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Gran Canaria is one of several islands that comprise the Canary Islands in the Spanish archipelago. The name literally translates to ‘Great Island of Dogs’. It ranks second in the Canary Islands in terms of population. In fact, the island comprises 40% off the total number of population in the archipelago. It is part of the Atlantic Ocean and along the northwestern coast of Africa. Travel to Gran Canaria is all about being in commune with nature and the unspoilt natural beauty of the island.
The capital of Gran Canaria is Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. This city, together with Santa Cruz de Tenerife (the capital of Tenerife – another one of the Canary Islands), comprises the capital of the Canary Islands autonomous community.
The island of Gran Canaria was formed out of volcanic origin. The island itself is round in shape with a diameter of 50 kilometers. Aside from its volcanic formation, there are also several notable protected areas in the island territory that makes it unique. In fact, these protected areas are sought after by tourists who travel to Gran Canaria, apart from its beautiful beaches. Despite the size of the island, it is packed with attractions such as natural monuments, natural parks, nature reserves, protected landscapes and sites of scientific interest.
It is therefore undeniable that tourism plays a huge part in the growth of the island. Travel to Gran Canaria is popular to the point that it has earned its own nickname: Miniature Continent. This implies that there is an abundance of sights and attractions to explore in Gran Canaria. There is also a varied landscape within the island so each portion of the island offers a different experience and make exploration worthwhile. As of 2014, the annual number of tourists who travel to Gran Canaria is estimated at 3.6 million.
Climate in Gran Canaria
Aside from the varied landscape, the climate in Gran Canaria also differs depending on where you are in the island. In fact, they have microclimates! The average day time temperature is at 20-degree Celsius during winter and 26-degree Celsius during summer. Winter can see further decline in temperature but nothing below than 10-degree Celsius is ever recorded.
The climate in the inland portions of the island is mild but the mountainous areas experience occasional frost. The summers see a rise in number of tourists who travel to Gran Canaria to experience its sunny weather. The south of the island experiences the best weather and climate during the summer.
Getting Around & Transportation
There is one commercial airport in the island: Gran Canaria Airport. This serves as hub for commercial flights that travel to Gran Canaria. It is also one of the busiest airports in Spain. The Gran Canaria is where the air traffic control headquarters is located in all of the Canary Islands.
As for exploring the island itself, there are several roads encircling the island making it easier to explore. In fact, the motorways built in Gran Canaria are among the first ones built in the Canary Islands. Some of the remote parts of the island, though, are only accessible via the main roads.