Gran Canaria holidays

Gran Canaria holidays

Deals from £209 per person

What’s so hot about Gran Canaria holidays? It’s a beach-lover’s dream to start with! And then there are the famous sand dunes, sleepy fishing villages and lively holiday hubs bursting with bars and restaurants. One of the Brits’ favourite Canary Islands, with T-shirt temperatures promising an incredible 12 months of ice cream days, Gran Canaria’s the ideal place to chase the sun.

Why you’ll love Gran Canaria holidays
• Stunning beaches: The gleaming dunes of Maspalomas, family-friendly Playa de Amadores and the magnificent crescent of Playa de Las Canteras are just three of the island’s many sandy stretches.
• Las Palmas: Explore Spain’s ninth-biggest city! This cultural hotspot will take you back to the 16th century with its colonial architecture and secret courtyards.
• Perfect for families: Gran Canaria has it all, from fun kids’ clubs and top-notch All Inclusive hotels to fab waterparks and some of Europe’s best sandcastle-building spots.
• Awesome adventures: There’s so much to do in Gran Canaria! Paddle a kayak along the coast, snorkel with the little fishies, join a dolphin-spotting boat trip or head out on a scuba dive. Or, hike through Bandama Caldera, go mountain biking and try your hand at sandboarding.
• The after-dark scene: Whether you’re into romantic seafront restaurants or wild party vibes, there’s a Gran Canaria nightspot for you. Including a warm welcome for LGBTQ+ travellers!

Best places to stay in Gran Canaria
From fab beachside chillouts to big-hitting nightlife, there’s a holiday here with your name on it! But which is the best resort in Gran Canaria?
Playa del Ingles: A sprawling 3 km coastline. Glorious Atlantic views. Seafront strolls to San Agustin. Nightclubs galore. Stay at Gran Canaria Princess – one of the island’s best 4 stars.
Maspalomas: Famous for its stunning sand dunes, ritzy shopping and dining, and outstanding gay scene. Indulge at the 4 star Maspalomas & Tabaiba Princess hotels.
San Agustin: Laid-back retreat? You got it! An evergreen fave for tranquil beach days and low-key activities – like swimming, hiking and day trips to Las Palmas.
Puerto Rico: A favourite for beach holidays to Gran Canaria. Think watersports, bustling bars and restaurants, and, of course, plenty of sunshine.
Puerto de Mogan: Full-blown charm meets family-friendly sands in this lush harbour town! You’ll find luxury to match at the 5 star Radisson Blu Resort & Spa.
Meloneras: Luxe holidays await in this swoon-worthy spot! Dine with a sea view on the beachfront prom, daydream on the sand, or browse the chic boutiques.
Playa Taurito: This chilled-out hideaway is just outside Puerto de Mogan. Perfect for romantic escapes and peaceful family holidays, with a black-sand beach and Lago Taurito waterpark.

More about holidays to Gran Canaria
Check out our other Gran Canaria holiday guides: Maspalomas | Playa del Ingles | Puerto Rico | San Agustin

Map of Gran Canaria

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15-28°C

Known for its year-round sunshine, holidays to Gran Canaria promise warm days whatever the season, with very little rainfall.

Gran Canaria weather forecast >

4 hours and 30 minutes
Gran Canaria airport (or Gando Airport) is on the eastern side of the island. Approx 23 km from Las Palmas and 30 km from Playa del Ingles and Maspalomas.

Gran Canaria is best for...

History buffs: Visit the island’s capital, Las Palmas, to follow in the footsteps of Christopher Columbus, explore the Old Town, see the beautiful Catedral de Santa Ana, and step inside Castillo de la Luz fortress. Plus there’s Maspalomas Lighthouse, cave dwellings and an archaeological park!

Party animals: From Yumbo Centre’s famous drag shows to Kasbah’s lively clubs, Playa del Ingles is the island’s party front-runner. While Maspalomas offers a more laid-back nightlife scene, you’re just a taxi ride from Playa del Ingles if you decide to dial things up a notch.

Sun worshippers: Whether you want to kick back on Sahara-like sands, get wet at Aqualand Maspalomas or enjoy the watersports at Playa del Inglés, no two days on this island are the same. And don’t forget to head north to walk Gran Canaria’s longest shoreline at Las Canteras.

Fast facts for Gran Canaria

Language: Spanish, hola! English is widely spoken in most tourist areas.

Currency: Euros are used in Gran Canaria.

Local time: There’s no time difference between Gran Canaria and GMT/UK time!

Fly to: Gran Canaria Airport (LPA). Shared shuttles to Maspalomas and Playa del Inglés are likely to take around 45 minutes, while you’ll reach Puerto Rico in about an hour. Get to the beach quicker with a private transfer.

Flight time from UK: Approx. 4.5 to 5 hours, depending on your departure airport.

Tourist information: Check out the Gran Canaria tourism website for all the insider knowledge you need. And don’t miss the @visitgrancanaria Instagram grid for more travel inspo!

Travel advice: Make sure you read up on the latest entry requirements and safety tips from the FCDO team.

Top Gran Canaria holiday destinations:
Maspalomas
Playa del Ingles
Puerto Rico
San Agustin

Getting around Gran Canaria

By hire car: A great way to get more from your holiday to Gran Canaria, hiring a car gives you easy access to the island’s rural spots and smaller villages. Arrange airport pick-up and you can set your own timetable from the moment you arrive.

By bus: Thanks to a good bus network, it’s also easy to explore Gran Canaria without a car. Check the Guagua timetables before you head to the bus stop, as services may be reduced on weekends and fiesta days.

By taxi: There are plenty of metred taxis on the island, ideal for getting from A to B in the bigger towns, such as Las Palmas. There’s no Uber service, though (yet!).

Getting to / from the airport: Pre-book your airport transfers so you know exactly how you’ll get to your hotel. Alternatively, grab a taxi at the airport or hop on the bus to your resort.

Events in Gran Canaria

Gran Canaria carnivals: Parties and parades are held all over the island in February and March.

Almond Blossom Festival: Walk the stunning Almond Blossom Route Jan - Feb and celebrate spring in the little mountain village of Tejeda (first weekend of February). From folk dancing to feasting, it’s a great chance to sample the traditional culture.

Gay Pride: As one of the island’s most popular events, Maspalomas’ Gay Pride celebrations get bigger and better each year. This 10-day LGBT event takes place at the beginning of May with drag races, pool parties, boat trips, and on the final day, a street parade. And there’s a Winter Pride too!

Fiestas del Carmen: Don’t miss out on this flower-filled festival in July! Held in Arguineguin, Puerto de Mogan and Las Palmas, the celebrations are known to continue late into the night.

Gran Canaria weather

Temperature: Annual average high around 24°C

No matter when you visit Gran Canaria, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a day without glorious sunshine. Temperatures hover in the high teens for most of the year, but can climb to 28°C in July and August – the hottest months of the long summer (May to November).

You may get the odd rainy day in the cooler months (when it’s winter back home), but you can still enjoy highs of 22°C at this time. So the weather in Gran Canaria is perfect for holidays at any time of year!

 

Best hotels in Gran Canaria

Popular Gran Canaria holiday resorts

Places similar to Gran Canaria to visit

Gran Canaria holiday FAQs
FAQs
Which is the best month to go to Gran Canaria?

With long hot summers and mild winters, any month’s a good time to visit Gran Canaria!

• Like the heat? The best time to hit the beach is between July and September – that’s high season in Gran Canaria, when summer temperatures are at their peak.

• Prefer more of a ‘Goldilocks’ temperature? June and November both average a comfortable 23°C. Which should be just right if you’re not limited by the school summer holidays!

• If you love hiking adventures, sightseeing trips and fewer crowds, the mild spring and autumn seasons (April to May and September to November) will be just the ticket.

• The hottest month in Gran Canaria is August, reaching a toasty 23 - 29°C.

• The coolest month is February when temperatures average 16 - 21°C.

Is Gran Canaria worth visiting?

Gran Canaria is definitely worth visiting! An island of soft sand beaches and year-round sunshine, rich in culture and natural beauty, with plenty for families, couples and friends to do.

This Spanish hotspot boasts awe-inspiring mountains and crags, like the free-standing Roque Nublo, lush forests, and the vast Maspalomas Dunes. It’s also steeped in history and culture, with a range of museums, art galleries, and traditional villages to explore. Make sure you check out Vegueta – the Old Town area of Las Palmas. It’s packed with colonial history and charming tapas bars.

What is the most beautiful part of Gran Canaria?

Gran Canaria has so many beautiful places to visit. Here are some of our favourites:

• Maspalomas Dunes Nature Reserve: One of the most stunning sights on the island, located on the southern coast, this vast stretch of golden sand rolls on for miles. Just like the deserts of nearby Africa!

• Puerto de Mogan: This gorgeous old fishing village is not only super pretty, it also has plenty going for it. Think cobbles, Mediterranean views, a lovely beach, lush hotels and a mouthwatering line-up of seafront places to eat and drink. A beautiful destination for holidays in Gran Canaria.

• The Tamadaba Natural Park: Boasting dramatic mountain landscapes, lush forests, a rugged coastline and impressive cliffs that plunge into the Atlantic Ocean. Hike along winding trails through the pine forests, explore ancient cave systems and take in panoramic views of the island.

• Barranco de las Vacas: Famed as the Gran Canaria canyon that ancient islanders called home. AKA the Red Canyon, it’s a breathtaking place to explore.

Does Gran Canaria have good beaches?

• Gran Canaria has some of the best beaches in Europe, with over 60 km of coastline and more than 80 sand spots, from secluded coves to bustling resort areas.

• The island's warm, sunny climate and clear, turquoise waters make it a popular destination for beachgoers all year round.

• Some of the most popular beaches on the island include Playa de Maspalomas, with its stunning sand dunes, Playa del Inglés for its lively atmosphere and watersports, and Amadores Beach for its sheltered bays and tranquil waters.

Does Gran Canaria have an off season?

Gran Canaria’s sunny enough to attract visitors 12 months a year! But while it doesn't have an off season as such, it does have a low season (approx November to March / April) when it’s quieter but most businesses are still open. So, if you’re looking for a great deal, that’s the best time to visit Gran Canaria, when the weather’s still warm but less intense than the peak summer months.

And did we mention it’s one of Europe’s top destinations for a winter escape?

Is Gran Canaria family-friendly?

Gran Canaria is a family-friendly destination with activities for all ages.

You and the kids can enjoy paddle-safe beaches, waterparks and amusement parks, as well as hiking trails and nature reserves.

It’s also known as a laid-back, safe and welcoming destination, making it the ideal spot for spending quality time together.

In short, holidays to Gran Canaria for families are go!

Is Gran Canaria in Puerto Rico?

No, Gran Canaria is in the Spanish Canary Islands. But there is a Puerto Rico Gran Canaria! You’re thinking of the Caribbean island also called Puerto Rico, so it’s an easy mistake to make. You’ll find Gran Canaria near Africa, much closer to home!

Luckily Gran Canaria’s also known for its gorgeous beaches and amazing year-round weather.

Is Gran Canaria as good as Tenerife?

Now you’re really putting us on the spot! We love both Gran Canaria and Tenerife but here’s a quick comparison to help you choose.

Best bits: Both have amazing beaches, beautiful weather and a gorgeous capital to visit.

Weather: They have similar temperatures with an average summer high of 28°C. Tenerife is often very slightly cooler than Gran Canaria but both are fantastic sunny destinations any time of year.

For families: Gran Canaria’s top family attractions include the famous Sioux City theme park. Tenerife is home to Siam Park, rated Spain’s best waterpark on TripAdvisor.

For adults: There are plenty of gorgeous places to unwind on either island, with an array of luxury hotels featuring everything from spas to suites. Plus there’s great sightseeing, nightlife, food and watersports. For golf, Tenerife wins, though (just!).

Scenery: Explore Mount Teide National Park in Tenerife or hike the Camino de Santiago in Gran Canaria.

Flights: Tenerife and Gran Canaria have their own airports. It’ll take you around 4 and a half hours to fly to either island from London.

Spain’s six-drink rule: The six-drink rule doesn’t affect Gran Canaria, Tenerife or any other Canary Islands.

There’s only one thing for it, you’re going to have to go to both!