When visiting La Palma, one of the Spanish Canary Islands, I was most struck by the extreme natural beauty of the island. It is known as ‘Isla Bonita’, literally the beautiful island and during my visit I definitely found out why.
The capital and main port of the island, Santa Cruz de La Palma, is utterly charming but sadly on the day I visited everything was closed for a public holiday. Instead of wandering around a pretty but deserted city, we decided to get out into the countryside and explore the forests of the island.
Driving up the gently sloping, windy roads into the hills, we were treated to stunning views over the city and the port.
As with other Canary Islands La Palma is volcanic however, unlike some of the other islands which are rocky and barren, it is green, lush and very fertile. It is covered in some absolutely stunning areas of forest, and has the most diverse range of floras and faunas in the Canary Islands.
When we got out of the car in the middle of this forest all I could smell was the intensely strong smell of pine from the trees. I can still close my eyes and remember that exact smell and how I felt as I stood there with thousands of trees stretched out before my eyes.
I’ll never forget how peaceful and quiet it was out there amongst the trees in the forest. Literally all I could hear was birds in the trees and the gentle whistle of the wind rustling the trees around me. It’s not often you come across a place as serene as this.
I would love to go back to La Palma and explore more of the natural beauty of the island. Sadly I was only there for one day as part of a cruise holiday, but I would certainly love to return and do some serious walking through the stunning forest areas of the island.