The versatile Canary Islands can suit families looking for fun and couples seeking to chill, says Joanna Booth
When it comes to a fly-and-flop holiday, choosing the right hotel is make or break. Get it wrong, and the result will be bored kids creating havoc in a serene fine dining restaurant, or frazzled honeymooners hiding behind a wall of sun loungers as the kids’ club closes for the day. Here are a few suggestions to suit families and couples.
The short-haul flights and abundant sunshine are just the start of the Canaries’ appeal to families – the hotels’ excellent facilities for kids put the icing on the proverbial cake.
The beachside Princesa Yaiza Suite Hotel in Lanzarote is famed for its child-friendliness. The extensive Kikoland children’s area has an amphitheatre for shows and parties, multiple children’s pools, a Jacuzzi, a play house, tennis, basketball, beach volleyball, football courts and a restaurant.
Families with under-threes get a complimentary baby kit on arrival (baby bath and seat, changing table, monitors, sterilisers, play pen, pushchair), while those with kids aged three to 12 get a Kids’ Kit (PlayStation and DVD with games and DVDs, child’s toilet seat, bathroom step, night light).
Even the spa now welcomes children aged seven and above, with a selection of new treatments to be enjoyed alongside mum or dad. Sovereign Luxury Travel offers one free child place and an early-booking discount; seven nights’ B&B for a family of three departing Gatwick on July 23 starts from £2,465.
Prestige Holidays recommends Los Jameos Playa, also in Lanzarote, particularly for families with teenage kids. With tennis courts, mini-golf and volleyball, plus evening entertainment, they won’t be bored.
There are two large pools, the beach is just across a pedestrianised road, choice and quality of food is good, and the spacious family rooms can easily sleep two adults and two children. Prestige offers seven nights’ all-inclusive from £879 per adult and £249 per child between three and seven, including flights from Luton and transfers.
Holiday Village Tenerife follows the tried-and-tested, family-friendly First Choice formula. There are three pools, one with a waterslide; stage, swimming and football academies; kids’ and teens’ clubs; a cinema, air hockey, pool tables and a bowling alley.
There is also live entertainment and theme nights in the restaurant. The family rooms and suites are spacious, sleeping up to five. First Choice offers seven nights’ all-inclusive from £612 based on a family of four sharing, including flights from Gatwick on October 30.
Waterbabies will love the Green Garden Resort & Suites in Playa de las Americas, Tenerife – a booking here gives free access to Siam Park, 10 minutes away by courtesy bus. As well as the rooms, where stays are on an all-inclusive basis, there are one and two-bedroom self-catering apartments with kitchens to suit families who like to keep meals flexible.
Thomas Cook offers seven nights’ all-inclusive from £635 per adult and £369 per child departing Gatwick in May.
You’ll find a lot of family holidaymakers in the Canaries, but that doesn’t mean the islands are off limits for couples.
An easy solution for those who don’t want screaming kids spoiling their trip is an adult-only hotel. Thomson Couples collection features three four-star hotels in the Canaries where clients can holiday child-free.
The smart, white-turreted Hotel H10 Timanfaya Palace is tucked between the mountains and the ocean at Lanzarote’s Playa Blanca. With daybeds for two and massages a deux, it’s one for couples who enjoy each other’s company. Thomson offers seven nights’ all-inclusive from £706 departing Gatwick on October 16.
The 120-room Iberostar Grand Hotel El Mirador is a luxury adult-only hotel in a peaceful area of Costa Adeje in Tenerife. It’s a village-style property with Moorish and colonial influences, and guests can dine at the hotel’s three restaurants plus the options on offer at the Iberostar Grand Hotel Antelias. There’s a large spa and discounts on green fees at the island’s seven golf courses. Jet2holidays offers seven nights’ B&B from £775, with flights from Manchester.
An alternative to an entirely adult-only property is a hotel with an adult section. Children aren’t allowed in the Club Volcan area of the Volcan Lanzarote Hotel, which features luxurious club rooms, a breakfast room and a sun terrace. New for Cosmos Holidays this season, seven nights’ B&B in Club Volcan in April starts from £725, with flights from Gatwick.
For an even more luxurious adult-only hideaway, Classic Collection Holidays recommends Tagor Villas at Abama Golf & Spa Resort in Tenerife. The villas are set in lush, tropical gardens, with a private pool, but the utter tranquillity isn’t the only benefit.
A buffet selection of food, soft drinks, beer and white wine are complimentary during the day in the pool area, there’s a buggy available for the entire stay, a personal villa attendant on call from 8am to 8pm, and access to the VIP lounge at the airport. Seven nights in a one-bedroom suite in October through Classic Collection starts from £2,030, including flights and private transfers.
Get active in Canaries
The Canary Islands are suitable for more than just sunbathing. The islands’ dramatic volcanic landscapes provide a backdrop for walking and cycling – especially in winter when temperatures are more activity-friendly.
Those who want to be active but hotel-based could try the Cordial Mogan Playa in Gran Canaria (from £899 for seven nights in November with Sovereign), which has a tennis court, squash court, dive centre, cycle hire and bowling alley.
Inntravel offers self-guided walking holidays in Gran Canaria and Tenerife, while Explore has two group walking tours in the region: one in Gran Canaria, the other visiting the lesser-known islands of La Gomera and El Hierro.
For a taste of the action, Attraction World has a day-long Jeep Survival Safari from Playa del Ingles in Gran Canaria that includes a ride around the island’s dirt tracks and a camel ride (from £50 per adult and £38 for children aged three to 12. On Lanzarote, there’s a Submarine Safari from £60 per adult and £35 per child between two and 12.
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