Off the west coast of Africa lies Tenerife, the largest of the Spanish Canary Islands. Offering beautiful beaches and incredible hiking Tenerife will captivate nature lovers of all kinds. Visible from just about every corner of the island Mount Teide, the third tallest volcano in the world, provides a striking backdrop. Often shrouded in clouds from sea level driving through Teide National Park can reveal startling sunshine above the blanket of clouds. If you prefer to explore the influence of volcanic activity closer to the ground Cueva del Viento-Sobrado provides a unique opportunity. Passing through the forests of Icod de los Vinos leads to underground volcanic tubes that show a different side to Teide often missed.
The beaches that surround the island are extremely varied, some have distinctive black volcanic sand while others have golden sand imported from the Sahara or sea bed. Picturesque nature is not the only thing Tenerife has to offer. The atmosphere of the night life is famous, especially in the south of the island. Water parks, zoos and whale watching tours are just a few of the available ways to spend time.
Discovering the side of Tenerife you are most drawn to will increase your appetite for the incredible food it can offer. Beaches are lined with restaurants that serve traditional Spanish food such as paella and fresh fish. The open air markets of Puerto de la Cruz serve mouth-watering local dishes that are sure to tempt you as you pass by.
Let them tempt you, they’re worth it.
Where I stayed
Accommodation in Tenerife is as varied as the island?s scenery. From the Altavista Refuge that provides rest for hikers taking on mount Teide to the luxurious Hotel Botanico situated near the botanical gardens of Puerto de la Cruz. Altavista provides basic accommodation in shared rooms, however after a day of hiking a chance to relax is appreciated, and the views from Teide are unrivalled. The elegance and excellent service of Hotel Botanico is obvious just from approaching the marble stairs to the doors. The restaurants and guestrooms alike are magnificent, matched by the attentiveness of the staff. It is hard to imagine anything but the stunning views of Teide from your balcony being able to distract you from the Oriental Spa Garden that is a part of the hotel. Several pools, jacuzzis and Turkish baths make the perfect addition to the variety of treatments available. A massage at the spa is a fantastic way to unwind and relax after the challenge of hiking Mount Teide.
Did you know....?
1) The volcanic tunnels of Tenerife are the longest in the world spanning over ten miles.
2) The Dragon Tree in Tenerife has been described as the oldest in the world, however aging it is complicated as unlike most trees it does not form rings.
3) The water park Siam Park has the highest water slide in the world.