Festival of Almond Trees in Bloom; February: This beautiful festival marks the beginning of spring, just as the almond blossoms burst into bloom. Celebrated in Tejeda, San Bartolomé de Tirajana and Valsequillo, it pays homage to all things almond, showcasing everything from almond wine to locally produced marzipan. With traditional dancing and folk singing thrown into the mix, it’s a very tasty festival.
Carnival; February/March: Carnival is a serious business in Gran Canaria and the island hosts a knees-up rivalled only by Rio (and nearby Tenerife). Think sequins, drag queens, street parades, outrageous parties, fireworks and live music around every bend. Whatever you do, don’t miss the bizarre burial of the giant sardine. The dates change each year so check before you book.
The Day of the Canary Islands; May 30: The Canary Islands held the first session of their autonomous government in 1983 – an independence of sorts from Spain. This festival celebrates that proud moment, making it something very close to Canarian hearts. Throughout the day, you’ll bump into everything from folkloric dancing to traditional wrestling, while singing echoes down every side street.