The 13 must see islands of Portugal and Spain


Spanish Island: Mallorca

To the east of mainland Spain is the highly popular tourist island of Mallorca, and at the eastern end of the island are the Caves Of Drach, made up of four connected caves, the Black Cave, White Cave, Cave Of Luis Salvador and Cave Of The French. This series of large underground chambers with clear shallow waters and impressive stalactite ceiling has become a major attractions for visitors to the island.

13. Cuevas Del Drach


Portuguese Island: Madeira

Closer to the Moroccan capital, Marrakesh, than to Lisbon is the Portuguese island of Madeira, at it's centre the Ribeiro Frio Natural Park encompasses the islands incredible central mountain range. Within the park visitors can seek out the small trail that leads up to the Balcoes Viewpoint and look out across the hugely impressive Ribeira De Metade Valley.

12. Balcoes Viewpoint


Spanish Island: Lanzarote

The artist Jason deCaires Taylor is famous for his underwater sculptures, including the first underwater sculpture park off the island of Grenada and a submerged museum off the coast of Mexico.

The Museo Atlantico off the coast of Lanzarote is the only underwater museum of it's type in Europe where three hundred separate statues at a depth of 12 to 15 metres have become one of the top diving attractions.

11. Museo Atlántico


Spanish Island: La Palma

On the most western of the Spanish Canary Islands, La Palma, at a height of 2,423 metres (7,950 ft) above sea level is a rocky mound that translates as 'Rock For The Boys'. From it's vantage point it offers incredible views over the mountains, the nearby Calder De Taburiente National Park and to neighbouring islands Tenerife, El Hierro and Gomera.

Pictured is the Roque De Los Muchachos Observatory.

10. Roque De Los Muchachos


Spanish Island: Mallorca

Covering almost the entire western end of the Spanish island of Mallorca is the Serra De Tramuntana Mountain Range, it's highest peak the Puig Major standing at 1,445 metres (4,740 ft) above sea level is the highest mountain in the Balearics. The entire Cultural Landscape of Serra De Tramuntana has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

9. Serra De Tramuntana


Portuguese Island: Corvo Island

Meaning 'Island Of The Crow', the Portuguese Corvo Island way out in the North Atlantic Ocean is the smallest, most northern and westernmost of the Azores archipelago. It is an island of sheer cliffs composed of ancient lava flows, a lot of steep coastline and remnants of the ancient Caldeirao Volcano that once dominated the island.

Pictured is the Caldeirão, the crater of a collapsed volcano.

8. Corvo Island


Portuguese Island: Sao Miguel

The 'Lagoon Of The Seven Cities' on the Portuguese Sao Miguel Island in the Azores is a twin lake in the crater of a dormant volcano, making for one of the most beautiful natural sites in the Azores. 

7. Lago Das Sete Cidades


Spanish Island: La Gomera

On the Spanish Canary Island of La Gomera is a 40 square kilometre (15 square mile) area of protected land named Garajonay National Park. The park protects a large area of sub tropical forest and a number of animal species, though the main attraction for visitors is the large rock formations carved by erosion from what was once ancient volcanoes. The entire national park is considered a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Pictured is the Roque De Agando.

6. Garajonay National Park


Portuguese Island: Madeira

Back on the Portuguese island of Madeira within it's central mountain range is Pico Ruivo (The Red Peak) standing at 1,861 metres (6,106 ft) and Pico Das Torres (The Peak Of The Towers) standing at 1,853 metres (6,079 ft) above sea level. Together they are the two tallest mountains of Madeira. The peaks can be reached either by undertaking a strenuous 5-6 hour trek over a 12 kilometre route, or there is the option of a much more accessible 3 kilometre route that takes a mere 2 hours to complete. Either way the hike will provide visitors with some of the most incredible views over the island.

5. Pico Ruivo & Pico Das Torres


Spanish Island: La Palma

At the centre of the Spanish Canary Island of La Palma is the Caldera De Taburiente National Park, named after the huge 10 kilometre (6.2 mile) volcanic crater with it's towering walls that can reach up to 2,000 metres (6,561 ft) over the caldera floor. Visitors to La Palma should not miss the sight of this enormous geological feature surrounded by the Canary Island Pine Forest that sweeps it's way across the landscape.

4. Caldera De Taburiente National Park


Spanish Island: Lanzarote

On the Spanish Canary Island of Lanzarote is the unusual Timanfaya National Park, named after the only active volcano left on the island. Made up almost entirely of volcanic soil the park offers visitors an alien landscape of odd coloured rocks and lakes the likes of which are seldom found anywhere else on the planet. Due to it's delicate flora and fauna and unique landscape the area has been declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.

3. Timanfaya National Park


Portuguese Island: Pico Island

In the Azores archipelago is the island of Pico, dominated by the volcano of the same name. As well as lush forests and long coastline the biggest feature of the island is the 2,351 metre (7,713 ft) Mount Pico, Portugal's highest mountain, also the highest point of the mid Atlantic ridge.

2. Pico Island


Spanish Island: Tenerife

On the Spanish Canary Island of Tenerife is Teide National Park, centred on Mount Teide, the highest mountain in Spain at 3,718 metres (12,198 ft) above sea level. Considered by scientists to have similar environmental and geological conditions to the planet Mars, Teide National Park is one of the twelve treasures of Spain. Due to it's location on the incredibly popular tourist destination of Tenerife, Teide National Park has become the most visited national park in Europe and is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

1. Teide National Park

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