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Top 20 things to do in Gran Canaria

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Welcome to the paradise. Young adventurers, honeymoon couples, active families, culture enthusiasts and of course lazy beach bums will fall in love with this island. Gran Canaria is the last place on Earth where you can feel bored. We share with you our 20 favourite things to do on holidays there.

1. Visit Palmitos Park, an impressive botanical garden and aviary 10 km north of Maspalomas.

2. Discover how the Canarians used to live at the spectacular archaeological site Cenobio de Valeron, with over 290 caves.

3. During your flights to Gran Canaria and back home, look out of the window of the plane and count the islands. Can you name them all?

4. Relax in the botanical gardens Jardin Canario in Tafira Alta or Cactualdea in La Aldea de San Nicolas.

5. With rugged rock formations, vertical cliffs, overhangs, water-worn ravines, rock needles and crests, cauldrons, wedges and cracks, Gran Canaria is climbing heaven. The most popular climbing site is La Sorrueda near Santa Lucia, but other impressive sites include Costa Ayala, Banaderos, Las Meleguinas, Fatagonia and the southern gullies of Berriel and Ayagaures.

6. Read The Ghost Island, a short story by Deborah Klaassen about the eighth Canarian Island. You can download this free ebook and other stories and games from our kids club.

7. In April, visit Gran Canaria’s biggest car rally, Rally Islas Canarias Trofeo El Corte Ingles. This rally attracts many international competitors and its stages include Ingenio to Tejeda, Artenara to Valleseco and Telde to Ayacata.

8. Board a glass-bottomed boat and discover the wonderful world underneath the surface of the sea.

9. Visit the Crocodile Park to see Europe’s largest collection of crocodiles as well monkeys, tropical fish, zebras and parrots.

10. Catch a tan on Las Canteras Beach, the heart of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.

11. Enjoy thrills and spills at the many water parks on Gran Canaria.

12. From February to March, enjoy the Carnaval in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. The dates vary from year to year, but the main Carnaval celebrations last for about a month.

13. Visit the Wild West theme park for exciting displays of horsemanship and all the thrills of the frontier.

14. Indulge in some retail therapy – there are many lovely boutiques, markets and shops in Las Palmas.

15. Learn to water ski or windsurf at one of the many water sports facilities.

16. Try scuba diving or learn to dive at one of the dive centres on the coast.

17. Climb the Dunes of Maspalomas (west of Playa de Ingles) for a spectacular view. You will get the best view of the dunes from the end of the Avenida de Tirajana.

18. Treat yourself to some culture during the Opera Festival.

19. Eat traditional tapas in the sun.

20. Visit “Mundo Aborigen”, a reconstruction of an ancient Canary village devoted to the Guanches (the original inhabitants of the island). The village is on the road to Barranca de Fataga (the biggest gorge on Gran Canaria) and overlooks the area around Maspalomas and Playa del Ingles.

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