Fuertventura is a popular holiday location and second largest of the Canary Islands. This island lies south of Lanzarote near the northwest coast of Africa. The two islands are so close together that you can island hop for a day trip within 30 minutes by ferry.
Although the landmass of Fuerteventura is bigger, the population is smaller than Lanzarote. Currently there are 122,600 permanent inhabitants living here. Fuerteventura covers an area of 1,660 km² and has a coastline lengh of 304 km (188.9 miles). Of the 7 Canaries, only Tenerife covers a larger area which may come as a surprise to some.
The capital of Fuerteventura is Puerto del Rosario on the eastern coastline. El Matorral airport is 5 km² south of the capital. Corralejo is 42 km² north of El Matorral airport with Costa Calma 63 km² to the south. Caleta de Fuste (Costa Caleta) is the closest of the big resorts which is 5 km² south.
You can fly from the Spanish mainland in around 4 hours from Seville which is some 1500 km away. There are also other routes such as Valencia, Barcelona and Madrid which are further away.
Puerto del Rosario accounts for a third of the population of Fuerteventura. Some 40,000 inhabitants live in the capital which covers an area of 290 km². El Matorral airport usually welcomes some 500,000 annual visitors each year. Many who visit the Canaries favour Tenerife, Gran Canaria and Lanzarote. Fuerteventura is trending upwards though and has done so for some time.
Our map of Fuerteventura image below will take you to a full size Google map of the island.
Below is a quick reference guide which contains key facts about Fuerteventura.
1,660 km² (640.8 square miles)
304 km (188.9 miles)
Capital City & Airport
Puerto del Rosario
El Matorral Airport
Fuerteventura lies in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of north Africa. A distance of 2500 km´s separate this island with The Balearic Islands which is the other Spanish archipelago.
There are many fine resorts spread across the island of Fuerteventura. We now have a page about the many resorts here which goes into extensive detail about the best places to stay. This includes Corralejo in the north of the island with Costa Calma in the south. On the eastern coast near the airport we also cover Caleta de Fuste and several other super locations.
Given how close the two islands are together it´s no surprise that the climate is almost the same as Lanzarote. Fuerteventura can be a touch warmer at times due to this island being closer to Africa. Summers here are generally hot with mild winters.
It´s common to see temperatures during summer here which can reach 40 Celsius. Spring can be as mild as winter which sees the temperatures fall to 18 Celsius. One thing to look out for here is “La Calima” which is like a sandstorm. A thick haze can make visibility difficult if you are driving a vehicle. This is a result of a storm or sand coming from the Sahara to the east. You can find more weather information here on our sister website Spanish Costas.
There are 6 municipalities that form the island of Fuerteventurta. These are Antigua, Betancuria, La Oliva, Pájara, Puerto del Rosario, and Tuineje. Below is a little information about each.
The town and municipality of La Oliva forms much of the north of Fuerteventura. This also extends to the tiny Isla de Lobos which is off the coast of Corralejo. The large tourist town of Corralejo is also part of La Oliva. There are some 25,000 inhabitants living in this part of the island which covers 356.13 km².
Casa de los Coroneles (Colonel´s House) is an iconic 18th Century building which is now an art museum. Montaña de Tindaya is another popular attraction here as is Corralejo´s Natural Park and sand dunes. Church of Our Lady of La Candelaria is a must visit if you enjoy beautiful architecture.
Puerto del Rosario
Puerto del Rosario is the capital and one of the 6 municipalities. This area lies on the east coast of the island which we already talk about above. Our resorts page also contains more information about this super location.
17 km southwest of Puerto del Rosario is Antigua, another town and municipality. Caleta de Fuste and it´s castle are two points of interest here. Antigua has a small population of around 12,000 people and covers an area of 250.56 km².
Pájara forms the southwest tip of Fuerteventura which includes Jandia and Costa Calma. Morro Jable is another important location of this town and municipality. The population here is around 21,000 people which covers an area of 383.52 km².
Tuineje is another town and municipality which lies in the southeast of the island. This location includes the town of Gran Tarajal and covers an area of 275.94 km². There are around 15,000 people living here.
Betancuria is a mountainous area of the island which lies on the west coast. Due to the terrain, there are somewhere around 1000 people living here. Betancuria covers an area of 103.64 km² which is around 40 square miles.
Attactions & Days Out
Below are a few of the super attractions and days out to enjoy in Fuerteventura.
Oasis Park is one of the top attractions in Fuerteventura which is close to Costa Calma. This is a unique interactive wildlife zoo set in beautiful scenery. Oasis Park offers several live shows which feature Parrots, Sea Lions and Birds of Prey. You also have the opportunity to feed the animals and even have your picture taken with them.
Another option here is taking a Camel trek both within and outside the park. Oasis Park is the biggest Camel reserve in Europe and a unique experience. A few other experiences to enjoy feature Sea Lions and Lemurs.
Isla de Lobos (Wolf Island)
2 kilometres off the northern coast of Fuerteventura is the beautiful Isla de Lobos. This is a must experience day trip, especially if you are already in Corralejo. Isla de Lobos no longer has inhabitants which has been the case since the 1960´s. The keeper of the lighthouse and his family were the last to leave.
We highly recommend taking the 15 minute boat trip to pay a visit to Isla de Lobos. You could also take the hour long trip which further explores the coastline.