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Throughout the year, tourists flock to the island of Tenerife, the second most visited island in the archipelago after Gran Canaria, to enjoy all its charms. It is also the largest, allowing them to discover a wide variety of landscapes: volcanic lands, green expanses, and colonial cities, to name just a few. Nature and urbanism have created a perfect blend for all tastes. If you’re planning a visit soon, we’ll explore what to do in Tenerife.
What to do in Tenerife?
Other useful information:

Tenerife in a nutshell

Located in the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of Morocco, Tenerife was the last island conquered by the Spanish at the end of the 15th century. After the discovery of the Americas, it became an important operational base between the New World and Spain.
Tenerife also hosts the highest peak in Spain, Mount Teide, reaching an altitude of 3,718 meters. Another interesting fact is that it is the most populous island in the country, with 918,000 inhabitants, annually joined by 5 million tourists attracted by its beauty and mild climate throughout the year.

What to do in Tenerife? 10 must-visit places

The island is divided into two parts: North Tenerife and South Tenerife. Visiting Tenerife often involves choosing one of the two areas. However, if you have enough time, it is highly recommended to visit both. This way, you can discover a wide variety of places.


What to do in South Tenerife?

The southern part of the island is extremely touristy. Irish pubs, low-quality clubs, and international cuisine restaurants abound, especially to cater to a predominantly British clientele. If, like me, this is not really your thing, still don’t miss visiting this area, as it hides several treasures.

Costa Adeje

If you want to enjoy a true beach vacation, this is the place! You can also take advantage of water parks, golf courses, and the possibility to go whale and dolphin watching, although this activity is not always practiced very responsibly. Along the coast, you’ll find no less than 14 beaches and coves.

costa adeje
costa adeje
costa adeje
playa costa adeje

El Teide

The giant of Tenerife is also the main attraction of the island. The variety of landscapes is absolutely incredible, and you’ll soon feel like you’ve landed on Mars.
There are several routes to explore in the National Park, either on foot or by car. If you want to reach the summit, you can do it on foot or using the cable car. Remember to book your ticket in advance! Don’t forget that to reach the peak, you need to obtain a special permit.
Here’s a selection of excursions to visit Teide:


Masca is definitely my favorite destination in Tenerife. After navigating the curves of the surrounding mountains with breathtaking landscapes (if you suffer from vertigo, don’t look out the window), you’ll arrive at the picturesque Masca, a village with barely 20 inhabitants that evokes the appearance of Machu Picchu.



Until 1706, the year of the eruption of the Arenas Negras volcano, Garachico was the main colonial port of the island. Today, it is known mainly for its tourist charm amid natural landscapes and religious buildings. After a brief visit, there’s nothing better than taking a dip in El Caletón, one of the most famous natural pools in Tenerife.

If you want to take a bus tour of Masca and Garachico without having to worry about renting a car, here’s an interesting excursion.


Icod de los Vinos

This small village is a must-visit for many excursions, as it houses one of the symbols of the island: the Drago Milenario. The tree found here measures over 18 meters in height, and it is estimated to be over 700 years old. After admiring this specimen, it is highly recommended to take a stroll through this charming village to discover its squares and try its gastronomy.

For more information about this rather mystical tree, I also recommend visiting the botanical garden.

Icod de los Vinos

What to do in North Tenerife?

The northern part of the island doesn’t attract as many tourists, especially due to its lack of beaches. However, it has a lot to offer, such as a colonial city and a natural park, among other things.

Santa Cruz

The capital of the island accumulates tourist attractions, such as the Castillo de San Cristóbal, the Church of La Concepción, and the Auditorio Adán Martín. If you stay there for a few days, you can also take the opportunity to visit the sublime beaches located just a few kilometers away.

auditorio santa cruz
playa santa cruz tenerife
santa cruz tenerife

San Cristobal de la Laguna

Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, San Cristóbal de la Laguna is a colonial city that captivates tourists with its colorful traditional houses and imposing mansions. A slow travel getaway is a must in this calm and peaceful setting.

visitar san cristobal de la laguna

Puerto de la Cruz

It is probably the most touristy destination in northern Tenerife, thanks to its wide range of hotels, charming historic center, natural pools, and above all, the pool built by César Manrique. Puerto de la Cruz is a city to consider if you want to spend a sunny holiday.

Enjoy Puerto de la Cruz differently:

Parc rural de Anaga

As mentioned earlier, Tenerife’s strength lies in the variety of its landscapes. And it proves it once again with the Anaga Rural Park. This nature oasis extends over more than 14,000 hectares, where beaches, rocks, cliffs, and precipices make it a unique place. If you enjoy hiking, it is a must-visit during your stay on the island. Discover the park on a private tour!

parque anaga
Credit Anastasia Saldatava


Did you know that it is possible to find pyramids on the island of Tenerife? There is still no consensus about their origin. Some believe they are a legacy from ancient civilizations, while others think they were built by farmers in the region in the 19th century. In any case, it is a pleasant and surprising visit. Buy your ticket here!

How to get to Tenerife?

The island of Tenerife has 2 airports, one in the north and another in the south. Your choice will depend on the part of the island you want to explore. Of course, there are numerous flights from the Iberian Peninsula, but being such a tourist destination, many planes also land from various European cities.

If you are on another Canary Island and want to reach Tenerife, you can do so by ferry.

How to get around Tenerife?

If you want to explore the entire island and have complete freedom of movement, the simplest way is to rent a car. Most companies will allow you to pick up the vehicle in one city and drop it off in another. Compare the best deals!

For visiting places like Anaga Park or Masca, most excursions offer to pick you up in a minibus at your hotel. You just have to follow the guide.

Finally, the public transportation system is very efficient in Tenerife and will allow you to easily move around the cities on the island. You can purchase your transportation card from machines located at the airports and reload it at many stores in the city.

When to visit Tenerife?

The island is fortunate to enjoy mild weather throughout the year. Therefore, there is no bad season to visit. Keep in mind that at the top of Teide, temperatures can be quite cold. The same applies in San Cristóbal de La Laguna once the sun sets.

Be a digital nomad in Tenerife

Tenerife is an increasingly popular destination among digital nomads. The quality of life is undeniable, nature offers numerous excursion options to unwind after a week of work, and the Wi-Fi is quite good. However, most coworking spaces are located in the capital, which limits options a bit if you need to work outside your accommodation.

Traveling responsibly in Tenerife

Nowadays, traveling responsibly is no longer an option, and Tenerife is no exception. Here are some non-exhaustive tips to be an eco-friendly tourist on the island:
1. If you want to observe cetaceans, make sure the chosen company does it respectfully towards these animals.
2. Before swimming, use eco-friendly sunscreen.
3. Pick up all your trash before leaving the beach.
4. Sort your garbage according to local standards.
5. Gentrification in the Canaries is becoming increasingly significant, so research normal housing rates before making your reservation.
6. Buy seasonal products.
7. Use a reusable bag for your groceries.
Of course, these are just some gestures to be a responsible tourist. 🙂

I hope this article has sparked your desire to visit Tenerife, an island with a thousand faces that offers a perfect blend of relaxation, nature, and history.

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what to do in tenerife
what to do in tenerife
what to do in tenerife

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