Things to do in Gran Canaria

The spectacular scenery across this island means that there’s plenty of things to do in Gran Canaria. There’s something for everyone here, from lazing on white sandy beaches to hiking in the mountains and visiting architectural delights telling the story of an inspiring history. Here are some of our top places to visit in Gran Canaria.

Places to Go

Immerse yourself in the beautiful surroundings and be sure not to miss the Bandama Caldera. Shaped like a witch’s cauldron, the volcanic crater evokes memories of the island’s prehistoric past. Hiking down into it takes around 30 minutes, although be aware that it’s quite steep, so leave the flip-flops at home and lace up some comfy walking shoes. The iconic Roque Nublo must also be included on your Gran Canaria things to do list. Created during a volcanic eruption and standing at 80 metres tall, it’s the centre point of the island and can be reached by car, bus or hiking.

Historians will enjoy a visit to the island’s capital Las Palmas. It’s home to Vegueta, its charming old town full of colonial history, charming architecture, galleries and traditional tapas restaurants. The jewel in the crown is the impressive Catedral de Santa Ana, the Canary Islands’ first church. Pueblo Canario is also worth a visit, for an authentic Canarian village experience.


Popular attractions in Gran Canaria include Palmitos Park, which has something for all ages. Aqualand is a hit with water lovers, with water-based rides and slides for the whole family. For a day out with a difference, head to Sioux City and indulge in the wild world of cowboys. You can learn lasso techniques, enjoy horse exhibits and cattle parades that make you feel as if you’re in America’s Wild West.

Be sure to visit Pico de las Nieves, Gran Canaria’s highest mountain at 1949 metres above sea level for panoramic views of the island and the Atlantic Ocean. The Painted Cave is another exciting excursion where you can immerse yourself in pre-Hispanic history, look at ancient artefacts and striking wall paintings within an archaeological museum.

Places to Visit

Places to visit in Gran Canaria will undoubtedly include the Jardín Botánico Canario Viera y Clavijo, where you can explore Spain’s largest botanical paradise showcasing exotic plants and vegetation. If you fancy something a little livelier, then experience the Gran Canaria Carnivale, held annually in February with a whole week of colourful galas, processions and exciting rituals.

After all that, you’ll need to relax and unwind on Gran Canaria’s white-sand beaches edged with crystal blue waters and swaying palms. Soak up the sun on Maspalomas Beach, and check out the local water sports including paddle boarding and scuba diving. You’ll also get the chance to ride across the sand dunes creating a holiday experience like no other.

1. Puerto Rico Nightlife

Looking for ideas on where to head out in Puerto Rico after dark? Then check out our quick Puerto Rico nightlife guide to one of the hottest resorts in Gran Canaria.
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3. Maspalomas Nightlife

Maspalomas nightlife is much quieter than that of Playa del Inglés, although they’re very close neighbours, and you can easily walk to Playa del Inglés if you fancy something a little more energetic in the evenings.
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5. Paddle surfing in Gran Canaria

You can’t go to Gran Canaria without spending some time soaking up the year-round sun on the island’s beautiful, golden beaches. But maybe you crave something a little more than just lounging on the sand?
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6. Bandama Caldera

If you’re a nature lover and enjoy nothing more than getting out and exploring your surroundings while on holiday, then seeing Gran Canaria’s Caldera de Bandama is an absolute must.
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7. Yumbo Centrum

For some of the best shopping and entertainment in Gran Canaria, don’t miss out on a visit to Yumbo Centrum. With more than 200 shops, bars and stands, it’s a vibrant place to spend a few hours after a morning in the hot Spanish sun.
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9. Paseo Costa Canaria

Take in the sights of Playa del Ingles with a walk along the Paseo Costa Canaria. Starting at San Agustin Beach, make your way along the coastal path for breathtaking views out to sea across miles of golden sand dunes.
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10. Learn to dive with the experts

Once you’ve seen everything that Puerto Rico has to offer on land, you’ll be ready to discover what lies beneath the waves. Take a class at the PADI diving school and you’ll be ready to do some diving
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12. Visit San Juan fort

Puerto Rico is blessed with fascinating sites that played an important role in Spanish history. San Juan Fort, a former defensive outpost, is listed as a World Heritage Site
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17. Water sports

As the coast is beautifully clear and quite calm, the beach is the perfect outing for either relaxation or something a little more upbeat. Why not choose from a wide range of water sports.
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21. Visit Maspalomas Lighthouse

One of the biggest tourist attractions in Maspalomas is the lighthouse. It’s situated next to the famous sand dunes and it’s been standing since before tourists came to the area and it turned into a holiday resort.
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25. Hike to the impressive Roque Nublo

Standing proud at 80 metres tall, Roque Nublo is an icon of Gran Canaria and actually marks the centre of the island. Looking at photos, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the rock is something that only mountaineers or the most experienced of explorers can visit
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27. Spend the day at Palmitos Park

Palmitos Park is an absolute must when on holiday in Gran Canaria. It’s one of the most popular attractions on the island, so much so that it’s currently ranked the number two thing to do out of over 220 attractions, according to people on TripAdvisor.
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