Las Palmas, formally Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, is the capital of Gran Canaria island in the Canary Islands, off the northwest coast of Africa.
It is the co-capital (together with Santa Cruz de Tenerife), the most populated city in the Canary Islands autonomous community, and the ninth biggest city in Spain, with a population of 383,308 in 2010. It is also Spain’s fifth most populated urban area and (depending on sources) the ninth or tenth most populous metropolitan region.
Las Palmas is situated in the northeastern portion of Gran Canaria, about 150 kilometers (93 miles) from the Moroccan coast in the Atlantic Ocean. It has a relatively moderate and pleasant semi-arid climate that is heavily impacted by the Atlantic, with mild to warm temperatures all year. It has an annual temperature of 21.3 degrees Celsius (70.3 degrees Fahrenheit). According to a study conducted by Thomas Whitmore, head of climatology research at Syracuse University in the United States, Las Palmas has “the greatest climate in the world.”
The city was created in 1478 and served as the Canary Islands’ de facto (without formal recognition) capital until the sixteenth century. It houses the Canarian Ministry of Presidency (shared in a four-year term with Santa Cruz de Tenerife), as well as half of the Canarian Government’s Ministries and Boards, as well as the Canary Islands’ High Court of Justice. It is the Canary Islands’ judicial and commercial center, as well as the seat of most of the governmental authority.
Climate of Las Palmas
Las Palmas has a hot desert climate (BWh), with warm, dry summers and mild winters. Its yearly temperature ranges from 21.2 °C (70.2 °F) to 28 °C (82 °F) during the day and 18 °C (64 °F) at night. The temperature in January, the coldest month, normally varies from 19 to 23 °C (66 to 73 °F) (and occasionally higher) during the day and roughly 15 to 16 °C (59 to 61 °F) at night, with an average sea temperature of 20 °C (68 °F). In the hottest months, August and September, temperatures normally range from 27 to 30 °C (81 to 86 °F) during the day and above 21 °C (70 °F) at night, with an average sea temperature of 23 °C (73 °F). Temperature swings of this magnitude are uncommon.
August 1990 was the hottest month on record, with an average high temperature of 30.6 °C (87.1 °F) during the day. The greatest temperature ever recorded was 44.2 degrees Celsius (111.6 degrees Fahrenheit), while the lowest temperature ever recorded was 9.4 degrees Celsius (48.9 degrees Fahrenheit). On November 28, 2005, the greatest wind speed ever recorded was 113 km/h (70.21 mph). There has never been any snow or sleet in Las Palmas.
The annual average relative humidity is 66%, ranging from 64% in March to 69% in October. Sunshine duration hours exceed 2,800 every year, ranging from roughly 190 in winter (average over 6 hours of daytime sunshine length) to around 300 in summer (average 10 hours of sunshine duration at day). It rains on average just 22 days each year, with a total annual precipitation of only 151 millimeters (5.9 in).