The following islands make up the Canary chain:
Gran Canaria — The largest island by population, its capital city (Las Palmas de Gran Canaria) has the shared title of capital of the Canaries. Green and steep in the north, dry and flat in the south.
Fuerteventura — windsurfer’s mecca
Lanzarote — Low lying and arid, with a spectacular volcanic landscape in the west of the island (National Park of Timanfaya). The capital is Arrecife and has its own airport (ACE code). Lanzarote is also of volcanic origin. The island, along with others, emerged after the breakup of the African and the American continental plates. The greatest recorded eruptions occurred between 1730 and 1736. This area is preserved as the Timanfaya National Park.
Tenerife — The island of Tenerife has many museums and monuments that serve as portrayals of its rich history. As the largest island of the seven, its oldest mountain ranges are young compared to its neighboring islands. Volcanic activity did not begin to occur here until eight to twelve million years ago, while other islands had it well over 20 million years ago. The highest mountain of Spain, El Teide. 3rd largest volcano in the world in extension (Volcano 3718 meters high). The Capital city is Santa Cruz de Tenerife, home to the Canary Island Parliament. The title of capital city is shared with San Cristobal de La Laguna. With a population of 899,833 people, it is the most populated island. Another popular city on the island is San Cristobal de La Laguna. Here you can find the oldest university in the Canary Islands.
La Gomera — The Magic Isle – walker’s paradise. It is shaped like an orange that has been cut in half and split into segments. The terrain is rough, which has left deep ravines or barrancos between them. These barrancos, in turn, are covered by the laurisilva ((laurel rain forest)). It is home to the only remaining Laurisilva rain forest in northern Africa. The local wine has a distinct taste, and is often accompanied with a tapa (snack) of local cheese, roasted pork or goat meat. Other cultural dishes include almogrote, a cheese spread, and a syrup extracted from palm trees called miel de palma. The local people have a unique way of communicating across deep ravines by using a whistled speech called Silbo Gomero. This whistled language is indigenous to the island, and its existence has been documented since Roman times.
La Palma — The total population is about 86,000, of which 18,000 (2003 data) live in the capital, Santa Cruz de la Palma and about 20,000 (2004 data) in Los Llanos de Aridane. La Palma’s geographic layout is a result of the volcanic formation of the island. The southern part of La Palma is dominated by the Cumbre Vieja, a volcanic ridge formed by numerous volcanic cones built of lava and scoria. The Cumbre Vieja is active but dormant, with the last eruption occurring in 1971 at the Teneguia vent, located at the southern end of the Cumbre Vieja.
El Hierro — ‘The edge of the world’. It is also known as the Meridian Island.
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