Walking and hiking in Gran Canaria
When you first think of Gran Canaria, you probably think of the stunning beaches and sparkling sea. Many visitors stay on the coast and might only venture up into the mountains for a day trip. But there is so much more to discover on the island, that is only revealed when you lace up your walking shoes and get hiking.
Gran Canaria might be small (it only measures 60km across), but it’s known as a ‘mini continent’ because of its varied scenery, which delights walkers and hikers of all ages. From far-stretching sand dunes and a jagged volcanic landscape to mountains and pine forests, you can immerse yourself in the island’s natural beauty. There are plenty of marked walking trails for all levels to make it easy to find your way around. Gran Canaria’s reputation for year-round blue skies means you can look forward to walking in the sunshine even during the shoulder spring and autumn seasons.
When is the best time to go walking in Gran Canaria?
Gran Canaria is a year-round walking destination, although the main walking season is considered to run from October to May.
In the winter months, temperatures average 18°C and rainfall is low, making it ideal for getting out for a walk. The mountains will be cooler than the beach resorts and may even occasionally get a dusting of snow. Because different areas of the island enjoy different climates, you can normally find somewhere on the island to walk in the sunshine, even in the middle of winter.
In April and May, the beautiful native flowers in the mountains are in full bloom, so nature lovers can enjoy swathes of colour, including the blue Canary Island Giant Burgloss. In the summer months it can be hot, but walkers can still enjoy some of the shorter trails. It’s also generally cooler up in the mountains, so while you may be baking in your flip-flops down on the beach, the weather is comfortable for walking in Gran Canaria up in the hills.
Best trails for hiking in Gran Canaria
There are around 200 hiking trails in Gran Canaria to choose from, which make it easy for you to explore the island on foot. The La Plata trail is one of the most popular routes to try. It stretches 13km and is of average difficulty. It follows an ancient farming pathway over cobbled paths, forest tracks and roads. During your walk, you’ll pass stunning sites including the hilltop town of Tunte, the ideal place to stop and refresh yourself on a shaded terrace.
Buses in Gran Canaria
The blue buses in Gran Canaria are reliable and criss-cross the island to make getting back to your hotel after a long walk easy. You’ll find timetables available at Tourist Information spots across the island. Alternatively, take the number of a local taxi firm with you, but be aware that it may take a while for one to arrive if you call during siesta.