Gran Canaria is the perfect destination for beach lovers and nature enthusiasts who want to combine relaxation with active adventures. There are a lot of attractions to see and discover on the island, starting with the capital, Las Palmas, and other towns like Arucas, Galadar and Telde. To get to know more about Gran Canaria’s wildlife, start at Crocodile Park, or organize a visit to the volcanic crater of Caldera de Bandama, the steep ravines and majestic rock formations of Valsequillo or Palmitos Park. Gran Canaria is also home to stunning structures that explain the island’s history, including the painted caves of Galadar, Cenobo de Valeron, the archeological settlement of Llano de las Brujas, and the charming old quarter of the capital.
Catederal de Santa Ana
The beautiful Santa Ana Cathedral is in the heart of the old quarter of Las Palmas and was the first church built in the Canaries by the orders of King Ferdinand II of Aragon and Queen Isabella I of Castille. It is notable for its twin-towers and mix of neo-Classical, Renaissance and Gothic architecture. Construction started in the 1500's, but wasn't completed until four centuries later. The compound is home to notable attractions like the Patio de los Naranjos (Patio of Orange Trees) where the Museo Diocesano de Arte Sacro (Sacred Art Museum) is located.
Address: Calle Obispo Codina 13 S of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
Casa de Colon
A short walk from Catedral de Santa Ana leads to Casa de Colon, or Columbus House, one of the most attractive buildings in Las Palmas. Large courtyards, latticed balconies, ornate entryways, and carved wooden ceilings represent the architectural styles of many traditional buildings on the island. Casa de Colon is also notable for being a home to Christopher Columbus and he stayed here in 1492 while waiting for repairs on one of his ships to be finished. The building dates back to 1777, but it was converted into a museum in 1952 to showcase pre-Columbian artifacts, navigation instruments, paintings related to Columbus, nautical tools, and a replica of La Niña, one of the most famous ships in the fleet.
Address: Calle Colon, 1, 35001 Palmas de Gran Canaria, Palmas, Spain
Crocodile Park started out as a small refuge for crocodiles and has since grown into one of the largest of its kind in the world. It attracts animal lovers and families to the only zoological park in Gran Canaria. Approximately 300 crocodiles live in the sanctuary along with several species of parrots, tropical fish, birds, chimpanzees, and baboons. Guests should dedicate an entire day to the park to fully enjoy all the attractions and activities. Special coaches are available or you can get here via bus number 30 from Puerto Rico.
Address: Carretera General Los Corralillos, km 5.5, 35119 Aguimes, Palmas, Spain
Aqua Sur Water Park
Also known as Aqualand Maspalomas, Aqua Sur is the largest water park on the island with more than 6,340 square feet of pools, 33 slides and 13 other attractions like swimming with the sea lions. The park is open daily and is accessible by public transportation on Global Bus Line 75 from Puerto Rico, Faro Maspalomas or Line 45 from San Agustin/Bahia Feliz and Playa del Ingles.
Address: Ctra. Palmitos Park, km 3 35100, Maspalomas, Gran Canaria
The Canary Island’s largest theme park, Holiday World boasts many different rides, a bowling alley, arcades, bars, and restaurants. Catering to visitors of all ages, it is also home to a wellness center as well as nightlife. Holiday World is accessible by taxi or car from the GC-1 motorway or Globe Bus lines 25, 30, 32, 36, 45, 52, 66, and 70 also stop here.
Address: Avenida Touroperador Tui, E-35100, Maspalomas, Gran Canaria
Maspalomas is known as Gran Canaria’s most beautiful beach because of its white sands with a backdrop of dunes. The coastline spans three and a half miles, giving visitors plenty of privacy and room to spread out even during peak season. There are leisure and sports facilities, as well as showers and scuba diving.
Address: Maspalomas-Costa Canaria town, San Bartolome de Tirajana, Gran Canaria.
Home to 200 different species of birds, an aquarium, butterfly haven, orchid house, and cactus gardens, Palmitos Park is a zoological and botanical center in Gran Canaria. White-handed gibbons live on Primates Island and visitors will enjoy exhibits about flora and fauna as well as dolphin shows. Palmitos Park is accessible from Playa del Ingles, San Agustin, Faro Maspalomas, Campo Internacional, and Bahia Feliz via bus number 45, and bus 70 from Puerto Rico, Faro, Amadores, or Campo Internacional.
Address: Barranco de Los Palmitos s/n, 35109 Maspalomas, Gran Canaria
Artifacts and archeological finds from the Guanches, the original inhabitants of the island, are the main attraction of this popular museum. It is also home to a large collection of the mummy remains and skulls. Museo Canario is situated in Vegueta, the historic quarter of Las Palmas near Santa Ana Square and the cathedral. Buses 1 and 2 stop at Perez Galdos theater and Alameda de Colon, which is within walking distance of the museum. It is also possible to take Global bus lines 50 and 30 from Maspalomas lighthouse and Playa Ingles.
Address: Doctor Verneau, 2, Vegueta, 35001 Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
Puerto de Mogan
This picturesque fishing village and resort in Mogan features channels that resemble canals. They link the harbor to the marina and has been nicknamed "Little Venice." The beachfront and marina are home to bars, restaurants and a market that keeps the area bustling every Friday. Many buses serve the area, but it is also easily accessible by car from the GC1 motorway or GC-500, the coastal road from Puerto Rico.
Address: Mogan, Gran Canaria
Relive the old west in Sioux City, watching cowboys and Indians perform. Duel Until Death, Indian Rain Dance and Saloon Fight are the most popular shows, but there are also horseback riding facilities and a zoo for children and families.
Address: Barranco del Aguila, 35107 San Bartolome de Tirajana, Gran Canaria, Islas Canaria, Spain