Hotel Riu Palace, Maspalomas, Gran Canaria, Spain
I always make my plan for my traveling at the end of each year. So I can plan my budget and also to have time to find out about my next destination. The last trip for 2006, I chose Gran Canaria or the Canary Island. There is not much information on my Lonely Planet guide book, so I thought I go there and find out myself. My main concerns are the weather because it is the end of the year and it could be cold. We don’t have four seasons in Singapore, we have tropical weather. We only have raining or warm season but my colleagues from Europe always debating of where they want to go next for their summer holiday. Gran Canaria always been mentioned.
I went to Gran Canaria from Madrid taking Iberia Airlines to Las Palmas airport.
I love Iberia because they have short film on the flight, only for short journey. Most of the films are interesting and entertaining. It was my first time at the new Madrid/Iberia terminal. It took about 20mins journey by bus from the main terminal to this terminal. The terminal is huge and very nice. Since the first week in November 2006 in Europe airport, they have new rule for all liquid item for hand carried, cannot excess more then 100ml and bottle or container have to be place in transparent re-sealable plastic bag. I got stop twice because my perfume bottle is more then 100ml.
Maspalomas sand dunes, Gran Canaria, Spain
If you look at the map, this island located just beside Morocco, north-east part of Africa and surrounded by Atlantic Ocean. There is a few other islands near-by but Gran Canaria is the most commercial and most visited by the tourist. This is also the first time that I depend on my friend to show me around and tell me about this place.
Normally I plan, read and all prepared but this time I just take it easy and relax. This friend of mine is from Belgium. He found a nice job in a hotel there and fall in love with the weather. His been there almost 7yrs now and loving every minute of it. He lived in the south part of the Island, area called Vecindario. It is a very nice neighborhood and there is a big shopping centre called De Atlantico. In this place I ate the best “mayonesa con ajo’’, I can just eat it with a bread and nothing else. There are a lot of nice restaurant there from a local delicacies to fast food like McDonald’s. ;-). I also found this movie called “La Passion Turca” which was banned for a long time in Turkey in the supermarket. I’ve been looking for this movie for years.
Puerto De Mogan, Gran Canaria, Spain
I stayed for a week in Gran Canaria, we went to many places and I got to see many things.
Since he drove a car, it is easy for us to move around. We went to Puerto De Mogan or they called it “Little Venice”, it is very beautiful, there is a small harbor, many nice restaurants, the houses there surrounded by flowers, tourist shop and nice light house. It is a perfect day to have a good meal for lunch and sipping vino tinto, with a beautiful meal of filete de ternera, patatas fritas, gambas and gazpacho for starter. That is what we had in one of the cozy restaurant and to add to that, the view of the area is picturesque.
Puerto De Mogan, Gran Canaria, Spain
There are many beaches in south of Gran Canaria, one of the most popular are Maspalomas. It is beautiful view of a sand dune. Very unique and during summer, this place is pack and I was told that you can get tan easily here ;-).
Puerto Rico is another nice place to visit.
There are so many holiday chalet and apartment around this area. Many people come here for summer holiday with their families and friends. People are really happy because they are taking break from their hard work or their life back from where there are. For nice night out, Playa del Ingles is the place. This place is full of shopping arcade, souvenir shops, restaurants, hotels, bars and not far away from the beaches. If you want something reachable, I recommended this area and from my knowledge it is way cheaper then other tourist area. In this area you can find a place called Yumbo and if you like a night of laughter and fun with drag show, here it is. For family daytime entertainment, you can try an aqua park at Maspalomas, Aqualand or the smaller one, Aqua Park at Puerto Rico.
Guayadeque Valleys, Gran Canaria, Spain
My friend surprised me with a very different kind of place.
It is called Guayadeque, “the valley of the caves”. On the way there, it looks like the area of Jurassic Park minus the dinosaur. I’ve learned that this area is the first settlement for the people of this island. Presently, there are people living in the caves. Even the local tapas bar and church are crafted into caves. There is also a small museum that they dedicated to this area and for tourist information. You have to pay a small amount to get in but they do not allow any photo taken. At the top of this hills, located a very nice restaurant called Tagoror. A very unique restaurant, because it is in the caves, the tables and chairs are made of stone. This place is really very special and I also recommend for everyone to go. The services are great and the food is fantastic. I really enjoyed my moment there. The music they played is a special kind from this area. Thank you to my friend for bringing me to Guayadeque.
Guayadeque Caves Houses, Gran Canaria, Spain
A day before I leave this island, my friend brought me to Las Palmas.
It is the capital city of Gran Canaria. It is located north-east of the island. It is quite a long drive from where we stay. I didn’t get the chance to see much because I fall asleep. All I remembered that we pass a very beautiful view of the sides of the island, many factory and also industrial area. Las Palmas is like any other city in mainland Spain. The Vequeta district is where you’ll find the historic quarter, monuments and museums. Adjacent is the pedestrians Triana district, another good place for shopping. It reminded me of Madrid or Barcelona. Without fail I went to El Corte Ingles, I got David Bisbal and Falete latest CD.
Paella, Tagoror restaurant, Guayadeque, Gran Canaria, Spain
I had a really great time in Gran Canaria and I will keep the nice memories with me.
Many people told me to go to the near-by island, perhaps I will do that in the future. Furthermore the weather is great. When I entered the plane, I remembered a good friend once said “too many places to visit, too little time”.
Santa Catalina Park, Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, Spain
“I dedicated this travel blog to my friend from Gran Canaria, Senior P.”