Gran Canaria is the Canary Island's most populated and diverse isle, with rolling green hills and flower-speckled meadows in the north and interior, and arid plains, sweeping sand dunes and the neon glow of holiday resorts in the south.
Warm summers and spring-like conditions the rest of the year make it a perfect place to visit at any time; Gran Canaria’s capital, Las Palmas, was once declared as the city with the best climate in the world by the scientific community. Aside from the balmy weather, the capital is also notable for its history. Founded in 1478, the cobbled streets and noble mansions in Las Palmas' old quarter are where Christopher Columbus prepared for his famous voyage of discovery.
However, the vast majority of visitors to Gran Canaria come in search of sun and sand. With 197km (122 miles) of coastline, the island doesn't disappoint. Of the 50 beaches with facilities, the most popular are San Agustín, Playa del Ingles, Puerto Rico and Maspalomas with its famous sand dunes.