home on the windy west side.
  • Naturists love the secluded coves and beaches.
  • The harbour at Isla de Los Lobos. Why? Well, just look at the picture!
Jetty at the harbor of Isla los Lobos, Fuerteventura

Isla de los Lobos Fuerteventura

Lanzarote –

  • The Parque Nacional de Timanfaya
  • César Manrique made his mark here, dedicating his life and work to ensure the island would never be spoiled by high rise buildings, and creating a wonderful environment.
  • Want to be part of the jet set? Take a few days in Teguise.

What’s the food like there?

The food. Yet another great reason to visit the Canaries, and re -visit, and re-visit! The gastronomy takes it’s name, and taste, from a mixture of traditional Spanish cuisine, the traditions that stretch back to the Gaunches, and some  – as Jamie Oliver would say – rockin’ great recipes that define this destination as a modern mover and shaker in world gastronomy.

Wrinkled potatoes, Mojo sauces of green and red, Banana liqueur, great wines that grow in Volcanic vineyards, fresh salads and great plates of great fish…African and Latin American influences combine to create some outstanding recipes.

Get your Mojo working with these sauces!

Combine everything with some of the best beaches you will ever visit, a huge choice of accommodation from Spain Holiday, year round sunshine and blue skies, friendly folk and of course…the music! All of this without the long haul too. What more could you possibly want?

Carol Byrne
Posted by Carol Byrne
Originally from Dublin, Carol has also lived in London and Wales before settling in Spain with her husband and family in 2006. She and her family run a rural retreat high in the Alpujarras mountains of Granada, which you can find here as property number 17043. She blogs about traditional village life, sparked by a passion for the culture and history of Spain, and teaches English locally..