Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
There’s nothing quite like stepping off a cruise ship and being almost immediately surrounded by pristine, golden sand beaches and crystal clear waters. And this is exactly what passengers stopping off in Las Palmas on a Canary Islands cruise can look forward to. Of course, Gran Canaria’s capital has a lot more to offer besides beaches (although these are world-class), including its charming old town and superb Spanish cuisine.
Why cruise Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
The bustling, cosmopolitan Gran Canarian city is filled with amazing culture, history and Spanish ambience. Cruise ship passengers will enjoy amazing weather, unrivalled beaches and spectacular seafood during their stopover in Las Palmas, which features on Mediterranean and Canary Islands cruise itineraries. Fred Olsen, MSC Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean all sail to Las Palmas.
What to see and do in Las Palmas
Las Palmas’ most famous beach, Las Cantaras, lies within handy walking distance of the cruise ship berths. Widely regarded as one of the best urban beaches in the Canary Islands, Las Cantaras boasts a beachfront boulevard complete with restaurants, bars and cafés. Relax on the golden sand, which stretches over two kilometres, before enjoying a spot of lunch.
Poema del Mar
Conveniently located alongside the cruise harbour is Las Palmas’ grand aquarium, Poema del Mar, regarded as being one of best in the world. Visitors will be given an in-depth tour of the aquarium, which features more than 250 different species of marine life and boasts some of the largest curved windows ever built, providing unobstructed views of the marine landscapes. The tour has been divided into three main areas: shallow water marine ecosystems, deep water marine ecosystems, and fresh water species.
Fans of history should venture to Vegueta, Las Palmas’ postcard-perfect old quarter. The old town’s cobbled streets and lanes contain several historic buildings, including the Casa de Colon mansion, Santa Ana Cathedral, the Museo Canario, Gabinete Literario, and the Atlantic Center of Modern Art (CAAM). Casa de Colón, named after legendary explorer Christopher Columbus, is a fascinating museum that delves into the history of the Canary Islands and their relationship with the Americas. The twin-towered Santa Ana Cathedral – the first church in the Canaries, constructed in the 1500s – has a unique mix of Renaissance, Gothic and Neoclassical styles, and inside exhibits many sacred artefacts. Head up to the top to enjoy sweeping views of the city.
Need to know when travelling to Las Palmas
Getting around Las Palmas
Las Palmas’ port is conveniently located a 20-minute walk away from the city’s famous beach, Las Canteras, and a 20-minute drive away from the old town. Car hire is available in the terminal, along with buses and taxis.
When to go to Las Palmas
Las Palmas enjoys all-year round amazing weather. To avoid the crowds, travel outside of the peak summer and Christmas seasons.
The Canary Islands are part of Spain and so use the euro. Credit cards are widely accepted in Las Palmas.
All UK and EU citizens can travel to the Canary Islands without a visa.