Walking Through The Maspalomas Dunes in Gran Canaria

When Karen and I were on holiday in Gran Canaria, I took a morning walk along the Maspalomas dunes, also taking in the Charca de Maspalomas Nature Reserve and having a swim in the Atlantic. The walk lasted just over 2 hours and it was medium-strenuous, but could have lasted anything from 1-4 hours and made easy to strenuous, depending on the number of dunes climbed and distance walked.

Maspalomas Dunes - Maspalomos Beach

Maspalomas Faro

I started the walk from the Maspalomas Faro (lighthouse) which is right on a rocky beach at the end of Maspalomas and a pretty evident landmark, then headed north towards the dunes keeping the Atlantic on my right.

Maspalomas Dunes - Maspalomos Beach

Looking towards the dunes and Atlantic from Charca de Maspalomas nature reserve’s seaside end

After some restaurants right on the beach, the walk continues on a thin strip of sand about 50m wide and 300m long, running between the Atlantic and the nature reserve, before getting to the first dune. The nature reserve contains various types of wildfowl and many huge mullet, up to 5kg in weight, swimming leisurely and picking at mosquito larvae. There are also many types of local plant species.

Maspalomas Dunes - Maspalomos Beach

Looking back to lighthouse and nature reserve from 1st dune

Once at the dunes, you can make an easy decision, to either head inland climbing on, or to the side of the dunes, or continue straight towards the naturist beach.

Maspalomas Dunes - Maspalomas Beach

Maspalomas dunes with views towards the Gran Canaria mountains

I decided to head for the dunes and climbed on the first 6 or 7, which gave me both great views and sliding opportunities.

Maspalomas Dunes - Maspalomos Beach

One of the highest dunes with sand blowing off the ridge. Great for sliding down the steep side (about 30m in height)

Once I had enough exercise, I changed into my swimming trunks and on my return journey I walked back along Maspalomas Beach. I had a lovely refreshing swim at the nudist section of the beach, where swimmers in various states of (un)dress mingled. Showers were available at the position where the nature reserve met the start of the dune path walk (near bicycles at 2nd photo).

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