Spain Guide


Gran Canaria Beaches

Gran Canaria has a variety of beaches to suit all tastes. There are beaches for young families, naturists, gays, watersports enthusiasts.and plain old sun worshippers! The most popular tourist beaches can get over crowded but if you're seeking a secluded spot there's enough sand on this coastline to give everyone their own bit of space.

Playa del Ingles, in the south of the island, is probably the most famous beach in the whole of the Canarian archipelago and is also one of the busiest throughout the year. It stretches for nearly three kilometres and is lined with bars, restaurants, hotels and shops.

Every kind of tourist facility imaginable is available here and you can enjoy a full range of beach and water sports. If you're offended by nudity, be aware that some areas of this beach are frequented by naturists.

Adjoining Playa del Ingles are the beaches of Maspalomas, arguably the most beautiful on the island with fine white sand stretching for six kilometres. The seafront is flanked by the famous sand dunes of Maspalomas a haven for gay holidaymakers as well as camel riding tourists.

Choose your spot here carefully one area of Maspalomas is ideal for families, two stretches of beach are used by nudists and a fourth area is a recognised gay haunt (so you may not want to park your towel on the wrong patch of sand by mistake!)


The beaches here are well served with bars, restaurants and sports centres, especially at Faro de Maspalomas where you'll find the Pasito Blanco sports harbour. There are several oases with palm trees along the beaches and a fresh water lake.

A little north west along the coast, there's the popular resort of Puerto Rico with its crescent shaped sandy beach and sports harbour. This is an attractive resort with a yacht marina and plenty of bars and restaurants but the beach is quite small and nearly always crowded. You can take a mini boat cruise from the harbour or book a day's big game fishing to hunt for the shark and marlin which inhabit these waters.

A more peaceful bay can be found west of Puerto Rico at Playa de los Amadores (the Lovers' Beach) where ball games and radios are banned. Sun beds are available for hire and there's a good selection of bars and restaurants behind the beach.

Travel a short way west along the coast and you'll come to the delightful fishing port of Puerto Mogan a world apart from Playa del Ingles with its traffic free village of local style houses and narrow alleyways ablaze with flower filled window boxes. This quiet resort has an excellent protected beach which is perfect for young children.

In the north of the island there's the wonderful beach of Playa de las Canteras, to the west of the island's capital Las Palmas. The beach is three kilometres of golden sand, flanked by a bustling promenade with safe bathing waters protected from the waves by a natural sand spit.

Where the sand spit finishes, at La Cicer, the waves come crashing in making this part of the beach ideal for surfers. The busy Paseo de las Canteras seafront promenade is awash with open air cafes, bars and restaurants.

Playa de las Alcaravaneras, just to the west of Las Palmas, is a 1,000 metre stretch of golden sand with a sailing club, a wealth of beach and water sports and a bustling seafront promenade.