EUROPE / SPAIN / FUERTEVENTURA

Fuerteventura’s Corralejo beach is full of surprises on a family holiday to the Canary Islands

Fuerteventura’s Corralejo beach is full of surprises on a family holiday to the Canary Islands

We take our children to review the all-inclusive Clubhotel Riu Oliva Beach in Corralejo, Fuerteventura

“Everybody is naked,” said my brother in a mock whisper.

The glorious beach at our hotel in Fuerteventura is full of surprises.

Not only is Corralejo bigger and sandier than any beach I can remember. With gently crashing turquoise waves, perfect for the children to try out their new bodyboards. And camel rides along sands which stretch for miles from the front of our hotel, the Clubhotel Riu Oliva Beach Resort.

A boy bodyboards in the sea on Corralejo beach in front of the ClubHotel Riu Oliva Beach Resort.

Bodyboarding in the sea on Corralejo beach

But one day as we turn right out of the hotel and venture further along in search of rock pools, we unwittingly gatecrash a naturist section.

This eye-opening experience was not part of the plan for a family trip away to celebrate my mum’s 70th.

My embarrassed mum picked up her pace, I tried not to snigger like a child while the actual children with us didn’t bat an eyelid, except my eight-year-old nephew who asked if it was legal.

While I had carefully dressed my son and daughter in their UV swimsuits, the youngsters in this area were in their birthday suits, while relaxed adults strolled in and out of the sea.

And the giggle we had about it later (apologies to naturist readers) confirmed this as a holiday to remember.

Hotel

The Riu Oliva Beach is a huge, all-inclusive resort set back from the sands.

We are Riu regulars and love the good food, child-friendly pools and fun feel of their hotels.

We knew this one was soon to be refurbished but the location more than made up for the slightly tired surroundings.

One of the pools at the Riu Oliva Beach hotel, with the beach behind

One of the pools at the Riu Oliva Beach hotel, next to the beach

The hotel is divided into a main tower and a lower rise annexe area better suited to families, where we stayed.

Our family room had a lovely large balcony, double bedroom and two single sofa beds for our children.

Swimming pools

There are two swimming pools – the fish-shaped one was where we spent most of our time. It is well designed for children with varying depths and an island to swim around.

Hotel guests relax by one of the wimming pools at Clubhotel Riu Oliva Beach Resort

The fish-shaped swimming pool at Clubhotel Riu Oliva Beach Resort

On one side is a handy shop, filled with temping inflatables for the children and buckets and spades.

Restaurants

On the other side of the pool is the smaller of the two main buffet restaurants.

There is also a restaurant specialising in Asian cuisine and another boasting Canarian favourites.

Our party of 11 – aged from three to 70 – all found something to their taste.

Entertainment

There is children’s entertainment daily with a party at 5pm, plus an adults’ show every night at 9.30pm.

A children’s disco would also have been welcome in the early evening which we have had at other Riu hotels.

All-inclusive

All-inclusive here means just that, all we paid for all week was a camel ride along the beach. And our inflatable dolphin for the pool!

Having all your food and drink included certainly makes it easier when you are in a big group as we were.

Surroundings

The nearby town of Corralejo has a pretty square, markets, a water park plus a ferry to nearby Lanzarote.
But we found plenty to entertain us at the hotel.

A camel ride along Corralejo beach in front of the Riu Oliva Beach Resort in Fuerteventura

A camel ride along Corralejo beach

In conclusion

Mornings in the pool, afternoons at the beach and evenings enjoying the food, drink and entertainment.

One magic show for children was especially good.

You might find plusher venues in the Canaries but I doubt you will find one in a better spot to enjoy the landscape.

Just remember to watch where you walk if you want to explore the sands.

Or pack extra sun cream.

*For a more detailed review of the hotel, see here.

Accommodation: We stayed as guests at Clubhotel Riu Oliva Beach Resort, an all-inclusive hotel in Corralejo, Fuerteventura in the Canary Islands, Spain, for the purposes of this review. All opinions are our own.

A hotel on the best beach in the Canary Islands? We stay at the Club Hotel Riu Oliva Beach in Fuerteventura with children

A hotel on the best beach in the Canary Islands? We stay at the Club Hotel Riu Oliva Beach in Fuerteventura with children

Five reasons to book a family-friendly all-inclusive holiday at this hotel on Corralejo beach

Location

The location is the big selling point of this hotel. The Riu Oliva Beach sits on one of the best beaches in the Canary Islands – the Grandes Playas de Corralejo.

The sweeping beach has perfect white sand and the warm sea has rolling waves ideal for playing and a bit of bodyboarding.

It’s a great beach where you can take a camel ride or a stroll. But a word of warning if you do walk – turning right eventually  takes you to a naturist section!

Oliva Beach in Fuerteventura

Rooms

The hotel is soon to be refurbished. When we stayed, the rooms were a bit dated but a good size and kept clean.

a hotel room at Club Hotel Riu Oliva Beach

A family room at Club Hotel Riu Oliva Beach

Our family room had a double bedroom, two single sofa beds in the lounge, a kitchen table and fridge plus a good sized balcony.

Refurbished room at Club Hotel Riu Oliva Beach

The hotel is being refurbished to look like this

Swimming pools

The hotel is split in two, the original high rise section and a low rise villa area better suited to families.

The villa area has a lovely pool shaped like a fish, with an island in the middle and varying depths.

The main hotel section has an older, oblong-shaped pool and small toddlers pool.

a swimming pool at Club Hotel Riu Oliva Beach

The pool at the main complex of Club Hotel Riu Oliva Beach

Food

There are four restaurants and it is all-inclusive.

The two main restaurants – one in each area of the hotel – serve the same food.

We preferred the one in the villa section which felt less of a canteen.

There is also a Canarian restaurant which does tasty steaks and an enjoyable Chinese restaurant. You have to book both of these in advance.

Activities

The RiuLand club for children wasn’t the best we have seen but the staff were great. There is a small playground, and they do an outdoor show at 5pm every day.

There was an excellent magician who visited and the evening shows for all are good fun.

The only complaint was the lack of a children’s disco around 7pm which we have seen at other Riu hotels.

*For a full review of the holiday, see here.

(We stayed as guests of the hotel for this review. For prices and information visit the Club Hotel Riu Oliva Beach website).