5 Irresistible Reasons to Visit the Canary Island of Tenerife

With summer arriving in Sydney, and with an upcoming trip to Fiji planned, beach travel is on my mind! Today, I thought I would revisit Tenerife, which I had a chance to visit right in the middle of final exams for a bit of rest and relaxation back in 2010.

Not a bad student life, eh?

Not a bad student life, eh?

Tenerife is the largest of the Canary Islands, which belong to Spain and are located off the coast of southern Morocco. The island was first settled around 200 BC and was conquered by Spain in the late fifteenth century. During the colonization of the Americas, the Canary Islands were used as a stopping point for most expeditions on their ways to Americas, and many say that the Canary language and culture played an influence on Latin American culture and vice versa.

Feeling nostalgic for my visit several years ago, here are five reasons Tenerife can’t be missed.

1. The Beaches

Tenerife boasts 41.72 miles/67.14 kilometers of beaches, and these beaches, with unforgettable views of clear blue Atlantic water, vary from fine white sand beaches in the south to black pebble beaches in the north. Some of the most popular beach destinations in Tenerife include Playa de las Americas, known as the island’s party capital, Playa Paraiso, a quiet retreat ideal for a relaxing vacation, and Costa Adeje, which offers luxury accommodation and views of the Teide volcano.

Playa de las Americas, Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain

Playa de las Americas (photo credit)

2. The Weather

Tenerife is known as the “Island of Eternal Spring,” and rightly so. Its temperatures at sea level rarely get below a monthly average low of 60° F/15° C, making the island an ideal destination year-round, especially if you’re trying to escape the winter cold of Northern Europe or the American East Coast. The cold sea currents surrounding the Canary Islands also keep the coasts from getting too hot in the summer. Who could complain about an eternal spring?

3. El Teide

One of Tenerife’s most important features is Mount Teide, an active volcano at the center of the island. Having last erupted in 1909, El Teide is the highest point in Spain, Spain’s most visited natural wonder, the tenth highest volcano in the world, and the planet’s third highest volcano on a volcanic island. (How’s that for a few superlatives?) The volcano is surrounded by Teide National Park, which is an UNESCO World Heritage Site and makes for some seriously striking hiking scenery.

Stunning timelapse of El Teide by TSO Photography

4. The Prices

With discount airlines like Ryanair and Easyjet flying into Tenerife, relatively inexpensive Spanish food and drink prices, and no shortage of accommodation options that fit your budget, considering how idyllic the island is, it’s a bargain. Pro tip: if you’re looking to feel like you’re splurging on your hotel without spending too much, give First Choice a try. My round-trip flight from Madrid to Tenerife only set me back €25, and I managed to feel like I was living a life of luxury while there, even on a student budget.

5. Carnaval!

Carnaval do Rio de Janeiro and New Orleans’ Mardi Gras may be the first two carnival celebrations most people think of, but the Carnaval de Santa Cruz de Tenerife in the island’s capital certainly rivals those each February. Hundreds of thousands come out each year for a week of elaborate costumes, festive parades, jubilant music, and non-stop partying. Making a return trip for Carnaval while I was living in Spain never worked out for me, but I’d love to see it in person one day.

Carnaval, Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain

Tenerife’s Carnaval (photo credit)

Have you been to Tenerife or any of the Canary Islands? How was your experience? And, more importantly, who wants to stash me in their suitcase on their next trip there?

13 Responses

  1. Cassandra says:

    I would love to visit! A friend of mine visited Tenerife for Carnaval and had the zaniest stories. They made we want to visit even more! Hopefully one day you’ll be able to attend the festival!

  2. We went to Tenerife early in 2013, and there was so much to do. We didn’t go to the beach at all. Rented a car, drove all around the island. We climbed to the top of El Teide, went on a helicopter tour, and so much more. Many people who goes to Tenerife only see the beach and main shopping area, and it’s a shame since Tenerife is so much more than that.

    • Oh that sounds lovely! We mostly stuck to the beach since we were relaxing in the middle of exams and also didn’t have a car, but I’d love to return and see more of the inner part of the island.

  3. …Perhaps someday soon I can visit–and if you’re a good contortionist, of course you can come along with!!…

  4. When I read about and saw the photos of the Canary islands, I got to the conclusion that visiting at least 4-5 of them would be my aim, when I get there. They all seem to be unique, so different. It would be a shame to miss out on any of the major islands.

  5. I ve been to Las Palmas , Kirstie , 10 or more years ago but it was one of my best trips and vacation ever.Unbeatable beaches , wonderful sights.All the hotels are excellent , the people more than friendly.Wow , and it was very cheap , is it the same situation as in the past?…and the weather , what can I say – it is like being in heaven – never hot never cold…..I ll never forget it…

    I am looking to visit Tenerife in the future along with Las Palmas again and I have heard a lot about El Teide

    • I guess it’s been five years since I was there (wow, time flies!), but it was still cheap, beautiful, and friendly then! With it being winter here in Australia, I could really use a trip there right now!

  6. It’s a great destination for those of us in the UK because it’s pretty much guaranteed sunshine and pretty cheap to get to!

  1. March 19, 2019

    […] the most unique spots I had the pleasure of visiting during my years as an expat in España was the Canary Island of Tenerife. Located off the coast of Africa, this island is perfect for a relaxing beach vacation but is also […]

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