Urban Dictionary defines the Spanish Canary Island of Tenerife as “a volcanic rock-island off the coast of Africa. Mainly full of fat, balding, English chav* families on holidays.” This is such a terrible stereotype, arguably only reflective of the Playa de las Americas area of the island, and I feel it is my job to advise that there is so much more to Tenerife than simply observing some of my embarrassing countrymen drinking beer out of their shoes**. Here are five reasons why everyone MUST experience Tenerife holidays.
*I realise that some of my non-UK readers may need to go on and further translate the term ‘chav’ – I imagine you may fall into a blackhole of other colloquialisms in doing so. Enjoy!
Home to around 90 inhabitants, Masca is a small, mountain village in the middle of nowhere. Part of the experience of Masca is in getting there – the steep, narrow and, frankly, incredibly dangerous roads offer some wonderful viewpoints, but none as breath-taking as from Masca itself. It is simply wonderful to soak up your surroundings in the sun with a drink from one of the village’s cafes.
2) Mount Teide
Mount Teide is the highest peak in the whole of Spain, as well as being the third highest volcanic structure and most voluminous in the world after Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea in Hawaii. Visitors can take a cable car up to the peak of Teide both day and night, with the evening views being said to present one of the best stargazing spots in the world (and is accompanied by a glass of champagne on most of the tour packages). A further attraction of Teide’s National Park is its abundance of vegetation – the area has 168 different species of plant, 58 of which are endemic to the Canary Islands and 33 of which are endemic to Tenerife.
3) Whale watching
Pilot whales and bottleneck dolphins can be seen all year round in the waters surrounding Tenerife. Visitors hoping to see migratory whales, such as humpbacks, should visit between the months of November-February. Incredibly, even blue whales have been sighted in the waters of Tenerife.
4) The Oldest DRAGON tree in the world
One of Tenerife’s main attractions is El Drago, the oldest Dragon Tree in the world. Found in the town of Icod de los Vinos, estimates for the age of the tree vary from between 650 to 3,000 years.
5) The Weather
With very little annual rainfall (266mm), along with hot summers and mild winters, Tenerife’s climate results in year-round tourism.
What are you waiting for? Flights to either of Tenerife’s airports (creatively named as North Tenerife and South Tenerife) can be booked on Skyscanner. If Spanish islands are your jam, check out my thoughts on the Balearic Islands too.