Set on Gran Canaria’s south coast, Maspalomas is a sprawling resort with pockets of shops and eating places dotted about. On the nightlife front, it’s more of a family player than its partying neighbour Playa del Ingles. It might be a quiet customer but it’s got at least a couple of things to shout about – its famous dunes and a whopper of a waterpark.
A desert landscape
Maspalomas has a Blue Flag beach that spools the coast for 6 kilometres. Behind the long, sandy stretch you’ve got wind-sculpted dunes that look like something out of an Arabian desert. On the sea front, the water’s calm and shallow, which suits paddlers and pedalo riders. And along the front you’ll find plenty of showers, shops and bars.
Maspalomas is well geared up for families. The resort’s centrepiece is the Holiday World Fun Park – you can’t miss the landmark Ferris wheel. Here you’ve got rollercoasters, bumper cars, merry-go-rounds and carousels. And when the kids are done with the fairground staples, there are quad bikes, rodeo bulls and a bowling alley too.
Easy day trips
Twenty minutes’ drive and you’re at Aboriginal World in Fataga. It’s like history meets Madame Tussauds here, with over 100 life-size models of the island’s native Guanche tribe filling this open-air museum. But for cobbled streets, a cathedral and quite a lot of shops, you can be in the island’s capital, Las Palmas, in less than an hour.