An Andalusian island
Isla Canela is a peaceful island separated from Spain’s southwest coast by a narrow canal. The north is covered by the Guadiana wetlands, while a 6-kilometre stretch of sand lines the southern coast, taking in the rustic eateries of Isla Canela town and the sophisticated nightlife at Punta del Moral marina. It’s a mazy and beautiful place, with a road bridge getting you to Ayamonte on the mainland in 15 minutes.
Blue Flag beach
Isla Canela’s beach is one of the longest and widest in the region. The water is calm, but Atlantic breezes give enough power to keep sailing fans happy. Punta del Moral Beach continues on from Isla Canela Beach – at the end of the beach there are umbrellas and sunloungers dotted along the shore, plus canoes and pedalos available to rent.
The bustling Punta del Moral marina is filled with sleek yachts and cruisers and is the starting point for fishing and canoeing expeditions along the coast. Tennis courts are next door, and a short walk away is the 18-hole Isla Canela Golf Course. It’s set among the wetlands, so it doubles up as a top spot for bird-watching.
Ayamonte is just a 15-minute drive across the bridge. It wears its Andalusian heritage well, with narrow shopping streets and pretty plazas decorated with wrought-iron gates and tiled fountains. Or you could take in the Baroque architecture of Huelva, an hour’s drive away – while the sights of Seville are just another half-hour on from here.