Are you going to rent a car or bike or do you just plan to relax by the pool or sea all day? Do you mind being in a primarily Scandinavian or German hotel or would you prefer a British one?
The best beaches are in the south and the weather is warmer there too. There wasn’t much at all there until the 1960s, apart from quiet, sandy coves. In the north there is often a lot of wind which is nice in the summer perhaps, when it’s hot, but not so much fun in the wintertime when it’s cold (OK cold to us!)
Let’s have a look at some of the main resorts:
- Puerto Rico: This is one of the main resorts in Gran Canaria. Familes and older people tend to like Puerto Rico, even though the fact it is built in a valley between two very steep hills can make it hard to navigate. Luckily taxis in Gran Canaria are quite cheap. There are two shopping/bar/restaurant centers in this resort, offering a wide range of food, drink and entertainment for all ages.
- Amadores: Like Puerto Rico, Amadores beach has a good breakwater making the sea safe for swimming, which is especially good if you are taking kids. During the winter, 80% of tourists in Amadores and Puerto Rico are Scandinavians but this figure is reversed in the summer when it’s mainly Brits and Irish.
- Meloneras: This is next to Maspalomas but a bit more upmarket. Meloneras tends to be about 75% German and 25% mixed. There is a nice beach there, a casino and lots of good restaurants. Meloneras is popular with middle-aged older couples and honeymooners.
- San Agustin: This area is very Scandinavian in the winter and mixed in the summer. In the winter there are mainly older people around.
- Maspalomas: You will find an international crowd at this resort and Maspalomas is quieter than Puerto Rico or Playa del Ingles. You can be in Playa del Ingles in five minutes though, if you take a cab, or twenty five minutes if you walk.
- Mogan and Taurito: These resorts are next to one another and both are quiet and popular with couples and families.
- Playa del Ingles: This resort is very international. There are young people in the summer and slightly older tourists in the winter. Playa del Ingles is more spread out than Puerto Rico, which has two main shopping centres. If you prefer a busy, lively place, try Playa del Ingles in July or August.
- Las Palmas: The capital – quite far away from the south but if you want to immerse yourself in Canarian culture, Las Palmas is interesting. Take a phrase book!