Las Palmas is a city in the north of Gran Canaria, which is part of the beautiful and hot Spanish Canary Islands, off the coast of Northern Africa. As a digital nomad, you may have heard of Las Palmas as a great destination for coworking, community, sun, sea, and surf.
Las Palmas is an all year round nomad destination because of it’s fantastic weather. Even when much of Europe is cold and dark from the months of October – March, it never drops colder than a balmy 18c.
It’s also one of the best places for surfing, and outdoor watersports in general.
This cool beach city is a hotspot with nomads because of it’s a good standard of living, great weather, buzzing nomad community, and excellent surf. If you want to get a tan, to make friends from around the world and to do some cool sightseeing, all whilst being productive and making money, look no further than this little gem.
When to go?
The great thing about Las Palmas is that you’re almost guaranteed sunshine. The whole island of Gran Canaria boasts warm temperatures pretty much all year round, reaching an impressive 32c in the summer and an average 25c temperature the rest of the time. You can check out what the main beach is like right now in Las Palmas with this handy live web stream.
Where to stay?
Las Palmas has a few areas to stay that are a good choice for remote workers.
Most nomads like to base themselves within walking distance of the popular Las Canteras beach, this is because it’s a great destination to walk to many of the cafes, co-working spots and nightly meetups – plus it’s great to go and sunbathe there after work. It’s a great central point and you will find tons of Airbnbs, co-working spots, bars, cafes and hotels all within walking distance of the main playa.
On the northerly end of the beach, there is a place called La Isleta. Whilst still walking distance to the beach, straying too far out means you’ll be entrenched in the local suburban life, and not all of these neighborhoods are pleasing to the eye.
If you’d like to be in the middle, the area of Guanarteme is the central part, a little set back from the beach. It’s the main strip that runs parallel to the beach. Here you’ll find plenty of supermarkets and coworking spots, all within a ten-minute walk. It’s also the location of the popular Friday nomad coffee club.
About a ten-minute bus ride away from the beach, or a one hour walk, is the old town of Vegueta. This is where all the nomads go on a Thursday night for Pinchos (tapas) and wine, plus there are a few coworking spots here if you’d prefer to be in a more rustic atmosphere.
Accommodation in Las Palmas for digital nomads
You’ll be spoilt for choice with accommodation in Las Palmas. It is plentiful, with co-living spots, Airbnbs, hostels, and hotels everywhere- but book a good four weeks in advance for the best prices. The only time of year you might struggle to find accommodation is in February, where it is not only Carnivale season (for a whole month, nonetheless!), but it is also popular with nomads and tourists alike, wanting to escape the cold European weather.
If you’re looking for a short term apartment, Airbnb can be good but prices have been creeping up recently.
Expect to pay around 750EUR+ for a 1-bed apartment. Use Idealista for stays of over 1 month, but bear in mind you will probably need x1 months rent and x1 month’s deposit in addition to your rental period.
The best place to look is on Gran Canaria Digital Nomads Facebook page, as nomads advertise cheap rooms at short notice with no contract terms.
Coworking spaces and good places to work
BEST COWORKING SPACES FOR DIGITAL NOMADS
If you’d like to just take your laptop to work, the Couple Cafe right in the center of Las Canteras beach is a hotspot for nomads. If you’re up early, try to get to Cafe Regina for the finest Colombian coffee and a croissant as you start your morning day.
Or, you could try hipster cafe Bioloco – a popular nomad spot with fantastic vegan and vegetarian food, at ridiculously cheap prices for Europe.
Amelie Green is another good choice to work from (formerly Terra Incognito Biofood). It’s relatively quiet there on a midweek afternoon, plus it’s only a short stroll from the delightful Smoothie Galaxy should you wish to grab a healthy fruit smoothie for your walk back along the beach.
The library is also available and many nomads work there, totally free. It’s in the heart of the city, a short walk from the beach.
Where to meet nomads?
Gran Canaria Digital Nomads is a must for a Facebook community, and join various groups on Meetup.com – you’ll find there is something for everyone – whether that’s a Spanish language class, yoga on the beach or a weekend hike into nature.
Money (ATM info
The Canary Islands are part of the EU and Las Palmas’s prices are fairly good; expect to pay around 3-4EUR for a beer and 1EUR for water.
You won’t have any trouble finding an ATM in the city and most globally recognized banks are represented. Visa and Mastercard are widely accepted and Amex cards are accepted by a few local banks too. You can expect ATM withdrawal limits to peak at around €300 per day, with nominal ATM service fees to take into account with transactions.
Check out your bank’s ATM locator for Las Palmas to reduce hassle.
WIFI speed info
- Las Palmas has an internet speed of 27 mbps internet speed, which is an ok speed, enough to get all the basic things done, although this is improving all the time.
Getting to Las Palmas from the airport is really easy, and it’ll take you about 30 minutes by car or around 45 minutes by public transport.
You can hire a car easily at the airport, or grab an Uber or Taxi. Socom taxis can take you anywhere on the island.
If you want to get the bus, check the timetable, but prices start from just 1.20EUR
When you get to Las Palmas, Local yellow bikes are available for city guests. You can Download their app “Sitycleta LPA” and start using it from day 1.
Mobile internet / SIM card use
The Canary Islands are part of the EU roaming pact, which means that prepaid SIM cards can be used in other EU countries at similar rates. There are four operators – Movistar, Vodafone, Orange, and Yoigo.
It’s best to travel with an unlocked phone and then use a prepaid SIM so you can get the best rate.
Las Palmas is part of Spain, so the Spanish visa rules apply to nomads entering.
If you’re a Citizens or residents of EU & Schengen countries, there’s no visa required.
If you’re a citizen or a resident of Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, NZ and the US, there’s no visa required for tourist visits of up to 90 days.
If you’re from another country, check with your local consulate.
- Chris the Freelancer has done a DN video guide to Las Palmas
- I’ve rounded up the best vegan and healthy eats in Las Palmas
How to spend your free time in Las Palmas
There is so much to do in Las Palmas and Gran Canaria in general. At the weekend, you can soak up the sun on one of its many beaches, grab a 2 hour spa session, or visit the Santa Ana Cathedral in Vegueta.
Why not try surfing? There’s a great surf camp in Gran Canaria at Las Canteras beach in Las Palmas; and it’s pretty much the best surf on the island.
It’s also reportedly got one of the best waves in the world, at El Confital.
At the other end of Las Canteras, you can surf the popular La Cicer and explore the many top class reef breaks and beaches.
Short trips & adventures
- Visit the Maspalomas Dunes – you could think you’re in the Sahara with incredible dunes like this!
- Or, go on a weekend hike to the center of Gran Canaria, the breathtaking Roque Nublo
- The coffee plantation is a good shout, if you like your coffee and fancy something a bit different.
- If you come to the Island in February, you can’t miss participating in the Carnival!
- Every second Friday join Restation’s regular coffee club, where nomads present on their topic of choice, so there’s an opportunity to have a speaking slot if you so choose.
- Nomad City runs every year in Las Palmas
Kerry Needs is a location independent freelance copywriter who loves to travel and work remotely, meeting interesting people along the way. She’s an author of the book Freedom Seekers, and also writes on Medium on productivity, creativity, and wellbeing. She has a passion for techno and electronic music and is happiest when dancing to live DJ sets.