Gran Canaria is one of Spain’s Canary Islands, off northwestern Africa that has a population of 847,830. It’s known for its black lava and white sand beaches. Its southern beaches include bustling Playa del Inglés and Puerto Rico as well as quieter Puerto de Mogán and San Agustín. The island’s interior is rural and mountainous. In the north, capital city Las Palmas is a major stop for cruise ships and duty-free shopping.
A tiny continent where you’ll find plenty of experiences that make every day special: golden beaches, stunning landscapes, and a big city full of fun things to do.
Discover beaches as diverse as the landscapes of Gran Canaria. Almost 60 kilometres of beach on 236 kilometres of coastline, all bathed in gentle sunshine that fills you with energy.
From the second half of the 19th century, Gran Canaria started gaining popularity in European circles as an attractive base for recreational holidays; a place for people in need of a rest. Shipping companies soon took advantage of this development and equipped their vessels with cabins for the transport of passengers. These companies would go on to build the first hotels on the island, one of which was the Hotel Santa Catalina (1890) in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. This is the only hotel dating from the early beginnings of tourism that still remains open.
In 1912, the Island Council Law was brought into force and the foundation stone for the development of the tourism industry and its related services was laid. This led to a number of infrastructure projects such as the construction of the airport, water reservoirs and the principal motorway network of the island.
During the first half of the 20th century a number of wars (World Wars I and II and the Spanish Civil War) impeded further growth. Not even the opening of the then-called Gando Airport (Gran Canaria’s first airport) in 1930 could spark a new boost to the tourism industry. It was only in 1957 when an aircraft from the Swedish airline TSA landed on the island with all of its 54 seats completely booked that tourism really starting taking off. This was the first of many charter flights to arrive on the island from that date on.
Eventually, building on the boom of the 1960s, tourism became the main source of income for the island, making Gran Canaria one of the most sought-after tourist destinations in the world.
Today tourism in Gran Canaria is divided between the North and South sides of the island with tourists coming to the southern sandy beaches and dunes have brought more wealth to Gran Canaria than banana plantations could ever have done – tourism has grown from less than a hundred visitors a year at the end of the 19th century to 11 million visitors per year in the beginning of the new millennium.
The north of the island is more orientated to the business visitor, hosting all sorts of facilities for the organisation of conferences, seminars and business meetings. This is also the area where you’ll find the cosmopolitan city of Las Palmas, the island’s business centre, and the busy port Puerto de la Luz, one of Europe’s most important harbours. The sandy beaches of Las Canteras and Las Alcaravaneras, flanking the city of Las Palmas, account for a stable income from tourism in this north-eastern area.
But if you want to get away from it all, Gran Canaria provides the perfect destination for a holiday. It’s easy to get off the beaten track when there are over 300km of footpaths and head to the mountains or nature reserves. Rural tourism has become increasingly popular with the renovation and improvement of facilities available at casas rurales (rural houses). These include cave houses where you can get as close to nature as is humanly possible. Gran Canaria is also attracting more and more visitors for golf or wellness holidays or rural tourism, adding even more attractions to this already eclectic destination and making it one of the most accomplished in Europe.
Information care of http://www.spain-grancanaria.com/en/discover/facts/tourism.html
Tauro valley is an idyllic place with a climate of eternal sunshine. Cocooned between majestic mountains the championship golf course (Anfi Tauro Golf Course) gently rolls down towards the crystalline Atlantic Ocean, providing you with a perfect location for your dream holidays.
In this episodes we visit a rum distillery that is over 100 years old and learn about the whole rum processing followed by tasting a variety of rums and liqueurs. We find out about Gofio at Molino de Fuego, one of the most ancestral foods of the Canary Islands since its origin goes back hundreds of years ago. We visit a restaurant in Puerto Rico to sample some of Gran Canaria’s best local cuisine, we visit the biggest Cactus Park in Europe, Cactualdea Park and find out about some of the plants culinary uses such as the Tuno Indio which is a red cactus that is used in juices, also at the Park we get to taste some local delights such as papas arrugadas (Canarian potato’s) and tomato’s as that is the area that produces the tomato’s for the island.
We visit Los Berrazales (La Laja Farm), which has the only Coffee Plantation in Europe and we also pay a visit to the Tropical Fruit Plantation on the farm.
Destilerías Arehucas (Arehuas Rum Distillery)
On 9 August 1884, the Fábrica de San Pedro Factory was officially opened in Arucas, on the Canary Island of Gran Canaria. Although sugar was the main product, sugar cane distillates and rum were also produced at this forerunner of the modern-day Destilerías Arehucas Distilleries. The artisanal process to turn sugar cane into rum and the use of modern stills led to the early success of the distillery, popularly known as La Fábrica.
In 1885, the first 5,619,540 kg of sugar cane were milled. The quality of the resulting liqueurs was deserving of the Vaso de Plata y Bronce silver and bronze trophy and the title of Purveyors to the Royal House and Court of Spain, granted by the Queen Regent Maria Christina of Austria.
Today, Destilerías Arehucas is over a hundred years old and has a rich history. The distillery, located in Arucas (Gran Canaria), is a testament to this fact, welcoming more than 45,000 visitors every year.
Arehucas is an established and prestigious trademark, thanks to the quality and history of its spirits. It has successfully become a benchmark brand in the Canary Islands, a vital launch pad from where to showcase the image of our products to the world, rooted as they are in the culture and traditions of the region.