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Phespirit goes to Fuerteventura
Jandía     September 2009

AROUND FUERTEVENTURA

Map of Fuerteventura

1 Cofete

This place has a genuine fly-blown frontier town feel. It is can only be reached by footpaths or by rough tracks suitable only for 4WD vehicles. Its dozen-or-so ramshackle huts are well spaced, with a few pens in between for livestock.

Restaurant Cofete provides refreshment to those passing through. Phespirit paused a while and cooled off with an Aupa ice lolly.

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2 Morro Jable

The magnificent golden beaches of the southeast coast terminate at Morro Jable's impassable rocky headland. Morro Jable Port lies immediately on the other side.

Phespirit visited or hiked past the port on three or four occasions and always found it quiet and relatively inactive. There are no little fishing boats or sleek, expensive-looking yachts. Usually there is just a single inter-island roll-on roll-off ferry moored up throughout the day, waiting to depart at half past six in the evening.

This lack of traffic may explain the stunningly clear blue water.

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3 Jandía

A typical Spanish resort designed for the European mass-tourism market. That doesn't make it a bad thing if it's accepted for what it is and is used for what it's most useful. Phespirit used it:

  • for the buses to and from his hotel at Playa de Esquinzo;
  • for the buses to Costa Calma;
  • for the Thursday market;
  • for the hiking trail to Pico de la Zarza;
  • for the Netto supermarkets;
  • for the Dalia Perfumeries selling factor 50 suncream;
  • for the Internet café hidden behind the shops.

Aside from that there are bars, restaurants, cafés and shops .....

..... all standard fare.

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4 Playa de Esquinzo

Phespirit stayed at the Fuerteventura Princess hotel on Playa de Esquinzo, an hour's walk north from Jandía or a three to three and a half hour walk south from Costa Calma.

As well as beach walking, there is the option to take a half-hourly blue and yellow bus from directly in front of the hotel, calling at all stops through Jandía and Morro Jable for a fixed price of one euro, but otherwise this is a self-contained community in isolation.

Perfect.

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5 Playa de Sotavento

Between the western headland of Morro Jable and the northern tip of Costa Calma there are eighteen beaches and bays. The giants are Playa del Matorral - which cups the twin towns of Morro Jable and Jandía - and the mighty, wind-raked Playa de Sotavento, with just one remote hotel to spoil its otherwise immaculate purity.

Playa del Matorral is an impressive four kilometres long but Playa de Sotavento beats it by half a kilometre, not counting the pristine beaches that join seamlessly on to each end. Roughly two million square metres of flawless flat sand spread out between its distant cliffs and the edge of its surf.

This is indeed one of the finest beaches in the world.

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6 Costa Calma

One of the larger resort towns on the southeast coast, but merely a means to an end for Phespirit. He started two long beach walks heading south, and two hikes across to the west coast from here.

The town itself was of no interest to him, and the town's beaches were a bit too commercialised and crowded for his taste.

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7 Los Boquetes

Nothing more significant than a point where sandhills replace cliffs sloping down towards the ocean. Just a few metres to the north is the wall of black rock that marks the end of the line for west coast walkers on the Pared Isthmus.

This whole area is wonderful under brilliant blue skies.

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8 La Pared

La Pared is a small outpost on a corner of the west coast popular with surfers. A natural flat-topped sandstone arch extends out into the sea, making it popular with fishermen. Just behind it stands a restaurant with a swimming pool, making it popular with tourists.

It offers a rare opportunity to observe the west coast for those who are not prepared to hike, nor quad-bike, nor hire a 4WD.

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9 Pájara

Phespirit had forgotten he'd visited Pájara during his previous stay on Fuerteventura. The dry river bed next to the church with 'Aztec' stonework, lined with flowering trees, all purples, oranges and red, brought the memories flooding back.

With a bit more time to play with on this visit, he wandered farther and more aimlessly around, reaching as far as the football ground with floodlights at the southeast corner.

Phespirit visited the town during siesta time, so it was particularly docile with barely a detectable activity transpiring anywhere. Even the breeze was taking its siesta.

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10 Valle de Ortega

La Fortaleza bar/restaurant in Valle de Ortega was the venue for a promotional presentation of Merino wool blankets and mattresses that Phespirit had to endure on a tour to Pájara and La Pared.

There are a few nearby windmills with skeletal sails that catch the eye, but otherwise this is a lonely unappealing dot on the map of Fuerteventura's scrubby interior.

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  1. Cofete
  2. Morro Jable
  3. Jandía
  4. Playa de Esquinzo
  5. Playa de Sotavento
  6. Costa Calma
  7. Los Boquetes
  8. La Pared
  9. Pájara
  10. Valle de Ortega
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Cofete Morro Jable Jandía Playa de Esquinzo Playa de Sotavento Costa Calma Los Boquetes La Pared Pájara Valle de Ortega