The breathtaking volcanic island of Tenerife is the largest of the Canary Islands and an incredibly popular holiday destination for both summer and winter sun holidays.
The majority of holidaymakers head to the south of the island and the popular holiday resorts of Playa de las Americas, Costa Adeje and Puerto de la Cruz. However, there is much more to sunny Tenerife than this. In the centre you will find the volcano of Mount Teide which towers over 12,000 feet into the sky, a constant jaw dropping and dominant feature of the Island of Tenerife. Look to the north and you will see Tenerife's capital Santa Cruz with excellent shopping, a number of museums, art galleries and an architecturally intriguing waterfront opera house. Explore the rural beauty of the Anaga Mountains to the East, historica La Laguna and pretty La Orotava.
Santa Cruz is the island’s historic capital. It's home to the Canaries' most spectacular carnival - a fortnight-long fiesta to rival Rio. A short ride away from Santa Cruz is Las Teresitas, a beautiful beach with waving palm trees and golden sand shipped in from the Sahara desert.
On the south coast is the popular tourist area of Playa De Las Americas, a clubber's paradise with plenty of bars and nightclubs, entertainment, restaurants, fast food and sandy beaches with exciting watersports on offer.
For those wanting to be close to the action although not directly in it, Los Cristianos or Costa Adeje are perfect choices, popular with families and couples. Los Cristianos is a charming fishing village and Costa Adeje is a quieter resort famed for boutique shopping, both traditional and modern restaurants and gorgeous sandy beaches with beach side cocktail bars. Puerto De La Cruz in the north is the oldest resort in the Canaries. It offers old world charm, tropical gardens – check out the sea parrots and the dolphins – and a beautiful lido with waterpools, palms and fountains. Book your 2017 holiday to Tenerife today!
Mount Teide National Park is one of the most popular tourist spots in Tenerife and includes a huge volcanic crater out of which Mount Teide soars to its status as the highest mountain in Spain. Cable cars take you to the top, however these are a little pricey so most visitors choose to walk, which is well worth it due to the breathtakingly beautiful views.
If you want to take a trip away from the island of Tenerife, head over to the small island of Gomera to the south west. You can take a ferry or hydrofoil from Los Christianos where you will find rugged mountains, tropical misty forests, earthy valleys and a beautiful coast.
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Things to do
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The weather on Tenerife can vary significantly depending on which area you are in. The south of Tenerife is where most tourists head to as the larger holiday resorts are located here. During what are considered to be the summer months, that is May until November, the temperature ranges from 20-26ºC and there is a slight wind, which makes the heat more bearable. The sea temperature rises to an average of 23ºC. During the winter months of December until April, it is still very warm; temperatures range from 12-18ºC. Rainfall is slightly higher from December until February than in the summer months. The sea temperature does drop during winter, but if you're brave, you should be able to swim all year round!
The north of Tenerife is cooler and wetter than the south, with the summer months being hot yet slightly overcast and with a higher rainfall risk. June until October see the temperatures ranging between 20-24ºC and a minimal risk of rainfall during the early months and around five days in October. During the autumn months the temperature is on average 18ºC during the day and 12ºC during the evening. You will still be able to swim in the seas during these months. The winter months in December until February, the weather is wetter and cooler than what you will find in Tenerife South. Temperatures range from 9ºC to 12ºC and the sea averages at 19ºC. The weather starts to rise again during the spring months of March, April and May however the night time temperatures still remain cold.
You need to prepare yourself for a change in climate when you climb Mount Teide. As you are at a higher altitude you will find it is much cooler at the top of Mount Teide, even during the summer months it is wise to take a jacket with you. You will find that there is more rainfall in this area, and during winter you will often find the mountain covered in snow.
Just as there are two varying climates in the north and south of the island, there is also two very different landscapes. While the south is dry with little vegetation, the north has a lovely lush terrain that’s flush with pine forests, palm trees and banana plantations.
The island is famed for its lunar landscape which shows off natural rock formations that makes you feel you are moon walking. A trip to see Mount Teidi is an out of this world experience, and you'll see traces of the volcanic eruptions all over the island.
Things To Do on Tenerife Holidays
Tenerife is popular because the island is packed with so much to do! You'd find it hard to fit it all into just one holiday, which is probably why many visitors to Tenerife return year after year.
The natives of Tenerife were known as the Guanches who were the inhabitants of Tenerife until the Spanish conquest of the XV century. Traces of the Guanches can still be found in Tenerife today, even though it is dominantly a Spanish culture, for example certain words of their language still remain, including the word Tenerife which was the name of a great Guanche king named Tinerfe. Also, you will be able to find many features from when the Guanches lived on the island including caves and pyramids, clay pots and engravings on certain rocks.
Whilst the religion in Tenerife is Roman Catholic, not everyone on the island practices, and although the main event of the year - the Santa Cruz carnival is loosely connected to saints’ days, the festivities don’t really have a religious meaning. The different theme year after year further cements the fact it’s now primarily a social event.
Loro Parque in Puerto de la Cruz is the islands most popular zoo, home to the largest display of penguins and parrots in the world. You will also find sea lions, dolphins, jaguars, chimps, gorillas and many more.Siam Park is situated near Costa Adeje and Las Americas and is Tenerife’s new biggest and most exciting waterpark! Mimicking the ancient kingdom of Thailand, you can ride the red dragon, the Mekong Rapids or take the plunge in the Tower of Power for a true adrenaline rush. However, be warned that in the summer months, Siam Park gets incredibly busy, so make sure you get there early to avoid the queues.
Tenerife is a great destination for all you shopaholics out there! Santa Cruz is home to many of the larger, more popular shops and department stores. If you are after a serious shopping trip you should head to the Continente Shopping Centre, Santa Cruz’s Calle Bethencourt Alfonso, Calle El Castillo, Calle Sabino Berhelot, Calle San Jose, Calle Villalba Hervas, Rambla de Pulido, the Plaza de la Candelaria and the Plaza de Espana.If, however, you want a more traditional feel to your shopping, the markets in Tenerife are always buzzing and a great place to pick up a bargain. The largest markets in the south of Tenerife are the Torviscas Market on a Saturday and Los Cristianos on a Sunday.
For a night to remember, Playa de las Americas is the perfect location and the Veronicas strip is where you should go. With loads of bars and clubs with many providing cheesy entertainment like drinking games, it isn’t for the faint hearted.
If you are looking for a more relaxed time, most of the resorts in Tenerife offer beach side bars and quiet restaurants especially Costa Adeje which is a much more chilled out scene. Head into the hills around Adeje for a more traditional evening with the locals, where you will find the drink prices significantly cheaper than in the resorts.
For a truly relaxing day, Los Gigantes is the perfect choice. A beautiful resort with a charming marina, you can sit in one of the waterfront cafes and watch the boats coming and going. Whale and dolphin boat trips run from this marina which not only promises a magical experience but also gives you a tour around the coast of Tenerife’s south shores.
Many beaches in Tenerife, such as those in Los Cristianos and Playa de lad Americas are man-made, with sand being shipped in from Africa’s Sahara Desert, these are all incredibly popular with tourists who prefer white sands to black. One of the most popular beaches in Tenerife is Playa de las Teresitas near San Andres. Tenerife also boasts many Blue Flag beaches, for example the Playa Jardin beach in Puerto de la Cruz which is a black sand beach.
Book a Tenerife Holiday now!
Tenerife is a paradise island with a huge variety of scenery and attractions, something to please all tastes. By using On the Beach's live online booking system you can create a holiday tailored to your needs, so book now for your perfect holiday in the Canary Islands.
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