Practical guide for visitors of Las Palmas, Gran Canaria

In winter, many northern Europeans visit Gran Canaria for sun and warmth. Most of these travellers opt to stay in the south of the island, which is typically warmer and has the most resorts. To get a more authentic experience, I chose to stay in Las Palmas since it is a city rather than just a resort. If you're planning to stay in Las Palmas for a week or two, my practical advice may be of help.10 street laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231208 140942

Getting to Las Palmas from the airport

If you're not bringing much luggage, taking a public bus from the departure level of the airport may be your best option. You'll need to go up one level from the arrivals area and follow the signs. The buses numbered 60 and 91 will take you to Las Palmas. You can pay in cash or with a credit card when you get on the bus.22 from airport laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231215 10570221 from airport laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231215 10553220 from airport laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231215 105347

Where to stay

There are a variety of accommodations available, including hotels and apartments. If you're planning to stay for a lengthier time, an apartment may be the best option, as it allows you to cook your meals. Be sure to check the pictures of the accommodation carefully before making a decision, and if you plan on needing a dining or working table, make sure the apartment you choose has it. 25 where to staylaspalmas thesanetravel.com20231208 141841(0)If you plan to get around Gran Canaria by public bus, looking for accommodation near San Telmo or Santa Catalina bus stations is advisable. If you're looking for a beach-like atmosphere, accommodation near Las Canteras Beach is your best bet.

Public transport

Gran Canaria has an excellent public transport system, with yellow buses operating in the city and blue Global buses running across the rest of the island.29 bus stop laspalmas thesanetravel.comP1275278 The yellow buses have a flat rate of 1.40 euros per journey, regardless of which stop you get in or out. Blue bus fares vary depending on the distance but are still relatively inexpensive.30 public transport laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231211 113120 The buses generally run on time, although in the city delays may occur due to traffic congestion. The yellow buses have 40 routes, with 37 operating during the day and 3 during the night. The route map is available online and their services are available 24/7. Contactless debit or credit cards can be used to purchase tickets.33 public transport laspalmas thesanetravel.com20221209 193823

Bus stations in Las Palmas

San Telmo bus station is located across from Parque San Telmo, a mere five-minute walk from Calle Triana. The bus station is easily accessible by taxi or public transportation. The underground part of the station is where buses pull up to their platforms, and passengers sit on benches or stand until the bus doors open.35 bus stations laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231215 100801 There is also a smaller Santa Catalina bus station located beneath Parque Santa Catalina, from where some buses start their route and then pick up additional passengers at San Telmo. 35 bus stations laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231215 100801On the return journey, the buses stop at San Telmo before reaching their final stop at Santa Catalina. Don't forget to check the bus itinerary to make sure it goes to the station.

Renting a car

There is a broad selection of car rental options in Gran Canaria and Las Palmas. However, you have to bear in mind that you may not be able to find parking in Las Palmas, so it's crucial to plan and know where to park the rental car.

Tourist information

I would suggest looking into the Tourist Offices situated in the central parts of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. I visited the information booth at Las Canteras beach and I learned about a new Banana museum that can be found close to the city.

99 tourist info laspalmas thesanetravel.comP1348594

Drinking water

In Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, the tap water has gone through Reverse Osmosis seawater purification, which makes it safe to drink. However, many locals and visitors prefer buying bottled water for domestic use due to the taste of tap water. If you're not fond of the taste, you can purchase bottled water from nearby supermarkets.

Shop, restaurant and other opening hours

In the Canary Islands, larger shops such as department stores, fashion outlets and commercial centres typically open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Supermarkets typically open from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Smaller shops generally open from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Saturday. Tourists should be aware that many shops on the island are closed on Sundays. Restaurants are usually open for lunch from 1 p[.m. to 4 p.m. and after a break they serve dinner from 7:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Some restaurants are open for dinner only. However, some may stay open throughout the day.40 opening laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231210 163852

Grocery shopping

Las Palmas offers a range of supermarkets to choose from, and you may find that the prices vary by up to 30%. If you do not have a car, it'd be wise to purchase lighter items from the cheaper shops and heavier items from the supermarket closer to your accommodation. Hiperdino and Superdino, which belong to a Canarian group of companies, are the most popular supermarkets in the city and range in size from small to large. Although they used to be relatively expensive, efforts have been made to become more competitively priced. 46 food shopping laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231215 092302There are also small or medium-sized shops in the area owned by the Spar supermarket chain. Their prices are not as competitive, but some shops offer takeaway food that is reasonably priced. There are also some other supermarket brands in Las Palmas, but not many of them. Fruteria Las Canteras is the best place to shop for fruits and vegetables. 45 food shopping laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231215 091558The staff are friendly and helpful, the selection is always impressive, and the prices are reasonable. 

Address: Fruteria Las Canteras, C. Tomás Miller, 75

Other shopping

Gran Canaria has a distinct tax system compared to the rest of Spain, with a Value Added Tax (VAT) of 7%, which leads to lower prices for many items. Visitors to the archipelago can benefit from this, getting more for their money. There are numerous Chinese shops in the city where you can find almost anything from socks to power tools, and they offer affordable prices.50 shopping laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231215 092158 Perfumes and cosmetics are also worth checking out for bargains.51 shopping laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231215 095548 You might also want to visit Centro Comercial Las Terrazas, located between Telde and Las Palmas, a 16.5 km drive away from the island's capital. This open-air mall offers great deals on popular brands such as Levi's, Nike, Mango, Asics and Lacoste. In addition, it also boasts a cinema, bowling alley and go-kart track. There are also several restaurants around the complex.

Eating out

Las Palmas has various culinary options, from budget-friendly to high-end eateries. While on vacation, visitors should sample the local Spanish and Canarian dishes – the cuisine is so delicious that it'd be a shame to miss it. Eating establishments around Las Canteras Beach offer a variety of cuisines, so it's worth trying something other than touristy tapas bars. I enjoyed Thai food at the small Kop Kun restaurant. If you want to try it too make sure to book a table in advance because it is very popular.55 eating out laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231210 204120

Address:  C. Alfredo L Jones, 35

Go Fit

Visiting Las Canteras Beach can be a pleasant experience, but note that the beach is not ideal for swimming in the colder months due to strong waves and chilly water temperatures.11 beach laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231209 093938 For those looking for alternative aquatic activities in the area, GO Fit Las Palmas offers an array of fitness and wellness services. Located along the Paseo de Las Canteras, the facility features swimming pools, a whirlpool and saunas, creating a tranquil environment for visitors to relax and recharge after workouts.61 go fit laspalmas thesanetravel.com20221210 12191960 go fit laspalmas thesanetravel.com20221210 121724

Address:  Calle Secretario Padilla, 88-90 35010 Las Palmas

What to bring

Gran Canaria's average temperature throughout the year is 24 °C, and the yearly rainfall only amounts to 148mm.12 beach laspalmas thesanetravel.com20231209 102726 November is the wettest month, with rain falling over five days of the month, so you most likely won't need an umbrella. The water in the ocean and natural swimming pools may not be warm, and if you plan to visit an indoor swimming pool such as Go Fit, you'll need to bring a swimming cap and swimsuit.

Places to visit

Check out my post about places to visit in Las Palmas. You can also enjoy day trips to Tejeda,  Arucas and other places.

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What did you think? Have you been to Las Palmas? I would love to hear from you, so please add your comment below.

  • Published by Anita on December 29, 2023
  • Author: Anita Sane

    Anita 03 18

    About the author
    Anita is a part-time traveller, passionate photographer and a retired career woman from Latvia, 
    travelling mostly solo for more than 15 years. She is a skilled travel planner who plans and executes her travels by herself. Anita wants to show you how to travel the world and open your mind to new experiences. Follow her on FacebookInstagramPinterestTwitter and Bloglovin.


    Gran Canaria is one I haven't visited yet. Looks like some useful tips there to help me on my way!
    It looks like I should go to Gran Canaria right now! Thank you for sharing this practical guide.
    A handy practical guide. Thanks for sharing!
    This was a great comprehensive guide to Las Palmas! I am planning a trip to Spain this year and this area hadn't been on my radar. The beach looks amazing though, so I am going to consider it!

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