Meloneras runs from the Maspalomas lighthouse, which has been shining for 125 years, all the way west to Meloneras beach. It's fringed by a row of the island's smartest hotels such as the Lopesan Costa Meloneras and Villa del Conde.
It's all about the boulevard
For visitors, the highlight is the 2KM seafront promenade, called the Boulevard El Faro, which runs from the lighthouse west all the way along the shore to the beach (turn east from the lighthouse and you can walk all the way along Maspalomas and Playa del Inglés beaches to San Agustin; south Gran Canaria's longest coastal walk).
The area closest to the lighthouse is packed with outdoor cafes and restaurants; this is a smart area so prices here are higher than to the east of the Faro but the presentation and atmosphere are also a step up. Behind the restaurants but still on the seafront is the Boulevard El Faro shopping arcade with some premium brand names like Polo Ralph Lauren, Hugo Boss, Armani Collezioni and a big, well-stocked Fundgrube.
The second half of the walk takes you past the Varadero shopping mall, full of a wide range of shops and fashion stores, in front of the white RIU hotels and to quiet Meloneras beach via a broad promenade with coconut palms and superb sea views.
When you reach the end of the coastal walk you have yet more restaurants and cafes in front of the H10 hotel. The beach here is quiet and often less windy than the main beach at Maspalomas. Just west of Meloneras beach is the 18-hole, par 71 Meloneras Golf course; probably the most attractive in south Gran Canaria with its oceanfront fairways and masses of palm trees.
Behind the hotels, you have even more restaurants and shops running east from the bus station, plus the Casino, and Lopesan is planning a vast new shopping mall between the Baobab hotel and Expomeloneras conference centre.
What to do at Meloneras
This is more a place to spend time rather than do stuff. Sit down at a cafe and order a long drink, have a leisurely lunch or evening meal as the sun sets, then wander along the boulevard for the views. You can always pop into the malls or the boutiques if you feel like exercising your credit card; there are some great clothes shops dotted along the front. Even the street entertainers here are relaxed and have mad the 'standing still dressed as Neptune/ a pirate' into an art form.
For a local guide to shopping here, see our shopping guide to Meloneras.
Don't miss Europe's only year-round outdoor cinema on the first floor of the Oasis Boulevard Shopping Centre behind the frontline.
Most of the restaurants along the boulevard do decent food although they can get crowded at peak times in the evenings. A couple of the terraces are open until well past midnight but really you need to head into Playa del Inglés for lively nightlife.
Getting to Meloneras
A lot of the people who visit Meloneras just walk out of their hotel gate and are already right there although its high-end appeal brings people from all over Maspalomas and Playa del Inglés resorts. It's less than five euros in a taxi from Campo Internacional and no more than six from anywhere in Playa del Inglés. If you come from further afield, the main Maspalomas bus station is just inland from the lighthouse.