We decided to turn our back on cold Germany and flew to Fuerteventura, Canary Islands. After having cold after cold and not really getting healthy this was indeed the best decision. We also needed a break from the one topic that dominates everything in Germany and is also dramatized and exaggerated in the media way too much…
Our flights were quite exhausting with lots of delays thanks to passengers who showed up late and de-icing the plane wings. After a short breakfast stop at the Senator Lounge in Frankfurt we started our second leg of the journey and arrived on Fuerteventura in the late afternoon. We hadn’t made any plans for this day except to buy some food for the next couple of days. We’re staying at an apartment that was organized by our surf school (but is actually owned by a third party). The place is okay…. But we only need it for sleeping and breakfast anyway so that’s not a big issue. There is even a (non-heated) pool but it’s probably too cold for a swim as we “only” have around 72°F here.
On our first “full” day here in Lajares we had decided to explore our surroundings a little more. There was no surf school (this being the 24th) so we had the whole day to find out what else this island had to offer except waves. As it turns out – a lot more! First we hiked up our local volcano, the Calderón Honda. The 3.1 miles loop trail took us over the ridge of an adjoining mountain all the way up to the crater. It was a quite steep and challenging way up but the view on top made us forget all about that. Another highlight were the chipmunks that had chosen this old volcano as their home. They even came up close to use, but retreated once they realized we did not bring any food. After a quick lunch at the crater we walked back to our parking area at the bottom.
Once we arrived back where we started we had another surprise for the kids – a camel tour. We had just missed them as we had arrived earlier but now they were back and we went on a short 30min tour through the volcanic landscape. After chatting a little bit with our camel guide, Nicolas, we found out that he was not only German too – he even grew up in the same neighborhood of Stuttgart as Mike, just a couple of streets over. What are the odds?! We had a really good conversation with him and learned that he had emigrated to Fuerteventura 5 years ago. The last two years had been super hard for him, both with no tourists coming to the island (meaning no income at all) and also the very strict lockdown (enforced by the military) that was in effect for a long time here. He also shared some more stories and anecdotes from his life both in Germany and on Fuerteventura. It’s just incredible to see how God always guides our paths and what amazing people we get to know along the way.
At night we wanted to eat at a restaurant but (unlike Germany), almost all of the restaurants were closed. Finally we found a pizza place in Lajares that was also offering take out – which saved us from having to eat pasta again :). As a dessert we had brought the rest of our homemade Christmas cookies. All in all we did have a very different, but also very memorable and enjoyable Christmas Eve here on Fuerteventura under the palm trees.