Tag - Gran Canaria

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Purple Hearts: the best beaches in Gran Canaria
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Purple Pick: Volcano Holidays
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Top Canaries Beaches: Best beaches Gran Canaria
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Top Tips: Gran Canaria beaches
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The Culture of Alcohol

Purple Hearts: the best beaches in Gran Canaria

Maspalomas Possibly the most famous and one of the best beaches in Gran Canaria, the rippling dunes of Maspalomas are an absolute must-see. This area is well kept and has something for everyone. If you’re into surfing, fishing or sailing you can do it from here, there are walking and hiking routes across the dunes and lots of bird watching available. For the beach part it’s well divided to suit all tastes… including nudists! It’s very popular thanks to its extensive facilities and location. Stay at the 4* Tabaiba Princes Hotel right amongst the dunes. It has excellent facilities and offers a great holiday experience.

Maspalomas

Flickr/El coleccionista de instantes/Creative Commons

Taurito A smallish beach, Taurito has great snorkelling right passed the cliffs on either side of the beach and is know as one of the best beaches in Gran Canaria. Days on the sand here offer the best of both worlds; have a go at some water sports, dive into the sea or sunbathe on the sand-free lido. The sheltered resort offers safe waters for children and any less confident swimmers as well as a large swimming pool nearby which looks more like a lake and should definitely be discovered! Stay at the 4* Hotel Taurito Princess in the heart of Valle del Taurito, there are fantastic views, great entertainment and it’s right on the beach. Hard to ask for anything more than that.

taurito

Flickr/Vitamindave/Creative Commons

Read more: best beaches in Tenerife

Mogan After a few years as a rocky outcrop, Mogan has become one of the most popular beaches on the island thanks to a huge delivery of sand from the Sahara. Now the relaxed, sheltered beach, is edged by tasty fish restaurants, its warm waters are great for children, and it’s known as having more hours of sunshine than any other part of the island. Stay at the Cordial Mogan Playa. This 4* has a wonderful Spanish feel, built in a traditional architectural style, the rooms are comfortable, the grounds are filled with lush greenery and you can’t beat its location, a stone’s throw from the beach.

You Should Read… Purple Hearts: the best beaches in Lanzarote

mogan

Flickr/El coleccionista de instantes/Creative Commons

Puerto Rico could be called the ‘people’s favourite’ such is the popularity of the area. A specially built resort, you’ll find Puerto Rico slap, bang in the middle of two beaches with lots of nearby shops, bars and restaurants. The beach itself is made of soft, golden sand and the waters are ideal for paddling in; there aren’t many waves and the water is quite calm so it’s a nice choice for families. Yachting is probably the most popular water sport choice here but there are also surfing or banana boating options. Stay at the 3* Altamar Aparthotel which offers delightful sea views and pretty garden surroundings. It’s just 400 metres from the beach and has a golf course a stone’s throw away.

Puerto Rico

Flickr/Redeo/Creative Commons

Meloneras Right in front of a couple of the big Maspalomas hotels, Meloneras is in a great location, meaning you can get from bed to beach in no time. And of course in a place like that you’ll find top notch facilities. The beach is well organised with lots of loungers and the best bit? It’s usually not too busy! Stay at the H10 Playa Meloneras Palace. A top choice for families, (it’s also right next to an exclusive golf course) and has been recently revamped so you can be sure of an enjoyable holiday.

Meloneras

Flickr/El coleccionista de instantes/Creative Commons

Arguineguin From the ancient Guanche word for ‘quiet water’ Arguineguin is a slightly quieter alternative to the big resorts like Playa del Ingles. A good choice for couples, it’s small and almost private. The sand was replaced in recent years and there are plenty of delicious restaurants serving daily fresh fish so you can enjoy a romantic meal. Check the weather forecast for the waves as surfers usually descend in good conditions. Stay at the 3* Dorada Beach apartments, with gorgeous views, an outdoor pool, and direct access to the beach. There you’ll find great value for a great holiday!

ArguineguinFlickr/shnwsk/Creative Commons

Find out more about the great hotels on the best beaches in Gran Canaria from the expert team at Purple Travel, click for our site or call us directly on 0207 993 9228.

Purple Pick: Volcano Holidays

The Canary Islands is more than simply glorious beaches, great hotels and buckets of sunshine. The group of Islands just a stone’s throw from the coast of Africa offers some amazing natural surroundings too and one of our favourites is its VOLCANOES!Amazing night picture of Teide

Each Island has its own “volcanic personality” with a hugely diverse population of flowers and plants, Dr Who-like scenery, stunning views of majestic mountains bathed in clouds and spa treatments made from the amazing naturally forming landscape. You can walk on lava fields, along cliff edges or discover strange life (possibly!) in the underground galleries. Volcano holidays offer something truly incredible for all ages.

Add that to great cheap hotels, wonderful beaches and basically, it’s got everything you need for an amazing holiday in 2013. Remember you can call us any time for a great cheap holiday in the Canary Islands – or anywhere else on 0207 993 9228 or visit our website: PurpleTravel.co.uk. But first, find out more about Volcano holidays in our guide:

 

Image via @ Freakyman

There have been many eruptions among the islands since the 15th century, with the last one on La Palma in 1971. Today the islands are considered to be one of the most important volcanic sites; it is home to the third biggest volcano in the world, and Spain’s highest peak Mount Teide and the islands are regularly studied for their natural plant life and seismic activity.

So, if you’re taking the kids for a cheap family holiday to Tenerife, you want a cheap couples getaway in Gran Canaria or you simply want to enjoy a little more of this varied  landscape, then here are a few of our top picks for groundbreaking volcano holidays!

You Should Read: Off the Beaten Track… Waterfall Restaurant

Fuerteventura A windsurfer’s paradise, Fuerteventura is also the oldest in the archipelago. Visit the volcanic scenes at the Peninsula de Janida, Malpais de la Arena and Isla de Lobos. Apart from the rich flora and fauna you can find there, the long plains and volcanic mountains in the middle of the island will impress even the most hardened tourist. Plus, Fuerteventura has 152 beaches along its coastline, so you can catch the best of both worlds. Reason to go: This is the oldest of the islands, dating back a whopping 20 million years!

Tenerife One of the busiest and most popular islands in the Canaries, Tenerife’s Teide Volcano is actually visible from most parts of the island. Today you can climb to the top, (the highest point in Spain) and it’s the third highest volcano in the world and is still registered as active. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the National Park is one of the most visited in the world. Reason to go: The unbelievably spectacular view, just be prepared for a climb!

You Should Read… The Best Costa Blanca Beaches

Lanzarote The scene of some of the most recent volcanic activity (in the 70s) but don’t you dare let that put you off! The strange alien-like landscape is enough to take your breath away. The Timanfaya National Park is the centre of volcanic locations in the islands, and from the moment you arrive you’ll get a feel for how hot it is. Temperatures just a few metres towards the centre of the earth can hit 400°C! You can also check out La Geria or Los Hervideros for other lava exploring. Reason to go: For the Doctor Who style pics you can take when you get there.

Gran Canaria Visit the huge rolling craters on Gran Canaria to really get a taste of an historic land formed by hot lava straight from the earth’s core. Alongside its pure sandy beaches, lush greenery and buckets of sunshine, a day trip from Maspalomas or Playa del Ingles is made all the more impressive with the site of El Dodo de Dios (or God’s Finger) a rocky spire that juts out to the sea. Reason to go: The beach is the ultimate reward after a day’s exploring a Martian landscape!

For more information visit the excellent Canary Islands Tourism site here.

Top Canaries Beaches: Best beaches Gran Canaria

The third part in our guide to the beaches of the Canary Islands. You won’t go wrong with a trip to the best beaches in Gran Canaria.

Finding your perfect beach can be like finding your soulmate; some trawl the Internet, running the risk of only finding the creepy ones, some end up lying down on the first one they see and others try out a few before settling on one that’s not already had every other tourist in sight.

Luckily, the best beaches Gran Canaria has something for everyone: there are the lively and alternative sorts, the quiet and peaceful types and even some nudists, romantics and wild partiers. In fact, finding your sandy soulmate has never been easier. So don’t get caught up in the rat race, just follow this simple guide for a beach life that’s nothing but bliss:

Playa de Maspalomas
Don’t be put off by the fact that Playa de Maspalomas is one of Gran Canaria’s most popular beaches. With 4 miles of desert-like white sands, it can be enjoyed by almost anyone, from families to homosexuals, nudists to quiet types.
This beach is for you if… you’re a bit of a playa yourself.

Playa del Ingles
A continuation of Playa de Maspalomas, Playa del Ingles provides plenty of opportunity to get stuck into some watersports. Enjoy water skiing, jet skiing and windsurfing or take a walk down Paseo Maritimo, a street filled with heaps of restaurants, bars and shops, specially tailored to all your tourist needs.
This beach is for you if…
you like an athletic beach, with a good stamina.

Playa de Puerto Rico
A crescent of sand, brought over from the Sahara desert, situated in Gran Canaria’s sunniest spot. This beach is a real paradise for sun worshippers and thrill-seekers alike, doubling up as a subtropical garden of outstanding watersport offerings, such as the eminent dolphin safari.
This beach is for you if… you like exotic types.

Playa de los Amadores: Just 20 minutes from Playa de Puerto Rico is the Playa de los Amadores, a.k.a. the Lovers’ Beach. This well-protected cove boasts half a mile of golden sand and a sea od crystal clear water.
This beach is for you if…
you’re a hopeless romantic.

If you fear that you might miss your beach too much during the winter months, remember that Gran Canaria boasts a subtropical climate, with water temperatures lying between 18 and 22 degrees Celcius all year round, so there’s more than enough reason to revisit your holiday fling.

Read more: Best Beaches Lanzarote

Top Tips: Gran Canaria beaches

The third entry in our 4-part series on the best beaches of the Canary Islands highlights the splendor of Gran Canaria beaches, the largest of the group.best beaches gran canaria

Playa de Las Canteras 

Considered one of the best beaches in Spain, Playa de Las Canteras boasts 3000 meters of golden sand and calm waters. The beach has a very good range of facilities for the entire family with restaurants, bars, and shopping in the direct vicinity. For the snorkeling and diving enthusiasts, the coral reef protecting the beach is about 2km for the shore. Something for everyone means windsurfers and body boarders will love it as well. Located in Las Palmas, this is the best and busiest beach on the island.

Playa de Maspalomas

Sand. Miles of sand. This is Playa de Maspalomas, home of the famous sand dunes of Gran Canaria. Stretching for 12km is a nature reserve of soft golden sands that leads down to the sea. This is a very busy beach as well, with different areas for families and nudists. Watersports enthusiasts will enjoy the winds in the as well. Hint: don’t bring anything to this beach you don’t want getting sand on.

Playa del Inglés

If you continue down the coast of Maspalomas, you will arrive at the highly organized and very busy Playa Del Ingles beach. This beach has plenty of facilities for everyone and quite a bit less sand than Maspalomas, which makes it more accessible to the surrounding restaurants, bars, and shops.

Playa de Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico beach is man-made and filled with white sand. Shaped to resist the winds, the waters are turquoise and calm as a result. This beach is very well organized and has all the amenities to make your stay both relaxing and entertaining. Ideal for families.

Playa Meloneras

On the other side of the Maspalomas beach is the beach of Meloneras, home to the outstanding H10 Playa Meloneras Palace. This is also a busy beach with golden sands, calm waters, and characteristically windy for this side of the island.

The Culture of Alcohol

Drinking is a part of the culture in the UK, pubs are the best places to go and socialise, catch up on gossip and watch the match of the day on the TV, all while having a pint or two, or three, or so on….

Holidays are no different, as the number of people choosing All Inclusive (AI) hotels proves that even whilst abroad, people still want to have alcohol to end (or in some cases begin!) the day with.

In case you don’t know, AI means that free drinks, snacks and even ice cream are served throughout the day, not just at mealtimes. There are varying types of AI, which tell you exactly when they are served. While it is all day, most hotels do not allow free alcohol after midnight, so do check with your hotel before trying for an all night booze up!

To keep costs down, hotels don’t always give away popular drinks all the time, since they are fairly expensive to import. Instead they tend to use drinks that are either brewed locally or imported from nearby. Though it isn’t your normal pint at the pub, their own local flavours are worth trying.

Here is quick list of the different types and brands of local alcoholic drinks that you may get to sample at your hotel or resort. This doesn’t include the small shots you can get in every bar, since those are everywhere, but for the more sedate pace of drinking a can of beer, or glass of wine.

In Tenerife, they have a beer called Dorada which is exclusive to the island, and comes in three varieties, Dorada Pils (normal alcohol level), Dorada Pils (strong), and Dorada Sin (alcohol free). The neighbouring island of Gran Canaria has its own beer by the name of Tropical, and as the two islands are so close to each other, both beers can be found on either one.

The Canary Islands also have their own wine thanks to their climate, and asking for the house wine for a meal is not a bad choice at all. Red wine is more common here too, and may even be chilled, good for those boiling summer days!

Egypt, despite being a Muslim country, is fairly tolerant of foreigners drinking alcohol, and so they have a large selection available. The most common beer which can be found in almost every bar is known as Stella (yes, similar name, but this isn’t related to the Artois family). Two more varieties, Stella Export and then Stella Premium have higher alcohol levels. A European brand called Meister, licensed for and produced in Egypt is also available and Meistar Max, another type, has the highest alcohol level for beer in Egypt, good if you want a quick dizziness spell!

For the wine lover, there are some that try to capture the taste from the ancient Egyptian days, these include Omar Khayyam, Cru Des Ptolmees, Rubis D’Egypte and Abarkai. They’re called Giancils types of wines, so ask for one if you’re interested.

Greece is famous for Ouzo, highly alcohol with the taste of aniseed, thus giving licorice-haters less to drink. However there are other drinks too. For beer there is Mythos, the most famous out of all the brands, and is easy to find. Retsina is a white wine that can be served with a meal, however house wine does taste good on the whole.

Overall, a huge variety which should move you away from your current tipple of choice. You’re sure to get a hangover if you overdose on them too much, but then you can rely on your own methods to clear your head. The levels of alcohol vary so do check the amount before beginning another round at the bar. Be sure to follow the law with regards to drinking age, and drink responsibly. Ending up in a police cell or even a medical clinic overnight does not make for a good vacation!

So, happy holidays, cheers, and bottoms-up!

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