Aug 1, 2017
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What to do in Tenerife – The Ultimate Guide

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What to do in Tenerife

Our guest blogger, Angela Leoni from Travel Lobsters, is a frequent visitor to the island and has devised a list of what to do in Tenerife, things to see, places to eat and drink and the best hotels and beaches.

The Island

The largest of Spain’s seven Canary Islands, Tenerife sits in the Atlantic Ocean just off the coast of North Africa and the idyllic location enjoys eternal sunshine – one of the reasons that make this beautiful island a popular hot spot for millions of tourists every year.

You can walk for miles on blissful dunes in the glorious sunshine and there is always something exciting to do on the island. Tenerife is a volcanic island that has been sculpted over time by several eruptions, but don’t worry the last volcanic eruption in Tenerife was in the early 20th century.

Tenerife has a great mix of rugged terrain, dramatic landscapes and a sub-tropical climate with temperatures averaging 20°C – 22°C in the winter months and 26°C – 28°C in the summer.

What to do in Tenerife Sunrise

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The magnificent sight of Mount Teide, which is the highest peak in Spain, welcomes you as you come into land. There have been four recorded volcanic eruptions in Tenerife with no casualties at all; two in the early 1700s, and the third in 1798. The last known eruption was in 1909, quite a while ago now, so if you’re a worrier, rest assured you’re more likely to run into a Barred Hogfish (a curious fish).

What to do in Tenerife Mount Teide

Image Credit: The Telegraph

Places to visit in Tenerife

Over the years, Tenerife has become a popular holiday destination and it’s easy to see why with dozens of great resorts to choose from. Check out the well-known resorts of Playa las Américas and Los Cristianos, the stunning cliffs at Los Gigantes and the pine forests in the Teide National Park.
The island has so much more to offer other than great weather, so what are you waiting for? Book your cheap flights to Tenerife, you won’t regret it.

What to do in Tenerife beach

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Car Hire

We have been to Tenerife a few times now, each time staying somewhere new. If you’re wondering what to do in Tenerife, hiring a car is the best way to explore the island and everything it has to offer.

Whether you’re a family of four or away as a couple, you won’t be stuck for adventures and activities. Hiring a car in Tenerife is a great way to visit a contrast of old and new places.

Hire cars are popular with tourists in Tenerife, it’s very easy to arrange car rental and most people do this before they travel.
Alternatively, visitors can queue up at the airport and arrange car hire for as many days as needed, depending on availability.
A few good car hire companies in Tenerife are Europcar, Thrifty, Auto Reisen, Cicar, Plus Car and Hertz.
If queuing at the airport isn’t your thing, you can book car hire from one of the car rentals in the town, there are plenty to choose from and all are reputable firms.

If driving in Tenerife isn’t your thing, there is an amazing public bus service that runs all over the island, one of the main bus stations can be found at Callao Salvaje.

Tenerife Hotels

The first step to book a hotel in Tenerife is deciding your ideal location carefully. If you have very young children, walking long distances isn’t always a good idea. Full blown coastal walks aren’t always great fun in the hotter months. You will be spoiled for choice with the huge selection of hotels on the island, particularly those close to the beach.
Here are some of our favorites: H10 Las Palmeras, Costa Adeje Grand Hotel, Hard Rock Hotel, Catalonia Las Vegas, Hotel Troya and Malibu Apartments.

What to do in Tenerife pool

Image Credit: Travel Lobsters

Malibu Apartments are better for families or couples looking for a budget place to stay.
Another good option is the H10, which is a luxury hotel with a lot to offer.

What to do in Tenerife best hotel

Image Credit: Travel Lobsters

If you’re looking for budget accommodation in Tenerife, why not try Laguna Park 1, Laguna Park 2, Malibu Apartments, or Park Club Europe.
When traveling as a family on the island, check the accommodation has enough to keep your little ones entertained, there are countless hotels that have kids clubs and entertainment to keep them happy, you can then sit back and enjoy your well-earned rest, knowing that they are also having a great time.

The hotels in the North of Tenerife tend to be a little cheaper than the South. This is due to the South being much more commercialized, so if you’re looking for peace and quiet as well as a cheaper holiday, go to the North of the island, there are still tons of beautiful beaches, coastal walks, and activities to keep you all happy.
The South of Tenerife is full of bustling bars and restaurants that stay open until the early hours. The younger generation (20s) are attracted to the South, and the stretch from Las Americas to Fanabe is where the hotels are most popular.

Bars and Restaurants

When we visit Tenerife, we love to pop back to the usual places we most enjoyed and felt relaxed in. Papagayo Beach Club is one of them, a beautiful bar and restaurant that captures the hearts of many. Popular for its cocktails and fine food, the size of the place also adds to its splendor, there’s nothing worse than being too cramped in a corner. The layout of Papagayo is great, there’s a second floor where you can chill out on sofas during the day and look out as far as the eye can see, the views are spectacular.

The evenings at the Papagayo Beach Club are busy, full of people having a great night out with friends and family, don’t expect it to be quiet, it won’t be, the DJ’s start around 10pm and the whole place comes alive with pumping music and dancers. Price wise, the Papagayo Beach Club can be on the expensive side, especially the alcoholic drinks, but hey you’re in a plush environment, live a little and enjoy the treat.

Things to do Tenerife

Image Credit: Travel Lobsters

CoCo Beach Bar is another one of our favorites and the location sits perfectly on the coastal path to Las Americas, with views out to sea. Guests can sit back and relax whilst being served some of the best cocktails on the island.
The service at CoCo Beach Bar is great, the staff are really helpful and experienced and they are happy to accommodate new and returning guests. The CoCo Beach Bar gets busy, so get there early if you want to try it out.
There’s comfortable seating inside and out at the CoCo Beach Bar and music is always playing.

There are 100s of bars and restaurants in Tenerife so take some time to stroll around them.
The stretch of restaurants situated on the main path from Adeje to Fanabeare are fantastic. We have eaten in this area many times and can’t fault the dishes that are on offer.

Things to do Tenerife CoCo Beach bar

Image Credit: Travel Lobsters

Excursions and Things To Do in Tenerife

Visitors will never be bored on the island. Wander off and investigate what is on offer, most hotels will have lots of leaflets and maps of what to do in Tenerife and where to go.
The excursion shops in the town also have many pamphlets and a friendly way of explaining what is available on what days and for how much.
Here is a list of some of the places that offer exciting day outs in Tenerife:

Teide National Park

Teide National Park is the largest national park on the Canary Islands. Tourists flock to the unique landscape of volcanoes, craters and rivers of petrified lava. The backdrop of the Teide Volcano makes a picturesque setting at 3,718m above sea level.

Teide tour tenerife, what to do in tenerife

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There are many organised Teide National Park tours for visitors as well as purpose-built roads and visitors centers across the park for those who have hired a car. The park has abundant view points to enjoy some of the best views in Tenerife. There is also a bar and a restaurant in the park for those who want to make a day of it.
Teide tour tenerife, what to do in tenerife

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Explore the extensive network of trails and consider staying overnight at one of the available accommodations, Las Cañadas del Teide Parador Hotel and Altavista Refuge, which is located at an altitude of 3,270 metres.

Book your excursion here:Teide Half Day Excursion, Teide By Night(with meal)

La Gomera

Visit La Gomera from Tenerife and experience Canary Island hopping. La Gomera is the second-smallest of the Canary Islands. The island is marked by volcanic mountains crisscrossed with moderate hiking trails.

what to do in tenerife, la gomera island tour

Image Credit: The Telegraph

High up in the mountains, there are beautiful forests of ferns alongside Garajonay National Park.
what to do in tenerife, la gomera island tour

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The unmissable Valle Gran Rey Canyon sits on the coast that leads to a cliff-side village known as La Calera. Black sand beaches can also be found on La Gomera, typical to the volcanic terrain of the Canary Islands.

If you’re wondering how to get from Tenerife to La Gomera, check ferry prices and times here.

Click here to book an excursion to La Gomera.

Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz is Tenerife’s vibrant capital. The town has abundant well-preserved buildings in the Old Town area as well as a main square known as the Plaza de España. Some of the buildings date back to the 1700s including the Palacio de Carta.

A museum occupies the Old Civil Hospital building, known as the Museum of Nature and Man where visitors can enjoy interactive displays on the history of the town.


Expect a hair-pinning drive over sharp volcanic cliffs to get to the beautiful mountain town of breathtaking Taganana. Watch surf smash into sea walls while enjoying some of the best views on the island.

Taganana what to do in Tenerife

Image Credit: Summit Post

If you’re self driving to Taganana, take a small car and expect minimal tourists in the small town right up in the mountains of Tenerife. The hamlet of Taganana is the most populated area within the South of the Anaga Rural Park.
Taganana - what to do in Tenerife

Image Credit: Web Tenerife

Taganana is in fact one of Tenerife’s oldest villages and one of the first settlements founded by Spanish conquerors.
Visit the two churches Nuestra Señora de las Nieves and the Santa Catalina chapel, both of which are listed buildings.

Basilica de Nuestra Senora de Candelaria

If you’re looking for historical buildings in Tenerife, don’t miss the The Basilica of the Royal Marian Shrine of Our Lady of Candelaria. The Basilica de Nuestra Senora de Candelaria, is a Roman Catholic church, which was also the first Marian shrine of the Canary Islands. It is located at the town square in the city of Candelaria. Entrance into the building is free, as with most churches in Europe.

Basilica of Candelaria, things to do in Tenerife

Image Credit: Wikipedia

The square itself is looking out to the sea and a series of statues surrounds the building. The statues celebrate the early rulers of Tenerife. Candelaria can be found at the North East of the Island.


Close to Tenerife’s airport, Garachico is a town on the northern coast of Tenerife. The town is nestled below a 500m+ (1500 ft) cliff. Garachico is the least spoiled coastal area of the island hidden away from tourists.

Garacico - what to do in Tenerife

Image Credit: Wikipedia

Garachico still has a Spanish feel and not many residents speak English which is ideal if you’re looking for that authentic experience of Spain. Man made rock pools have been created so guests can enjoy the sea away from strong currents and sharp rocky areas.
garachico natural rock pools, tenerife

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The coast line of Garachico consists mostly of volcanic debris, giving the town a unique charm and a reason to visit.

The Beaches

We’ve visited beaches all around Tenerife’s coastline, from the most popular tourist haunts to the hidden coves that require three hours of trekking to get there. Whether you are looking for a busy beach with lots going on or a secluded paradise, there are a fair few beaches in Tenerife to choose from.
Things to do Tenerife Beach

Playa el Camisón lies tucked between Los Cristianos and Costa Adeje. Because it’s on a headland, Playa el Camisón doesn’t feel crowded by hotels and benefits from having the five-star retro good looks of the Sir Anthony Hotel behind it. It feels smaller and more intimate than other beaches in the area, although it can get extremely busy.

Another one of the best beaches in Tenerife is Playa La Tejita, with acres of pale golden sand, a red mountain and loads of space, it is ideal if you want to go for the all over tan. Playa La Tejita ticks a lot of boxes that puts it high on the list of the best beaches in Tenerife. The beach lies on the East coast where there is a lot of wind. Take a hoody or warmer clothing, just in case you feel a little chilly. Even on a hot day the wind will disguise the sun pretty well.

Playa La Tejita is the perfect beach for the area often referred to as the ‘upmarket’ part of Costa Adeje thanks to its profusion of luxury hotels and restaurants. The beach is segregated from the rest of the southern resorts by a rocky outcrop with a mock castle, adding to that air of exclusivity.
The sea is a beautiful turquoise color, the beach is white lined with straw umbrellas, striped beach huts and a colonial restaurant on stilts which all add to the personality that mixes the South of France with the Caribbean. It’s a beautiful looking beach.

Our Guest Blogger, Angela Leoni, is responsible for the content and images related to this blog.

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