Renowned for its volcanic landscapes, forested terrain and black sand beaches, La Palma forms part of Spain’s Canary Islands off the north-west coast of Africa. It’s home to one of the most beautiful towns in the archipelago, Santa Cruz de la Palma, and a national park that encompasses a 10-kilometre-wide caldera.
Things to do in La Palma
Take the time to explore the colourful capital, Santa Cruz de la Palma, which is built atop the remains of an old lava flow. Backed by emerald hills, its cobblestoned streets open out to a bustling port and the charming square of Plaza España. You can delve into the local history at the Museum of the Island of La Palma or step aboard a replica of the “Santa Maria” that Christopher Columbus sailed in the 15th century.
In the central north of La Palma is Caldera de Taburiente National Park, which encompasses a massive crater framed by jagged peaks. Stretch your legs along one of the hiking trails that lead to its cascading falls and visit the Barranco de Las Angustias gorge or soak up the majestic views from the Mirador de Los Brecitos. The park is also home to La Palma’s highest peak, the 2,423-metre-high Roque de los Muchachos.
For a day at the beach, head to the black sands of Playa de Nogales, which is framed by dramatic cliffs near the town of Puntallana. It can easily be combined with a visit to the nearby Zona Recreativa Bosque de Los Tilos, a magnificent forest dominated by laurel trees and giant ferns that’s ideal for hiking.
Getting around La Palma
La Palma Airport is the main aviation gateway to the island and has flights to destinations across Europe. Buses travel around La Palma while having your own vehicle gives you greater freedom to explore.