There is a great deal to see in Northern Tenerife. The north of the island is home to thousands of hidden gems. You could spend entire weeks exploring the many towns and villages.
Here is a list of recommendations you can’t miss out on during your visit:
1. Wander Teno Rural Park’s vast landscape
To visit Teno Rural Park is to discover an unchanged centuries-old landscape; a piece of the island’s past and its ancient ways of life.
Teno Rural Park invites visitors to walk its hiking trails, explore its many villages, taste traditional cheeses and contemplate the most humble forms of traditional architecture from Tenerife.
You shouldn’t leave the park until you have been to Punta de Teno – home to the most spectacular sunset on Northern Tenerife. This magical corner is a perfect example of the volcanic coastal landscape that is so impressive due to its isolated and abrupt nature.
We also suggest you head over to the very north-western point of the island to discover its small dock, take a swim next to its lighthouse and snorkel around some unique underwater landscapes full of endemic fish.
At the Anaga and Teno Country Parks, you’ll be amazed at the giant ferns within their Laurel Forests, a relic of the Tertiary period, that will make you feel like you’re in a magical fairy tale. The Cliffs of Los Gigantes, which rise to 1,968 feet above sea level, is another place that will leave you feeling mesmerized.
2. See the rich architecture of La Orotava
This town and its go-slow philosophy is home to a historic old quarter with very well preserved houses and buildings. To stroll along the streets in the center of La Orotava is to surround yourself with the most traditional forms of Canarian architecture.
The wooden balconies, high-ceiling houses and cobble-stoned streets are a delight to behold. This town has been historically tied to production, trade, and wine. Its traditions have been protected and are a reason for celebration.
The Corpus Christi celebrations are particularly surprising, with the creation of rugs made from colored sand and flowers. Meanwhile, the pilgrimage in honor of San Isidro Labrador fills decorated streets with hundreds of pilgrims.
To learn more about arts and crafts in the Canary Islands and their ties to Ibero-America, you can visit the Tenerife Latin American Craftwork Museum (MAIT).
3. Visit one of the prettiest towns in Spain – Garachico
This small coastal town is full of history. In past centuries, it used to be the biggest port on the island; an essential location for trade and export in Tenerife.
Now it offers several examples of well-preserved historical architecture from the 16th and 17th centuries. It is a peaceful place that moves to the rhythm of small seaside towns.
Its coastal landscape is dominated by the ever-visible Roque de Garachico, a basalt formation that has created a small island, and the natural pools of El Caletón.
Besides being somewhere to visit in Northern Tenerife, Garachico offers a great chance to try fresh fish from the island and has officially been listed as one of the prettiest towns in Spain.
Additionally, consider traveling just under an hour outside of Garachico to the town of La Laguna. There, you can explore churches, mansions, and historic buildings that make this old and dazzling city a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
4. Explore Teide National Park
Have you ever seen an uneroded lava field? This other-worldly landscape, declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, awaits you in Las Cañadas del Teide. Climbing to an altitude of over 2,000 meters above sea level is well worth the effort to witness such wild and overwhelming rock formations.
At the El Portillo Visitor Center (free entry), you will learn about the geological, zoological, and archaeological characteristics of Tenerife.
You probably know that Mount Teide is the tallest volcano in Spain, but it’s also the third-tallest volcano in the world. Going up to the peak at 3,718 meters above sea level is allowed and costs nothing. The altitude of this park makes it an extraordinary place for watching the night sky, which is why the installations of the IAC (Astrophysics Institute of the Canary Islands) can be found here, one of the most important places for professional space observation on the planet .
5. Swim in natural pools
A naturally created salt water pool next to the sea that has been embellished by human intervention – these are the natural pools – or charcos – to be found in Tenerife.
These charcos or natural pools are very typical of the island. They have been the go-to bathing places for local inhabitants for centuries.
6. Tour historical wineries
The history of Tenerife is closely tied to that of wine. Wines from the Canary Islands and, by extension, Tenerife have played a major role in European history.
Many wineries in the north of the island open their doors to visitors and reveal the traditional grape harvest methods, the way production techniques have changed over years and the influence on society in Tenerife.
Several festivals on the island are also tied to wine, such as the San Andrés festival on the night of November 29 in the north, when the wines from the last harvest used to be tried for the first time.
The Tablas festival is celebrated in Icod de los Vinos. This descent down steep streets on wooden boards produces a characteristic sound and an atmosphere full of adrenaline and fun.
7. Walk scenic hiking trails
The history of Tenerife was written for decades on hiking trails and royal roads. Towns exchanged goods by crossing valleys and ravines.
Nowadays, walking these old tracks to recreate these journeys for yourself is an interesting activity. Can you imagine the skill needed to cover long distances through mountains and valleys while carrying the weight of your trade?
We suggest the Los Silos-Cuevas Negras-Erjos trail, which combines some impressive flora with this incredible history.
There are many places and hidden corners to discover in Northern Tenerife. This is just a tiny sample of everything Tenerife has to offer.
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This post was created by United with Insider Studios.