An island about 4.5 hours flying time where the sun shines more than 300 days a year. That’s Tenerife! The largest island of the Canary Islands, which is a great sun destination even well into winter due to its wonderful climate. With green valleys, charming villages and the highest mountain in Spain as the center, the island always has something to offer. Take a look at the highlights during a holiday on Tenerife!
1. Overwhelming Masca
The flowery village of Masca and the valley of the same name are without a doubt among the most beautiful places on the island. Masca is hidden in a deep gorge and the adventure begins on the way to the village. A steep and narrow winding road leads to the mountain village where your driving skills are put to the test. But the ordeal is worth it!
The views along the way are overwhelming and at every hairpin bend you get a different panorama as a gift. The road takes you past gaping canyons, lush vegetation and awe-inspiring rock formations. After about half an hour of meandering you will spot the hamlet of Masca; balancing on a huge rock and bordered by bright green palm trees. From the main road a steep path takes you into the village. Stroll past the few antique houses, eateries, mini shops and the church.
Masca is not only one of the highlights on Tenerife, but also certainly one of the most beautiful places in Spain . In high season, the narrow roads can be full and parking spaces are scarce. Try to lose your car somewhere anyway, because the charms of Masca are best explored by a walk through and around the village. The gorge in which Masca is located eventually leads to the sea: the bay of Masca. Those hard walkers without a fear of heights can make the descent to the coast in about 5 hours.
2. The Cliffs of Los Gigantes
These colossal cliffs on the west coast of Tenerife definitely live up to their name! Just next to the harbor village of Los Gigantes, these fantastic cliffs loom out of the sea and rise up to 600 meters above sea level. These enormous cliffs can be seen and heard from many places in the village. The sound of the waves crashing with tremendous force on these imposing cliffs is unmissable. You can also choose to book a boat trip and get a closer look at the cliffs. Some wildlife spotting is also possible from Los Gigantes. Get back on a boat and look for dolphins and whales!
3. A day in Santa Cruz
One of the highlights on Tenerife is also the capital that is bustling on all sides. Santa Cruz offers a nice mix of atmospheres and experiences, where you are not surrounded by tourists, but by the Tinerfeños and their daily worries. You stroll through the exotic parks, across cozy squares with invariably filled terraces and grab a tapas while enjoying the eternally shining sun. As a foreigner you can easily take over this relaxed Canarian life!
In addition, there are also many beautiful buildings in Santa Cruz, such as the eye-catcher ‘ Auditorio de Tenerife ‘, various university faculties, the parliament buildings and the shopping center on the Plaza de España by the sea. There is no shortage of shops in Santa Cruz anyway. From local markets with artisan products to luxury businesses and extensive shopping centers. This mix of historic buildings, green parks, top gastronomy, modern shopping centers and relaxed beaches makes Santa Cruz a great destination for a day trip and a highlight on Tenerife, whether you visit it in the middle of summer or in winter. Tired of watching? Settle down at Playa las Teresitas or visit the historic town of La Laguna.
4. National Park de las Cañadas del Teide
Leaving Tenerife without having visited the Pico del Teide? Impossible! The diversity of landscapes is perhaps the most beautiful highlight on Tenerife. While the island is intensely green and mountainous on the one hand, a bizarre lunar landscape formed by volcanoes a little further on. In the National Park de las Cañadas del Teide, Mount El Teide (3718 meters) rises from a gigantic primeval volcano this one is the absolute highlight. Start the car again and spend at least one day in this whimsical nature reserve. You can enter and exit the park via many roads, but beware: on certain routes you have all the beautiful views in the back. For the best views, enter the park to the northeast through the village of Esperanza.
Highlights on Tenerife: how to visit Pico del Teide
The National Park is located in an old volcanic crater at an altitude of about 2200 meters. Slowly winding through vast forests with coniferous and eucalyptus trees, the road takes you to this plateau. It doesn’t take long before you cross the cloud cover and the air cools down quite a bit. Along the way, several miradors give you the opportunity to stop and catch a glimpse of the mighty volcano. At about 2000 meters you drive into the huge crater and the landscape is completely different from anything you saw on the road before. The tour takes you further through a barren and barren lunar landscape with extensive lava fields, black rocks, craters, sand hills and bizarre rock formations. You are in a microclimate and there is hardly any vegetation, except for some moss and cacti.
Where rows of cars are parked, the cable car departs and takes you to a point just below the top of Teide in 8 minutes. Once at the top, you have a phenomenal view of the results of centuries of volcanic activity. In clear weather you can even wave to the other Canary Islands. A little further along the main road is the striking rock formation Roques de García. Climb and scramble around and enjoy the views of the lower Llano de Ucanca valley, strangely shaped mountains and solidified lava flows. All this under the ever-watching eye of Mount Teide in the background. A ‘wow feeling’ guaranteed!