Gran Canaria is the most populated of the Canary archipelago. All of the islands were formed by volcanoes. The islands are approximately 60 miles off the coast of northwest Africa. If you’re traveling to Gran Canaria for the day, consider a drive along the north side. Places to visit include Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Teror, Arucas, and the Bandama Crater.
This city is best known for the Basilico del Pino. Since the beginning of the 16-century, Christians have made pilgrimages to visit the image of the Virgin of Pino. Most of the people inside the church were taking pictures of the ornate statues and displays.
Teror’s 16th century architecture is an added bonus. As you walk through the town, visitors will need to look up. Wooden balconies adorn the colonial styled two-story buildings. The skilled craftsmanship will make you look upwards. For a taste of local cuisine, stop at one of the restaurants, some of which have outdoor seating.
Dark green vegetation and many banana plantations border the road to Arucas. One cannot miss the Inglesia de San Juan Bautista (Church of San Juan Bautista) because it towers above all of the nearby buildings. This massive neo-gothic styled church has intricate carvings. The church appears out of sync with everything in the immediate vicinity. It would be more at home in a large city like Barcelona. If you’re looking for something to eat or drink there are restaurants nearby as well as a few shops where you can purchase gifts.
Caldera de Bandama (Bandama Crater)
The best photos are taken on a hill overlooking the rim. The volcano stands almost 2000 feet above sea level. According to the Smithsonian Institution website the last known eruption occurred in 40 CE. If you have time, you can walk down to the floor of the crater. Remember to leave time to trek up the steep slope. You’ll be very thirsty if you forget to bring water.
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
Las Palmas is the largest European Union city that is outside the European continent. After touring several hours, a relaxing stroll along the three-kilometer Playa de Las Canteras Beach is a perfect way to end the day.
A dip into the water is safe due to a natural barrier of sandstone and beach reefs. A snack or a full meal can be purchased at one of the restaurants that border the adjacent promenade. This walkway runs the full length of the beach. Cruise ship passengers will be thrilled. It’s close to the port.
Like Madeira and Tenerife, Gran Canaria has a spectacular climate. Cruise ship visitors and tourists will be delighted by the diverse geography and the multitude of places that can be explored in one day.
THE ABOVE ARTICLE WAS ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON NOVEMBER 25, 2015. IT IS BEING REPOSTED ON THIS SITE BECAUSE THE EXAMINER SITE SHUT DOWN IN JULY, 2016. SOME PARTS OF THE ORIGINAL ARTICLE HAVE BEEN UPDATED AND THE ORIGINAL SLIDE SHOW HAS BEEN ELIMINATED.
Sandra Bornstein is the author of MAY THIS BE THE BEST YEAR OF YOUR LIFE. It is available on Amazon.
Sandra’s memoir highlights her living and teaching adventure in Bangalore, India. She is a licensed Colorado teacher who has taught K-12 students in the United States and abroad as well as college level courses. Sandra is married and has four adult sons.
The memoir was a finalist in the Travel category for the 2013 Next Generation Indie Book Awards, the 2013 International Book Awards, the 2013 National Indie Book Excellence Awards, 2013 USA Best Book Awards, and a Honorable Mention award in the Multicultural Non-Fiction category for the 2013 Global ebook Awards.