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Fuerteventura - Northern area

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fuerte north map El Cotillo Glass Beach Flag Beach Corralejo - Rocky Point Corralejo - Shooting Gallery Majanicho Hierro Marrajo

At the NW tip is El Cotillo with it's famous beach and wave break.

At the NE tip of the island is Corralejo - probably the most popular holiday resort (for Brits) & an excellent base for the windsurfer. Corralejo has been subjected to gross over-development over the last 10 years and apartments & hotels now sprawl over a wide area.

The town istself teems with restaurants, bars, clubs, "duty-free" shops, car hire places, amusement arcades, etc. There are a couple of worthwhile exceptions - try Corky Kirkham's bar (Brit. ex-pat & a mean wave sailor), and the No Work Team shop does some good clothes (but not cheap). If you like nightlife, this is the place to be, & most UK package tours end up here.

(Jun 2001 update: Corralejo is growing unfeasibly large, to the extent that some of the newer apartment blocks & hotels are a good 30 minutes walk from the centre. It looks like there's still lots more building to be done yet. I'm sure there isn't the market yet & that it'll be years before they can fill all the beds - if ever.)

It's possible to sail in Corralejo bay itself, with access via Waikiki beach (yeah- really!). It's pretty rocky here, so aim to launch & recover via the slipway. Never done it myself - too much trouble trying to find somewhere to park. There used to be a small board-rental place by the Waikiki. I'm not sure if it's still there.

The most popular beaches for windsurfers are Flag Beach & Glass Beach (there are no signs with the beach names however!).

There is a coastal path going round the N. side of the island from El Cotillo to Corralejo, with an "escape route" at Majanicho heading S. to Lajares. If you're into serious waves and soul sailing, the N coast is the place to be.

However, be careful taking this track unless you've rented a 4WD. Much of it is soft sand, or deeply rutted, rocky path. I have done it a couple of times in the ubiquitous rented Corsa, but shifting sands can cause unpredictable problems, & ruts can contrive to remove the sump, exhaust, suspension arms & other low-hanging fruit.

None of the launching spots on the N. shore are user friendly - you're launching from rock/lava almost all the way. None of the breaks/beaches are marked, so it's impossible to describe how to find them. Windsurf mag (UK), May 1999 & Nov 1995 have more details about locations along this coast.

The North shore really only works in the winter as the summer trades are too onshore. The swells are larger in the winter too, but the wind is more hit or miss. I'll readily admit to never having sailed on the N Shore - mainly due to there being no wind when I've been there, and the problems with Corsas, launching & the track - as mentioned above.

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