Is Gran Canaria LGBT Friendly? A Comprehensive Guide to LGBTQ+ Travel in Gran Canaria

First published on September 20, 2023 and last updated on October 1, 2023

Have you ever wondered if Gran Canaria, that gem of an island off the African coast, is as LGBTQ+ friendly as it is beautiful? Well, wonder no more because the answer is a resounding yes!

Gran Canaria isn’t just welcoming; it’s practically a haven for the LGBTQ+ community. The first gay bar opened its doors here back in the swinging 1960s, and since then, it’s been a love story between the island and LGBTQ+ tourists.

Fast forward to today, and Gran Canaria is proudly flying the rainbow flag. The LGBTQ+ scene is alive and kicking, with a buzzing community, numerous bars, clubs, and events tailored for everyone under the rainbow.

Now, here’s the magic—Gran Canaria is not just about the rainbow. It’s a place where everyone, no matter their orientation, feels right at home. The island boasts a friendly, laid-back atmosphere that’s contagious. Locals and tourists share a live-and-let-live attitude, creating a vibe that’s as welcoming as a warm hug.

woman on beach alone

Understanding Gran Canaria’s LGBT Community

Gran Canaria is like the VIP section of the LGBTQ+ world. It’s not just gay-friendly; it’s practically the glittering heart of the global LGBTQ scene. Maspalomas, the throbbing epicentre, is where the magic happens. Exclusive accommodations? Check. Beach bars with serious beach vibes? Double-check.

But wait, there’s more! Ever heard of the Yumbo Center? It’s not just a shopping centre; it’s a monument to fabulousness, the first in the world dedicated to our incredible LGBTQ+ family. With an array gay-friendly hotspots, it’s practically the heartbeat of Maspalomas.

But hold on, there’s more to the Canaries than Maspalomas. From the nudist beach at Montaña de Arena to Playa del Ingles, the beaches are like pages from a travel magazine. And if you’re feeling adventurous there are an array of activities you can fill your day with before getting ready for a night on the tiles.

And when the sun sets, get ready for nightlife that’s not just varied but top-notch and safe. Gran Canaria is the European LGBTQ nightlife circuit’s hottest ticket, with theme nights, shows, and parties that redefine fabulous.

LGBT Nightlife in Gran Canaria

Welcome to the glittering heart of Europe’s LGBTQ+ scene – Gran Canaria! And at the beating centre of it all, the vibrant capital, Las Palmas, proudly holds the Yumbo Center – a four-story ode to fabulousness tailored specifically for the LGBTQ+ community. The Jumbo Center is where the magic happens, and it’s home to Gran Canaria’s most iconic gay bars.

Let’s talk Parrots – a legendary spot born from the Sitges gay scene. With a prime location in the Jumbo Center, Parrots is the go-to for sipping cocktails, people-watching, and being immersed in a world of drag shows and DJ beats every weekend. Feeling a German vibe? ADONIS has you covered with friendly vibes, refreshing beers, and summer months that come alive, especially during Pride.

Now, let’s dive into the sparkling gem that is Bar Diamonds. New management, great drinks, reasonable prices, and a southwest-facing patio for that perfect afternoon cocktail – it’s a must-visit. On Fridays, the cabaret performances are nothing short of spectacular.

And for those who love a bear-friendly atmosphere, step into Bärenhöhle – a long-standing icon in the Yumbo Center. Warm welcomes, great-value drinks, and happy hour until 10 pm, because the party doesn’t stop.

Mardi Gras Bar on the ground floor of the Jumbo Center is another hotspot, offering warm welcomes, drink deals, and occasional themed party nights that spice things up.

And if a night of entertainment is on your agenda, Sparkles Show Bar is your go-to. Picture this: a nightly comedy variety show followed by a Canarian dance troupe rocking stunning costumes and routines. For the drag show aficionados, Ricky’s Cabaret Bar is the place to be, featuring some of the best performances in the Yumbo Center.

In a nutshell, Gran Canaria doesn’t just offer nightlife; it offers a kaleidoscope of experiences. Whether you’re after laid-back vibes or an evening of jaw-dropping entertainment, this island has it all. So, put on your dancing shoes and let the LGBTQ+ magic of Gran Canaria ignite your soul!

drag show gran canaria

LGBT-Friendly Accommodations in Gran Canaria

When it comes to accommodations, this island knows how to roll out the rainbow carpet. Enter AxelBeach Maspalomas, a gem in the AxelHotels chain. Officially adult-only but practically a sanctuary for gay guests, this haven boasts a swimming pool, gym, and spa, offering a slice of luxury just a 1.5-kilometre stroll from the beach. It’s not just a hotel; it’s a promise of indulgence amidst the Maspalomas gay scene.

Hotel Nayra, once exclusively gay, now opens its doors to all adults but remains a firm favourite among LGBTQ+ travellers. Imagine a place where friendly faces, excellent facilities, and a poolside oasis create a haven close to the gay scene’s vibrant pulse.

Seeking intimacy? Say hello to Villa Adler, a boutique haven with eight bungalows nestled conveniently between the beach and the Yumbo Centre. A dip in the pool, a sun-soaked terrace, and staff with smiles as warm as the Canarian sun—it’s a recipe for the perfect escape.

But the rainbow tapestry doesn’t end there. Seven Hotel & Wellness, Birdcage Gay Men Resort and Lifestyle Hotel, and Bohemia Suites & Spa Gran Canaria are among the stars in the LGBTQ+ constellation of accommodations. Looking for a touch of luxury? The Hotel Gran Canaria Princess and Seaside Grand Hotel Residencia beckon with opulence.

No matter which hotel becomes your temporary home, Gran Canaria’s embrace is wide and inclusive. It’s not just about the accommodation; it’s about a warm welcome, a friendly smile, and the assurance that here, in this vibrant corner of the world, you’re not just a traveller—you’re family. Rest assured, your LGBTQ+ journey in Gran Canaria is about to be extraordinary.

LGBT Events and Festivals

Brace yourself for a journey into the heart of celebration, where the vibrant spirit of Gran Canaria’s inclusive LGBT community takes center stage. Throughout the year, the island pulsates with a kaleidoscope of events and festivals that promise not just entertainment but a celebration of diversity.

First in the spotlight is the Maspalomas Gay Pride, a juggernaut of joy that draws over 100,000 visitors to Gran Canaria annually. Imagine a week-long fiesta filled with concerts, parties that last till dawn, and a parade that transforms the streets of Maspalomas into a kaleidoscope of colours. It’s not just an event; it’s a spectacle that ignites the spirit of pride.

And then there’s the Winter Pride Maspalomas, a newcomer that’s quickly become a must-attend. November is when the island comes alive with pool parties, cabaret shows that defy gravity, and a parade that paints the town with the colours of diversity.

Summer in the Yumbo Centre heralds the Freedom Festival, an extravaganza of performances that echo the heartbeat of Playa del Ingles. Drag shows, live music, and DJs turn this popular LGBT hub into a melting pot of entertainment and free-spirited revelry.

In Gran Canaria, every season is a reason to celebrate. It’s a destination where fun and inclusivity know no bounds. Whether you’re drawn to the dazzling extravagance of Pride, the electric energy of Winter Pride or the freedom vibes of Yumbo Centre’s festival, this island is your canvas of celebration. Pack your pride, your joy, and your love for life, and let Gran Canaria show you the true meaning of a holiday.


Gran Canaria stands as a shining beacon of welcome and inclusivity for the LGBTQ+ community. LGBTQ+ travellers can find solace in the knowledge that this island is a safe haven where they can be their authentic selves. So, whether you’re drawn to the vibrant events, the welcoming beaches, or the lively LGBTQ+ scene, Gran Canaria promises an enriching and comfortable experience for all.