Gran Canaria, the Cuba of Europe,? casket of unexpected scenarios, unspoiled nature, mosaics of interesting diversity? which undoubtedly make it a complete microcontinent.
The lightness of soul of the Canaries fills the streets, with bursting smiles, of Las Palmas.
The colorful Pueblos and the ancient melodies will make you feel in an absurdly close Havana.
As soon as we landed in the late evening we decide to rent a car from a Canarian company that - listen, listen - at the modest price of 8 euros a day also promises coverage of any damage. It is undoubtedly the most popular policy. canaria I've ever heard and that more? it reflects the "free" lifestyle of the new Guanches.
I remind you, in fact, that the Canary Islands enjoy a particular freedom: they are free port and taxes are almost always low. Not ? a case, in fact, that for a few years the desire to leave everything and go to the Canary Islands has crept among thousands of Italians.
The climate ? as we expected: 19 degrees dry, perfect. A mirage for a Europe that is beginning to feel the first boils of July.
We decide to go to the hotel in Maspalomas, about 30 minutes from the airport, to leave the luggage, eat something bought at the nearest supermarket? close and start planning for the following day.
As soon as you wake up it seems already? everything more? clear: from the balcony of our hotel you can see the great dunes of Maspalomas. Meanwhile, the wonderful African sun warmed the long stretches of fine golden sand making tropical flowers and plants shine. A shower, t shirt, shorts and ... backpack!
We rush out onto the long paseo that crosses part of the Dunes. Are there any fish restaurants, and the name "Paella"? everywhere: ? almost a Bible in these parts (more than in Barcelona I would dare to say). There is no shortage of Chinese buffets, Mcdonalds, pizzerias and Italian restaurants everywhere.
At a certain point of the paseo it seems to be in a Little Italy. The prices are astounding and confirm the myth of the low cost Canaries:? you can eat well even with only 10 euros each!
We decide to eat a good mariscos (fish) paella accompanied by a good glass of sangria. The bill seems to smile at us: 34 euros for 4 people. Great I'd say.
Maspalomas? a locality? Canarian tourism: large hotels alternating with cheap aparthotels (less than 40 euros per night per apartment!), paseo with restaurants of all kinds and for all budgets, immense perfumeries, hiperdino (exclusively Canarian supermarket), pub in full style British.
A small Las Vegas on a human scale for? still far from the authenticity? which we will discover in the coming days.
We decide to spend our day here, renting a surfboard on the beach and sipping mojitos until six in the evening. Not more? a weird nightlife begins later, involving mainly the English and Germans sitting at pub tables drinking: the barbarians, already? drunk, they dance to the rhythm of an overwhelming Canarian melody that seems to transport everyone to a remote village in Mexico. In the evening, in fact, there is never a shortage of typical Canarian singers armed with hats, guitar and cheer to sell!
The third day has only one order: Las Palmas!
The capital, with its 600 years of history, really has a lot to tell through its ancient Pueblos (neighborhoods).
So let's visit the city? renting in the city? a bike. We are immediately struck by the large green spaces, the shopping center between Las Canteras and the port where the Mercadillo (Market) takes place.
Las Palmas? however large and the attractions must be selected: the House of Columbus and the Cathedral are located in another nucleus of the city, the largest. ancient.
We suggest that you inquire about opening hours, costs, etc. To our regret, in fact, we could not visit the beautiful "House of Christopher Columbus", which has now become an interesting museum where every stone? in its place and the balcony, in full colonial style, seems to be the one from which the Genoese explorer looked much more? than 500 years ago. In the center will not be? difficult to find the typical Canarian taverns called "Piscolabis" where? It is possible to savor, without spending too much, the delicious dishes of the islands: The queso di Cabra from Fuerteventura, Las Papas Arrujadas, the Galician pulpo.
The second stage? Las Canteras: a long paseo that develops along the enchanting and extensive city beach. Surfers, families with children, seniors: Las canteras? a universal formula. On the paseo you can breathe a different, sweet and spring air, and the colors of the many clubs give the perfect suggestions for those who want a different postcard.
In the evening we return to Maspalomas: will you wait for us? the next day a long day ...!
Early in the morning we decide to dedicate ourselves to the most? beautiful, the ones in top ranking on tourist guides a few kilometers away from each other.
The first is located near Arguineguin:? called "Anfi del Mar". Built by tennis player Bjorn Borg,? an exclusive residential and tourist center surrounded by lush nature: it is a project that has transformed this small corner of the Canary Islands into a Mexican beach. The white sand brought from Mexico and the palm trees take us to another dimension (artificial, alas?). Not far from the beach, on the paseo, there are a la carte restaurants and a curious and varied carrefour. Know that in the Canary Islands the supermarkets will never abandon you, almost as much as the tourist Paellas.
The second beach? that of Puerto de Mogan not far from Maspalomas and Arguineguin; this is Puerto de Mogan, a nice resort? tourist built following Venice as a model: there are therefore small canals and colorful houses on the sea. The beach ? beautiful but still not the best.
Los Amadores, in fact, exceeds all our expectations! A long expanse of white and fine grains mixed with chopped shells, and the colors that speak the language of the Caribbean. A magic.