It's hard to explain how much Arinaga has improved in the last 25 years. From a windy and dusty little east coast town with a ramshackle seafront it has turned into a thoroughly pleasant place to spend a day. Or longer!
Here's a few of our favourite things to do in Arinaga...
Lunch at the Vaqueria de Las Salinas at the far southern tip of the beach
The Vaqueria specialises in pork dishes from the Canarian black pigs that the aboriginals brought with them to the islands over 200 years ago. However it also does a good range of local dishes if you don't fancy pork. Its one of the exceptions to the Gran Canaria restaurant rule that its best to eat fish by the sea and meat inland. Fair enough since it's set in an old cow shed next to what used to be the town's salt pans. It's worth eating here when you can just for the setting and the decor.
The Vaqueria hopes to reopen mid February (with outdoor tables in the car park) at Arinaga but the same people run La Cuchara, which is on the Carretera de Los Corralillos, Kilómetro 2 and is serving on its terrace.
Jump in off the old jetty
The stone jetty at the east end of Arinaga has been there for longer than most of the town and is a meetimg oint for the local kids who love jumping off the end.
It's a perfectly safe spot to jump into the sea even at low tide because thre water is deep and almost alwatys calm. The sea at Arinaga is as clear as it gets and a beautiful blue colour.
Take a snorkel because there are a lot fish around the jetty inclduing a big school of bright-blue damselfish or fulas. Also look out for orange starfish, and schools of parrotfish that swim around the fishermen on the jetty and feed close to the shore.
See our snorkelling guide to Gran Canaria.
Walk along the coast to the other old jetty
From the jetty at the end of the beach, follow the coastal promenade north and you reach the Soco Negro natural pool. Another of Arinaga's many fine swimming spots. Keep going, past the giant ceramic fish, and you reach the old lime kiln and the restaurant next to it at the end of the promenade. Keep going along the coast and you get to Muelle Viejo beach named after the old jetty at its north end. It's a good swimming spot on calm days and the Horno de Cal restaurant here is a local favourite.
Seafood on the seafront
Apart from La Vaqueria, all the restaurants along Arinaga beach serve seafood.
While it is windy all along the east coast duting the summer, the winter breeze is really no problem most days. And the