• France's news in English
 
app_header_v3
Top ten reasons to holiday in Gran Canaria
www.grancanaria.com

Top ten reasons to holiday in Gran Canaria

The Local · 16 Jul 2013, 17:24

Published: 16 Jul 2013 17:24 GMT+02:00

 
1. Check out the capital
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria is the largest city of the Canary Islands. Its central square, Parque Santa Catalina, resembles one vast, outdoor café that is buzzing all day and night and central to all of the city’s celebrations. Hop on one of the sightseeing buses that begin their tours here or simply stick around to enjoy the atmosphere with a glass of wine or two. 
 
2. World-class windsurfing
Active holidaymakers will not be disappointed with the wide range of water sports on offer. The island is a world-class destination for windsurfers and the coastal area around Pozo Izquierdo doubles up as a Mecca for enthusiasts. Both trade winds and the energetic sea currents in this area of the island make it a natural home for the annual Windsurfing World Championships. 
 
3. Ride the surf
If you’re at home in the surf, you’ll be in good company along with some of the world’s best surfers and bodyboarders who reside on the island where the World Championships are held. Surfers can feel just as much at home in Gran Canaria as in many parts of California and Australia, thanks to the excellent conditions along the volcanic coastline and great depth, allowing waves to break with brutal energy. 
 
4. Dive the depths
There’s 230km of spectacular coastline where you can scuba dive and discover amazing marine life. The island has a host of diving schools and clubs offering the possibility of signing up to a course or an organised trip. The deep ravines snake their way from the coast to the highest point inland, which also lend themselves to nature activities including climbing, trekking and cycling – the perfect way to find all of the hidden beauty spots. 
 
5. Lounge on the best beaches
The picture-perfect image of Gran Canaria is the home of golden, sandy beaches that stretch over 31 miles. A trip to Canteras Beach (La Playa de las Canteras) is a must due to its great beauty and the pleasant water temperature, making it one of the most important recreation areas for people living in the city. Its waters hide La Barra, a coral reef that calms the waves without isolating the beach from open water. 
 
6. Accompaniment by the Atlantic
Evening entertainment in Las Palmas offers something for every. Dine out on an open-air terrace in Vegueta, which transforms into a melting pot of people eating in the wide range of restaurants, enjoying live music or heading to nightclubs. For something a little bit different, you can attend a classical concert overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. The far north-west edge of Canteras beach is crowned by the Alfredo Kraus Auditorium, one of the city’s emblematic buildings, designed as a space for meetings and musical events. 
 
7. Enjoy the silence
For a slice of tranquillity, head to Ciudad Jardín. Known as the English district, it housed the first British transport company employees who set up bases in the Puerto de la Luz at the end of the 19th century. Despite its city centre location, Ciudad Jardin, is one of the most peaceful areas of the capital of Gran Canaria. 
A coffee on the terrace of the a beautiful Pueblo Canario or the lovely Hotel Santa Catalina and a visit to the Néstor museum, dedicated to the modernist painter Néstor Martín Fernández de La Torre, will complete a day’s sightseeing.
 
8. Shop until you drop
Vegueta is the primitive nucleus of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. This is the place where the Real de Las Palmas was located and where the island conquest began in 1478. When Vegueta could expand no further, Triana emerged on the other side of the Guiniguada ravine. The central axis of the district is the street bearing its name, a busy commercial boulevard in the city, which is ideal for shopping. 
 
9. Sample the local dishes
You may well be surprised by the distinctive and impressive cuisine of the island. Check out papas arrugadas (potatoes boiled in salt water and served in their jackets) along with mojo picon (spicy sauce) or puchero (beef and pork with vegetables, chorizo, potato and sweet potato). Gourmets will go mad for the unique mountain variety of cheeses, with thistle added at the curd stage – a real must for food enthusiasts to try. 
 
10. 365 days of great weather
The excellent geographic condition of the Island and the springtime climate all year round is why the island is often compared to a ‘miniature continent’. There’s something new to photograph around every corner, from sand dunes to rugged mountains, tropical forests and tranquil valleys. Gran Canaria has a fascinating history, amazing food, spectacular scenery and brilliant water sports. There’s also the opportunity to relax and get away from it all.
 
Article sponsored by www.grancanaria.com

Related links:

Today's headlines
France imposes three-month ban on making foie gras
Photo: AFP

Foie gras producers in France are in a flap, and your next serving of the delicacy may be pricey.

French minister fumes over Euro 2016 song in English
Photo: Screengrab YouTube/SkipTheUse

The team is French, the tournament is in France, but the official song is in English. Cue anger in the government.

French are 'more tolerant' despite big rise in racist acts
A copy of a burned Koran after an Islamophobic attack in Corsica last year. Photo: AFP

French society is becoming tolerant even though there are more acts of racism, the results of an annual survey has shown.

'They are lost': Journalist infiltrates French jihadist cell
Photo: AFP

"I never saw Islam in this affair, just lost frustrated youths," says a French journalist who managed to infiltrate a cell of jihadists, planning to launch an attack in France.

Police evict 1,350 migrants from Paris camp once again
All photos: AFP

A huge group of migrants has been evicted from the Stalingrad Metro area in Paris, for the third time in three months.

Frenchwoman killed closing window shutters in storm
File photo: Julie Kertesz/Flickr

Storms claimed the life of a woman in France at the weekend, when she was killed trying to close her shutters.

French rail passengers must now pay for ticket changes
Photo: AFP

From now on passengers on French trains will have to pay for last-minute changes to their tickets.

How things change in France from May 2016
Photo: AFP

The beginning of the month of May brings with it more changes to everyday life in France.

Frenchman sues firm for being 'bored out' of his job
Photo: Tahir Hashmi/Flickr

You've heard of a burnout. This guy says he lost his job because of "bore out". A first in France.

May Day march in Paris descends into violent clashes
May Day protests in Paris end in violence once again. Photo: AFP

There was yet more violence between police and protesters in Paris on Sunday as the annual May Day labour protests turned ugly.

Sponsored Article
How to launch your international career
National
Who exactly are the masked rioters causing havoc across France?
Sponsored Article
What's the best way for expats to transfer money abroad?
French rail passengers must now pay to change their tickets
Travel
Here are nine must-see landmarks in Paris you may have missed
Sponsored Article
Education abroad: How to find an international school
Society
Paris makes love-lock bridge even more love-lock proof
Lifestyle
Parisians paying dearly for their bad 'parking'
Society
What's on in France: Ten great things to do in May
Society
Protesters clash with police over France's new labour laws
Sponsored Article
Retiring abroad: ensuring your health is covered
National
French dangerously 'unprepared' for future natural disasters
Is it really safe to come to France for Euro 2016?
National
Salah Abdeslam: Pot-smoking 'little moron' is finally back in Paris
Rail strike: Passengers in France face major disruption
Cats in a cafe?!? Nine of the quirkiest things you can see in Paris
National
VIDEO: The moment a Paris suicide bomber blew himself up
National
Why there's another rail strike in France and why there will be more
National
Winter is coming (back). Why is France so cold right now?
National
WWI's Anzac Day heroes honoured in northern France service
Lifestyle
VIDEO: Did you know all these stars spoke great French?
Culture
How did the French end up with their 'crazy' numbers?
Politics
Why this man could become the next president of France
Society
VIDEO: Jewellers in southern France raided by... swarm of bees
Culture
Did you know the strange origins of these six French curse words?
Why are more and more people dying on French roads?
National
VIDEO: Mass street brawl erupts at Paris migrant camp
2,782
jobs available