¿Only got 24 hours between ships to enjoy the island? Don't worry! In this article we take you straight from the port to the beach, never going too far from your dock. 24 hours is plenty of time to enjoy the islands.
Passengers disembarking in Puerto de la Luz and wanting to get to the beach only have to cross a couple of streets. In a straight line from Santa Catalina park, crossing either Luis Morote or Nicolás Estévanez, you soon reach at Las Canteras, considered one of the finest urban beaches in Spain. With over three kilometres of golden sand, this magnificent beach is the local favourite and is buzzing throughout the year, partly due to its promenade. Surfers, sunbathers and strollers spread out over the whole shore, reaching almost as far as the Alfredo Kraus concert hall, which overlooks one end of the beach.
Heading out of the capital of Las Palmas for around 20 kilometres towards Aegete brings us to the natural pools at Roque Prieto. These stepped pools offer lovely sea views and are the perfect place to take a relaxed dip whilst contemplating your surroundings. The best way to get here is by car taking the GC-2, although you can also take the bus to Santa María de la Guía. However, if you do choose the bus, bear in mind that this also involves a five kilometre walk.
If you have chosen one of Trasmediterranea's ships as a relaxed way to travel with your pet, it is worth knowing that Gran Canaria's Tourist Office is currently the only one in Spain with a department dedicated to travelling with pets. It is called Gran Canaria Pet Welcome and aims to make the island into the top destination for travellers with animals.
Although it is a little further from the port of Las Palmas, if you have a couple of days, it is worth visiting La Aldea de San Nicolás, 71 kilometres to the south-west, home to the only beach in the Canary Islands –and one of the very few in the whole of Spain- that allows dogs. This town is a long way from the main tourist centres, and is a pioneer in the pet-friendly movement. It boasts a wide range of holiday homes and hotels that welcome pets. Only 71 kilometres from Las Palmas, you can get there in an hour and a half by car.
Arrecife, Lanzarote's capital, is just an appetiser for the many magnificent beaches adorning the island. If you are pushed for time, start by visiting the city and stroll to the south; this brings you to Playa del Reducto, the city's main beach. For relaxing in comfort, this beach offers everything you need, even palm trees. The half kilometre of white sand features showers, toilets and beach bars, and is overlooked by the restaurants along the promenade, serving typical local cuisine. The beach is protected by a reef, ensuring the sea is calm.
Travelling a little further to the south brings us to Playa Honda beach, in San Bartolomé, close to the airport. Although this an urban beach just nine kilometres from Arrecife, it is quiet and relaxed. Nudism allowed.
The Costa Teguise is less than 10 kilometres to the north of Arrecife, boasting beaches such as the charming Caleta Caballo, with just 60 metres of white sand overlooked by small white houses. Nearby we come to Playa del Ancla, one of the most beautiful developed areas. But if you really want to escape from it all and find an unspoilt landscape, you need to go a little further. The coast road between Punta de Mujeres and Órzola, 25 to 30 kilometres from Arrecife, is dotted with coves, and is an excellent starting point for exploring the area and discovering your own paradise.
This summer, Tenerife's capital is reopening one of its sunniest beaches, which has been closed for two years of work to prevent rock falls. Although not urban, it is very close to the city. This is Playa de las Gaviotas breach, to the north of the city's port. This nudist beach with its black volcanic sand has a youthful vibe; it will be making up for lost time this summer. You can get there by car taking the TF-121 or by bus.
There are some hidden gems just two or three kilometres to the north of Santa Cruz de Tenerife that don't attract the crowds. For example, Playa de Antequera is a spectacular untouched volcanic beach in a wild setting. There are no roads to the beach, but you can reach it by a three-kilometre trek from Igueste de San Sandrés. If you don't have the time or energy for this, you can take a boat from the town or from Santa Cruz, which is what most people do. The same is true of Playa de las Brujas beach, although in this case you can't even hike there: you have to take a boat.
While refurbishment work is being finished on Santa Cruz de La Palma beach -to be completed next year- travellers disembarking in the city can still take a dip nearby. The magnificent Playa de los Nogales beach is in Puntallana, just 10 kilometres to the north. This is one of the most stunning beaches in the Canary Islands.
The charm of this wild black sand beach hemmed in by cliffs is undeniable. There is a car park to the north of Puntallana where you can leave your car or bike, and from there the beach is just a 20 minute walk along a path and wooden walkway.
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