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Shortened walk through the dunes of Maspalomas

Walk through the dunes of Maspalomas

On the enchanting island of Gran Canaria there is a natural paradise of sand and you can't help but take a walk through the dunes of Maspalomas. These extensive sand dunes form an unspoilt piece of nature amid the bustling tourist life of the island. For those with limited time, this abbreviated walk through the Maspalomas dunes still offers an enchanting experience that strengthens the connection with nature.

Walk through the dunes of Maspalomas
Dunes of Maspalomas

Maspalomas Dunes

The Maspalomas dunes stretch along the south coast of Gran Canaria and are known for their impressive sand formations. The sand, which comes from the Sahara Desert, creates a surreal landscape. While the full walk through the dunes can take several hours, it is also possible to choose a shorter route and still experience the essence of this natural paradise. A walk through the sand dunes “Dunas de Maspalomas” is probably one of the most famous walks on Gran Canaria. When we went horse riding in Gran Canaria and explored the hills of Maspalomas, we saw the dunes on the coast and I felt like going for a quiet walk.

Starting point of the walk: Charca Laguna

A good place to start the shortened walk is the Laguna of Charca, a picturesque brackish water lake that is home to a unique ecosystem. While you follow the shore of the lagoon, you will be guided to the starting point of the walk through the dunes. Here you turn left and begin the shortcut through the golden sands, with the Laguna of Charca on your left. This small water paradise serves as a breeding ground for birds, but is also used as a resting place for migratory birds on their way south. Before leaving, take water, sunscreen and a hat with you. It gets warm quickly in the dunes.

Starting point walk dunes of Maspalomas
Charca Lagoon

Yellow and then blue markers

You start the walk (3A) at the lagoon of Charca (step towards the sea). At the end of the promenade with apartments on your right, turn left onto the sand. There is another one on those posts yellow horizontal stripe. You can also choose to take the long walk of 10 km. It then goes to Playa del Inglés, but we opted for the short (loop) walk of about 7 km with the viewpoint “La Punta” as its center. We had a short break there and then returned via route 2 (see plan below).

Dune walk Gran Canaria
Promenade next to the lagoon
Dune walk Gran Canaria
Yellow markers
Dune walk Gran Canaria
Blue markers

The walk is well marked with the yellow stripes on the posts (parallel to the sea). Then you see blue stripes on the blue route (3A). That route leads to a viewpoint “La Punta” close to Hotel Riu. Don't underestimate a walk through loose sand, it is more difficult than walking in the mountains. As you make your way through the dunes, you soon notice that the landscape is constantly transforming. The sand forms a labyrinth of winding paths and high dune ridges, making every step a new discovery.

Viewpoint "La Punta"

The shortened route still offers beautiful viewpoints. After an hour of walking you arrive at “La Punta” where you have a panoramic view of the vast dunes and the Atlantic Ocean behind them. The viewpoint not only invites you to photo opportunities but also offers the opportunity to enjoy the harmony between land and sea. La Punta is located at the back of the beautiful hotel Riu and at an ice cream parlour, ideal for taking a walking break there. There are toilets next to the ice cream parlor that you can use for free.

La Punta viewpoint
Ice cream La Punta
Ice cream parlour
La Punta Gran Canaria
La Punta
Hotel Riu La Punta
Riu Hotel

Magic of the sunset

Walk through the dunes of Maspalomas

From La Punta you continue walking on the wide path between the posts from where you came, but at the first junction you go straight ahead (route 2) and you continue to follow the path straight through the dunes. I liked this last part the most. As the day comes to an end, the magic of the dunes becomes even more intense, especially from the Laguna of Charca. The setting sun casts its warm glow over the golden sand, causing the light to fall differently and creating a spectacle that enchants the senses.

La Punta Gran Canaria
La Punta
Walk Dunas de Maspalomas
Go straight for route 2
Route walk Dunas de Maspalomas
Hiking trails

A shortened walk offers the opportunity to experience this natural spectacle without having to follow the entire dune route. It could also be because on this part of the trail the vegetation seemed different, with more plants and palm trees. Towards the end, you continue to follow the posts until you reach a gate, after which you continue walking along the promenade that crosses the bridge of the dried-up river “Barranco de Fataga”.

Walk through the dunes of Gran Canaria
The Magic of the Sunset
Barranco de Fataga
Barranco de Fataga

How long did the dune walk take?

Plan a walk through the dunes of Maspalomas
Walks in the dunes of Gran Canaria

To give an idea of ​​how long the walk took, I give the times and location below:

    1. Start walk at the Charca Lagoon: 17:40 PM
    2. Arrival La Punta: 18:40 PM
    3. Departure after break: 19:00 PM
    4. At the bridge: 20:00 PM
    5. Arrival Lagoon terminus: 20:10 PM

Fauna and Flora dunes Maspalomas

Although the dunes mainly consist of sand, they are home to a surprising variety of flora and fauna. During the walk you can admire some of the local plant species that have adapted to the arid environment. In addition, the dunes are home to several bird species, making it a paradise for bird watchers. A shorter walk still offers the opportunity to view this natural splendor.

Fauna and Flora Dunes of Maspalomas

Our dune walk lasted a total of 2 hours and 30 minutes. I must admit that we took the walk very leisurely. You can actually easily do the walk in 2 hours. The unique sandy landscape made it a different type of walk than we usually do, which made it more fun to do.

While an abbreviated walk through the Maspalomas Dunes may not reveal all the hidden corners of the dunes, it still offers an enchanting experience. The combination of the brackish water lagoon, the golden sand and the opportunity to experience the natural beauty in about 2 hours make this walk a valuable addition to your holiday in Gran Canaria. So, let the Laguna of Charca be your guide as you explore the dunes of Maspalomas and enjoy the magic of this natural paradise.

If you can't get enough of walking in Gran Canaria, then you will find this one three beautiful short walks in Gran Canaria might also be fun to do!

Another short walk on Gran Canaria's unspoilt west coast is the walk Puerto de La Aldea: Discover the secret sandy beach of Gran Canaria

Three short beautiful walks in Gran Canaria

Gran Canaria is a real walking island, you can take countless beautiful walks along the coast or in the mountains.

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Wim & Jessica

We created the travel blog "Globetrotter Avenue" as a hobby, but also to share travel experiences with others. In the meantime we have visited more than 40 countries. We love nature, forests and mountains, but also sun, sea and beach. When we are not traveling, you will find us in the garden. Enjoy reading!

This post has 2 responses

  1. Jill

    Thanks, this post is very helpful as I plan to see the dunes in May. Can I ask where you got your map from?

    1. W&J

      Hello Jill,
      You can find the map at various places on the route itself.
      Regards, Wim

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