Gran Canaria

Explore snaking trails, cross huge canyons, climb peaks with bird's eye views of the surrounding countryside, discover volcanic landscapes, admire amazing waterfalls... Get to know Gran Canaria's impressive natural heritage - much of the island is a UNESCO designated Biosphere Reserve.

Gran Canaria , one of the Canary Islands, is a paradise for hiking. The island is well known internationally for its array of sun and sand options. Now, however, we suggest a different facet of Gran Canaria for you to discover: its countryside. The best way to do this is to explore its many tracks and trails on foot. Almost 43% of this enclave in the Atlantic Ocean is protected countryside, and it also has 32 ecological areas with special protection. Enjoy all the options available on this island that has been called a "miniature continent" on account of its wealth of countryside and varied microclimates. Put on your boots and set out for adventure.

Any time of year is ideal to visit Gran Canaria, although spring is the ideal time for hiking. At this time it rains little and the temperature is excellent. You will also find clear blue skies and stunning landscapes with an abundance of flowers. Before setting out, check weather forecasts and take time to choose which route you want to do. This is important because, despite the relatively short distances, the island's relief is rugged and sometimes complicated. Over the course of just a few kilometres you can sometimes experience sudden changes in temperature, humidity and sunshine. This is why it is best to make for the local tourist office wherever you are based, to get all the relative information.

Gran Canaria is an island of contrasts. The north has broad, open spaces, gentle trails and relatively flat landscapes, ideal for easier walks. Meanwhile, in the centre and south the main mountain ranges make their presence felt, with deep canyons such as those of the Macizo del Suroeste Nature Reserve, rocky landscapes and impressive volcanic craters in the Cuenca de Tejeda Nature Reserve, as well as areas where the endemic flora and fauna play an especially important role, as is the case in the Ojeda, Inagua y Pajonales Nature Reserve, home to one of the largest pine forests on the Canary Islands.

In this part of the island, routes are generally quite demanding, with snaking trails and steep gradients running from mountainsides to deep canyons. In any case, the choice of trails is huge and there are options suitable for all levels: old royal cattle trails that have been recovered and now form part of Gran Canaria's heritage, gentle forest tracks, trails for experts only... These trails are all harmoniously integrated into their surroundings and respect the environment. You just have to choose which one best suits your shape and your requirements.

As always, it is a good idea to bear certain things in mind when heading out to hike: use a good pair of hiking boots that are waterproof and provide good support to the ankles; wear long sleeves and trousers; take a water bottle and walking poles; avoid walking at the hottest time of day or in bad weather; never leave the main trail and avoid short cuts; wear a hat; take a waterproof, especially in April and May, and use sun cream and lip balm.

Get ready to discover volcanoes, cascading clouds on the peaks, weird rock formations, an extraordinary wealth of flora and fauna, waterfalls, viewpoints, springs... Take your camera to capture some of the most beautiful spots you could imagine, on the magical island that is Gran Canaria.

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