The “Green Island” of Spain

Covering an area of just 273 square miles (708 sq. km), La Palma enchants with incredible diversity. Featuring beautiful beaches, crystal-clear water and high mountain peaks, the most north-westerly of the Canary Islands is a holiday haven for beach lovers, cyclists and hikers alike.

La Palma is the greenest and most wooded of the Canary Islands, which is why it is also referred to as the “Isla Verde” (Green Island). The island’s forests and black sand beaches are a result of its volcanic origins. 800 different types of plants grow on the island, of which 45 are endemic to La Palma.

Quick facts La Palma

Flight time

4:40 h

Distance

3280 km

Time difference

- 1 hour CET

Language

Spanish

A cup of cappuccino costs around

CHF 1.72

From city beach to charming bathing coves

Located on the east coast of the island, the capital Santa Cruz de la Palma is characterised by historic Canarian- and colonial-style architecture. The city’s main attractions include the renaissance-style town hall and the Real Castillo de Santa Catalina fort built of black lava stone.

Los Cancajos in the east of the island is a choice location for a classic beach holiday. This charming beach resort is home to a string of hotels, bathing coves and gently-shelving beaches, making it ideal for families, but also for scuba divers and snorkelers – particularly for beginners. Puerto Naos in the west is one of the island’s most popular beaches. It stretches for almost 600 metres and includes a seafront lined with bars and cafés. Holidaymakers who appreciate a bit of action will opt to soak up the sun on the city beach of Santa Cruz. Set in a shallow bay, Playa de Charco Verde is one of the nicest beaches on the island featuring fine gravel and wonderful black sand.

Mountain peaks above 7800 feet (2400 m)

Boasting a year-round mild climate and a wealth of different landscapes, La Palma is a true gem for hikers and cyclists. It is also, unsurprisingly, where the famous “Transvulcania” ultramarathon takes place. The Caldera de Taburiente National Park is situated in the heart of the island; the caldera (crater) is surrounded by volcanic peaks, including the Roque de los Muchachos that rises to a height of 7949 feet (2423 m).

The best way to experience the island’s breathtaking nature is on a guided hike or bicycle tour. And the best way to refuel after exercising? With a generous helping of “papas arrugadas” (potatoes with a salt crust) or “arepas” (stuffed corn buns). Delicious!

Travel recommendations

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Activities

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