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Canary Islands - Facts for the traveller, when to go, events

Facts for the traveller for Canary Islands

Observatorio Astrofísico del Roque de los Muchachos, an observatory on Isla de la Palma Visas: Spain (of which the Canaries are a part) along with Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Portugal, forms part of the border-free travel zone known as the Schengen Area. US, Canadian, Australian, New Zealand and Israeli citizens are among those who may enter the Canary Islands as tourists without a visa and stay up to 90 days. EU passport holders can come and go as they please.
Time: GMT/UTC GMT (Greenwich mean time)
Electricity: 220V ,50Hz
Weights & measures: Metric

When to Go to Canary Islands

Go whenever - the weather is great year-round. December to February are the islands' busiest months, bringing the thickest crowds and higher prices. Being winter, the weather is also slightly cooler. The best value on airfares is offered from November to mid-December and even better, March to May (with the exception of the Easter rush).

Canary Islands Events

Like many of their mainland cousins, Canarios kick back and celebrate at plenty of fiestas and ferias throughout the year. Carnaval in February/March is the wildest time, and brings several weeks of parades, fancy dress and general good times across the islands. In Santa Cruz de Tenerife, the party rivals the Rio Carnaval. From 21 to 30 June, the Bajada de Nuestra Señora de las Nieves is the premier religious festival on Isla de la Palma, but is held only every five years. The most important religious celebration held on Gran Canaria is the Fiesta de la Virgen del Pino, and festivities last for two weeks, culminating on 6 to 8 September.

Las Palmas de Gran Canaria hosts several important arts festivals, including the Festival Internacional de Música (January); the Festival de Opera (February-March); the Festival de Ballet y Danza (May); and the Muestra Internacional de Cine, an international film festival held every two years in October and November. If that's not enough, the Encuentro Teatral Tres Continentes draws theatre companies from Europe, Latin America and Africa to Agüimes (Gran Canaria) in September.

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