Puerto de Mogán marina is known as Little Venice because of its gorgeous lanes and canals. It's a must-visit spot in Gran Canaria and here's twenty photos that show you the highlights.
Besides the beach, and the other beach at Amadores, there's plenty to do in Puerto Rico. It's the island's busiest resort and you can do anything from absolutely nothing to driving a Ferrari.
Sometimes we think there's a giant conspiracy amongst San Agustín fans to keep it quiet and off the radar. It's certainly the most tranquil and least-visited of Gran Canaria's resorts.
You've arrived in Playa del Inglés, unpacked your flip flops and want to explore the resort. Well, Playa del Inglés stretches right along the coast so you're not going to do it all on your first day. Head to the sea and the dune front promenade for an overview.
Once you've arrived in Puerto Rico resort and unpacked you're ready to explore. It's not hard to find your way as all roads in Puerto Rico lead to the beach provided that you aim downhill.
Ferries in Gran Canaria come in two different styles: Big ones that travel to other islands, and little ones that hop between harbours along the south coast.
Playa del Inglés is about half an hour down the motorway from Gran Canaria airport and you can't really get lost. You can rent a car or get a bus or taxi to the resort.
Playa del Inglés has an incredibly low crime rate given the number of people and the late opening hours. Most crimes are opportunistic and can be avoided by using common sense. Serious crimes such as muggings and break-ins are extremely rare but happen here as they do everywhere.
Standard resort cuisine in Gran Canaria hasn’t changed much since the 1970s. Prawn cocktails comewithout an ironic wink and the banana split rules the dessert menu. Is this because restaurateurs and chefs are stuck in a time warp? No, it’s because they serve what you guys want, and what you guys want is retro comfort food and old favourites.
Millions of people come to Gran Canaria every year for its beautiful beaches and perfect weather. Some of you however, want to do a bit more than just get a tan. If you fancy going for a walk in Gran Canaria, but don't want to go too far from the resorts, don't worry: There are plenty of excellent walks right in the heart of Gran Canaria's main resorts.
Walking in Gran Canaria ranges from sunset strolls by the sea to epic treks across the mountains. Here’s our guide to the resort walks in Gran Canaria that combine easy walking with plenty of outdoor cafes and ocean views.
The dunes are Europe's only slice of the Sahara Desert. They stretch over 6km from Maspalomas resort to Playa del Ingles. The best way to see them is to walk right across them from the end of Avenida Tirajana to the sea.
See here for a Google Map of the start point for this walk.
The walk takes an hour with a couple of stops for taking photos and running up and down sand dunes. The soft sand is hard going so stick to the crests of the dunes for the easiest path. Take water, a hat and sunscreen.
Once you reach the sea either walk west along the beach back to Maspalomas or east back to Playa del Inglés. We recommend doing the walk at dawn or dusk as you will get better photographs and it won't be as hot.
If walking through the dunes sounds like too much hard work, then walk along the shore from Maspalomas to Playa del Inglés resorts, or vice versa.
Start either in Maspalomas by the lagoon, or from the Annexo 2 line of restaurants on the beach in Playa del Inglés. The walk is about 6 km long and takes a couple of hours with a stop for a swim, some sunbathing, or a drink at one of the many snack stands on the beach.
You’ll go past the nudist sections of the beach so don't be surprised if you see a few naked people splashing about in the sea or playing volleyball on the beach (what is it with nudists and volleyball?).
You don't even have to get sand in your sandals to walk along the beachfront in Playa del Ingles. The beachfront promenade, called the Paseo Costa Canaria, runs all the way from the end of Avenida Tirajana to San Agustín Beach about 5km east. The whole walk is dune- or seafront and takes you past a couple of quiet, local beaches.
Walking from Playa del Inglés the promenade, which is largely wheelchair friendly, runs behind the dunes and past the three small, sheltered beaches called Playa El Cochino at the end of Playa del Ingles beach.
The walkway continues along the coast to Las Burras Beach with its golden sand and largely local crowd and goes on all the way to San Agustin Beach and up the hill to the end of San Agustín Resort. The whole walk takes a couple of hours one way if you include a drinks stop or a swim at one of the beaches.
The Lugar las Meloneras seafront promenade is in the newest and most upmarket part of Gran Canaria's resorts. It runs between the historic Maspalomas lighthouse, soon to open as a museum and exhibition centre, all the way to Meloneras Beach. The walk takes you past plenty of shops, bars and restaurants, and past a tiny archaeological park right on the seashore.
Lugar las Meloneras is a great place to walk in the evening as you get to watch the sea set over the Atlantic Ocean. Meloneras Beach itself gets ignored by most visitors in favour of bigger Maspalomas Beach. It is sandy and has its own little shopping centre with bars and restaurants. If Maspalomas beach is windy, there is a good chance that Meloneras will sheltered enough to sunbathe.
The safe, cliff-top walk from Puerto Rico resort to Amadores Beach gives you beautiful views of the turquoise sea and rocky shore along the way. There is even a spiral stair case in front of the Gloria Palace Hotel that takes you down to the sea. If the sea is rough, which isn't that often, don't go down the staircase as people have been washed off the rocks during storms.
The walk starts from the shopping centre in Puerto Chico. It takes about 40 minutes one way. Once you get to Amadores Beach you can get a drink or a snack in one of the restaurants, go for a swim and do a spot of sunbathing, and then either walk or take a taxi or bus back to Puerto Rico.
These walks may not take you up into rugged Gran Canaria mountains, or past any rural villages but they give you amazing views of the sea and have plenty of convenient drink stops.
Gran Canaria’s resorts, clustered along the south coast, get the most sunshine on the whole island. They are sheltred by the rest of the island and exist in a permenant bubble of blue sky.
If you come to Gran Canaria for a week’s holiday you are virtually guaranteed plenty of sun. With minimum winter temperatures over 20ºC they are the best place in Europe for topping up your winter tan.
Playa del Inglés Weather
Even when Gran Canaria’s mountains are covered in cloud Playa del Inglés is sunny. The clouds seem to burn off when they float over the Maspalomas sand dunes in front of the resort.
Minimum temperatures during the day never drop below 20ºC and rarely rise above 33ºC. Combined with the sunshine this makes Playa del Inglés a fantastic sunshine destination all year round.
For more on Playa del Inglés click here for our resort guide.
With it’s enormous beach and dune system Maspalomas has its own microclimate. The hot air rising from the dunes keeps the clouds off the resort and blue is the default sky colour. You can sunbathe all year round on the beach and the water is warm enough for a dip even in the winter.
Maspalomas is the Gran Canaria’s flattest resort so it does sometimes get windy on the beach. If the palm trees are swaying back and forth take a windbreak, head to sheltered Meloneras Beach at the end of the promenade, or just stay by the pool for the day.
Like the sound of Maspalomas? Click here for our resort guide.
Mogán is the prettiest resort on the island and the weather is dreamy too. It’s as sunny as it gets anywhere in Europe with 320 days per year of sunshine and is rarely windy. For the absolute best chance of getting a winter tan, Mogán is your spot.
For more on Mogán, click here.
Puerto Rico Weather
Puerto Rico is a couple of days short of being the sunniest spot in Gran Canaria behind Mogán but is still basically set to ‘permanent sunshine’. With the beach, a short walk from all the accommodation, and with stunning Amadores beach just around the headland, Puerto Rico is the sunbather’s resort.
Click here for our Puerto Rico guide.
San Agustín Weather
San Agustin gets the blue skies and hot sun of Maspalomas without the crowds. The beaches are stunning but can be windy. If you get a blowy few days head along the promenade towards Maspalomas. The sheltered beaches along the way, like Las Burras, don’t get the gusts.
Click here for our Puerto Rico guide.
Las Palmas Weather
Gran Canaria’s capital city is tucked up in the north east of the island and has much more varied weather than the resorts. It still gets seven hours of sunshine per day on average, but cloudy days are more common. During July and August Las Palmas is often cloudy due to the Panza de Burro or Donkey Belly cloud that lingers over the city.
During the winter, Las Palmas gets plenty of sunshine and is an excellent spot for a city break that includes tanning time on the beach along with great nightlife and culture.
For more on Las Palmas, click here.
The Cumbres Weather
Most of the real weather in Gran Canaria happens up in the mountains or Cumbres. In the winter the very top gets frost and even snow. Even in the summer it can be chilly in the mornings and evenings and in winter it gets bitingly cold if the clouds are low down.
The weather up top changes by the hour. Take a windcheater and a couple of extra layers if you plan to walk about. We can’t tell you how many times we have seen poor tourists in shorts shivering away up there. They always say the same thing: “Nobody told us it gets cold in Gran Canaria”.