Best things to do in Gran Canaria
Stunning landscapes, history and culture and fantastic beaches: these are some of our recommendations during your stay in Gran Canaria.
1. Feel tiny in vast landscapes
Whether you hike, cycle or drive to the summit, the huge craters formed by volcanoes at Bandama, or Caldera Tejeda are well worth the climb, as is the breathtaking Barranco de Guayadeque canyon and Pico de las Nieves – the island’s highest mountain. In fact, Gran Canaria is full of miradores - viewing points – from which to take in the jaw-dropping scenery.
2. Explore picturesque villages
Centuries ago, hardy Canarians who worked the rugged landscapes built dozens of pretty old towns and villages that today are the perfect places to visit. There’s Artenara, clinging to the mountainside watched over by a huge Christ statue; Agüimes and its perfectly restored historic centre; Tejeda, where almond groves burst into bloom every February, and many more.
3. Delve into the past
If you want to discover Gran Canaria’s history, go underground. The Cueva Pintada Museum is an important pre-Hispanic archaeological site: a wheelchair-friendly cave adorned with geometric shapes, thought to relate to the lunar and solar calendars. Discovered in 1862, the cave is described as the Sistine Chapel of the indigenous Canarian people.
4. Marvel at the wildlife
If you ever wake up wondering what to do in Maspalomas, just reach for your binoculars – bird watching is one of the most popular activities in Gran Canaria. You’re guaranteed to see herons and egrets, and maybe even an osprey or Barbary falcon. Maspalomas is one of the best places to take a boat trip to spot whales and dolphins too. Seeing some of the 30 species of sea mammals that visit the nearby waters is a sure thing.
5. Walk among the cacti
At the Jardín Canario, the official botanical gardens of the Canary Islands, you can come face-to-face with all of the Canary Islands’ exuberant flora, set among waterfalls over 10 hectares on the banks of a canyon.
6. Enjoy the ultimate beach holiday
Gran Canaria has some of best beaches in the Canary Islands. From rugged turquoise coves to our very own Maspalomas beach with its eight metre-high dunes, you can snorkel, kite-surf, wind-surf, or just lie back and enjoy the hospitality.
7. Play golf among the greatest
Home to Spain’s oldest golf course, the Real Club de Golf de Las Palmas, Gran Canaria has impeccable golf credentials. Play surrounded by volcanoes, sand dunes or the Atlantic on a variety of 18-hole PGA championship-level courses.