Aeropuerto de Fuerteventura

Aeropuerto de Fuerteventura

Aeropuerto de Fuerteventura

Date

6 April 2013
Location

El Matorral, Fuerteventura

28.453053°N, 13.869381°W

Information

Fuerteventura’s first airport was the military aerodrome built near Tefía in the 1940s. This opened to commercial traffic in 1959, but was superseded in 1962 by a new airport at Los Estancos, the latter’s site having been chosen for its proximity to the island’s capital. However, increasing levels of demand coupled with local wind problems led to this site in turn giving way to the present location at El Matorral, 5km south of Puerto del Rosario. The airport at El Matorral opened in 1969 and its facilities were expanded in 1978 and again 1994. Further expansion work has recently been completed on the terminal, allowing it to double its passenger capacity. In 2012 the airport handled 38,000 flights and 4.4 million passengers.

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Parque Natural de Corralejo II – Las Grandes Playas

Grandes Playas, Parque Natural de Corralejo

Grandes Playas, Parque Natural de Corralejo

Date

5 April 2013
Location

Corralejo, Fuerteventura

28.704309°N, 13.836488°W

Information

Las Grandes Playas is a 3.5km-long group of beaches in the Parque Natural de Corralejo. This stretch of Fuerteventuran coastline has at its centre two hotels – the Clubhotel Riu Oliva Beach and the Riu Palace Tres Islas. These are the only two buildings in the Parque Natural. The fine sandy beaches together with the near constant winds make this a very popular spot for water sports such as surfing, windsurfing and kiteboarding.

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Parque Natural de Corralejo I

Dunas de Corralejo

Dunas de Corralejo

Date

5 April 2013
Location

Corralejo, Fuerteventura

28.704309°N, 13.836488°W

Information

The Parque Natural de Corralejo is a desert zone in the northeast corner of Fuerteventura. Its field of sand dunes and white sandy beaches stretches some 8km from Corralejo south to Montaña Rojo. Its fine sand, formed by erosion of sea shells, lies over extensive volcanic badlands (‘maplaís’). The area, covering over 2,600 hectares, was designated a Natural Park in 1994. This superseded the previous classification from 1982, which also included the Isla de Lobos — now a Parque Natural in its own right. The park is also part of a bird reserve (Zona de Especial Protección para las Aves).

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Salinas del Carmen, Fuerteventura

Museo de la Sal (Salt Museum)

Museo de la Sal (Salt Museum)

Date

4 April 2013
Location

Caleta de Fuste, Fuerteventura

28.367160°N, 13.871441°W

Information

The production of sea salt was an industry that employed hundreds of people in the eastern Canary Islands in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Today, however, Salinas del Carmen is the only working salt works to survive in Fuerteventura. The works, located 3km south of Caleta de Fuste, was originally known as Salinas de Hondurilla and dates back to the 19th century. It was rebuilt around 1910 and was acquired in the late 1970s by the island authorities, who restored the site and built El Museo de la Sal (The Salt Museum) there. The sea-spray salt produced at the works using traditional methods is now marketed internationally as a gourmet product. It is lower in sodium than conventional salt and higher in minerals such as magnesium, potassium and sulphates.

The production process starts with waves driven by the trade winds battering against rocks on the shore. The resulting sea spray, with increased concentrations of minerals, overspills into a receiving area, from where it is channelled into a series of tanks (‘cocederos’) to be warmed by the heat of the sun. From there, the heated brine is then allowed to run down into the evaporation tanks (‘tajos’), where the salt gradually crystallises in a thin layer on the surface of the water. The tanks are stirred twice a day and once almost all the water has evaporated the salt is raked up into mounds to drain at the side of the tanks before being taken to the salt store.

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Molino de Antigua, Fuerteventura

Molino de Antigua

Molino de Antigua

Date

4 April 2013
Location

Antigua, Fuerteventura

28.430791°N, 14.012738°W

Information

The Molino de Antigua is a visitor centre on the outskirts of Antigua in central Fuerteventura. In addition to its fully restored windmill, the centre also features a cactus garden, exhibition rooms and a craft shop. The windmill used to grind gofio, a traditional Canarian flour made from toasted maize. The Molino de Antigua has been selected as the location for a new cheese museum, El Museo de Queso de Fuerteventura.

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Montaña de Arena, Fuerteventura

Looking towards Montaña de la Blanca from the summit of Montaña de Arena.  The apparently converging 'anti-crepuscular rays' are formed by shadows being cast by clouds on the opposite side of the sky.

Looking towards Montaña de la Blanca from the summit of Montaña de Arena. The apparently converging ‘anti-crepuscular rays’ are formed by shadows being cast by clouds on the opposite side of the sky.

Date

3 April 2013
Location

La Oliva, Fuerteventura

28.633835°N, 13.929066°W

Information

Created 185,000 years ago, Montaña de Arena (422m) was declared a Natural Monument in 1994. The mountain is located 2.5km north of La Oliva in northern Fuerteventura, and its volcanic ‘bad lands’ plain, the Malpaís de la Arena, stretches some 6km from La Oliva northwards to Lajares. There are two conjoined craters at the top of the volcano’s pyroclastic cone, which stands 120m above the base of the mountain.

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Casa del Inglés, La Oliva

La Casa del Inglés, La Oliva

La Casa del Inglés, La Oliva

Date

3 April 2013
Location

La Oliva, Fuerteventura

28.614897°N, 13.923778°W

Information

The Casa del Inglés (‘Englishman’s House’) is an 18th century residence in La Oliva in northern Fuerteventura. The two-storey house, constructed around a large patio, was built by Julián Leal Sicilia, whose family, from the island of La Palma, was involved in agriculture and trade with America. The house was later owned by a Mr Parkinson, an English naturalist who spent a lot of time in Fuerteventura. In the mid 19th century the Casa was the home of Pedro Manrique de Lara, brother of the last Colonel of Fuerteventura. After the Spanish Civil War the house was occupied by the army, with infantry troops and the nursing service being stationed there.

The process of listing the building in the Spanish heritage register was started in 2001 and in 2005 the monument was declared a Bien de Interés Cultural (BIC). It was reported in 2006 that the island’s local government was considering purchasing the house. It is, however, privately owned and, despite its status as a BIC, has been allowed to fall into ruins.

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Montaña Tindaya, Fuerteventura

Montaña Tindaya

Montaña Tindaya

Date

2 April 2013
Location

Tindaya, Fuerteventura

28.596269°N, 13.976842°W

Information

Montaña Tindaya (399m) is in the middle of the plain Llano del Esquinzo in northern Fuerteventura. It is a volcanic plug composed of trachyte, a stone similar to marble. The mountain is 18.7 million years old and over the millennia the outer covering of solidified basaltic lava has been eroded away leaving the hard core of the volcano. Trachyte is a valuable ornamental stone, used for example in floors, walls and kitchen worktops. It used to be quarried from the mountain, but with the latter now being a protected site this is no longer permitted.

Tindaya is the most archaeologically significant mountain in the Canary Islands. The Majos, the aboriginal inhabitants of Fuerteventura, considered it sacred and left many traces there. 213 rock carvings have been found on the mountain, most of them outlines of human feet (podomorphic petroglyphs). These all point to the west towards Teide, warding off evil, as the Majos believed that to be the abode of the devil.

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Montaña Quemada, Fuerteventura

Statue of Miguel de Unamuno, Montaña Quemada

Statue of Miguel de Unamuno (1864-1936), Montaña Quemada

Date

2 April 2013
Location

Tindaya, Fuerteventura

28.568842°N, 13.983095°W

Information

Situated 2km south of Tindaya town, the pyroclastic cone of Montaña Quemada (366m) lies at the edge of an extensive malpaís (the volcanic ‘bad lands’ formed from material thrown into the air during an eruption). The volcano, whose name means ‘burnt mountain’, is some 460,000 years old.

Located close to the base of Montaña Quemada is a statue in memory of the writer and philosopher Miguel de Unamuno y Jugo (1864-1936). In 1924, during Primo de Rivera’s dictatorship in Spain, Unamuno was exiled to Fuerteventura, where he stayed before escaping to France.

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Faro de Tostón, Fuerteventura

Faro de Tostón

35m tall concrete tower

Date

2 April 2013
Location

Punta de Tostón, Fuerteventura

28.715204°N, 14.013970°W

Information

The point Punta de Tostón is situated in the northwest corner of Fuerteventura, 3.5km north of the town of El Cotillo. The lighthouse there, Faro de Tostón is fully automated, and the site now also houses the island’s Museo de la Pesca Tradicional (Traditional Fishing Museum).

There has been a lighthouse at the point since 1897. The original 6m stone-built tower proved to be too low and was replaced in 1963 by a 13m octagonal stone tower. The latter was in turn superseded in 1985 by the present 35m concrete tower. The octagonal tower now serves as an open viewing gallery, accessible from the museum.

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Mirador Corrales de Guize, Fuerteventura

Mirador Corrales de Guize

Panoramic vista from the viewpoint Mirador Corrales de Guize, 2km north of Betancuria

Date

30 March 2013
Location

Betancuria, Fuerteventura

28.440756°N, 14.056203°W

Information

Fuerteventura was conquered by the Normans in 1402. At that time, the indigenous Majo islanders were ruled by two kings: Guize in Maxorata in the north, and Ayose in Jandía in the south. After surrendering, the kings assumed Christian names: Luis and Alfonso, respectively. The boundary between the two original kingdoms is thought to have passed close to the site upon which Betancuria was founded.

The 4.5m high bronze sculptures of the Majo kings are by Emiliano Hernández and were donated by the Spanish international construction group OHL.

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Betancuria, Fuerteventura

Iglesia Santa María, Betancuria

Iglesia Santa María, Betancuria

Date

30 March 2013
Location

Betancuria, Fuerteventura

28.424485°N, 14.056390°W

Information

Founded around 1404 by the Norman conquerors, Santa María de Betancuria was the capital of Fuerteventura until 1834 when that honour was transferred briefly to Antigua before finally passing to Puerto del Rosario. Named after Jean de Bethencourt, Betancuria is considered to be the first city founded in the Canary Islands. Protected by mountains and far from the coast, its position was chosen on strategic grounds.

Bethencourt started building the church of Santa María around 1410 and the original edifice was destroyed by Berber pirates in 1593. Rebuilding began at the end of the 16th century and continued until around 1691.

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Tope, Fuerteventura

Tope

Tope

Date

29 March 2013
Location

Tope, Fuerteventura

28.621129°N, 14.032207°W

Information

Located 6.5km northwest of Tindaya, Tope is the site of an abandoned coastal development project. The two derelict buildings — one now apparently a squat — were to have been offices for the apartment complex that was never actually built.

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Abandoned development, Parque Holandés

Abandoned development, Parque Holandés

Abandoned development, Parque Holandés

Date

29 March 2013
Location

Urbanización Peña Erguida, Parque Holandés

28.611020°N, 13.832590°W

Information

The unfinished structure — started in the 1980s — at the Parque Holandés roundabout on the FV-1 half way between Puerto del Rosario and Corralejo in the north of Fuerteventura was to have been part of a luxury marina complex. Development of the Urbanización Peña Erguida complex followed on from approval in the 1970s of a special plan for tourism in the area. The first moorings were, however, swept away in a storm and the marina project was abandoned.

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Morro Tabaiba and Morro Carnero, La Oliva

Montaña del Frontón (left) and the ridge from Morro Carnero (centre) to Morro Tabaica (right)

Montaña del Frontón (left) and the ridge from Morro Carnero (centre) to Morro Tabaica (right)

Date

28 March 2013
Location

La Oliva, Fuerteventura

Morro Carnero 28.588799°N, 13.917425°W
Morro Tabaiba  28.591639°N, 13.944077°W

Information

The ridge between Morro Tabaiba (529m) in the west and Morro Carnero (513m) in the east lies 2km south of the town of La Oliva in the north of Fuerteventura.

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La Casa de los Coroneles, La Oliva

Casa de los Coroneles

Casa de los Coroneles

Date

26 / 28 March 2013
Location

La Oliva, Fuerteventura

28.606745°N, 13.925438°W

Information

The Casa de los Coroneles (The Colonels’ House) is an 18th-century fortified mansion house in La Oliva that was the residence of the military commanders of the island of Fuerteventura. The house has two storeys and an internal courtyard is surrounded by a gallery resting on wooden supports. The Colonel and his family occupied the upper level, which also housed a chapel, while located on the ground floor were the coach house, grain stores and other stores.

The Cabrera Bethéncourt family took control of Fuerteventura in 1702 and the colonelcy passed down the generations of the family. The last Colonel of the island, Cristobal Manrique de Lara Cabrera, fell from power in 1856. Construction of the mansion was started by Ginés de Cabrera Béthencourt (1650-1722) and completed by his grandson, the fifth Colonel Agustín Cabrera Béthencourt Dumpiérrez (1743-1828).

The Canary Government acquired the house, which had fallen into a state of disrepair, in 1994. Following its restoration, it was opened in 2006 as a multi-purpose cultural centre hosting events and exhibitions.

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Caldera Encantada, Fuerteventura

Caldera Encantada

Caldera Encantada

Date

26 March 2013
Location

Fuerteventura

28.705418°N, 13.901358°W

Information

Caldera Encantada is one of the seven volcanoes in the 135,000-year-old Morros de Bayuyo chain lying between Lajares and Corralejo in the north of Fuerteventura.

The quarry — la cantera de picón “La Capellanía” — is owned by Infrarenta S.A. and extracts lapilli, which is a relatively fine tephra, or fragmented rock that fell from the air in a volcanic eruption. Known locally as picón, this material is used in agriculture and also as an aggregate in construction. This light volcanic gravel has traditionally been used in the arid Canary Islands as a stone mulch due to its ability to suppress evaporation from the soil. It is also said to absorb and retain moisture from the air during the night.

Infrarenta was fined €120,000 in 2005 for working 27 hectares outside of its authorised extractive area. Plans to officially expand the area of its operation and also to restore disused areas of the quarry were submitted to the Canarian authorities in 2009. These were approved in 2011.

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