Insider Guide to Tenerife: Our five favourite experiences
02 October 2017
Notable for its warm sunny days and balmy evenings, Tenerife is renowned as a go to destination for guaranteed year-round sunshine. With some of the best natural beaches to be found in Spain, the island is widely regarded as the pinnacle of family-friendly short-haul getaways, seeing attractive coastal space aligned with world class water parks, luscious garden and park areas, historic sights, and an unending list of outdoor excursions and attractions for an action-packed holiday to remember.
Travel Counsellor Sam offers some recommendations for travellers to Tenerife: "I would recommend Tenerife for a short winter sun break, however there is plenty to do and see for a 7-night stay all year round. My top tips for a trip to Tenerife - take a trip to Siam Park and a trip to Loro Parque. If you are up for exploring and a bit of adventure why not take a trip up Mount Teide and experience a hike and the cable car trip".
Read on below to find out more about the experiences we rate at the top of the list of experiences found when visiting the sun-kissed outdoor haven of Tenerife.
However you imagine your dream beach location, Tenerife’s diverse coastline offers the ideal beachbound experience to suit you. Costa Adeje’s provision of chic boutique hotels and immaculately combed beaches represents a discerning choice for many families, while El Medano’s enviable proximity to welcome trade winds permeating through some of the best natural beaches on the island can also prove alluring.
Whether you’re looking for secluded beach space to unwind, a great spot to explore the volcanic underbelly of the ocean floor, or taking part in a variety of your favourite watersports, Tenerife truly has it all.
Geographical marvel - Teide National Park
A must-see when visiting Tenerife is the otherworldly spectacle of Teide National Park. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007, the national park comprising Spain’s highest peak is iconic to the island’s inhabitants and tourists alike.
Experiencing the reality of walking through solid volcanic magma as you traverse an area also boasting the largest amount of supra-Mediterranean vegetation on the planet, and you start to see why the park is one of the most visited national parks in Europe. Animal enthusiasts will delight at the prevalence of unique insects and reptiles including the Tenerife lizard, the Tenerife gecko and the Canarian lizard, as well as a variety of rare bird sightings whilst travelling through some of the Canary Islands’ most mesmerising flora and fauna.
Keen astronomers can visit during the evening for a combined sunset and stargazing experience, with a range of excursions providing fantastic photo opportunities as you ascend up to 7,000ft among the sunset-glazed ridges and rocks before a truly magical evening under the stars.
Whale and dolphin watching
A fantastic day excursion for the whole family includes journeying off the south-west coast of the island, which is the perfect place to spot some of the marine world’s most striking aquatic mammals in their natural habitat. There are many specialist companies organising such trips from the ports of Los Cristianos, Puerto Colon and Los Gigantes, with varying times and prices available to suit your requirements.
The plentiful waters near Tenerife are home to 21 different species of whale and dolphin, with the chance to spot pilot whale practically guaranteed year-round. Enjoy watching the moment where the calm of the sail is broken by popping cameras and excited exclamations as the whole family witness the spectacle of spotting these magnificent creatures in the ocean.
Aquatic playground at Siam Park
Visit the glorious Thai-themed water haven at Costa Adeje’s Siam Park, where water slides and adrenaline-rush rides from part of Tenerife’s biggest and best theme park adventure. Adrenaline junkies can try the daring 90ft plummet down the Tower of Power slide, while those looking for a more serene experience can opt for the snaking Mai Thai river ride in a rubber dinghy.
Other rides providing fun for the smaller ones in the family include Sawasdee, comprising a designated jungle inspired children’s area with varying waterslides suitable for children of all ages, while The Lost City offers the only pool made for babies on the Canary Islands, where multiple towers, bridges, nets, and no fewer than 15 waterslides provide endless hours of fun.
Tenerife Carnival: 7th-18th February 2018
Savour the magic of the Tenerife Carnival during your trip, which is one of the most iconic events in the Canary Islands' calendar. This popular event rivals Rio's carnival as one of the world's most enchanting celebrations of culture through music, dancing and swathes of colour, and takes place each year in the vibrant capital of Santa Cruz. Extravagantly decorated floats and equally eye-catching costumes combine for an incredible spectacle, with a series of main events ensuring a memorable experience for all. Each year there is a different theme and a unique opportunity to glimpse the chosen Carnival Queen, with many visitors returning each year to witness the event.