10 Reasons to Fall in Love with the Island
Here are the ten main reasons why anyone will fall hopelessly in love with this marvellous island.
1. The Weather As One’s Ally
Gran Canaria is blessed with a privileged climate, on account of its geographical location and the generous contribution of the trade winds. These are some of the contributing factors to the mean annual temperature of 24°C. The island’s landscape ensures a mild atmosphere, which tempers the four seasons of the year.
2. A Spectacular Natural Setting
Concerted endeavours to preserve its natural heritage have made Gran Canaria a place where time seems to stand still. Virtually half of its surface area is protected, an ongoing legacy which ensures the exceptional purity of the environment here. And, best of all is that its whole area is accessible to visitors. The most striking feature of this magnificent natural setting is its volcanic origins.
3. The Beaches are the Island’s DNA
Gran Canaria boasts 60 kilometres of beaches on a coastline stretching for 236 kilometres. Its seaboard has been the leisure resort of choice for generations of islanders who are only too happy to share it with visitors. The variety is endless and there is something for all tastes, from the vast carpets of golden sand in the south to the secluded coves in the north. One of the advantages of Gran Canaria is that its beaches can be enjoyed most of the year around.
4. A Sporting Paradise
One of the pluses of having such a mild climate all year around, and a privileged natural setting, is that Gran Canaria is an ideal enclave for doing open-air sports. Hiking enthusiasts are pampered by a network of trails that cover the whole island, and it is also a paradise for lovers of cycling, which is undoubtedly one of the best ways to enjoy the island’s scenery. Those who prefer the sea can choose from a broad selection of activities. Surfing, windsurfing and kite-surfing, if what you’re after is an adrenalin rush, and sports fishing or diving if you’re eager to explore the sea floor.
5. A Place for All the Family
Gran Canaria is the ideal destination for family tourism. Either for couples or families with children, the island offers all types of attractions which will make your stay an unforgettable experience.
6. A Land of History, Culture and Leisure
The pre-Hispanic history of Gran Canaria still pervades the island, six centuries after the Castilian conquest. Its aboriginal past is jealously guarded in archaeological parks and museums, which also mirror the cultural fusion that characterises the local population. Christopher Columbus stopped over at Gran Canaria on his way to the New World, bequeathing a legacy of which vestiges still survive. As for leisure and culture, the island’s Carnival is one of its landmark festivals, which brings out the affable, playful side of the islanders.
7. An Exquisite Sea of Flavours
Every corner of Gran Canaria offers delicious flavours, many of them part of a rich, heterogeneous culinary tradition. The island boasts the only coffee plantations in Europe, and it is also proud of its orchards and market gardens, its juicy confectionery and its iconic rum, distilled in the oldest cellar on the continent.
8. Take a Well Earned Break
Gran Canaria is the perfect destination for relaxing and breaking with your daily routine and the stress of work. Taking care of ourselves is one of our priorities and you will come across many a spa resort and wellness centre on Gran Canaria.
9. An Open, Modern Capital
The historic centre of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, based in the districts of Vegueta and Triana, is well worth touring leisurely to see its colonial-style buildings. Puerto de la Luz is one of its major hubs of trade activity and, a short distance away, on the far side of La Isleta isthmus, a prominent meeting point is Las Canteras, one of the finest urban beaches in the world. There is a lot of entertainment on offer in the capital, the product of its modern, cosmopolitan essence.
10. Villages with Charm
Agaete, Mogán, Teror and Tejeda are but a few of the enclaves worth exploring to discover the spirit of the island. Its friendly people and rich traditions make visitors feel at home. Whether on the heights, the midlands or the coast, each locality makes its harmonious contribution in the projection of our identity traits.
Hurry and discover the charms of this idyllic island. Check out our flights here.
Images by Patronato Turismo Gran Canariamore info
Let's Go to the Beach
What makes Gran Canaria unique is its very diverse ecosystem. The coastline features 60 kilometres of greatly varied beaches. The infinite options offered everywhere on this island are ideal to explore alone or with all the family. Its different types of landscape will seriously make you believe you are on the continent. This Atlantic enclave has a 236-kilometre coastline, kissed by a gentle sun that makes it pleasant even in summer. In today's issue of My Vueling City, we will focus on Gran Canaria's beaches and all you can do there. What are you waiting for to grab your swimsuit?
Our Top Beaches
Here is a list of our beaches of choice. The island boasts more than 120 of them, all quite different from one another – from long, golden, sandy beaches to hidden coves. If you don't find your favourite beach here, you surely haven't searched properly. We also confess that, to a great extent, our preferences coincide with those of the canariones – the locals of Gran Canaria:
Some beaches are very popular, such as the long sandy tongue of Maspalomas. A massive line of white sand that runs from Playa del Inglés to the foot of the great Maspalomas lighthouse, after skirting a desert of sand dunes that covers the southern coast of the island.
2.- San Agustín
In the south, a calm and relaxing beach with a family environment.
Ideal to come with all the family. Also located in the south, the great weather can be enjoyed almost all year around.
4.- Puerto de Mogán
Small and ideal to switch off from your daily routine. This beach is very suitable for children.
5.- Las Canteras
It is well known as one of the best urban beaches of Spain.
6.- Puerto Rico
If you prefer, you can just go with the flow and join the bustle of this traditional touristy spot, which boasts one of the best climates in the whole country.
I'll Be Waiting for You in the Water
Gran Canaria boasts the ideal sea and wind conditions for doing water sports such assailing,windsurfing,surfing, and deep-sea fishing. This has also attracted enthusiasts to the increasingly popular practice of bodyboarding – with a sail or without – in addition to kitesurfing – an enjoyable water sport that uses a kite to pull the surfer over the waves. Gran Canaria's unique location makes it ideal to pursue these activities: thanks to the trade winds, most waves are either medium-sized – and suitable for beginners – or considerably large – ideal for more experienced surfers.
If you're more into exploring the seabed, we suggest you dive down into these crystalline waters. Several diving spots can be found along the island's coastline, such as Pecios de Mogán, the artificial Reef of Arguineguín, Taliarte and Las Merinas. Prefer to do your own thing? You can always go snorkelling. We suggest you rent a car and explore the coast. We can still tell you a secret though – Risco Verde, Caleta Baja and Sardina are ideal places to start off with. Here you'll find all the information you need on diving schools and clubs.
Gran Canaria indeed offers a myriad of options for those planning to spend their holiday with all the family, in addition to a great choice of kid-friendly activities. This of course includes spending time on the beach. We definitely recommend the vast extension of dunes in Maspalomas and the coves in the coastal area of Mogán. The latter is fail-proof: is there anything better than the sea to bathe and frolic in the waves, or the endless beach to make sand castles and play with toy cars? Well, surprisingly, there is. You can enjoy a ride on camelback, or spend the day at Sioux City, a theme park devoted to the Wild West. Who hasn't played Red Indians against cowboys as a kid? Alternatively, for the more adventurous, you can go on a submarine or watch the dolphins in the south of the island, or even travel to the amazing world of Palmitos Park, where the sight of astonishing animal species can be enjoyed in a tropical environment. Marabou storks, silver-cheeked hornbills, emus, wallabies and Komodo dragons are waiting eagerly to welcome you.
Another sure win is a tour of the whole island to experience its scenic variety first-hand. The tourist bus in the capital travels to some of the island's most emblematic locations, like Vegueta, the historic centre of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. You can visit this more than 500-year-old district to recharge your batteries in one of its many tapas bars. Oh, and don't forget to visit Cristopher Columbus' house, where he stayed for a last stop before embarking on his legendary voyage to The Americas.
An Appointment Not to be Missed
With all this beach talk, you shouldn't forget your swimming costumes. Do not miss out on Gran Canaria Swimwear Fashion Week 2015, an event where more than 40 brands show off their designs in three intense fashion days. This catwalk has become a showcase of swimwear fashion for firms from all over the archipelago, also sharing their stage with national and international first-class brands. This event takes place in Meloneras (Plaza de las Convenciones), in the municipality of San Bartolomé de Tirajana from 18 to 20 June.
Come and enjoy the beach in Gran Canaria! Check out our flights here.
Text and images by Turismo de Gran Canariamore info
Your Best Getaway Ever In 4 Days
Now that the end of the year draws near, you are bound to have a few spare days. Here’s a great recommendation for spending a delightful long weekend in Gran Canaria. As you will see, it is time enough to get a good taste of one of the pearls of the Atlantic. Why wait to discover it? Four days on the island will yield any number of plans to take a well-earned break from your routine. Here, then, is a compendium of practical tips for making the most of your stay on the island.
As soon as you leave the airport, your best bet is to head south and have your first weekend splash in the ocean. Maspalomas and Playa del Inglés await you with their large tracts of pale yellow sand where you can sunbathe safely all year around. If you’re looking to switch off real quick, take an adventurous stroll in the heart of the sand dunes or play golf on one of the quiet courses in the area.
Be sure to visit charming Puerto de Mogán, the ideal spot for promenading and savouring fresh fish in any of the restaurants at the seaside.
Begin the day by taking a route across the north of the island. And where better than to aim for the town of Arucas, where homes are harmoniously interspersed with banana plantations? Its most striking landmark is the Neogothic Church of San Juan Bautista, built with stone quarried in the municipality itself. Another highlight of your itinerary is the Arehucas rum factory, where the celebrated beverage is made in the oldest and largest rum distillery in Europe.
On the way to the north-western triangle of Gran Canaria, make a point of visiting the Gáldar Painted Cave, a museum and archaeological park based on a large native deposit. If you then press on towards the picturesque village of Agaete, you will marvel at the rugged rock formations adorning the coastline. Enjoy a sunset there and take time to upload to your social networks some stunning panoramas. Your main subject is likely to be the striking dragon’s tail plotted by the cliff faces which the ocean has eroded over millions of years.
Time to discover Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, a modern, cosmopolitan capital city. Have a walk through Vegueta, the historic old town and stop over at the Christopher Columbus House Museum which boasts a valuable cultural legacy encapsulating the relationship which the island has maintained with the Americas for five centuries. The Calle Mayor de Triana has all you need for a busy shopping day, as it is lined with shops stocking both local brands and international labels.
The Pérez Galdós House Museum, where the universally acclaimed Canary Island writer was born, is another point of interest before heading to Las Canteras, one of the finest urban beaches in Spain. Open-air concerts are held there as part of the “Ruta Playa Viva” (Living Beach Route), one of the most attractive leisure proposals in the city.
The rich natural heritage of Gran Canaria reaches its climax in the island’s interior. On Sunday you can drop in on the street markets to taste the best of local cuisine and choose a souvenir from among their regional craftwork. Devotion in Teror involves pampering the “Virgen del Pino” (Virgin of the Pine), the patron saint of the Canary Island diocese. This is where you start a climb up to Tejeda and Artenara.
A phenomenon known as the “sea of clouds” spreads out at your feet, in a breathtaking landscape which Miguel de Unamuno described as a “petrified storm”. Look out over the Roque Nublo and Roque Bentayga outcrops; then close your eyes and engrave that stunning picture in your mind’s eye forever. Why wait to experience it for yourself? Check out our flights here.
Images by the Patronato Turismo Gran Canariamore info