Las Canteras Beach: The Best City Beach In The World?

Las Canteras: The world's best urban beach Las Canteras: The world's best urban beach

Some people say that Las Canteras is one of the top city beaches in Europe. We say it's number one. In fact, we'll go further and say that Las Canteras deserves to be at the top of any "best city beaches in the world" list.


Las Canteras beach sunsetYes, it's that good. Nowhere else in Europe can compete for one simple reason: Winter and beaches just don't mix.
Barcelona has lovely beaches, so do Dubrovnik, San Sebastian, Lisbon, Copenhagen and Marbella. But how many people sunbathe on them in February? Las Palmas city is over 20ºC every day of the year and gets glorious sunny days right through the winter. 
If you factor in the calm, clear water behind the reef, the golden sand, the year-round surfing at the south end, the snorkelling and the beachfront promenade where you can eat lunch in a t-shirt almost every day, then there's no doubt.
Las Canteras beach is the best city beach in Europe. But it's not really Europe is it?

But it's not really Europe is it?

Geographically the Canary Islands are south of mainland Europe but live here and can tell you that this is definitely Europe. Gran Canaria is two hours flight from Madrid and has all the services you'd expect from a European destination. 

Ok. Best in Europe. But best in the world?


Las Canteras beach north endStill yes. And here's why ...

Las Palmas city has the world's most pleasant climate. That' official, according to Syracuse University study that compared it to 600 cities around the world. Las Palmas gets more pleasant days of weather than anywhere else on Earth and doesn't get the air pollution of other big cities with beaches.

It's actually right in the middle of Las Palmas city rather than on the outskirts like many rival urban beaches. You walk down the street and there it is right by the shops, bars and restaurants that you want next to your urban sand.

Las Canteras is huge: With over 3.5km of sand it's big enough for everyone to sit down and enjoy the sunshine. It also has a long promenade right by the sand rather than a road. Las Canteras is big enough to still feel wild and natural even though it's right in the city. 

As well as being enormous, Las Canteras is varied enough to appeal to everyone: The south end has no reef and gets surfable waves almost every day. There're board rental, surf schools and surf hostels right by the beach and no need for buses or parking. The north end is sheltered by an offshore lava reef so it's calm with clear water. There's plenty of sand and lots of coconut palms for shade.

Las Canteras beach palm treesLas Palmas takes its biodiversity seriously. The beachfront lights were recently replaced with LEDs to stop them shining into the water at night. The water between the reef and the beach is teeming with fish and the snorkelling is fantastic. 

Las Canteras is a safe beach in a safe city: It doesn't have dangerous rip tides, has never had a shark attack and theft and nuisances are rare. There are no sandflies or pesky bugs and Gran Canaria doesn't get hurricanes.

It's a world beach: Las Palmas is a Spanish city but with heavy South American influences. It's more salsa that sangria. The city also has a huge diversity of communities from all over the world and you get food from everywhere. Just on the beachfront there are restaurants from Peru, Lebanon, China, Italy and Korea. Within one street from the beach, you can eat at restaurants offering over 30 national cuisines

Additional Info

  • Lifeguard: Yes
  • Calm water: Yes
  • You're sitting on: Sand
  • Sand colour: Sahara yellow
  • Looks best at: Sunset
  • Nudist: No
  • Hippy rating: 4

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