|GRAN CANARIA TRAVEL GUIDE|
Instead of spending the whole afternoon looking for information here and there on the web, I did it for you hoping to make your life easier.
With the time saved you can calmly prepare the suitcase.
- Se preferisci: Leggi la guida di Gran Canaria in Italiano.
In this guide to the Things to Know Before arriving in Gran Canaria, I'll explain:
- What to do when you land at the airport LPA
- Transport available on the island: buses, taxi, transfer, cheap rental cars
- Find Wi-fi, hotspot areas
- Cheapest Grocery store in Gran Canaria
- Gran Canaria Free maps to download
- Application for mobile / tablet
- Gran Canaria main beaches to see
- Main Street markets and Places to visit in Gran Canaria.
- Gran Canaria Health care: Useful phone numbers: police, hospitals…
- Shopping in the Canary Islands (Transport Rules customs)
Gran Canaria Travel Info
What to do when you land at the airport LPA
Once landed in Gran Canaria you can choose to reach your destination in many ways:
- Transfer from the airport
- Car Rental
Buses in Gran Canaria AirportThe bus stop is located in the departure terminal (salidas comunitarias). As soon as you leave the baggage claim you have to go up one floor (with the escalator or elevator) and follow the signs “Buses” or, as they are called in the Canary Islands: Guaguas.
BUY BUS TICKET at the Airport LPA:
WHERE TO GO:
To get to my apartment in Puerto Rico you have to take the bus 91.
The bus line 91, leaves from the capital of the island (Las Palmas), makes a stop at the airport and up to Playa del Cura, stopping also in the tourist centers of Puerto Rico and Amadores.
- Bus 91 timetables download pdf
- For those who prefer to download the app on their tablet or smartphone, the company GuaguaBus offers free APP with bus timetables for Android and iPhone / iPad.
NOTE: Consult timetables, taking into consideration that the bus goes to the Airport about 15 minutes after departure from Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.
Gran Canaria Airport Transfers
I used this service during my first trip to Gran Canaria to reach the airport. Unfortunately, I left early, at 5 am, and the bus wasn't still active so I booked a private transfer with driver. When I left the resort where I was staying, the driver was there waiting for me. The advantage of this option is that you already know how much you spend and there are no unpleasant surprises or price increases on the agreed price.
Gran Canaria TAXI service
Out of the exit door, you will see a row of taxis. Head to the first in line, show the address or tell to the taxi driver the name of the resort where you will stay and... enjoy the landscape while the driver takes you to your destination.
How much does a taxi ride cost in Gran Canaria?
- If you want to do a rough calculation of transport costs, click here and you'll get an idea using the online calculator.
Gran Canaria rental car
How much does renting a car cost per day or per week?
Get a free and instant quote online in a few seconds:
Gran Canaria Public Transportation
The alternative is to use the Municipal Buses and buy travel tickets prepaid.
Gran Canaria has a bus service "Global" all around the resorts, from the resorts to the major towns, around and between the towns. You can rely on the public bus system to get you around most of the island. The service that goes into the center of the island and the smaller villages however is very infrequent and I wouldn't recommend relying on a service that isn't from one town or resort to another.
Global also have a website in Spanish, English and German which shows you which service to catch for which resort, the bus timetable, the fare and more.
Gran Canaria wi-fi zone
In the Las Palmas area, the capital, on the beach you can connect for free using the local hotspot.
Even in the many Gran Canaria shopping center, wi-fi is free, the biggest store near Puerto Rico is: Shopping Center El Tablero (motorway exit: number 48.)
In the south of Gran Canaria you can buy an online wifi service called 1a- Hotspot System:
It has 1300 hotspots scattered throughout the south of the island. Buying the internet subscription online, it works around the resort, my apartment and in many other southern cities.
The service can be purchased online by credit card (7 days wi fi service costs 20 euro, 28€ 2 weeks, or 40€ a month).
CHEAPEST GROCERY STORE IN GRAN CANARIA
Driving from the airport to the south of the island you can stop to buy food and beverages at the Tablero shopping center (prices are cheaper). Motorway Exit: number 48
Supermarkets in Gran Canaria: Which one is the best and cheaper ?
- Shopping Center El Tablero, Hyperdino. Motorway Exit: number 48 (10:00/22:00, 7 days open)
- Mercadona Av. de las Américas, 35109 El Tablero (exit n.48 - open: 09:00/21:30 Sunday closed)
- Mercadona: Av. de Galdar 35290 San Bartolomé de Tirajana.
- LIDL: Calle Alcalde Enrique Jorge, 35110 Maspalomas, San Fernando (8:00-22:00, 7 days open)
Weather in Gran Canaria
You may not know that the climate of the Canary Islands is considered one of the best in the world according to studies carried out by universities and climate experts.
The air is clear and dry for the duration of the year, the little pollution, the absence of changes in temperature has a positive effect on health, especially on joint pain and respiratory disorders.
If you want to live in the perfect climate and try on your skin what it means to be always in spring, see the benefits it can give you, the easiest solution is to go to Mogan area (Puerto Rico, Amadores...) and discover the beauty of the island climate. I strongly recommend the south-west area of Gran Canaria, at least in winter, which remains the most warm and protected from the wind.
- Related article: Canary islands Latitude: sun benefits vitamin d.
The temperature of the seawater is also agreeably warm, this together with the 2,700 hours of sunshine means that you can truly get the most out of your days down on the beach. The magnificent weather of Gran Canaria makes it into the ideal place for all kinds of open-air sports.
When is the best time to visit the canary islands? Is the weather good in January/February, what about the summer months, is it too hot then?
People often make the mistake of thinking that if the winter weather is so mild that the summers must be suffocating hot. This is not correct, thanks to the Trade Winds, the summer in the Canary Islands is mild thanks to the sea breezes and not at all stuffy or intolerable with temperatures around 26-29 degrees just perfect for endless days down on the beach.
Every month of the year is perfect for the holidays to the Canary Island.
Gran Canaria BEST BEACHES
In Gran Canaria there are many beaches, each with different characteristics:
- the windy beach ideal for surfing
- the wide and long beach to walk up and down
- the beach protected from the wind ideal for swimming and sunbathing.
The lighthouse of Maspalomas
The best known is the beach with the famous dunes of Maspalomas (video). This beach is great for walking because it is wide and long (from Playa del Inglés to the Maspalomas lighthouse) but it isn’t protected from the wind. It is good to know that a few times a month, especially during the winter, the wind can be annoying.
In the south of the island, there are many other beaches. Most suitable for families are located in the south-west of the island: playa de San Agustín, Anfi del Mar (video) the beautiful Amadores beach, the small beach of Puerto de Mogan and playa de Puerto Rico.
Puerto Rico is a very popular destination in winter, it attracts many visitors who enjoy the sun and water sports in fact is one of the sunniest places of the island, there is a slight breeze that makes it pleasant to be lying in the sun without sweating because of the heat. The sea is calm.
For walkers there is a path built between the rock and the waterfront of about 1 km that connecting Puerto Rico to Amadores beach (video). Both are the best places to swim even and especially in the winter.
It is for these reasons that in the winter, in the south-west of the island, it is difficult to find an accommodation if you do not book in advance.
The Playa de las Canteras is the beach of the capital. When you take a trip to the capital of the island you can not miss the opportunity to see the long beach of Las Palmas, and if the weather permits, you can also swim.
Gran Canaria MARKETS/ EVENTS
In Gran Canaria there are many street markets where you can find souvenirs and local crafts: accessories wicker, leather, ceramic, or typical gastronomy. In the south and on the coast there are more items for tourists, while in the hinterland villages you sell food and local fruit.
If you want to visit the city, you can do it during the day of the street market, however you note that usually in those days the city are literally assaulted by tourists. My advice is go early in the morning to avoid the crowds.
Street Markets in Gran Canaria:
Mercadillo de Gáldar. Thursday 8h-14h
Located in Calle Capitán Quesada, 29. The market specializes in food products.
Mercadillo de Vegueta. Every Sunday (except during July, August and September). This market in the Plaza del Pilar Nuevo, in the town of Vegueta, offers visitors the most varied local crafts. In addition you will have the opportunity to visit the old neighborhood of Las Palmas. It is interesting to see the house where Cristoforo Colombo stayed before leaving for the Americas (or rather before leaving for the Indies ^^).
Mercadillo Municipal de Playa de Mogan. Friday 8h-14h
The market is located near the port of Mogan. It is also accessible by sea. The village is a little gem with some restaurants and small shops. Will be pleasant to take a walk.
If you are interested in taking a trip by sea and enjoy the scenery, instead of the usual bus, you can take the ferry from the various ports in the south of the island.
Mercadillo Teror. Friday 8h-14h.
This street market is located near the Basilica of Nuestra Señora del Pino and is among the largest on the island.
Mercadillo San Mateo (Vega de San Mateo) Saturday and Sunday 8h-20h 14h-8h.
Located in downtown San Mateo.
Mercadillo Municipal de Arguineguín. Tuesday 8h-14h. Calle Paco González in the Ancora Centre.
WHAT TO SEE IN GRAN CANARIA
- Roque Nublo, Tejeda, in the mountainous area of Gran Canaria.
- Museum and archaeological reserve of Cueva Pintada. Galdar
In the north of Gran Canaria is a Painted Cave at the time of the aborigines.
- Puerto de las Nieves: Agaete
Small fishing village.
- Guayadeque Ravine: Agüimes and Ingenio
A stone's throw from the beaches of southern Gran Canaria. Under the palm trees of the canyon you can see the estate left by the ancient inhabitants of the Canary Islands. For lovers of mountain and trekking.
- Bandama: Las Palmas
It is a volcanic caldera near the vineyards of Tafira. For those who love hiking.
SHOPPING in Gran Canaria
Unless you come on holiday with a group of friends (all men), more interested in water sports, women and pubs... you will need to accompany your sweetheart in some shopping center and (you already know) give her your credit card. (I know! Your heart cries!)
To avoid running out of money, I give you some advice on where to go to save money, so that your soul mate will be satisfied and you'll still have some "survivors" euros in your bank account.
If you plan to stay in Puerto Rico, here you will find various shops in the town center full of restaurants, shops, pharmacies and many supermarkets where you can do shopping (usually close at 22 h). See the video.
- El Mirador
This is the largest shopping centre of the Canary Islands. Located between Telde and Las Palmas. Here you will find several shops and Primark, a store of clothing, bedding and home accessories low cost.
- Las Terrazas
An air outlet of 20 thousand square meters located near the sea. Here you will also find shops of big brands with discounts up to 70% and, while you wait for your sweetheart, you can visit electronics stores and have a "cerveza-beer" in one of the various bars and restaurants on site.
- La Estrella
It is the commercial area most frequented by the inhabitants of the island. I know it well, since I have made numerous trips between Alcampo, Ikea and Leroy Merlin, to buy everything I needed to make my apartment nice and comfortable. This commercial area is located in Telde, halfway between the airport and the capital. A little inconvenient for those coming from the south, about 60 km away. Across the highway there is the Decathlon store, which is the largest provider of sports equipment on the island. I strongly advise: NOT to go on the weekends because the place is stormed by local people. I happened to be over there in a day of promotion. After driving for 60 km and an hour of traffic to get off the highway, I did not have the heart to go back but, I assure you, it was an experience not to be repeated.
- “Atlantic” and "El Tablero" shopping center
The first one is located in Playa del Ingles, the second most recent, is near Playa del Inglés-Maspalomas.
I recommend them because, coming from the airport, they are the firsts shopping centers that you meet. If you want, being easy to reach them (near the motorway exit), you can stop directly and go shopping to fill the fridge and the pantry of your holiday apartment. In the Atlantic there is a Carrefour, in the Tablero a big Hyperdino. The parking is free in both shopping centers.
- Shopping in Playa del Ingles
Playa del Ingles is one of the most touristic places of the island. There are many shops and shopping centers, the best known are Yumbo and Kasbah and the largest Cita.
NOTE: If you are a smoker, in the Canary Islands you can buy quality cigarettes from 10 € the carton, and Marlboro just over € 2 the pack. In order to avoid problems at the airport, carrying too much alcohol, tobacco or cash, click on the page of the European Union to know the limits established for certain items.
Gran Canaria Health Care Abroad
Before heading for the Canary Islands, and the whole Spain in general, you should bring the latest version of your medical card. Who is affected by particular diseases, don’t miss to carry with himself the medicines, and a copy of the documentation relating to the last check on the state of health.
- For more detailed information, click here.
GRAN CANARIA EMERGENCY NUMBERS
Not to wish you “bad luck” but it is better to be prepared for anything:
you may lose your wallet,
someone could steal your smartphone,
you could fall asleep under the sun and none of your friends wake you up (change friends!)…
If you've lost your passport, know somebody who's hurt or just need some advice about Gran Canaria here's useful numbers:
HOSPITAL IN GRAN CANARIA
- Hospitales San Roque / Maspalomas /Hospital with an efficient emergency services.
TELEPHONE NUMBER: +34 928 063 666 -Health Care Hotel 24 hours, Service of translators-
- The phone numbers of the Emergency Services: Police, Fire and Ambulance, 112.
“Oh God, I should speak spanish if I barely know only the dialect of my province? “
No problem! The service is available 24 hours, in 5 languages: Castilian, English, German, French and Italian.
British Consulate in Las Palmas (or others countries)In Gran Canaria you can also find the consulate of your country. If you need to make a bureaucratic practice, redo a document urgently, click the link above.
MULTIMEDIA - Gran Canaria Maps
If you need more information or brochures, on this page “Gran Canaria patronage of tourism” you will find other bonus material that you can download for free:
Download Tourist Brochures
iPhone/iPad & Android App
Here you will find various maps of the major tourist towns on the island: Maspalomas, Puerto Rico, Puerto de Mogan, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.
If you are "more technology", in this page you can download the Free APP for your tablet or smartphone.
- GIFT: Download a copy in pdf (this article), print it and bring it with you if you need.
- Find out which island of the Canaries is "THE BEST" for you.
- How to plan a cheap holiday in Gran Canaria.
- Best Area to Stay in Gran Canaria
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