Welcome to the largest city in Gran Canaria, an island home to some extraordinary historical, cultural and natural wonders. Despite being a fairly small gem nestled among some of Spain's most beautiful islands, this destination is bound to satisfy all sorts of holidaymakers, including those who love a day out at the beach.
If you choose to visit Las Palmas on a Costa Cruise (which we highly recommend), your first stop will be the city’s Puerto de la Luz. From here, all you need to do is head to one of the city’s excellent bus terminals – such as San Telmo Park or Santa Catalina Park – to start your trip around the city and local surroundings.
We recommend that history buffs make the trip to Vegueta, where you can admire some of the amazing historical buildings that have stood guard over Las Palmas for more than 500 years. Definitely worth a visit are the Ermita de San Antonio Abad and Plaza de Santa Ana, which is surrounded by the Casas Consistoriales, Obispado, Casa Regental and Santa Ana Cathedral. Also worthy of a trip is the Casa de Colòn Museum, which is dedicated to Christopher Columbus and is a great place to learn about the explorer’s journey to the Indies. While the Museo Canario, on the other hand, will teach you all you need to know about the indigenous peoples of Gran Canaria. Before heading to the beach or for a bite to eat, make sure to visit Guininguada Theatre and take a stroll through the old market square dating back to 1854.
If you’re hoping to track down some of the best places in Las Palmas, head to Caldera de Bandama, which is the name of a one-kilometre crater inside a dormant volcano. Lava has created both a crater and a landmass here, making it the perfect place to enjoy an incredible view of the island and surrounding area.
Parks, fish restaurants and hospitality: you’re bound to be won over by the local residents. Gran Canaria is the perfect place for a great holiday! And if you’re still not convinced, it’s because you haven’t heard about the best beaches in Spain yet. Las Palmas de Gran Canaria is one of the few Spanish capitals to offer tourists kilometre upon kilometre of sandy coastline. And it’s also worth mentioning the year-round warm climate, which makes a dip in the sea perfectly reasonable whatever the season may be. It’s no coincidence that Gran Canaria is famed for having one of best climates in the world. It’s never a bad idea to head to the beach, but we also recommend a stroll through town on the Avenida Marìtima. This street connects San Cristóbal fishing district (where you have to eat at least once in your life!) to the city centre. Local residents come here to enjoy the sunshine, lively atmosphere and great shopping opportunities. We also recommend a visit to the Triana pedestrianised shopping area, before continuing your cultural journey with a local ice cream in hand.
Happen to be a fan of plants and flowers? Las Palmas is a botanical centre par excellence. Take a trip to the Jardín Botánico Viera y Clavijo, which is living proof that pretty much anything can grow on this volcanic island. Get ready to be wowed by the extraordinary variety of local species here, including flowers and large, beautiful cacti. Make sure to bring your camera, you won’t regret it! The Anglo-Saxon quarter is also located near here, which is a great place to admire beautiful urban scenery with a nineteenth-century influence, such as ornate embassies, dream homes, and gardens that look like they belong on a postcard. Also worth a visit is the Holy Trinity Church and Parque Doramas, a charming garden created by expert landscapers.
Check out our list of the best beaches in Las Palmas. All that’s left to do is hop on a cruise and take in the beauty of Gran Canaria. You’ll thank us upon your return!
If you are looking for a stretch of rural coastline lined with small beaches nestled between colourful houses and the sea, we recommend a trip to San Cristóbal fishing district. Here, you will soon be struck by the smell of fish and salt, mixed with sand and pebbles. Among the first things you’ll notice along this enchanting strip of coastline is San Pedro Castle, a beautiful building stood atop a rocky mount.
San Cristóbal fishing district consists of clusters of houses that almost look as if they’ve been stacked on top of one another. The main street offers a great view of the surrounding neighbourhood and port, while also providing easy access to bars and restaurants, where you can enjoy the local cuisine and hospitality Las Palmas has to offer. The older generations love to talk about San Cristóbal’s glory days, when fishing boats would return to shore surrounded by swarms of seagulls. The more birds there were, the better the daily catch had been. Nowadays, the area is no longer a fishing hub, but it still prides itself on its quality produce. The air here is full of character and history, and it’s made that bit more special by the presence of some truly beautiful beaches.
Of course, when talking about Las Palmas’ best beaches, we just have to include La Puntilla Beach, which is the smallest, loveliest beach in all of Las Palmas. La Puntilla consists of a golden strip of sand protected by large, rounded rocks. This particular beach boasts crystal clear waters, making swimming easy and pleasant. In fact, the beach’s natural shape protects it from strong sea currents. Feel free to bring the kids here, too, but make sure not to stray too far from the beach and into the port. Fishermen tend to get cross if they see swimmers on their territory!
This beach tends to get crowded, especially during high season, but a little further down the coast is a beautiful pebbly beach that’s usually fairly quiet. Between dips in the sea, you can always take a break for a stroll through San Cristóbal, where you will find some of the best seafood restaurants in all of Gran Canaria.
The beach is monitored by lifeguards, making swimming here a truly fabulous experience!
Las Canteras Beach
A vast area of sandy coastline in the heart of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Las Canteras Beach boasts three kilometres of sand, and is a particularly popular among tourists and local residents. In fact, most people come here to enjoy the calm waters and soft sands. The sea is protected by a coral reef called La Barra, allowing holidaymakers to swim safely in the waters without fear of meeting strong currents. Come for a swim with your little ones or to sunbathe in this beautiful part of the world, where you can lay out your towel and relax until sunset. People also visit to enjoy various water sports, including surfing.
The southern part of Playas de las Canteras is bordered by a natural rocky reef called La Cicer. This area abounds with shops selling and renting all kinds of water sports equipment, as well as surf schools suitable for all skill levels.
If you are looking for an urban beach where you can enjoy a day of sea, sand and relaxation, you should definitely come to Las Canteras. And if you get tired of beach life, you can always take refuge in one of the many restaurants and bars dotted along the shoreline. Here, you will find some excellent places to try local Gran Canaria delicacies at some very affordable prices.
Las Canteras is split into several areas, where you can make the most of amazing tourist facilities. Take the northern section of Playa Grande, for example. A large, calm area, it is protected by an underwater volcanic barrier, making the waters suitable for the whole family. The area boasts some great facilities, and you can also rent sunbeds and umbrellas. Public toilets, showers, changing rooms and coast guards make this the perfect place for a worry-free day of complete relaxation. Playa Grande is also very near some excellent restaurants and bars serving delicious local cuisine.
Playa Chica is located in the centre of Canteras. Despite being a fairly small beach without any public services or beach rental facilities, it does have a lot of bars and restaurants, as well as an unparalleled view of the coastline. The water at Playa Chica is ideal for snorkelling, so don your flippers and snorkel and get ready to admire the beautiful seabed, which is always brimming with colourful fish and coral. This is the best place to immerse yourself in local Las Palmas life. It might be fairly busy, but you will soon feel like you’ve been coming here for a lifetime!
El Confital Beach
Welcome to El Confital, one of the most beautiful, modern beaches in Gran Canaria. If you are looking for something a little different, this is it. In addition to being equipped with bathing facilities, the local area is home to a beautiful strip of sand and rocks nestled in the heart of Las Palmas. This beach is also famous for its surfing opportunities. Every year, hundreds of surfers flock to this spot to practice the sport or participate in championships. Located just a short distance from Las Canteras, El Confital is a small paradise that’s definitely worth a visit. Reachable on foot, the area surrounding El Confital is simply fantastic. Come here if you are looking for the perfect place to relax and take some unforgettable photos.
Swimming in El Confital isn’t best suited to beginners. Although the coastline gently slopes down to a sandy seabed, there are a few rocks further out in the water that can hinder swimming.
At the moment, due to a few issues with pollution, El Confital is closed to the public. However, redevelopment works are slated to begin very shortly, and we guarantee that when the beach re-opens, it will be even more beautiful and well-equipped than ever before!
Las Alcaravaneras Beach
Beautiful Playa de las Alcaravaneras is located along the coast of Las Palmas. On this beautiful stretch of soft, sandy, golden land, it’s easy to find a place to lay out your towel and enjoy the sunshine without having to worry about there being too many tourists. It doesn’t matter what day you choose to visit Las Alcaravaneras, you’ll always feel welcome!
In addition to relaxing and enjoying the natural beauty, there is plenty to do in Las Alcaravaneras, such as sunbathing, swimming and a whole host of beach activities. We recommend, for example, getting stuck into a beach volleyball game, or trying your hand at a spot of kayaking or sailing. The kiosks dotted along the coastline sell cold drinks and excellent refreshments all day long. Come hire an umbrella and get ready to relax! This beach is also perfect for children thanks to its public toilets, changing rooms and showers.
If you like jogging, we recommend a trip from Vegueta to La Isleta. There are also plenty of buses that will take you to Las Alcaravaneras, so you really are spoiled for choice.
The area is also very popular with tourists looking for a luxury experience. As a result, this is quite a good place to come for that extra spot of pampering on your unforgettable holiday!
Del Hombre Beach
Lots of space, dark, soft sand and endless sunshine. That’s right, you’ve reached Del Hombre Beach, one of the best loved spots among tourists and residents who come to Las Palmas looking to take some excellent photographs. Located on the coast of Telde, Playa del Hombre is a difficult place to get your head around, but it’s guaranteed to provide you with some food for thought and opportunities for introspection. The beach is almost black, and the wind often blows stronger than is bearable. As a result, the water is very rough, and swimming here can be really difficult. Not easy to access, Del Hombre Beach is the perfect location for people wanting to take a photo in complete isolation. During the week, in fact, it is almost always deserted!
On the other hand, it’s the perfect location for surfers. In addition to hosting various championships, you can also sign up for beginner lessons, thereby allowing everyone to experience the thrill of conquering the rough seas. Although taking a surf lesson might not be the most adrenaline-filled experience, you’re guaranteed to find everything you’ll need here to practice before exploring more ambitious strips of coastline.
El Hombre isn’t home to any bathing facilities and has no lifeguards keeping watch. The only convenience around here is the beach’s vicinity to the city, which boasts some of the best restaurants in Gran Canaria. Come here for a day of photo-taking, walks and some of the best local cuisine around!
Dos Roques Beach
A quiet beach and a great place to enjoy a packed lunch during your trip to Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. Although not the best location for a day of swimming and diving, Dos Roques is home to a sandy beach dotted with rough rocks that really add to the local beauty. The water here is fairly rough due to local winds and strong currents, and it often falls prey to big waves that make swimming difficult. What’s more, the beach is often entirely submerged by the high tide, so make sure you check before setting off!
Dos Roques is also a fabulous location for photography lovers. Come here if you are looking for a quiet place surrounded by nature, where you can enjoy a tasty snack away from the tourist crowds. And if you do choose to make the trip here, you’ll probably be the only one on the beach. Sound like a good reason to visit Dos Roques? You’ll be grateful we recommended this excellent spot upon your return to the ship.
You’ll probably not be too surprised to hear that the beach doesn’t have any bathing facilities or coastguards. As such, we don’t recommend swimming here!
Peña de la Vieja
There are various theories as to why this place is called Peña de la Vieja. The most famous being that this delightful sandy beach bordered by Las Palmas was once home to elderly women who came to fish. Legend has it that one of the women fell into the water and tragically lost her life. Another theory is that children used to come here to hide behind the rocks when their mothers came to take them home for dinner in the evening.
On this characteristic stretch of Las Canteras beach, you can relax just a few metres from the city centre. Come here to enjoy the excellent ice cream produced by local dairies and let yourself be drawn in by the smell of the wind and sea. The water is calm and crystal clear. And while perhaps not the best location for swimming in Las Palmas, Peña de la Vieja is a great place for anyone looking for a quiet spot where they can immerse themselves in Gran Canaria’s local coastal life without straying too far from the centre of town.
It may not be the number one spot for surfing in Gran Canaria, but La Cicer (to the south of Las Canteras) is the perfect place to learn how to master your surfboard without running into too much danger. In fact, this beach is home to the largest number of surfing schools in the area. The area is also dotted with small shops and kiosks where instructors await learners with enthusiasm and passion.
La Cicer is covered in golden sand, making it ideal for beginners. The waves tend to be quite unpredictable and unruly, but don’t worry, it’s better to learn in a place where the sea is a little more unreliable!
In the middle of the beach is a lookout tower where lifeguards watch over the coast and help swimmers in difficulty. Come here to enjoy a day out while your fellow holidaymakers try their hand at bodyboarding, surfing or other water sports. The sunshine is fantastic and the breeze will keep you cool.
La Laja Beach
Visit Las Palmas with Costa Cruises
Set off for Las Palmas tomorrow with Costa Cruises. Whether you want to learn to surf on a beautiful beach, or relax in San Cristóbal, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria welcomes you with its wonderful food, never-ending sunshine and numerous opportunities for relaxation and fun. What are you waiting for? Book your Costa Cruise today and visit one of the most beautiful islands in Spain.