on the island of Mallorca / in Canary Islands

garrika

Senior Member
español
Hola, a todos.
Siempre tengo dudas con qué preposición debo usar cuando hablo de islas. (IN / ON)

Palma is the capital city on the island of Mallorca
Things to Do in Canary Islands

Estas dos frases las he buscado en Google. Yo habría puesto en las dos IN. Pero ya no estoy del todo seguro.
¿Podéis ayudarme?

Muchas gracias
 
  • The Newt

    Senior Member
    English - US
    We say "in the Canary Islands."

    Islands per se don't have "capital cities," although if Mallorca is also a legal jurisdiction of some sort (which I assume it is) then you could say "the capital city of Mallorca."
     

    Sprache

    Senior Member
    English/inglés
    It depends. We use “in” with larger, populated islands that are also countries or political divisions of some kind. Hence, it’s usually “in the Canary Islands” or “in the Hawaiian islands” etc. And we’d never say something like “on Great Britain” or "on Iceland". However, I think that the phrase “on the island of” is always used, and not “in the island of”, which sounds odd.

    So, as confusing as it sounds, I would probably say: “in Mallorca” but “on the island of Mallorca”.
     

    garrika

    Senior Member
    español
    Gracias por vuestras respuestas.
    No me queda aún del todo claro.

    Read our guide to the best sights and activities in Tenerife.
    Masca Hike is one of the most popular hikes on Tenerife.

    Entiendo, por vuestros comentarios, que las dos frases anteriores serían correctas. En la primera se entendería como una isla muy poblada y en la segunda frase haría referencia a la tierra rodeada de mar.

    En Google aparecen muchas frases con "in Tenerife" pero también con "On Tenerife".
     

    merquiades

    Senior Member
    English (USA Northeast)
    Gracias por vuestras respuestas.
    No me queda aún del todo claro.

    Read our guide to the best sights and activities in Tenerife.
    Masca Hike is one of the most popular hikes on Tenerife.

    Entiendo, por vuestros comentarios, que las dos frases anteriores serían correctas. En la primera se entendería como una isla muy poblada y en la segunda frase haría referencia a la tierra rodeada de mar.

    En Google aparecen muchas frases con "in Tenerife" pero también con "On Tenerife".
    "On Tenerife" is probably short for "on (the island of) Tenerife". I feel the idea of island is emphasized.
    "In Tenerife" doesn't highlight it's an island. It's just a place. For all I know it could be the name of a club in Madrid too. "I'll see you in Tenerife at 11 pm". Both prepositions are fine. Same for "in/on (the island of) Mallorca...."

    "In the Canary Islands people speak Spanish". "On" the Canary Islands doesn't sound completely wrong, but "in" is better. You might be able to find an appropriate context for "on" though. "There are volcanoes on all the Canary Islands." Again you are emphasizing the fact they are islands and when you are on them you are surrounded by ocean.
     
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