Canary Islands Weather in January - Winter is better in the sun
Start the year with a holiday in the sun...what else can be better than relaxing in the sun, while back home it's cold and gloomy? And the Canaries might be just the perfect destination for such a trip in January!
When winter comes and the cold hits, many people in Europe will start looking for warmer travel destinations, where they can escape the low temperatures even if for a short while.
Cheating winter is possible in the Canary Islands, where you usually have temperatures above 20°C during the day and the sun will still shine bright for many hours, making it possible for you to get a tan, even in January.
Weather in the Canary Islands in January
January is one of the coldest months in Europe, and this is the case also in the Canary Islands. But the difference is that cold in the Canary Islands means T-shirt weather on most days and a light jacket at night, which is a huge upgrade from the cold and freezing weather you typically get back home.
Some parts of the Canary Island do get some rainy days in January, especially the north of the islands in the case of Tenerife and Gran Canaria and the east coast and north of the island in the case of La Palma.
Temperatures in the Canary Islands in January
Below you can see the average temperatures for the islands during the month of January. But do keep in mind that especially in Tenerife and Gran Canaria the temperatures in the north will be lower than in the south during the winter months.
- Average high temperature: 21.8 °C
- Average low temperature: 15.3 °C
- Daily mean: 18.5 °C
Gran Canaria (Airport)
- Average high temperature: 20.8 °C
- Average low temperature: 15 °C
- Daily mean: 17.9 °C
- Average high temperature: 20.7 °C
- Average low temperature: 14 °C
- Daily mean: 17.3 °C
- Average high temperature: 20.6 °C
- Average low temperature: 14.7 °C
- Daily mean: 17.7 °C
As you can see, the values for temperatures in the Canary Islands in January are relatively similar between the largest and most visited islands in the archipelago.
However, in Tenerife, the difference between the south where most of the tourist resorts are located (Playa de las Americas, Los Cristianos, Costa Adeje) and the north can be quite big. In the north, you have more greenery and the Anaga Rural Park, which is as spectacular as it is thanks to the humidity that characterizes the area.
So if the sun is what you're after, just stay in the south and go visit the north on day trips, when the weather forecast is favorable.
If you want more info about the weather conditions, temperatures & sunshine hours in January, you can read the dedicated article for each island:
Rain in the Canary Islands in January
- Tenerife South - Average rainfall (mm): 17 mm
- Gran Canaria South - Average rainfall (mm): 12 mm
- Lanzarote - Average rainfall (mm): 17 mm
- Fuerteventura - Average rainfall (mm): 14 mm
Although Tenerife seems to get the largest amount of rain in January, this usually happens in the north of the island, and less often in the south, where most of the resorts are located (with the exception of Puerto de la Cruz).
Sea temperature in January in the Canary Islands
- Tenerife South - Average sea temperature: 20.2°C
- Gran Canaria South - Average sea temperature: 20.1°C
- Lanzarote - Average sea temperature: 19.4°C
- Fuerteventura - Average sea temperature: 19.4°C
The water temperature will be lower in January compared to December.
Can you swim in the Canary Islands in January?
Honestly, it depends on how the weather is that year and where you are trying to swim.
Some beaches have warmer water since they are more sheltered and don't have strong currents. We've been able to go swimming in the south on Playa Las Vistas, Playa la Pinta (Puerto Colon) and Playa Camison. But we've also gone swimming in Playa Las Teresitas several times, which is located near Santa Cruz.
Should you travel to the Canary Islands in January?
We love traveling to the Canaries in January.
At this time of the year, Tenerife is usually our first choice, but this is a personal preference, based on what activities we like to do while we're there.
January can be a good time to go hiking, as the weather won't be as hot as during the summer months. But you should also check the forecast before going hiking, as you wouldn't want to be surprised by a cold shower while you're in the forests or on top of a mountain. In our case, winter is the best time for hiking and we love spending time exploring the nature of the islands.
Even if you don't get the best weather for sunbathing, remember that there are many other things to do in the Canary Islands, besides spending time on the beach. You can explore new towns, hire a car and do an island tour or you can try various bars and restaurants, sampling the local gastronomy.
In any case, winter is better in the Canaries!