Tenerife is the volcano-crowned centrepiece of the Canary Islands. Its landscape runs from the rainforest north to pine trees on the southern slopes, through volcanic moonscapes and down to glorious, Atlantic fronted beaches.
With year-round weather firmly in the twenties, not only are Tenerife holidays great if you want winter sun, but the island is temperate and lovely through the summer, too. There are 67 beaches to choose from. Enjoy the black sand like the locals or retreat to golden shores at a luxury resort. Explorers are rewarded by deep ravine walks, remote hill villages, smooth road biking routes and great surfing spots. Pause at a family-run Gaunchico for a simple, wine-fuelled lunch. When the sun goes down, look up from the horizon – another delight awaits. The island is one of the best places for stargazing in Europe. Experts will help you pick out the constellations. This night sky is best enjoyed with a bottle of rarely-exported Tenerife wine. What are you waiting for? Book flights to Tenerife for a journey to the stars.
The south coast enjoys the most sheltered beaches – and imported golden sand makes lazing there particularly pretty. With dry, sunny days all year round, stay in the exclusive resorts on Costa Adeje. The popular Playa de Las Americas has plenty of familiar shops and restaurants. Playa del Duque, with its chic signature cabanas, is the beach to be seen on. Stay at the Bahia Del Duque, which has massive restaurants, or the lovely Sheraton La Caleta Resort and Spa which has plenty of pools and a fleet of sun loungers.
Golf du Sur is a convenient resort right by the airport, but you won’t want to fly away in a hurry. Enjoy the sunny shores of the south east – especially at beautiful windsurf beach Playa El Medano. Stay at family friendly Santa Barbara Golf & Ocean Golf Club. These grand white buildings are close to several different golf courses, and have outdoor pools and a bar overlooking the ocean. CLC Sunningdale Village is a relaxed resort and the big, fun Sandos San Blas is set in an environmental reserve. Steal away from the resorts and head to Los Abrigos for lunch, when the catch of the day gets hauled out of the fishing boats and straight into the restaurants.
The most famous strip on the island is well known for neon lit bars, but it has recharged its image in recent years. It’s now an upscale promenade, with six safe, sandy beaches, duty-free shops and great tapas restaurants for visitors. Cleopatra Palace Hotel has fancy touches, like breakfast piano music and marble statues. Adults can unwind at Tigotan Lovers & Friends.
Continue along the southern coast from Playa Las Americas and you reach an even newer resort. Guia de Isora is the site of the Ritz Carlton Abama. The red-walled, African-inspired façade gives way to beautiful rooms and a stunning golf course. If you want to leave the resort, drive just a few minutes up the motorway to mirador Los Gigantes – a viewpoint that exposes the 800m high cliffs, ‘the giants’. This being the west coast you’ll get the afternoon sun for longer on the beaches – and you’ll get sunsets over the sea, too, of course.
Discover the lush northern face of Tenerife, where the beaches are left to their volcanic black selves and the surf is up. At Punta Brava, the best beaches are next door to each other – the secret coves of Playa del Bollullo and Playa de los Patos. A former fishing village, Puerto de la Cruz is now known for a sophisticated set of saltwater bathing pools at Lago Martiánez. For a little more exclusivity, stay at the wonderful Hotel Botanico & The Oriental Spa Garden. Tucked away beside grottos and lakes, the hotel styles itself as a Far Eastern retreat.