6 Best Things To Do in Betancuria, Fuerteventura's former capital

Published on October 25, 2023
FuerteventuraThings to do in Fuerteventura
visit betancuria fuerteventura
Visit Betancuria, one of the most charming places in Fuerteventura

Did you know that Betancuria is the historic capital of the Canary Islands?
The town of Santa María de Betancuria was founded at the start of the 15th century by the Norman conquerors, so the city owes its name to Jean de Bethencourt, who was the leader of the conquering army.

Located away from the coast, in the heart of Fuerteventura, Betancuria is a unique place that every visitor to the island should see. 

Why should you visit Betancuria?

You should visit Betancuria when traveling to Fuerteventura if you're interested in knowing more about the island's history. The town used to be Fuerteventura's capital before it was moved to Puerto del Rosario, which is now the largest town on the island.

Things to do in Betancuria 

First of all, if you want to visit Betancuria, we recommend hiring a car, which is pretty cheap to do in Fuerteventura.  This way, you can stop along the way to see the Morro Velosa statues, as well as some of the best viewpoints in Fuerteventura

See our recommended drives around Fuerteventura

1. Convento de San Buenaventura

This is actually a church, located where the old convent of San Buenaventura used to be. This church has been included within the Historic Site of Betancuria since 1979.

The building is nowadays abandoned and not complete anymore, so it's a good place for adventurers, who seek to explore these kinds of mysterious places.

How to get there

2. Church of Santa Maria de Betancuria

betancuria fuerteventura
The church is probably one of the most visited places in Betancuria

This is the most iconic place in Betancuria and probably the most photographed as well. It is also included within the Historic Site of Betancuria.

There is usually a lovely atmosphere in the plaza in front of the church, so it's nice to sit there on a bench, looking at people and just listening to the music (there are often street performers playing something in the square).

How to get there

3. Fuerteventura Archeological Museum

things to do betancuria archeological museum fuerteventura
Image source: Cabildo de Fuerteventura

The Archaeological Museum of Fuerteventura hosts four temporary exhibitions on the archaeological heritage of the island, paying special attention to the dissemination of the culture of the Majo people. Access is free, from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Tuesday to Saturday. Currently, all the rooms of the museum space can be visited, with the “Archaeological Fuerteventura”, “Re (s) tos” and “The search for ancestral faces”, the exhibition “Back home. The legacy of the Majo people”, inaugurated last June, in which different objects belonging to the local culture, that were previously found in other museums in the Canary Islands, are exhibited for the first time in Fuerteventura.

  • From from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
  • The museum is open from Tuesday to Saturday (Closed on Sunday and Monday)
  • Entrance is free

4. Ermita de las Peñitas

You will need to do a bit of walking and trekking in order to reach this place, which is a hermitage, built on the side of a cliff.

It is a quiet and overlooked place since it requires a bit of walking in the sun, but if you're looking to find some of Fuerteventura's hidden gems, this is a place we would recommend for you. 

How to get there

5. Ermita de la Virgen de la Peña

vega de rio palmas betancuria fuerteventura
Vega de Rio Palmas is only 10 minutes away by car from Betancuria

La Virgen de la Pena is the island's patron saint and this church is located in Vega de Rio Palmas, a small village in the municipality of Betancuria. It is worth stopping for a while to see the church's architecture and decorations since it's dedicated to Fuerteventura's patron saint.

How to get there

6. El Pinar de Betancuria

el pinar de betancuria fuerteventura
El Pinar de Betancuria

El Pinar is a picnic area and probably the greenest place in Fuerteventura.

It is located very close to Betancuria, and it's worth stopping here to see the Canarian pine trees and enjoy a few moments in nature (there is also a playground for kids).

How to get there

Visit the charming Betancuria

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Visit the old historic capital of Fuerteventura

If you're planning to visit Betancuria, you really don't need to make a lot of plans ahead of time.  Just take a stroll through the beautifully paved streets, admire the old architecture and enjoy the atmosphere, as Betancuria is definitely one of the most charming towns in Fuerteventura.

Also, if you want to grab something to eat in the area, we would recommend stopping at Casa de la Naturaleza, a beautifully decorated place in Vega de Rio Palmas.

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