Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (Spanish pronunciation: [las ˈpalmaz ðe ɣɾaŋ kaˈnaɾja]) commonly known as Las Palmas ([las ˈpalmas]) is the political capital, jointly with Santa Cruz, the most populous city in the Autonomous Community of the Canary Islands and the ninth largest city in Spain, with a population of 383,308 in 2010. Nearly half (45.9%) of the people of the island and 18.35% of all inhabitants of the Canary Islands live in this city. It is also the fifth most populous urban area in Spain with a population of around 700,000 and (depending on sources) ninth or tenth most populous metropolitan area in Spain with a population of 625,892, 640,000 or 741,826. Las Palmas is the largest city of the European Union outside Europe. It is located in the northeast part of the Spanish island of Gran Canaria, about 150 kilometers (~93 miles) off the northwestern coast of Africa within the Atlantic Ocean.
Las Palmas enjoy a subtropical climate, with mild to warm temperatures throughout the year. According to a study carried out by Thomas Whitmore, director of research on climatology at Syracuse University in the United States, Las Palmas enjoys "the best climate in the world".
It was founded as city in 1478, considered the de facto only capital of the Canary Islands until the seventeenth century. Today, the city is capital of Canary Islands with Santa Cruz and home to the Canarian Ministry of Presidency (shared in a 4-year term with Santa Cruz de Tenerife), one half of the ministries and boards of the Canarian Government, (the other half being located in Tenerife), Gran Canaria Provincial Courts and two courts of the Superior Court of Justice of the Canary Islands.