Maspalomas sand dunes.

Maspalomas sand dunes.

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Credit: MARK WILLIAMSON/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: The famous sand dunes of Playa de Maspalomas on the south coast of the island of Gran Canaria. The roughly 1000 acre area has been a protected nature reserve for more than a century and attracts tourists to the island. This type of crescent-shaped dune is known as a Barchan dune. The Atlantic Ocean is visible at the top of this image. Gran Canaria is the second most populous of the Canary Islands, a group of seven main islands, and a number of smaller islets, in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Morocco. The Canaries are known as autonomous communities of Spain and their economies are based largely on tourism.

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Keywords: atlantic, barchan, blue, canaries, canary islands, crescent, desert, deserted, desertification, dune, dunes, gran canaria, island, lonely, maspalomas, nature, ocean, person, playa, rolling, sand, sea, shape, sky, spain, tourism

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