My summer season started early this year with a holiday in the sun-kissed Spanish island of Gran Canaria. I was there on a press trip hosted by Anfi, one of the top leading resorts of Gran Canaria. Today I am sharing my review of Anfi del Mar beach resort and my guide to spending five beautiful days there.
Anfi del Mar
The Anfi Group comprises of five clubs on the island’s south-west coast of Mogán, originally founded in 1988 by Norwegian entrepreneur Bjorn Lyng. The resorts are integrated in the landscape, built with rocks carved out of the volcanic mountain rock.
The ethos behind the Anfi Group is to provide guests with luxury combined with a home from home feel.
I didn’t know about Timeshare, but after my holiday at Anfi del Mar I have started to consider it as an option for the future. I would love a holiday home, but realistically I cannot afford to buy a second home anytime soon. Timeshare is an affordable way to own a holiday home to use a few weeks every year. The prices for an apartment at Anfi range from €13,000 to €70,000 for 50 years (one week per year) which can be paid through a financing system.
I shared a family apartment at Club Gran Anfi with fellow food blogger Fuss Free Flavours. We each had our own bedroom and marble bathroom (mine featured a Jacuzzi bath and separate cabin shower) and we shared the spacious living room, a kitchen and terrace overlooking the resort and marina.
We made great use of our magnificent balcony: relaxing on the sun loungers, eating Spanish tapas, drinking white wine and watching the sun go down over the Atlantic ocean.
I don’t usually book holidays in resorts as I like to explore a destination more than relaxing by the pool all day. So on the first day, I was itching to get out of the club and explore the island. After two days though, I started to feel at home at Club Gran Anfi and wanted to spend more time there. Our apartment was so comfortable, and the sun loungers at Maroa Club right by the beach were so comfy…I would have loved to spend a week or two on holiday at Anfi del Mar! And unwind from the stress of my busy London life.
I went for runs along the marina and swims in the ocean. I also tried paddle boarding by the beach, which was fun (a range of watersports are available to book there). Gran Canaria is also a great destination for mountain bikers and golfers.
I still got to see a lot of Gran Canaria, thanks to a range of excursions that I booked through Anfi Experiences. The program was launched this year to encourage guests to see more of Gran Canaria during their holidays. A range of resorts activities for kids and adults are meant to enhance the guests’ stay at the resort.
Gran Canaria, the third largest island in the Canary Islands and home to 700.000 people, is a fantastic holiday destination for anyone. The weather is warm and sunny all year around with average temperatures of 24°C (lows of 18°C in winter and highs of 27°C in summer). I absolutely love the fact it never gets extremely hot as in southern Europe.
The island offers stunning landscapes and dreamy beaches. There are rocky mountains and pine forests to hike, hills to climb on a mountain bike, sand dunes and black sand beaches to sunbathe, luxury resorts to relax, traditional restaurants to discover Canarian cuisine and picturesque towns to explore.
Affordable flights from London and other UK airports mean you can visit Gran Canaria even just a long weekend without breaking the bank. But when you have so much to see and do, why not stay longer?
Gran Canaria is also steeped in culture and history. The first Spaniards came here in 1488 and in 1492 Christopher Columbus anchored here, before setting off for his first trip to the Americas.
The North of the islands – with the green hills and mountains – is more developed for agriculture, but in the last century the South has developed thanks to tourism and new resorts.
Las Palmas is a city of nearly 400.000 inhabitants and a major cruise-ship port. It’s a great destination for a half day excursions if you are looking for history and culture. A must-see is of course Columbus House (Casa de Colón) in the old town, but also the stunning 15th century cathedral (free entry on Sundays).
Around the resort area of Maspalomas you will find 400 hectares of sand dunes, unspoilt and part of a nature reserve.
The sights of the dunes – and the sea beyond them – is breathtaking. Take the time to walk on the dunes, don’t worry you won’t get lost in the desert!
While you are in Maspalomas, pay a visit to Abrasa Grill for a fantastic meal of bacon wrapped dates, melted smoked Valsequillo cheese, green Canarian peppers with dried bellota iberian ham, grilled chistorra sausage and 12h slow-cooked fillet steak with Canarian saffron.
Puerto de Mogán
Puerto de Mogán is a picture-perfect tiny fishing village with a port, marina, whitewashed houses covered in gorgeous bouganvilles.
Often described as ‘Little Venice ’, Puerto de Mogán has a good selection of shops, cute cafés and superb fish restaurants.
Puerto de Mogán can be reached from Anfi del Mar in just 10 minutes by car. There are also boat services departing from the resort’s Maroa Club all day long. It takes 25 minutes by boat and I definitely recommending this route, so you can also admire the striking landscape of the south of Gran Canaria island.
The Agaete Valley is the most fertile area on Gran Canaria. It’s about 1h30′ drive from Anfi del Mar, but certainly worth a visit. I loved Puerto de Las Nieves, the picturesque port of Agaete, filled with charm, Canarian character and atmosphere and houses painted with white walls and green or blue doors. Agaete reminded me of another Canary island, Lanzarote, which I visited last year.
I highly recommend Restaurante Las Nasas where I had a taste of the delicious Canarian cuisine: a lot of fresh, grilled seafood and the famous papas arrugadas con mojo (boiled salty new potatoes served with a spicy sauce).
My favourite excursion was to Finca Los Castaños, a 2-hectare farm which grows Europe’s only coffee crop. A trip to origin is my dream, so it was a joy to visit this farm and learn about their coffee production.
For 150 years the coffee has been cultivated in Agaete with plants originally from Ethiopia. Coffee is a tropical plant and thrives in the north-west of Gran Canaria. In addition to the farm, where they mainly grow “Arábica Typica” but also some Geisha, Finca Los Canstaños is a coffee school offering barista and sensory courses recognised by the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA).
For more info on the Anfi del Mar and Anfi Tauro resorts’ experience packages, call 0034 928 152 990 (option 4) or email [email protected]
I hope you enjoyed this post! Have you been to the Canary Islands? Which island is your favourite?
Disclaimer: I visited Gran Canaria as part of a press trip hosted by Anfi Group. All opinions are my own.