Considering it’s surrounded by gorgeous spots like Fuerteventura and Tenerife, it’s a real vote of confidence that most people consider Gran Canaria to have the best beaches in the Canary Islands. We at Orbzii would be hard pressed to disagree with that assessment, but even on a beach lovers paradise like Gran Canaria there are some stretches of powdery shore that are better than the rest. If you’re the sort of beach goer who likes to lounge with a bad romance novel, or even if you prefer to frolic in the sea and then slurp on a beer, then Gran Canaria has you covered. Read our guide to the best beaches in Gran Canaria to find out which one is the best for you.
One of the most unique and impressive beaches on this list, Maspalomas is one of the few stretches of coastline in the world that really does have something for everyone. The beach is flanked by the Maspalomas Dunes Nature reserve, which is worth a visit to gawp at the impressive natural formations – beautiful at any time, but especially during sunrise and sunset, when coloured light flits through the peaks of the dunes. The beach is located on the southern tip of the island, so tends to be warm all year round, as well as sheltered from the worst of the wind.
The space itself is massive, and the different sections are almost like their own little beaches. In the east there’s the Play del Ingles resort, which is a heaving, well-served expanse of sand that’s great for people with families and those who don’t want to have to walk too far to get back into the action.
As you head west towards another famous landmark, Maspalomas Lighthouse, there’s water sports areas, and fewer people around for those who prefer the slap of sea on sand instead of the babble of beach goers. If you’re looking for a nudist beach on Gran Canaria, this is the best section to head too.
Despite being the main beach in the capital city of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, this beautiful little spot remains a bit of a serene getaway from the rest of the island’s busy beaches. This is partly to do with its massive length, stretching for miles around the north eastern corner of the island. The weather is predictably wonderful all-year round, and they have plenty of amenities available despite the secluded feel of it all.
The area around the beach is also a marine life reserve, with over a thousand fish species making their home in the seabed. Lovers of the natural volcanic formations that make up this island should also be keen to come here as it’s home to La Barra, a strip of volcanic rock that protects the beach from rough tides and makes the bay a great place for a relaxing swim.
Las Canteras is also known as the Changing Beach, with the shoreline receding and growing in unique ways every day. A must-visit for all kinds of beach lover.
When it comes to nudist beaches in Gran Canaria, there’s few places better than Guayedra. Because of its secluded location and lack of amenities, it’s not really one for families or those looking to do anything other than relax as God intended: there aren’t even any bins, so make sure to take a bag with you for your rubbish.
The beach is accessibly by bus or car, but if you get the bus let the driver know that’s where you’re going as it’s an optional stop. You can also walk from Agaete or Puerto de la Nieves, but this takes an hour or so, and should not be completed if you don’t have a hat and some water. The beach itself varies: at high tide it’s rocky and can be dangerous for swimming, but at low tide it’s sandy and relaxed. What’s always certain is a beaming sun and a beautiful sunset.
Gran Canaria beaches don’t get better than this when it comes to astounding views and pristineness. A natural beach (like all the ones on this list) it was once home to several shanty homes but has been clear of these for nearly two decades. There’s a great little coastal path that winds through the sand if you’re just looking for a seaside walk, and El Confital is generally not visited by the thousands of tourists who have their holidays here. With that said, if you have your own equipment and a car to carry it, this is an ideal spot to surf or bodyboard, with surfing championships taking place off the shore.
The nearby mountains also make for a great hike, so if you do want an active day full of natural beauty you can do one of the beautiful mountain walks and end up here, where you can jump into the refreshing sea. It’s also got a nudist beach, and despite the great surf has a shallower, less choppy bathing area thanks to some protective reef.
This remote, black sand beach is only accessible by a three-hour hike or a boat from the nearby Puerto Rico beach. The long walk to get here isn’t flat or easy, either: although the terrain is mostly doable by people of a decent fitness level, there are some tricky spots where you might need to take a few minutes rest before continuing. The hike to get here is through the Gui Gui nature reserve, and you get to traipse through jagged volcanic mountains and lush greenery, which means the walk itself can be seen as its own reward. However, when you have this idyllic, secluded spot basically to yourself at the end of your trek, it makes Gui Gui beach a must-visit. One of the best beaches in Gran Canaria, even with the effort needed to get there (and, of course, another nudist beach in Gran Canaria thanks to its inherent privacy).
Located right next to Maspalomas, this beach tends to be a lot quieter than its bigger sibling, so if you’re looking for tranquillity from your Gran Canaria beaches, then there’s not many better spots. It’s great for families too, giving you the space to spread out while not taking you too far away from any amenities that might be urgently needed. The ocean around here is also quite calm, and there are also a number of bars and restaurants nearby, so you don’t have to pack anything.
While this beach might not have the unique natural splendour of volcanic rock formations jutting out in the distance, it does have a relaxed vibe, endless sun, and a nice mixed crowd. If all you want is to splay out and dig your toes into the sand, then Meloneras Beach is the place for you.
Taurito Beach is one of the best beaches in Gran Canaria for water sports and fishing. Situated on the southern tip of the island, there’s a water park just behind the stretch of sand, which is dotted with palm trees for that perfect holiday feel.
As the beach is primarily for activities, the actual sand tends to feel quite deserted at times, so you can get the best of both worlds. With that being said, there’s a wide selection of places to get food and drink nearby if you are feeling peckish. As far as Gran Canaria beaches go, this is probably one of the best when it comes to having something for everyone.