The tourism that arrives to the Spanish island La Palma is not concentrated in a specific city or a tourist resort as on the other Canary Islands. On La Palma many visitors choose accommodation in the mountain areas to enjoy the tranquillity and stunning nature that the south European island has to offer.
The island of La Palma is known as the “pretty island” thanks to its landscapes, forests, streams and beaches. The clarity of its night sky has meant that the Observatory of the Roque de Los Muchachos, situated on the highest point of La Palma, has become a world reference point for Astrophysics, thanks to the installation of the Great Canarian Telescope, currently the telescope with the largest and most powerful lens in the world. Moreover, its natural treasures include the forest of El Canal and Los Tiles, which is one of the best examples of laurel forest, and is recognized as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO; as well as the National Park of the Crater of Taburiente.
La Palma, also called the “Isla Bonita” or Pretty Island, it is the greenest and most flowery of the Canary Islands. The high mountains and clear skies have made it the ideal location for the largest astrophysical observatory in the northern hemisphere. The centre of the island is a gigantic volcanic depression 1,500 meters (4,920 ft.) deep comprising the remarkable Caldera de Taburiente National Park.
• Surface: 708.32 square kilometers.
• Highest point: Roque de Los Muchachos, at 2,423 m.
• Protected nature reserves: 20.
- Complete Nature Reserves: Pinar de Garafía .
- Natural Monuments: Azufre, the Volcanoes of Aridane, the Risco de La Concepción, La Costa de Hiscaguán, the Barranco
del Jurado, the Volcanoes of Teneguía, the Volcanic Tube of Todoque and Idafe.
- Protected Landscapes: Tablado, Barranco de Las Angustias, Tamanca and Remo.
- Places of Scientific Interest: Juan Mayor, Barranco del Agua, and Las Salinas de Fuencaliente.
- Nature Parks: Las Nieves and Cumbre Vieja.
- National Park: La Caldera (The Crater) of Taburiente.
• Biosphere Reserve: The whole island.
• Marine Reserve: of the Island of La Palma.
• Typical flora: endemic species such as Echium aconthocarpum, violets of La Palma, the Canary pine (Pinus canariensis), and Lotus pyranthus.
• Typical fauna: local birds such as the crow (Corvus frugilegus), the chaffinch, Bolle’s pigeon (Columba bollii), the laurel pigeon (Columba junoniae), and the grasshopper (Acrostira euphorbiae).
• Population: 85,933 inhabitants*.
• Capital: Santa Cruz de La Palma.
The city has an important harbour which receives cruise ships and merchant ships, and was the third most important port of the Spanish Empire in the 16th century. It has a rich artistic heritage in the Flemish, Renaissance, Baroque and Neoclassical styles, as well as a colonial air, with buildings whose architecture is traditional.
• Municipalities: 14/ Barlovento, Breña Alta, Breña Baja, Fuencaliente de La Palma, Villa de Garafía, Los Llanos de Aridane, El Paso, Puntagorda, Puntallana, San Andrés y Sauces, Santa Cruz de La Palma, Villa y Puerto de Tazacorte, Tijarafe and Villa de Mazo.
• Airports: 1/ Mazo Airport.
• Passenger Ports: 2/ Port of Santa Cruz de La Palma and Port of Tazacorte.
• Yachting marinas: 2/ Port of Santa Cruz de La Palma and Port of Tazacorte.
• Public hospitals: 1/ General Hospital of La Palma.
• Museums: 13/ Naval Museum, Island Museum, Archaeological Museum Benahoarita, Ethnographic Museum Casa Luján, Museum of Silk and Cultural Heritage, Museum of the Corpus, Museum of Gofio, Museum of Wine, Museum of the Banana, Casa del Maestro, Museum Molino El Regente, Museum Ramón Rodríguez Martín, and the Sacred Museum of the Church of Our Lady of the Remedios.
• Gastronomy: Andalusian soups, vegetable broth, chickpeas, fish, pork with red mojo (spicy sauce), fresh fish, local desserts made with fresh products, milk bread and almond cheese.
• Denominations of origin: 2/ Regulatory Authority of the Denomination of Origin Vinos de La Palma and Regulatory Authority of the Protected Denomination of Origin Queso Palmero.
• Public holidays: Carnival (The Indians), Corpus in Villa de Mazo, Day of the Cross in Santa Cruz de La Palma (Fiesta de Los Mayos) and the Breñas, Festival of San Antonio del Monte in Garafía, the Procession of the Virgin of the Pine (every three years) in El Paso, Moors and Christians in Barlovento, Festival of the Flowering Almonds in Puntagorda, Festivals of the Devil in Tijarafe and local festivals in Fuencaliente and Tazacorte.
• Places of interest: Crater of Taburiente, World Biosphere Reserve of Los Tilos, Salinas (natural salt works) de Fuencaliente, Roque de Los Muchachos (Observatory), and the Volcano of Tenguía.