The second most populous island of the seven Canary Islands is a stone’s throw away with just 68 kilometers (42 miles) separating the port cities of Santa Cruz (Tenerife) and Agaete (Gran Canaria). For those wishing to head straight to Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (the island’s capital), there are also direct ferries with Armas. This trip is rather slow taking approximately 2 and a half hours but is comfortable none the less.
Las Palmas itself is much larger than Santa Cruz and is believed to have the best climate in the world with an average annual temperature of 21.3 °C (70.3 °F). The city has a few urban beaches, the largest, and most popular one being Playa de Las Canteras. These warm waters are visited by many tourists as well as locals living and working in the city.
The city is divided into a few districts containing a number of smaller neighborhoods such as Triana, Vegueta, and Guanarteme. When not at the beach, many tourists walk through parts of the city, exploring the historical buildings and charming streets. There are numerous restaurants to chose from (especially if you love fresh seafood) and many bars to enjoy a refreshing cocktail.
I would recommend trying out one of the restaurants in front of Playa de Las Canteras such as La Casa de La Playa (4,5* on tripadvisor) and then head over to La Azotea de Benito in Triana (4* on tripadvisor), a great rooftop cocktail bar with some cool city views.
If you are visiting the island for just a day or two it’s probably best to remain in Las Palmas. A day at the beach and a day for exploring the city is a good itinerary. For longer stays, consider heading down to the south of the island for something different.