The UK is a country of traditions. We love a Sunday roast dinner, gathering to watch the Queen’s Speech on Christmas Day and setting off fireworks on Bonfire night. And when it comes to a summer getaway Tenerife holidays are almost an annual pilgrimage.
The largest of the Canary Islands is a stunning mix of volcanic landscape, rugged coastline, bustling beaches and welcoming towns. From the city life in the capital of Santa Cruz to lazy days on the southern resorts, Tenerife provides something for everyone. Whether you’re a regular visitor or ready to pop your Tenerife cherry, here is everything you need to do on this amazing island.
How many opportunities do you get to see a volcano on holiday? El Teide is the defining image of Tenerife; the towering volcano stretches over 3,700 metres in the air and keeps a watchful eye over the rest of the island. Not only is it the highest point in Spain, it sits among one of the oldest national parks in the country.
Teide National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site of immense cultural and historic importance to the Canary Islands. Hike through the breathtaking forests, admire the unique volcanic landscape and dip your toes into the hidden lagoons. Teide is a must for anyone visiting Tenerife.
When many people think of Tenerife, they picture the beaches of resort towns such as Costa Adeje and Playa de las Americas. However, the island has a number of quaint villages and none are as beautiful as Masca.
Hidden away in the ancient Teno Massif is western Tenerife, this remote hamlet is a colourful slice of tranquillity in a simply stunning location. It is the encapsulation of Canarian life of a bygone era where you can see locals go about their business as you wander through the stone walkways.
Masca has long been regarded as the “hidden village” having only been made accessible in the past two decade. Legend has it that it was originally used by pirates as a hideaway in the 16th century and with scenery this good, you can see why.
Not content with having a volcano and the country’s highest peak, Tenerife is also home to Spain’s biggest and best water park. Siam Park is regularly voted among the most spectacular water attractions in Europe and when it has been the royal blessing of the Princess of Thailand, it is easy to see why.
This sprawling Thai-themed park is world of wonder no matter how old you are. Spend the day taking on the exciting slides such as the Vulcano, a four-person slide complete with disco lights, and the Tower of Power, a vertical, transparent freefall which is not for the feint-hearted. Naturally, you could just chill out floating down the Mai Thai River, the world’s highest lazy river.
Every February and March, a little piece of Rio de Janeiro comes to Tenerife. The island goes into party mode as the capital Santa Cruz host the annual carnival. For 15 days, the city becomes a sea of vibrant colours, flamboyant parades and music at every turn.
This celebration of freedom and extravaganza contains some pretty quirky traditions. First, the gala needs to crown a Carnival Queen who will oversee the whole event. Then there is a procession of colourful floats passing through the city, then there is the climax of the carnival – the Burial of the Sardine.
Yes, you read that right. Santa de Tenerife Carnival comes to a close with a giant papier-mâché sardine being paraded through the city and then laid to rest and set on fire. They say the sardine symbolises the spirit of the carnival and its destruction is mourned by “grief-stricken” widows – this is something that really needs to be seen to be believed.
Have we mentioned Tenerife’s beaches yet? They are pretty special. They encompass everything you could possibly want from a beach. From the promenades lined with bars and restaurants in the resorts of Playa de las Americas and Costa Adeje to the secluded black sand wonder of El Bollulo, they never fail to add a ‘wow’ factor to a holiday.
There are quirky beaches like Playa Jardin which was designed by famous Canarian Cesar Manrique and features a colourful botanic garden next to the black sands. While the dramatic setting of La Tejita shows Tenerife in all of its natural glory, it is no wonder why so many people come back to the island.
Discover the best Tenerife has to offer by choosing Sunmaster for your next break. We have a range of holidays to the Canary Islands and beyond and thanks to our super low deposits you can secure your break from just £49pp. Find out more at www.sunmaster.co.uk.