Free Museum Entry to 7 Las Palmas de Gran Canaria Museums

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Culture in the Canary Islands:
Free Museum Entry to 7 Las Palmas de Gran Canaria Museums

Most people don’t come to the Canaries in search of culture and art, but that doesn’t mean there’s not plenty of it! From centuries-old houses transformed into museums showcasing local artists and poets to ancient cave paintings by the indigenous Canarii, there’s something for everyone in and around Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.

If you’ve gotten a bit bored of Carnaval parties, or the old swim, cerveza, repeat in the south, or if you catch yourself on a rare rainy day, there are plenty of cultural attractions to check out. And as luck would have it, the Cabildo de Gran Canaria sponsors free entry to several of their museum the first weekend of every month and on select cultural remembrance days.

Read on for the definitive list of 7 Gran Canaria museums that offer free entry on the first weekend of the month, and get to know a deeper side of this island paradise 🏝️

Museums in
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria

Casa de Colón

Calle Colón, 1, 35001
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria

Casa de Colon 11-2017

I detest Columbus as much as the next sane person, but this can be a worthwhile visit.

Set in the heart of historic Vegueta, the museum is not only informative but is housed within a 15th century Canarian mansion (not Colon’s as the name suggests, as he never actually lived in Gran Canaria). The museum offers visitors a peak into the architectural style, including the cellar and two enclosed patios.

The permanent collection concentrates on Columbus’ voyages to the Americas and early colonization, complete with a large-scale model of the Niña and excerpts from Colon’s journals. There is also a small collection of (stolen) pottery and figurines from early exploration in Mexico and central America.

Casa de Colon 11-2017 (12) wm.jpg

The museum also offers temporary collections and events that are typically free to view year round. On my last visit in November, the museum hosted a Día de los Muertos event for children, and local artist Julia Crespo exhibited a stunning homage to Frida Kahlo that brought in scores of visitors.

Hours

Monday – Saturday: 10:00 – 18:00
Sundays & Holidays: 10:00 – 15:00

Cost

Adult: €4
Students: €3

Free Days

Entry is free the first Sunday of each month and the previous Saturday, as well as the following dates: 18th April (Día del Patrimonio Mundial), 18th May (International Museum Day), 30th May (Canary Island Day), June 24 and October 12 (Día de Hispanidad).

For more information, visit the website.

Casa-Museo Pérez Galdós

C/ Cano, 2 y 6, 35002
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria

«Nuestra imaginación es la que ve y no los ojos.» – Pérez Galdos

Located in Triana amid the sidewalk terraces of the pedestrian street Calle Cano, this museum honors Las Palmas–born artist and intellectual Benito Pérez Galdós (1843-1920), arguably the most important author in 19th century Spain.

Although Pérez Galdós spent most of his adult life in Madrid and Santander, the museum is housed within his childhood home and displays relics both from his military family as well as several pieces of furniture that he himself designed and used during his later life in mainland Spain.

Museum Museo Perez Galdos 11-2018 (1) afga 50

Whether or not you’re familiar with his work, the house is an excellent example of 16th century Canarian architecture and it’s worth the half hour guided visit to enjoy the charming courtyards and intricately carved furniture.

Hours

Tuesday – Sundays: 10:00 – 18:00
Mondays Closed.

Cost

Adult: €3
Students: €1.50

Free Days

Entry is free the first Sunday of each month and the previous Saturday, as well as the following dates: 4th January (the anniversary of the author’s death), 18th April (Día del Patrimonio Mundial), 10th May (Galdós’ birthday), 18th May (International Museum Day) and 30th May (Canary Island Day).

For more information, visit the website.

CAAM (Centro Atlantico de Arte Moderno CAAM)

Los Balcones, 11
35001 Las Palmas de Gran Canaria

CAAM Modern Art Museum Las Palmas 11-2017 (3).jpg

The CAAM is a great little modern art gem within Vegueta. Though I’m not always a huge fan of everything the bizarre modern art world has to offer, the ever-changing exhibits mean that I can always find a few things that pique my interest.

The museum offers three stories of artwork, a library and a rooftop terrace with views of Las Palmas’ Catedral de Santa Ana, and occasionally hosts special events such as exhibition opening nights and concerts. See the agenda for details.

Hours

Tuesday – Saturday: 10:00 – 21:00
Sunday 10:00 – 14:00
Monday closed

Free Days

The CAAM is always free 😊

For more information, visit the website.

Museums in Gáldar

Plaza Galdar 11-2017 (2)

If you’ve been in Gran Canaria any length of time, you know that most Canarios hold the painted caves of Gáldar in high regard, and for good reason.

Gáldar was an important base for the indigenous Canarii and home to two of the most well-known chiefs – Fernando Guanarteme and his uncle, Guanarteme el Bueno.

Museo y Parque Arqueológico Cueva Pintada

Audiencia nº 2,
35460 Gáldar (Gran Canaria)

Cuevas Pintadas Galdar Gran Canaria 11-2017 (13)

The Cuevas Pintadas should be on anyone’s to-do list for the island. The museum (which is an active archeological site) offers entertaining and informative tours that provide a solid background of pre-Hispanic history in the islands. The tour includes a glimpse at what the cave dwellings might have looked like and builds up toward the final exhibit, a glimpse at the carefully preserved Canarii cave paintings.

The museum organizes nocturnal visits about once a month, as well as various workshops and activities, mostly catering to families with children. Join their Facebook page to keep updated about events.

Cuevas Pintadas Galdar Gran Canaria 11-2017 (30)

Daily entry tickets are limited since you must join a group to visit the cave and adjoining museum. Spanish-speaking tours begin every half hour, while the daily English speaking tour leaves at 16:00.

Especially if you’re planning to take advantage of the free visit on the first weekend of every month, be sure to arrive early. There were only a few spots left when we arrived at 13:00, and by the time we returned for our scheduled tour at 15:30, there were no more spots available for the day.

Hours

Tuesday – Saturday: 10:00 – 18:00
Sunday: 11:00 – 18:00
Mondays Closed.

Public Transport from Las Palmas

Global Bus 103 and 105.

Cost

Adult: €6
Students: €3

Free Days

Entry on free days is first come, first served and spaces are limited so you’ll need to arrive early!

Entry is free the first Sunday of each month and the previous Saturday, as well as: 18th April (Día del Patrimonio Mundial), 18th May (International Museum Day) and 30th May (Canary Island Day), 29 June and 25 July.

Saturday 10:00-18:00 (the last tour begins at 16:30)
Sunday 11:00-18:00 (the last tour begins at 16:30)

For more information, visit the official website.

Casa – Museo Antonio Padrón:
Centro de Arte Indigenista

Calle Capitán Quesada, 3,
35460 Gáldar (Gran Canaria)

Museum Gladar 11-2017 (2)

While I wouldn’t necessarily recommend making a trip out to Galdár solely for this museum, it’s absolutely worth popping in on a daytrip to the Cueva Pintada.

The artwork is displayed within a 19th century Canarian house and exhibits regionalist style paintings, as well as some Canarii pottery in the gardens. This museum in particular celebrates the art and culture of the indigenous Canarii and is an excellent complement to a visit to the Painted Caves.

Hours

Tuesday – Sunday: 10:00 – 18:00
Closed Monday.

Public Transport from Las Palmas

Global Bus 103 and 105.

Cost

Cost: €2

Free Days

Entry is free the first Sunday of each month and the previous Saturday, as well as: 22nd February (Padron’s birthday); 18th April (World Heritage Day); May 8th (anniversary of Padrón’s death); May 18th  (International Museum Day); May 30th (Canary Islands Day); and July 25th  (Santiago Apostle Day, patron of Gáldar).

For more information, visit the official website.

Other Museums

Casa – Museo Tomás Morales

Plaza de Tomás Morales s/n 35420
Moya, Gran Canaria

«El mar, el gran amigo de mis sueños, el fuerte titán de hombros cerúleos e inenarrable encanto en esta hora, la hora más noble de mi suerte, vuelve a henchir mis pulmones y a enardecer mi canto» – Morales

Heading northwest on the highway from Las Canteras beach, you’ll soon run into the small seaside of Villa Moya. Turn inland from here and make your way upwards on the scenic (yet dizzying) mountain highway, dodging deep gorges and plunging ravines until you reach the town of Moya.

Arucas Coast Sunset 8-2017 (1)

Surrounded by verdant green hill and valleys, the whitewashed town of Moya is practically the definition of charming. The main draw here is the Casa-Museo Tomás Morales – the home Morales grew up in during the late 19th century. The museum houses furniture and décor of the time, along with memorabilia of the poet’s literary works.

Tomás Morales Museum CGP FSCO Film Inspired.jpg

Tomás Morales (1884-1921) was a turn of the century modernist poet who grew up in the mountains above Gran Canaria’s northern coast, inspired by the wild Atlantic surf and sometimes known as the poeta del mar (poet of the sea). Whether you’re familiar with his work or not, any ocean lover is sure to be charmed by his marine prose.

Hours

Tuesday – Sunday: 10:00 – 18:00
Closed Monday.

Public Transport from Las Palmas

Global Bus 116 and 117

Cost

Cost: €2

Free Days

Entry is free the first Sunday of each month and the previous Saturday, as well as the following dates: April 18th , May 18th (Día Internacional del Museo), May 30th (Día de Canarias), June 13th (Day of San Antonio de Padua), August 15th (Death of Morales), October 10th  (birth of Morales).

Moya Morales WM

For more information, you can visit the website.

Casa-Museo León y Castillo

C/ León y Castillo, 43-45
35200   Telde, Gran Canaria

The Casa-Museo León y Castillo is a perfect example of traditional Canarian architecture, set in the childhood home of Fernando de León y Castillo and housing historic documents and artwork by local artists.

This is the one museum I haven’t yet been to so I can’t offer first hand knowledge. What I do know is that the house is set within the charming historic districts of Telde’s San Juan and San Francisco barrios, a beautiful historic area that is absolutely worth getting lost within.

Hours

Tuesday – Sunday: 10:00 – 18:00
Closed Monday.

Public Transport from Las Palmas

Global Bus 12 and 80

Cost

Adults: 2€
Students: 1€

Free Days

Entry is free the first Sunday of each month and the previous Saturday, as well as the following dates: 12 March, 18 April, 18 & 30 May, 24 June, 12 October, 30 November.

For more information, you can visit the website.

**Hours and prices are accurate as of January 2018. While I’ll try to maintain this post up to date, I am not responsible for changes in hours or pricing. Please confirm with the official websites.**

What are your favorite
Gran Canaria museums?

Do you know of any other Gran Canaria museums that offer free entry on the first weekend of the month? Or have you got any other favorites? I try getting my culture on as much as possible, but like you, I often get sidetracked by the sand and the sea 🙂

If you have any favorites that I’ve left out, I’d love to here about them in the comments below 👇! And don’t forget to follow me for more on teaching English in Spain 📚 and adventures ✈ in the Canary Islands, Spain and the world 🌍!

Love & Light, Erica

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29 Comments Add yours

  1. Dom says:

    Who knew there were so many museums in the Canaries – I only know o fit as a fun in the sun destination. Great to see that there are options to see them for free as well. Happy Travels

    Like

    1. Erica says:

      Yeah, it’s so disappointing to see so many people come over on holiday and bury themselves in beer in the south – they never get to actually see the islands! Incredible hiking, secret swimming coves, arqueological digs and plenty of museums. The north of Tenerife alone has more biodiversity than in all of the UK!

      Like

  2. I am usually not big on museums, especially art ones. But I do like to visit the small museums that are full of characters, which give a good view into the culture of a town. The archeological museum would be a definite yes for us!

    Like

    1. Erica says:

      That’s what I love about these ones! Rather than massive structures that take hours to wade through, they’re quaint collections housed within antique 16th-19th century homes, giving you a great peak at what life was like here. And the archeological museum is a MUST! 🙂

      Like

  3. Never heard this place before but looks like must add in alley. Love visiting Archaeological museums and i feel this is good choice. Thanks for sharing.

    Like

  4. kumamonjeng says:

    I love free museums and some looks like old mansion. More pictures will be great!

    Like

  5. This is a great post, love that you have pointed out the free days but also a new angle for visitors to the Canaries. Thanks for sharing

    Like

    1. Erica says:

      Thanks for reading 🙂

      Like

  6. Katie says:

    I never knew that there would be so many museums in the Canaries. I’m a huge history sponge so this is right up my stream. There is only so much sitting on a beach I can do. Thanks for sharing this! It’s good to know the days which the museums are free. Perfect for budget travellers.

    Like

    1. Erica says:

      I definitely love sitting on a beach, but I think one of the most important parts of travelling is learning a bit about the culture and history! These are just 7 of the many museums in Gran Canaria, and there are plenty more in Santa Cruz de Tenerife and the other islands!

      Like

  7. So many museums and they all seem great to visit. The first one caught my attention most and the Gran Canaria one that looks like Mexico. I like that many museums here and in many other cities are free, helps so much with budgeting. The downside is that free days have SO much people. Hope these weren’t too overpacked.

    Like

    1. Erica says:

      They are a bit busier on freedays, but not too much that it ruins the experience! Certainly not like visiting the Lourve or the Prado during their free hours!

      Like

  8. Kristine Eva says:

    Very informative post about the art scene in Gran Canaria. Although I admit, that the beach is mostly what I’d think first when visiting this island, I always find myself visiting museums and art galleries when in a new place. You’ve provided more than enough to explore when one is looking to learn about the art and culture of this place.

    Like

    1. Erica says:

      The Canaries definitely have something for everyone! Hiking, sunbathing, history and quaint old mountain town, I never get bored exploring here!

      Like

  9. Kayla Manoe says:

    I didnt even know where Gran Canaria was! I has to look it up! Its great to see so many options for museums! After reading about it a bit more I really want to go there now! Looks really beautiful x

    Liked by 1 person

  10. whyyouwander says:

    Adding this to my travel list. Have not seen much about museums in the areas, Thank you for sharing

    Like

    1. Erica says:

      You won’t be dissapointed! The north of Gran Canaria is stunning, as are the rest of the (less touristic parts of) the Canaries!

      Like

  11. Corinne says:

    Excellent tips for the free visits! I never knew there was so much more to do in Canary islands besides sun and fun.

    Like

    1. Erica says:

      I’ve been hearing this a lot! It’s funny, I spend very little time in the tourist areas since I’ve lived here and I forget all that exists! The north of Gran Canaria is gorgeous – sleepy whitewashed villages, hidden turquoise beaches, almond blossoms blooming in the mountains… It’s a whole other world up here!

      Like

  12. Samantha says:

    I have a new found love for museums and wandering through them when I go travel. I find you can learn so much about the place you’re in which will make other activities worthwhile.

    Like

    1. Erica says:

      Oftentimes I skip the big, majestic museums when travelling because I find they take up such a big chunk of time, but I adore these smaller ones! The perfect dose of history in the midst of exploration 🙂

      Like

  13. I am a big big museum fan and love strolling through the corridors seeped in history. These are so quaint and I am in love with the archaeological one being a sucker for excavations! 🙂

    Like

    1. Erica says:

      The archaeological one is fantastic, I really enjoyed the tour and learning more about the indigenous Canarii! And I love the feeling of visiting museums that are housed within the homes of historical families. You can really feel the history!

      Like

  14. This is a totally fresh perspective of the Canary Islands. There is indeed so much of art and culture to experience. Being very passionate about cultur and fond of museums we would absolutely love this side of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. Casa-Museo Pérez Galdós looks really interesting to me.

    Like

    1. Erica says:

      You’d love it! The great part about the area is you can come on holiday and enjoy a little of everything – a day at the beach, a day of hiking, a day of museums and a day in the city!

      Like

  15. some great information here. When you read island you don’t expect there to many so many museums there is so much history on the Canary islands!

    Like

    1. Erica says:

      It’s true, so many people just hit the tourist resorts down south and never actually see the islands, but they have so much to offer!

      Like

  16. some great information here. When you read island you don’t expect there to many so many museums there is so much history on the Canary islands!

    Like

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