The island of Gran Canaria is part of the Canary Islands archipelago. It’s located between Tenerife in the west and Fuerteventura in the east. It is an autonomous community of Spain, which makes it a territory of the European Union. The island is located more than 1,200 km from southern Spain, off the Western Sahara Desert. It’s one of the biggest gay destinations in Europe. Moreover, it is in Maspalomas – Playa del Inglés, on the southernmost tip of the island, that you can find the meeting point for the gays of Europe. When winter hits the European continent, its location makes it an ideal gay travel destination, as it’s warm there all year round.
Gran Canaria is the second most populated island of the Canary Islands after Tenerife. It has a population of about 850,000 inhabitants and its capital is Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. The gay seaside resort of Maspalomas is located on the southern tip of the island, especially in Playa del Inglés. It takes about 20-30 minutes drive from the airport to reach the seaside area. It is around the Yumbo Center, a popular shopping mall, that you will find a very large number of gay accommodations. Once night falls, it’s in the heart of this shopping center that the night owls meet. Indeed, it is a 100% gay area with many bars, clubs, restaurants and other establishments, making it the ideal place to party.
You are in Spanish territory, one of the most LGBTQ+ friendly countries in the world! The Yumbo Center was originally built in the 1980s as a very large shopping centre. Unfortunately, the centre was never as successful as expected and the first gay establishments were set up there. Very quickly, the Yumbo Centre became known and started attracting gay tourists, mainly from Germany. Today, it’s one of the most famous gay destinations in Europe. Its warm year-round climate, its tolerance, and its lively LGBTQ+ nightlife quickly conquered tourists from Europe and around the world.
Like other popular gay destinations in Spain such as Madrid and Barcelona, Gran Canaria benefits from very favourable LGBTQ+ legislation. Gay marriage has been allowed since 2005 and discrimination based on gender or sexual orientation is strongly discouraged. You can walk there hand in hand with your boyfriend without any problem.
To reach one of Europe‘s busiest gay beaches, you will have to walk for about 30 minutes through sand dunes that will remind you of the Sahara. Also note that the said sand dunes are also known to be a gay cruising area on Gran Canaria.
The currency is the Euro. For citizens of the European Union, Switzerland or a member country of the European Economic Area, a national identity card or passport is sufficient, as Spain is a member of the Schengen Area.
For travellers coming from Canada, USA or Australia, there is an agreement with the EU allowing you to be exempted from visa requirements for stays not exceeding 90 days. However, please note that during 2022, you will have to obtain your ETIAS before your departure. This is an electronic travel authorisation that must be done online before the trip, which will cost €7 and will give access to the Schengen area. Here is the link for more information: ETIAS.
Specificity of the Canary Islands as an outermost region of the European Union :
Even if you are in Spanish territory, Gran Canaria has a special status within the European Union. VAT (Value Added Tax) does not exist. There is indeed a local consumption tax, but it is much lower than the taxes imposed elsewhere in Europe, since it is at a maximum of 7%. It’s also a more accessible gay destination compared to more sophisticated ones as can be the Greek island of Mykonos.
All the gay bars at the Yumbo Center:
Parrots Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Very nice big gay bar on the main floor. Located in front of the Adonis. With a large terrace and excellent cocktails.
Spartacus (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Long open gay bar, café-cocktail-beer with a clientele of all ages and a large terrace.
Bärenhöhle (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Very popular with gay bears, the name of this bar means “bear cave” in German.
Adonis Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Nice atmosphere, beautiful outdoor space and located in front of the Parrots. Ideal for watching shows on the main floor.
Sky Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Well-placed gay bar with a small terrace and a nice drinks menu.
Ricky’s Cabaret Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay bar-cabaret with a drag show every night.
Mykonos Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Bar party for the second part of the evening. Good music and cute little guys.
Pirates (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). A nice beer-cocktail menu and a shaded terrace.
The Bubble (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay bar with a more secluded lounge atmosphere where it’s easier to chat with your first date.
Cheyenne’s The Lounge Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay disco-pub karaoke with transformist shows.
Cruise Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Beautiful bear-muscle-leather atmosphere, this gay bar is very well known and has been around for a long time.
Strong Construction (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Popular gay bar with a men’s cruising atmosphere and all the bar faces outwards.
Peppermint (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay bar with quiet terrace and a very nice cocktail menu.
Do You Want (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Nice gay bar very comfortable with a nice cocktail menu and good music.
Barack’afe (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Secluded bar-café with a nice atmosphere and a boss who makes you feel at ease.
Sparkles Show Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Big gay bar with transformist parties and a beautiful stage with shows every night.
WunderBar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay bar located on the main floor with a large terrace and a good selection of beers and other drinks.
Tom’s Cruising Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Fetish bar.
Mardi Gras Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Bar appreciated during the day / late afternoon for its smoothies, ice creams and other hot drinks.
Internship Center (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay bar located upstairs with nice atmosphere. Rather recommended for your second part of evenings.
Fiction Bar(Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay cocktail bar with a nice drink menu and a nice terrace.
Kiki (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Bar for the second part of the evening with a very nice atmosphere and loyal clientele.
Zaza Bar(Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay bar with a beautiful and delirious atmosphere and a great choice of cocktails.
Diamonds(Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay bar with a nice menu of cocktails and long drinks. Reasonable prices.
Na’Und (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay bar with a very German atmosphere and clientele. “Na und” in German means “So what” in English.
Junior(Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Bar-cafe-pub a little out of the way towards the exit of the Yumbo. Good friendly atmosphere and regular shows.
MeickeR (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Bar known for its excellent service and a very family atmosphere.
Macho Macho bei André(Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay bar located upstairs, popular with the youngest, and recommended for dancing and drinking at reasonable prices.
Grand Café Latino(Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Large pub-coffee-bar located on the main floor.
At Funny Boy’s (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Bar-cabaret with a nice crazy atmosphere and beautiful transformist shows.
Coco Loco Bar(Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay bar-party, ideal in the second half of the evening. Located on the first floor of the Yumbo complex.
Terry Show(Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay bar with fabulous transformist parties. Nice place to enjoy shows.
Buddies Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Bar-restaurant is ideal if you want to have a drink while eating a real meal.
Blue Night(Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Small gay bar with terrace.
Miau(Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Small bar located on the first floor of the Yumbo complex with a very nice owner.
Outside the Yumbo Center:
Strandapotheke (Paseo del Faro, Maspalomas). This gay bar isn’t in Yumbo but by the sea. Excellent location because you can come here before or after a day on the gay beach of Maspalomas. From the gay beach, just walk towards the lighthouse!
Score Gay Sports Bar(Cita Center) Located at the Cita Center. gay bar with good music, good cocktails and live sports broadcasts.
Mantrix (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay nightclub located on the top floor of the Yumbo complex. There is an entrance fee to be paid for access, often including a drink. Good pop atmosphere and young clientele.
Tubos Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Large popular gay bar-club frequented by a young clientele, also located on the top floor of the Yumbo.
Mykonos Bar (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). It’s a late night bar but also a gay club with good music and a very young clientele. Right next to the Mantrix.
Maspalomas Gay Beach – Booth Number 7
The gay beach of Maspalomas is very well known because to get there from Playa del Inglés, you will walk across a long sandy road where we can guarantee you a total change of scenery: it’s like the Sahara Desert!
You have 2 ways to get there:
The most adventurous (we advise you to do so at least once during your stay): walk to the Riu Palace Maspalomas Hotel. Go straight ahead (just follow the crowd) and cross the dunes of El Oasis until you arrive directly on the beach. It’s a good opportunity to meet people on the way from all over the world!
Our advice: put on trainers, otherwise you’ll burn your feet on the hot sand and bring some water!
The most comfortable: go to the Maspalomas Lighthouse that you can see in the distance. Once there, walk and go along the beach to kiosk number 7 which is the gay beach indicator. Don’t be afraid to miss it, you’ll see the beach in the distance!
Gay Cruising Bars at Yumbo:
At Cruise Bar, Strong Construction and Tom’s Cruising Bar already listed in the Yumbo’s “Gay Bars” category. These open-air bars are ideal for just having a drink and rinsing your eyes out.
Bunker Bar(Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Famous and very popular cruising bar.
Noxon (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay fetish cruising club.
The Box (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay cruising club with a rather mature clientele.
The Basement Studios (Av/Estados Unidos, 37). Right in front of the Yumbo. It is basically a BnB Gay complex which offers bungalows for single or double occupancy as well as an outdoor swimming pool. But it’s also a gay cruising club with daytime access.
Gay Sauna at the Yumbo:
Heroes Sauna (Yumbo Center, Playa del Inglés). In addition to the cruising bar, you have this sauna which is located on the top floor of the Yumbo, right next to the Mantrix disco. Fully equipped, entrance fee a bit expensive.
A 1-3 minute walk from the Yumbo Center:
The Hole Cruising Bar & The Zone Fetish Terrace (Jardim del Sol Center, Playa del Inglés). Very big and beautiful gay cruising club. Numerous theme evenings.
Hell Club Gay (Jardim del Sol Center, Playa del Inglés). Gay cruising bar.
Zoo Mens Bar (Av/de Tirajana, 17 – Barbados Building). Gay cruising with a different dress code every day. Find out before you go.
Reds Club Bar (Av/de Tirajana, 17 – Barbados Building 2). Gay cruise located in the same complex as the Zoo Mens Bar.
Romeo and Julio (Av/de Francia). Gay cruise located in the Cita Center.
On the way to the sand dunes The dunes that you will cross to reach the gay beach of Playa Del Ingles is a particularly well-known cruising area.
From May 6 to May 16, 2021. The event has been cancelled due to the current health situation.
The Maspalomas Gay Pride is very well known and attracts gays from all over Europe to start the summer season.
November 8 to 14, 2021.
The Maspalomas Winter Pride exists since 2014. A great way to party in the warmth before winter on all the European continent.
Grindr and Scruff remain the most used applications.
Lots of Germans on site, so you absolutely need PlanetRomeo.
Source of the video: You Tube – Gran Canaria Official – 21 July 2020. Photo credit 1 : under Shutterstock.com license / photographer : Ingus Kruklitis. Photo credit 2 : under Shutterstock.com license / photographer : Balate Dorin.