What to see in Spain
Tourist attractions Gran Canaria
One of Spain’s Canary Islands, Gran Canaria is situated in the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of North Africa. An eternally popular vacation destination, many visitors travel to Gran Canaria to enjoy its white-sand beaches, volcanic landscapes and family-friendly resorts. Whilst the south of the island is famed for its laid-back resorts and sun-kissed coastline, in the north you’ll find the beautiful capital city of Las Palmas, the largest city in the Canary Islands archipelago.
Whilst a vacation to Gran Canaria is sure to include a healthy helping of sun, sea and sand, there’s more to this island than resorts and all-inclusive hotels. In fact, it's an incredible destination for hiking enthusiasts and around one-third of the island is a World Biosphere Reserve. It’s said you can experience all four seasons in a single day here. From the arid sand dunes of the south to the towering mountains and pine forests of the interior, Gran Canaria is incredibly diverse and offers many unforgettable outdoor experiences for those willing to explore the interior. With little rainfall, the island has a desert-like climate and is perfect to visit at any time of year with average temperatures hovering around 20-25-degrees Celsius.
On the other hand, no trip to Gran Canaria would be complete without immersing yourself in the rich delights of Canarian culture. From sleepy mountain villages to the cosmopolitan treasures of Las Palmas, this Canary Island is known for its excellent cuisine and its exuberant Carnaval celebrations, a must-see if you visit Gran Canaria between February and March.
So, if you’re in search of a travel destination where you can enjoy a little of everything, a vacation to Gran Canaria ticks all the boxes. From lounging on volcanic black sand beaches to snorkelling trips, hiking tours, mountain biking adventures, stargazing excursions and museum visits, you can do it all on Gran Canaria!
Things to do in Gran Canaria
Whilst there’s a whole world of things to explore and enjoy when you travel to Gran Canaria, there are a handful of sights that are considered unmissable! When it comes to natural sights, this island possesses an abundance, but one of the best things to see in Gran Canaria is the otherworldly Roque Nublo. An emblem of the island, this geological wonder stands atop a mountain in the Tejeda basin. A rocky monolith, this natural formation is well worth the hike! The surrounding landscapes, home to vibrant plant life, rugged mountainsides and lush valleys, are truly a sight to behold!
Once you’ve experienced the interior of Gran Canaria, head to the south coast to visit another of its jaw-dropping natural wonders: the Maspalomas Sand Dunes. Stretching along the coastline next to the sea, the Maspalomas Natural Dune Reserve is like something from an altogether different planet. Kilometres of untouched sand, in the form of rolling dunes, seem to go on for as far as the eye can see. Furthermore, the beaches here are some of the most secluded and peaceful on the island.
Although you might be headed straight for the beaches of the south coast when you visit Gran Canaria, it's recommended to spend at least a little time exploring the island’s capital. Las Palmas is awash with colourful architecture, atmospheric plazas and irresistible golden sand beaches. It’s known for its duty-free shopping and as a major cruise-ship port. Undoubtedly, the most charming neighbourhood is Vegueta, the historic old town. Here, you’ll find a Christopher Columbus Museum, the fascinating Museo Canario and countless colonial-era buildings. If you want to uncover the true nature of Gran Canaria, this is one of the best places to explore on the island.
Finally, if you’re in search of some quiet time beside the sea, be sure to pay a visit to Puerto de Mogan, nestled in the southwest of the island. This charming fishing village is among the most popular destinations on the island, home to a glistening harbour filled with yachts and boats. Backed by low-rise white and blue houses and a stone’s throw away from some of the best beaches on the island, Puerto de Mogan is one of the best places to visit in Gran Canaria.