Volcanoes, nature, sport, gastronomy, tradition, architecture… It would be difficult to find another destination offering as much as Tenerife, whose privileged situation also makes it a perfect island to visit at any time of the year.
The largest of the Canary Islands does not require much introduction, but if you need convincing to visit it – or to revisit it –, here are nine good reasons for doing so. You won't have much trouble finding great offers on flights.
1. Because it's in the Teide National Park
A volcanic space that well deserves its declaration of World Heritage site awarded by the UNESCO. Standing at an altitude of 3,718 metres, it is Spain's highest peak and offers spectacular views. We recommend doing the excursion to the summit on foot, but if you're put off by the climb, don't worry, you can get to the top by cable car.
Apart from the Teide National Park, the island has 43 protected nature spaces – 48% of its area –, making it a paradise for nature lovers. We also recommend visiting the Anaga Rural Park and the Teno Rural Park, with their forests of laurisilva and giant ferns that will make you feel you're in a fairytale.
2. Because you can choose from a whole array of sporting activities
If you want to be in the sea, your options include kayaking, windsurfing, surfing, scuba diving or simply swimming. If you prefer to stay on land, you could decide to either go mountain biking, cycling, hiking, climbing, caving, playing golf… whatever you fancy! And if you're looking for adventure and are not afraid of heights, why not go hang-gliding so you can see the island from the air. It's breathtaking! The most difficult thing will be to choose what you want to do and find enough days to do it all in.
3. Because all you want (and deserve) to do is sunbathe and just relax
Tenerife's beaches and the sun are an unbeatable combination that lures us all like a siren's call. They have particularly eye-catching pale or black sand, due to the island's volcanic origin. You'll find beaches everywhere, from north to south, so you'll always be spoilt for choice. The natural swimming pools carved out of solidified lava are an equally authentic alternative. There are many to choose from.
4. Because you'll be amazed to see whales and dolphins
In the waters in the south of the island, about three miles from the coast, you can sail among these cetaceans 365 days a year. Tenerife is one of the best places in the world for sighting them, as it has a stable colony of bottlenose dolphins and almost 400 short-finned pilot whales. If you want to see them, all you need to do is sign up for an excursion in one of the ports on the south of the island, but make sure above all that the boat has the “Blue Flag”. This will guarantee that the boat is authorised by the Canary Islands government to carry out this activity. This is important not only for your safety but also for that of the animals, who are guaranteed to be treated with respect.
5. Because Tenerife is also all about architecture
From the avant-garde buildings of Santa Cruz – like the Tenerife Auditorium, the International Centre for Trade Fairs and Congresses (both by Santiago Calatrava), and the Tenerife Space for the Arts (TEA) by Herzog & de Meuron – to the mansions and traditional courtyards of La Laguna, declared a World Heritage site by the UNESCO; or the historic centres of La Orotava, Garachico, Puerto de la Cruz and Icod, to name just a few.
6. Because you'll be able to regale your taste buds with its delicious cuisine
Tenerife's traditional delicacies have evolved in recent years and have now become highly creative and original, although always prepared with some of its star products: tuna, bananas from the Canary Islands (famous for their brown spots) and avocado. And if you accompany this with the original local wines, whose history dates back to the 15th century and whose hallmark is that they are produced with grapes grown on volcanic soil, it can't get much better.
If you want to be sure of an absolutely first-rate experience, we recommend you visit one of the island's five Michelin-starred restaurants.
7. Because it's been a long time since you stopped to gaze at the stars
As we said before in this other post, the sky in Tenerife is regarded as one of the best places on the planet to observe the stars, thanks to its cleanness and clarity. The island is home to the prestigious Canary Islands Institute of Astrophysics, and both national and international teams work with its telescopes. If you want to enjoy this "stellar" experience, there are companies that offer star-gazing activities with telescopes, a specialised guide and a snack.
8. Because you have to experience its traditional celebrations
Pilgrimages are one of the best examples of the culture of the Canary Islands. From March to September, carts, oxen and typical food – and particularly "papas" and "mojos" (tiny local potatoes with typical sauces), local wines and meat – invade every town and village on the island.
What's more, the calendar of events in Tenerife is packed with popular festivities, many of which are clearly religious. Easter Week, particularly in La Laguna, or Corpus Christi, with the obligatory stop in La Orotava to admire its carpets of flowers and sand from the Teide, are also highly recommended.
If you're visiting in February you'll find the island immersed in its carnival, and particularly the capital Santa Cruz, which has one of the most spectacular, colourful and popular carnivals in the world.
In any case, before travelling to Tenerife, we recommend you cast your eye over the calendar of events to make sure you don't miss a thing.
9. Because it's a perfect destination to visit with children
If you're travelling with the family, you'll find a miniature paradise here where you're guaranteed a great time with the kids. Not only because of all the attractions and options for recreation on the island, like its beaches or nature areas, but also thanks to the various theme parks to be found from north to south, and where the fun never ends. From Siam Park, a waterpark with attractions and waterslides, to Loro Parque, a zoo with all kinds of animal species. Many establishments have been specially adapted for families so you are guaranteed to feel completely at home.
What shall we do then? Shall we go to Tenerife?