If you are looking for fun in the sun, head to the southernmost tip of Gran Canaria to the vibrant resort of Playa del Ingles. The name means “Beach of the English”, but there are plenty of all nationalities found here. This former agricultural area has been transformed since the 1960s into one of the largest purpose-built holiday resorts in the whole of Spain. It is a sunshine paradise along with its neighbours, Maspalomas and San Agustin.
The area is the perfect holiday resort for couples and families with a range of accommodation in Playa del Ingles. It is also popular with the European gay community and with couples in the 18-30 age group looking for an action-packed nightlife during the summer. In the cooler months the resort attracts an older clientele including many retirees from Scandinavia, Germany and Holland escaping the cold winter further north.
Playa del Ingles is just a 20 minute taxi ride from Gran Canaria Airport and is very flat, making it easy to get around on foot or by local bus. There are supermarkets, shops, currency exchange, banks, bars and amusement arcades all over the town. Whatever Playa del Ingles accommodation you choose, either near the beach or in the quieter suburbs, you will be close to great restaurants serving fresh seafood, tapas and international cuisine.
Things to do in Playa del Ingles Gran Canaria by Day
When the sun is high most tourists can be found on the beach and with 8km of golden sands there is plenty of space for everyone to do their own thing. Some areas are suitable for families while quieter areas such as the Maspalomas sand dunes are where nudist sunbathers gather. Swimming, sunbathing, ball games, banana boat rides and a host of watersports can all be enjoyed. The watersports centres are around the Annexo II Centre with jet skis and pedaloes for hire and the opportunity to go paragliding or even sky diving.
Visitors will find some excellent shopping at the Kasbah in the Plaza del Teide or the massive Yumbo Centrum next to the tourism office in Avenida de España.
Whether you are shopping for clothes, souvenirs, electronics or jewelry, from the upmarket stores in San Fernando to the Indian bazaars where haggling is part of the fun, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
Camel rides are a fun experience at Maspalomas or visit the Crocodile Park which has over 300 reptiles. Boat trips, snorkeling and fishing charters are all a great way to spend a day. The Paseo Costa Canaria is a pleasant promenade for strolling along the beachfront to Playa de las Burras. Outdoor activities continue at the Maspalomas Golf Club which is ideal for playing a round in the sun. Alternatively, spend a relaxing day at one of the luxury spas.
Playa del Inglés Events
Maspalomas Carnival 2023 takes place from 9th – 19th March 2023.
- Thursday March 16th – 9pm: Drag Queen Show at Yumbo Shopping Center.
- Friday March 17th – 12:00pm: Tourist Day and the Rescue of the Sardine at Playa del Ingles beach and Yumbo.
- Saturday March 18th – 5pm is the much anticipated Carnival Parade from 5pm with a huge Mogollon party at the Yumbo Shopping Center afterward.
- Sunday March 19th – 7pm Reading of the sardine's will this the last day of carnival and burial of the sardine at Anexo II Shopping Center followed by fireworks.
St Patricks Day
St Patrick's Day is March 17th every year. The Irish community and everyone else who wants to join in the party get together in the area of Aguila Roja Shopping Center also known as The Irish Center. Live music rocks the resort with fireworks and a parade. Wear green and enjoy the party in one of the many bars, maybe try some traditional Irish stew or win yourself some prizes and sip on some Guinness for the luck of the Irish.
Maspalomas Pride 2023 dates are 4th – 14th May 2023. This is one of the biggest gay Pride events in Europe, which is celebrated every May in Gran Canaria. People of the LGBTQ+ community and allies gather from all over the world to celebrate with pool parties, boat trips, free concerts, the big Pride parade and more.
If you didn't get chance to visit in May or want to celebrate again, Maspalomas Winter Pride takes place from 6th – 12th November 2023. The Winter Pride event includes free open air concerts at the Yumbo Center main stage with top artists and the big Pride Parade.
Dress Code: Rainbow.
Christmas Market | Weihnachtsmarkt | Mercado de navidad
This traditional Christmas Market takes place annually at Hotel Maritim Playa poolside in the advent weeks leading up to Christmas.
There are food stalls to get mulled wine, bratwurst and tasty treats like crepes and waffles. Here you can purchase handcraft gifts from artists and get into the spirit of Christmas. The children can even visit Santa Claus in the grotto and tell him what they would like for Christmas.
Things to do in Playa del Ingles After Dark
After dark the tempo changes as party-lovers hit the streets and they will not be disappointed. Bars, restaurants, pubs, clubs, bingo and karaoke can all be found offering non-stop entertainment from dusk to dawn.
Most of the action is around the commercial centers. The Yumbo Centre is the hub for the gay scene with a host of clubs, bars and drag shows.
Elsewhere the popular Pacha and China White nightclubs keep the Kasbah Centre rocking or chance your luck at the casino on the outskirts of the town.
Places to Visit near Playa del Ingles
Families can enjoy the nearby Aqualand Maspalomas waterpark with flumes and slides or head for the Wild West theme park at Sioux City.
For a cultural day out visit the museum in Las Palmas or the beautiful Church of San Juan Bautista in the town of Arucas.
You can walk along the beach in Playa del Ingles to Maspalomas Dunes and after the Dunes you will find Maspalomas Lighthouse and Meloneras. Its a nice walk along the beach about 45 minutes and you will reach Meloneras where you will find plenty of Bars and Restaurants and if you dont fancy the walk back you can always get a taxi back to Playa del Ingles.