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Maspalomas Gay Travel

wolfyy’s Maspalomas gay travel guide covers where to stay, gay bars, beaches & events in this LGBT resort town.

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The Gay Travel Experience: Maspalomas, Gran Canaria

Strangers run up to each other on the gay beach in Maspalomas making jokes and laughing under the island sun; people in Maspalomas embody every sense of the word carefree. There are actually two Maspalomas gay pride events each year. These fabulous festivals draw many thousands of people from all over the world.
Winter Pride 2018
Pride flag
Maspalomas gay dunes

I visited for Maspalomas Winter Pride 2018, which takes place in early November. My time spent on this majestic island was short, but it was a time I’ll never forget.

I made more gay friends during my visit to Gran Canaria than any other destination or gay pride that I’ve been to. Since then, these friends have turned into long-term buddies and travel partners! Whats more, Maspalomas pride is by far the friendliest gay event I’ve been to.

Maspalomas gay dunes
Winter Pride 2018
maspalomas dunes gay area

Gay vacationers in Maspalomas are talkative and so outgoing! There are fewer groups of men who are closed off to making new friends. It was such a nice change from the usual gay pride vibe. Maspalomas is a top gay vacation destination for Europeans, especially Germans, Spaniards and the French.

Pride flag

Gran Canaria is the largest of the Canary Islands. You will surely find rainbow flags and gay resorts everywhere. Take note that Maspalomas is a town completely occupied by tourists. There are not too many local Spaniards to be found, as I’ll mention below.

Is Gran Canaria Spanish Speaking?

Many travel newbies assume that because Maspalomas is the largest Canary Island and because it is occupied by Spain, that there must be a ton of local Spanish life around. This is not exactly the case.

gay circuit party in maspalomas

Spanish is the official language of the Spanish Canary Islands, but aside from that, there really is not much “Spanish culture” per se. This is simply because the island mainly caters to tourists.

maspalomas dunes photo spot
gay circuit party in maspalomas
maspalomas dunes photo spot

Many more locals from the Canary Islands are found on other nearby islands, but not so much in Gran Canaria/Maspalomas. Nonetheless, the atmosphere is gorgeous and you have to see the dunes! Your fellow Maspalomas gay travel buddies are bound to be on the friendly side, too.

Gay Maspalomas: Hotels & Where to Stay

The three most important considerations for booking hotels in Maspalomas are proximity to Yumbo Centre and beaches, and availability of a private/community pool. Taxis are plentiful and cheap, but it’s much more convenient to be able to walk to some destinations like the town center.

Maspalomas gay resorts
Maspalomas gay resorts
Canary Islands gay traveler

Playa del Inglés is the main gay area of Maspalomas and many prefer to stay nearby. Life revolves around Yumbo Centre since all the bars and restaurants are nearby. If you are visiting for a pride event, it is much more desirable to stay in one of the many Playa del Inglés hotels.

Winter Pride Parade Canary Islands

If you’re not concerned with the gay parties/bars or Yumbo Center in general, then there are plenty of other beautiful options to pick from. There are loads of highly-rated resorts in La Playa de Arguineguín, a beach town only a ten-minute drive west of Playa del Inglés.

A bit farther west, you can find some truly majestic accommodations in Playa Cura, many which have spectacular views.

gay travel Canary Islands

Accommodation types in Maspalomas are typically resort/bungalow style rentals and chic hotels. Airbnb apartments also exist, but they don’t seem as popular given that hotels are already pretty inexpensive.

I stayed at Eó Maspalomas Resort. It’s a bare-bones accommodation that is only a 3 to 4-Euro cab ride from Yumbo Centre. Having the swimming pool and personal patio made my stay very relaxing. It was also a great layout for sharing a space with a friend.

Maspalomas Gay Travel Experiences

Yumbo Centre is the hub of all nightlife. But, let me tell you a few more things about it. Firstly, the center is sort of like a “New Orleans Bourbon Street meets Bangkok’s gay district.”

Everyone socializes at tables outside or they just grab drinks and wander! Physically, Yumbo is not pretty. It’s just a spot to get wild and have some fun!

Maspalomas gay beach
Maspalomas gay beach
Spain pride event

Also, the setup of Yumbo Centre is sort of “walled-in.” Everything faces inward, which I love. You enter through various stairwells and passageways.

Spain pride event

High-end restaurants are mostly within the higher-end hotels and resorts. Food is decently cheap here in the Canary Islands, but the convenience stores are not. It’s a good bet to simply eat out. There are a couple run-of-the-mill Chinese and Indian restaurants close to Yumbo.

Maspalomas Gay Beaches & The Dunes

Now it’s time to talk about Las Dunas de Maspalomas! I’m sure you’ve heard about and seen many photos of these dunes. Spectacularly scenic, do not leave the island without walking through them. 

las dunas de maspalomas gay

Head toward the Maspalomas gay beach and take tons of photos. Watch out for a few areas that have cacti, as the little burrs can hurt and be difficult to remove.

las dunas de maspalomas gay
maspalomas gay beach

There are two points from which you can approach the Maspalomas gay beach, called Kiosco Beach Number 7. If you prefer a route walking along the shore, grab a Taxi to Plaza del Faro and walk east. You will pass various pockets of areas with beach chairs.

maspalomas gay beach
If you prefer a little hike through the dunes (a little steeper but nothing crazy), go directly to the main entrance of the dunes which is due south of Playa del Inglés. The beach is downhill from this point, so it is definitely easier to walk from Playa del Inglés and stroll the shore back.
Canary Islands gay traveler

The beaches in Maspalomas are beautiful, and the water is warm enough to swim in most of the year. Most people don’t swim during the coldest couple months since drying off can be chilly.

canary island beaches
maspalomas gay beach dunes

At the Kiosco Beach Number 7 gay beach, lounge chairs are free. Most people just spread out on the sand though. There is a small cash-only bar as well, so bring your Euros.

Maspalomas Dunes Cruising

Anyone who hasn’t been to Maspalomas is surely wondering, is there actually cruising happening in the dunes? The truth is…yes. But it may vary on time of day and day of week.

maspalomas dunes gay cruising

Maspalomas dunes cruising isn’t a full-on herd of men. It’s more like a few individuals nestling themselves into a secluded spot, remaining just visible enough to invite a stranger over.

best areas of maspalomas
maspalomas dunes gay cruising
best areas of maspalomas

Ultimately, there’s no harm in trying your luck! I’d say to keep your expectations in check, though. 

Before heading to the dunes, why not get a workout in? Aaptiv can help you squeeze in a killer workout anywhere. You can start a 30 day free Aaptiv trial if interested. I love their HIIT workout programs.

Maspalomas Gay Bars

There are so many gay bars and clubs in Maspalomas to choose from in Yumbo Centre. Mykonos Bar is one of my favorites. They have a fun outdoor terrace for a fun indoor-outdoor feel. 

yumbo center

Otherwise, most of the fun is just exploring the dozens of gay bars in Yumbo. wide-open terraces and cabaret bars pack in thousands of gay men.

If you are visiting for Maspalomas gay pride, the crowd drastically changes around midnight. Earlier in the night you’ll find an older European audience. Hang around a little later and things get wild with a primarily 25 to 35-year old crowd.

maspalomas gay bar
yumbo center
During Maspalomas pride events, there will be a couple of “official” parties put on by the committee itself. I had an absolute blast at the T-dance. This party was in an indoor-outdoor bar overlooking the ocean at Playa de las Meloneras.
maspalomas gay bar

Bunker Maspalomas Cruising Club

If you’re interested in a little more “fun” after some dancing, Bunker is the main Maspalomas gay sauna and cruise bar with a darkroom basement. They charge a cover at the door of about ten Euro.

If there is a sizable crowd in the Yumbo Centre, you can expect Bunker will be open with a good crowd.

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Gay Events in Gran Canaria

Since Maspalomas is a huge gay holiday destination in Europe, the island holds many gay events every year. Aside from Maspalomas Pride, there are several themed gay holiday weekends on the largest canary island.

First I’ll discuss Maspalomas Pride weeks, and then I’ll mention some other fun gay party weekends.

When is Maspalomas Pride?

Maspalomas hosts two pride events each year. Gay Pride Maspalomas is in May, conveniently scheduled before pride season ramps up in the rest of Europe. Winter Pride Maspalomas is in November.

Maspalomas gay pride
Maspalomas gay pride
gay maspalomas

Be cautious when looking at the official Maspalomas Pride events because some of them are quite far from Playa del Inglés, which is the top place to stay during Maspalomas Pride. I purchased one ticket to a beach party but it was so far away we decided not to go.

gay maspalomas

Bear Carnival Maspalomas

Bear Carnival is another super popular gay festival in Maspalomas. In 2020, Bear Carnival will be March 20-29. There is an entire week of scheduled events, but the main party weekend is March 27th to 29th.

Bear Carnival is branded as Europe’s biggest bear event. Their events typically include a welcome barbecue, a neon-beard party night, speed dating night, a toga party and sex parties at the maspalomas gay sauna. 

Fetish Week Maspalomas

I would love to go to Maspalomas Gay Fetish Week the next time I visit the Canary Islands. The photos from past events look great. Many of the gay resorts will participate in the overall fetish week themes.

fetish week
maspalomas summer fiesta gay parties
fetish week

In 2020, Maspalomas Fetish Week will be from October 2-11. All the proceeds go to a local HIV/AIDS charity. Learn more about Maspalomas Fetish Week Official Website.

Gran Canaria Summer Fiesta Events

With events all throughout August, there’s no excuse to miss Maspalomas Summer Fiesta! The end-of-summer gay event program starts on August 1st and finishes up on August 31st.

maspalomas summer fiesta gay parties

Summer Fiesta Maspalomas has literally everything from wine tastings and free scuba experiences to their famous “Please Disturb” cruising party.

Maspalomas Gay Travel Tips

Taxi cabs in Maspalomas are trustworthy. Of all the taxis I took, none of them tried to rip me off. They are extremely cheap as well. Most don’t speak much, if any English.

Knowing the name of the road where you are going is best, especially if your hotel isn’t well-known. The cabbies are honest guys, so tip them well!

maspalomas winter pride
maspalomas winter pride
gay travel canary islands

One of the many Gran Canaria public buses can take you directly from the airport to Yumbo Centre. It is only 3 Euros or so, a much better deal as opposed to the normal 50-Euro ride. Playa del Inglés is not near the airport, so the bus is definitely worth it. You can grab a cab locally once it lets out at Yumbo.

gay travel canary islands

I have a few friends who decided to take a day trip around the island by car to check out the beautiful landscapes. If you have the time, this may be of interest to you. 

I personally stayed in central Maspalomas the entire time. However, there truly is much more to see on the largest Canary Island.

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Looking to meet other gay travelers to explore with? Join wolfyy’s Gay Travel Facebook Chat and introduce yourself to some new friends!

Want more gay Spain party destinations? Check out wolfyy’s Barcelona or Madrid gay travel guides.

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