If you are looking for sun, sand and exotic adventure then Gran Canaria is the place for you. The island lies off the west coast of Africa and is less than 200km from the Sahara Desert, so the sun nearly always shines and it is always warm.
As well as soaking up the sun on the 8km beach at Playa del Ingles and cooling off with water sports like jet-skiing and windsurfing, you can step into another world in Gran Canaria.
Pretend you are in the desert by riding a camel through the spectacular sand dunes of Maspalomas, follow in the footsteps of Clint Eastwood at the Sioux City western theme park, or enjoy unforgettable views of the volcanic island by paragliding or skydiving above it.
For animal lovers, boat excursions from Puerto Rico offer an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see dolphins and whales up close in the ocean.
Gran Canaria Factfile
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Top Resorts and Hotels
Playa del Ingles is Gran Canaria’s largest holiday resort and offers a range of hotels and apartments to suit every budget – all within walking distance of its long beach, clubs, bars, restaurants and shops. For luxury and peace there is the four-star Neptuno Hotel, which is set within beautiful gardens and just 900 metres from the beach.
Hospitable and friendly, Maspalomas is fantastic for families being home to Aqua Sur Water Park, the biggest water park on the island with 13 water attractions, 33 water slides and over 5,300 sq metres of pools. Another must-see for fun family trips is Holiday World – the largest funfair in the Canaries. With its kids’ club, playground, mini-disco and three pools, the four-star Dunas Suites and Villas Resort is a perfect place for families to stay.
For leisure boat excursions, Puerto Rico is the place to go. The resort has a wide range of luxury hotels including four-star Morasol Suites Hotel, which is just 400 metres from the beach.
Attractions and Things To Do
Go off-road on a jeep safari tour, where you can explore the volcanic, mountainous landscape of the island and admire the spectacular views of mountains, villages and lush valleys of almond trees.
Dive underwater and discover life on the ocean floor – without getting wet – on a yellow submarine excursion from La Playa de Mogan. Walk in the footsteps of the ancient kings and elders of the Guanche people, who lived on the island before the Spanish arrived, and walk up to el Roque Nublo (Rock in the Clouds). The 80-metre tall volcanic monolith stands at 1,803 metres above sea level are the remains of a stratovolcano which stood there 3 to 4.6 million years ago.
For culture, history and shopping then visit Las Palmas, the island’s largest city. The Vegueta, its historic old town, includes the Catedral de Santa Ana – which took 350 years to build – and countless museums, including Casa Colón, named after Christopher Columbus who stopped in Las Palmas in 1492 on his first voyage to the New World.
Walk through the original film set of a Fist Full of Dollars on a night out at the western theme park Sioux City which is complete with a saloon, bank, general store, sheriff’s office, church, houses and buffalo.
Annual Temperature and Rainfall
Gran Canaria enjoys warm temperatures all year round. The average temperature ranges from 26°C to 28°C in the summer and 16°C to 24°C in the winter. The island enjoys 2,805 hours of sunshine annually and it only rains an average 21 days a year. It is very rare for it to rain in the summer.