Mount Teide, day tours in tenerife

25 Best Things to Do in Tenerife, Canary Islands

When traveling abroad, get a policy from one of the best travel insurance companies. You can get a 5% discount on Heymondo, the only insurance that pays medical bills upfront for you, HERE!

There are so many amazing things to do in Tenerife, Spain, and its pleasant temperatures make it the perfect place to travel year-round. Tenerife is also the largest of the Canary Islands, so you might be overwhelmed by all the attractions and activities here.

I can help with this guide to the top attractions in Tenerife, including its best towns and tours. No matter what kind of traveler you are, I know there are beautiful places in Tenerife that you’ll love visiting. Our favorite sites on the island are Mount Teide and the fabulous beaches, although we also enjoy exploring the forests and admiring the dark starry skies. It’s no surprise that many people consider Tenerife to be the best Canary Island of all.

Before I share the 25 best things to do in Tenerife, I want to tell you that the best way to get around the island is by driving. We always rent a car in Tenerife because it gives us more freedom and independence. Plus, since the island isn’t too big, you can easily drive to the top places in north Tenerife and still have time to discover southern Tenerife. If you want to rent a vehicle, I highly recommend going through DiscoverCars since they offer the best deals.

That said, you can also get around the island by riding a guagua, which is what they call the bus here, or by booking some of the best tours in Tenerife. However, nothing beats the convenience of having your own car!

Now, let’s dive into the best activities in Tenerife and the must-see attractions that will make your trip unforgettable.

1. Visit Teide National Park, the best thing to do in Tenerife

First, Teide National Park is one of the coolest places in Tenerife, so I can’t recommend it enough. The park has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2007 and belongs to the Natura 2000 Network, which recognizes the most valuable natural areas in the EU.

The park’s crown jewel is Mount Teide, a stunning volcano, and the highest peak in the Canaries and all of Spain. At nearly 12,190 feet, it’s a breathtaking thing to see in Tenerife, both from afar and close up.

To truly experience the majesty of this mountain, I suggest climbing Teide, either by hiking or by riding the cable car. This way, you can see the unique flora and landscape of this area, including the tajinaste rojo or the Teide violet, which only grows at altitudes higher than 8,200 feet.

Teide National Park, things to do in tenerife

1. Visit Teide National Park, the best thing to do in Tenerife – Efrén Yanes

The Teide cable car is 7,730 feet above sea level and connects to La Rambleta, at 11,665 feet. From there, you’ll have to walk the last bit of Trail 10 (Telesforo Bravo) to the peak. If you choose this option, be aware that you’ll need to request this permit in advance to access the summit.

Alternatively, you can take Trail 11 from La Rambleta and go to the viewpoint at Mirador de la Fortaleza or take Trail 12 to the Pico Viejo lookout.

We once did the entire 5-mile route on foot by taking Sendero 7 (Montaña Blanca), which took about 4 hours. During the trek, we stayed overnight at the Altavista Mountain Refuge, then woke up early to hike up the summit and watch the sunrise. This way, we didn’t need a permit since you can access the peak without a permit before 9:00 a.m.

If you’re not an experienced hiker, there are several Mount Teide tours you can take. This excursion is the best since it includes your permit for the summit and the cable car ticket, although you can also take this tour, which only includes the cable car ride to La Rambleta. There is also this free tour (in Spanish) that explores the surrounding area, such as Cañadas del Teide, the Roques de García, and the Roque Cinchado.

2. Santa Cruz de Tenerife, one of the best places to visit in Tenerife

As the capital city of the island since 1833, Santa Cruz de Tenerife is another must-see in Tenerife. This free tour is a great introduction to the city and visits many top attractions in Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

Here, you can stroll through the narrow streets of the historic city center and wander along La Rambla. Don’t forget to visit the bustling Our Lady of Africa Market and the iconic Adán Martín Auditorium, as well as the Palmetum, the largest collection of palm trees in Europe.

Santa Cruz de Tenerife, what to do at tenerife

2. Santa Cruz de Tenerife, one of the best places to visit in Tenerife

This beautiful place in Tenerife is also home to some of the island’s best museums, including the Museum of Nature and Archeology (MUNA) and the Municipal Museum of Fine Arts. If you’re traveling during Carnival (late February or early March), you can’t miss Santa Cruz de Tenerife’s celebrations, which have been declared a Festival of International Tourist Interest.

Finally, this is the largest city on the island, so it’s a good idea to spend at least one night here. There are several great hotels in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, so you can rest up, then continue your adventure.

3. See the Los Gigantes Cliffs, another top thing to do in Tenerife

You can’t go sightseeing in Tenerife without visiting the Los Gigantes Cliffs. These massive volcanic rock cliffs rise 1,970 feet above sea level and were considered sacred to the indigenous Guanches, who called them the walls of hell.

The cliffs are part of Teno Rural Park, and are probably the main feature of this incredible landscape. Several small paths lead from the cliffs to the sandy coastline, so you can get different perspectives of Los Gigantes, Tenerife by hiking or kayaking around the area. When we visited, we were able to take a boat from the Masca jetty and sail over to Los Gigantes. The pier is closed now, but there are other ways to see these spectacular cliffs from the water.

Los Gigantes, attraction in tenerife

3. See the Los Gigantes Cliffs, another top thing to do in Tenerife

In addition, the seabed beneath Los Gigantes is just as interesting, measuring about 100 feet deep and attracting lots of scuba divers and fishermen. If you don’t want to dive, you can take a Tenerife whale-watching tour since many of the top excursions depart from Los Gigantes.

Without a doubt, these cliffs are one of the most impressive attractions in Tenerife, and the surrounding area is very nice. You can also find lovely apartments in Los Gigantes, so it’s worth spending the night here.

4. Puerto de la Cruz, one of the most beautiful cities in Tenerife

Puerto de la Cruz is another famous place in Tenerife, thanks to its old-town charm and artistic flair. Throughout the years, this village has maintained its seafaring traditions, which co-mingle with the more modern advancements of today.

Puerto de la Cruz, place to visit in tenerife

4. Puerto de la Cruz, one of the most beautiful cities in Tenerife

You can learn more about this town’s history by taking this free tour (in Spanish). It’ll take you to the most interesting sites in Puerto de la Cruz, like the San Felipe Castle, the Botanical Garden, the port, and Playa Jardín. I also recommend visiting the La Paz Viewpoint and the Plaza del Charco natural pool.

If you’re a fan of watersports, head to Martiánez Beach and join the surfers there. You can even take lessons here if it’s your first time surfing or you want help from a guide. Also, if you plan on visiting other popular Tenerife attractions in the northern part of the island, then this city is a great base camp, as you’ll find lots of lovely hotels in Puerto de la Cruz.

5. Anaga Rural Park, one of the most beautiful sites in Tenerife, Canary Islands

Visiting Anaga Rural Park is hands down, one of the best things to do in Tenerife. The park is a declared Biosphere Reserve with three natural reserves (Pijaral, Ijuana, and Roques de Anaga), making it an iconic site in northern Tenerife.

This is also a wonderful place to visit as a family since there are several walking trails to suit all fitness levels. These paths weave through Anaga’s famous laurel forests, which look like they belong in a fairytale. In fact, the park is known as the “Enchanted Forest,” making it one of the most amazing landmarks in Tenerife.

Anaga Rural Park, fun things to do in tenerife

5. Anaga Rural Park, one of the most beautiful sites in Tenerife, Canary Islands

We hiked not only the popular Trail of the Senses, but also the trail that goes from Afur to Tamadiste Beach and ends in Taganana. It was a beautiful 9-mile hike, and it wasn’t too difficult, so we were able to focus more on the incredible landscapes of cliffsides and laurel forests.

You must try at least one of the trails here, and you can get more information on each one in our guide to Anaga Rural Park. Again, walking through this magical place is a fun thing to do in Tenerife as a family, and you can even book a hiking tour if you prefer going with a guide. It’s also worth staying overnight so you can explore the trails first thing in the morning. We spent the night at this hostel and didn’t have any complaints.

6. Visit Benijo and the other beautiful beaches of Tenerife

Going to the beach is one of the most popular activities in Tenerife since there are so many beautiful beaches to choose from. One of the best is Benijo Beach, which has black volcanic sand and incredible views of the Roques de Anaga. The entire beach is surrounded by the Pista el Draguillo, a forested walking trail that runs along the coast.

Benijo Beach, beautiful places in tenerife

6. Visit Benijo and the other beautiful beaches of Tenerife – Efrén Yanes

Benijo Beach is also a common spot for nude sunbathing, although if that’s not your style, there are other gorgeous beaches in Tenerife. For example, Las Teresitas Beach is one of the few white sand beaches in the north, specifically in San Andrés, a town near Santa Cruz de Tenerife. If you’re in the south, check out El Médano Beach, which has an area with calm waters and another spot where the waves are perfect for surfing and watersports.

Spending a day by the water is one of the most relaxing things to do in Tenerife, and for a super chill day, head to one of the more remote beaches like El Bollullo in the north or La Tejita in the south. The latter offers amazing views of Montaña Roja, one of the most famous attractions in south Tenerife.

7. Hike the Barranco de Masa, an amazing thing to do in Tenerife

Visiting the Barranco de Masca is another excellent outdoor activity in Tenerife, as this place has one of the best hiking trails in Spain.

Barranco de Masca, things to do in tenerife

7. Hike the Barranco de Masa, an amazing thing to do in Tenerife – Efrén Yanes

The route starts at the Masca farmhouse, then descends the rock walls of the Masca Gorge. You’ll end up on Masca Beach, where you can enjoy a new landscape that’s part of Teno Rural Park. When we did this hike, it was possible to do the round-trip route or descend the ravine and take a boat from the jetty to Los Gigantes. However, the pier has been closed for a few years now, so if you hike this trail, you’ll have to hike both the descent and the ascent back up to the trailhead. It isn’t easy, so I only recommend this option if you’re in very good shape.

Also, remember that if you want to access the Barranco de Masca, you’ll need to request a permit online. To protect this natural environment’s flora and fauna, only a certain number of people can access this area per day. So, you should either request the permit in advance or book this guided hike, which includes the permit.

8. Whale and dolphin-watching, one of the best things to do in Tenerife, Canary Islands

It’s no secret that whale and dolphin-watching is one of my favorite things to do in Tenerife. Every time I see these wild creatures, I’m left speechless, and I’m sure you’ll absolutely love this experience.

The first time we went whale-watching here, we took this tour, which I highly recommend. The tour leaves from Puerto Colón, and you’ll ride in a catamaran to the areas with the highest concentrations of cetaceans. Not only that, but the boat has a glass bottom, so you can marvel at the seabed during the cruise.

Whale and dolphin-watching, cool things to do in tenerife

8. Whale and dolphin-watching, one of the best things to do in Tenerife, Canary Islands

Of course, spotting whales and dolphins in the wild is always unpredictable since it’s impossible to track their movements and determine when they’ll show up. That said, these tour operators have years of experience, so you’ll have the greatest chance of seeing wild cetaceans.

During our tour, we saw several beautiful species of dolphins and pilot whales, as well as lovely views of some of the most popular places in Tenerife like Costa Adeje, Guía de Isora, and Santiago del Teide. Up to 21 different species of cetaceans inhabit these coastal waters, so if you want more information and tips, check our guide to the best whale tours in Tenerife.

9. The Drago Milenario in Icod de los Vinos, a must-see in Tenerife

Another fun thing to do in Tenerife is to go see the oldest dragon tree in the Canary Islands. The Drago Milenario is in Icod de los Vinos and stands 59 feet tall while measuring 65 feet in diameter at its base. You can see this famous tree from San Marcos Square in the town center, and if you want to see it up close, you’ll need a ticket to the Parque del Drago.

Drago Milenario, must visit in tenerife

9. The Drago Milenario in Icod de los Vinos, a must-see in Tenerife

This 800-year-old tree was declared a National Monument in 1917 and remains one of the top attractions in Tenerife. While there are other dragon trees on the island, none are as old or well-known as the Drago Milenario. If you go to visit it, take advantage of your time, and check out other sites in Icod de los Vinos or take this free tour of the town.

10. Teno Rural Park, an incredible attraction in Tenerife, Canary Islands

I mentioned Teno Rural Park earlier, but it’s worth adding it here since it’s one of the most beautiful places to visit in Tenerife. The park encompasses nearly 19,800 acres, covering the municipalities of Buenavista del Norte, Los Silos, El Tanque, and Santiago del Teide.

What makes this place so special is its diverse ecology, cultural significance, and variety of landscapes, which include cliffs, valleys, and laurel forests. Here, you can look for the endangered laurel pigeon and enjoy the pristine natural environment that has so far been protected from human interference.

Punta de Teno, famous places in tenerife

10. Teno Rural Park, an incredible attraction in Tenerife, Canary Islands

One of the top spots in Teno Rural Park is the Punta del Teno, a famous lighthouse where you can get unparalleled views of the Los Gigantes Cliffs. It’s an incredible viewpoint, especially at sunset, so if you can, plan your visit so you get there right before dusk.

Also, if you have time and want to see more, consider taking a boat tour or a kayak excursion to explore the Punta de Teno and the Los Gigantes Cliffs from a different perspective. There is also this walking tour, which goes through the park and ends at the lighthouse.

11. San Cristóbal de La Laguna, one of the most interesting cities in Tenerife

Of all the cool places in Tenerife, you can’t miss San Cristóbal de La Laguna. It’s the only UNESCO World Heritage Site in the Canary Islands and the perfect place to go for a traditional Canarian meal.

San Cristóbal de La Laguna, beautiful places in tenerife

11. San Cristóbal de La Laguna, one of the most interesting cities in Tenerife

La Laguna is known for its colonial architecture and rich history, so it’s an excellent city to do some sightseeing in Tenerife. This was the first unwalled city on the island, and much of its original 15th-century layout is still preserved. Other relics of the past include palaces with wooden balconies, churches made with volcanic stone, and La Carrera, the town’s first street.

You’ll also notice the ever-present fog that drifts through the city, which is due to the humidity of the atmosphere. It gives this charming town even more character and adds to its mystique. If you want to see this place but you’re short on time, do this free tour. It’ll take you to the Plaza del Adelantado, the Cathedral of San Cristóbal de La Laguna, and other popular attractions in La Laguna.

12. Swim in El Caletón and other natural pools in Tenerife

A visit to Tenerife isn’t complete without wading in one of the charcos, or natural pools, on the island. One of the most famous swimming holes in Tenerife is El Caletón, which is really a series of lagoons formed after the Arenas Negras volcanic eruption of 1706.

El Caletón is just one of the many cool things to see in Garachico, a small town in northern Tenerife. I recommend taking your time to walk along its cobbled streets and past its traditional white houses, although there is also this free tour if you’re short on time.

El Caletón natural pool, cool places in tenerife

12. Swim in El Caletón and other natural pools in Tenerife – Efrén Yanes

Moreover, there are other natural pools throughout the island, so you can see these interesting rock pools even if you aren’t in Garachico. The Jover natural pool is by Anaga Rural Park, while the Bajamar pools by La Laguna have calm waters, so swimming there is a fun thing to do in Tenerife as a family.

Since these charcos were formed out of rocks along the coast, they act as a breakwater from the ocean’s waves. This means the waters are typically quite tranquil, so you can come here for a relaxing swim. Just note that the pools in southern Tenerife tend to be more crowded than the ones in the north.

13. La Orotava, another one of the best places to visit in Tenerife

La Orotava is another traditional town with some interesting attractions in Tenerife, so it’s another place you should visit. Here, you’ll learn more about the island’s colonial history and see some old buildings dating back to the 18th century.

La Orotava, outdoor activities in tenerife canary islands

13. La Orotava, another one of the best places to visit in Tenerife

For example, the iconic Casa de los Balcones is a beautiful mansion that’s known for its old, wooden Canarian patios. You have to buy a ticket to visit it, but it’s worth it. There is also the Town Hall, a Neoclassical building from the 19th century, and a series of water mills from the 1600s and 1700s. While most are no longer operational, La Máquina still works as a mill that grinds gofio, an authentic Canarian grain.

La Orotava’s cultural and historical richness makes it a must-see in Tenerife, so I suggest adding it to your itinerary. You can explore on your own or take this free tour to see all the top attractions in La Orotava. Also, the town is very close to the Humboldt Viewpoint, so I recommend taking advantage of your visit to go to this lookout point. You’ll get spectacular views of the ocean, Mount Teide, and Puerto de la Cruz, so bring your camera.

14. Cueva del Viento, one of the most unique attractions in Tenerife

Back in Icod de los Vinos, you should check out the Cueva del Viento, one of the largest lava tubes in the world. Given its huge size, you’ll only be able to cover a small stretch of the tube during your visit, but it’s an incredible experience.

Cueva del Viento, things to do tenerife

14. Cueva del Viento, one of the most unique attractions in Tenerife

As you walk through this amazing attraction in Tenerife, you’ll see the fossil remains of extinct vertebrates as well as rock formations that are tens of thousands of years old. Cueva del Viento translates to “cave of the wind,” a name that refers to the strong air currents inside the tube.

It’s one of the most memorable experiences in Tenerife, and you can book a ticket here or sign up for this guided tour. It starts in Santa Cruz de Tenerife and also travels to San Cristóbal de La Laguna, Garachico, and La Orotava. Just be sure to book in advance and wear layers, and comfortable shoes since the temperature drops inside the cave.

15. Barranco del Infierno, one of the most popular hikes in Tenerife, Canary Islands

Next, the Barranco del Infierno Special Nature Reserve is another beautiful place in Tenerife that you can’t miss. This area has one of the best hikes in Tenerife, which takes you past several viewpoints, a waterfall, and other lovely landscapes. It has an elevation drop of just 650 feet and takes about 3 hours to complete, so it’s suitable for the family.

Barranco del Infierno, places in tenerife

15. Barranco del Infierno, one of the most popular hikes in Tenerife, Canary Islands

That said, keep in mind that access to this pristine ravine is limited to 20 people every 30 minutes, and you can only visit during certain hours, which you can check here. This restriction may seem annoying, but its purpose is to preserve the flora and fauna here, which includes several unique species.

If you don’t want to organize a visit on your own, you can book this guided excursion, which includes your entry pass to the Barranco del Infierno, food, drinks, and transportation.

16. Visit the Pyramids of Güímar, a spectacular thing to do in Tenerife

One of the greatest mysteries of Tenerife is the Pyramids of Güimar, an incredible group of pyramids. The origin of these ruins is unknown but could be the remains of ancient temples. Either way, visiting this archaeological site is one of the best things to do in Tenerife, especially if you’re into history.

Pyramids of Güimar, what to visit in tenerife canary islands

16. Visit the Pyramids of Güímar, a spectacular thing to do in Tenerife

You’ll need a ticket to access the site so you can see these interesting structures up close. The terraced pyramids are made of lava stone, and whoever built them didn’t use mortar, which is quite intriguing and makes this one of the most unique attractions in Tenerife.

Also, access to the surrounding gardens is included in your visit. Among the different plots here, there is the Poisonous Garden, which is home to over 70 poisonous plant species. Another one is the Sustainable Garden, where you can look at a variety of flora that’s native to the area.

17. Siam Park waterpark, a fun place to go in Tenerife with kids

If you’re looking for things to do in Tenerife for families, I highly recommend spending a few hours at Siam Park. This waterpark is inspired by the architecture and tropical environment of Thailand, giving it a colorful and vibrant look. There are all kinds of pools, waterslides, and aquatic attractions to keep the kids occupied, and it’s a great place to cool off on a hot day.

Siam Park, tenerife experiences

17. Siam Park waterpark, a fun place to go in Tenerife with kids

Moreover, Siam Park has been ranked #1 on TripAdvisor’s list of the Best Waterparks in the World for several years in a row. In addition to the kid-friendly activities and slides, there are fun areas for adults to enjoy, too. One of them is the wave pool, which is the largest in the world. If you dare, go down the 92-foot-tall Tower of Power waterslide or raft along the Mekong Rapids.

Siam Park is in Costa Adeje, another lively place in Tenerife where you can find more things to do with friends or family. Of course, the waterpark is wildly popular, so I suggest getting your tickets in advance to avoid long lines.

18. El Médano, a charming village to visit in Tenerife, Spain

El Médano is one of the most beautiful places in Tenerife as well as the perfect spot to practice watersports. It’s not uncommon to find people surfing, kitesurfing, and windsurfing, thanks to the great year-round conditions at El Médano Beach.

El Médano, best attractions in tenerife

18. El Médano, a charming village to visit in Tenerife, Spain – Efrén Yanes

Even if you don’t surf, you’ll appreciate the rustic beauty of El Médano’s other beaches. One of the best is La Tejita Beach, which is part of the Montaña Roja Natural Reserve. You can get lovely views of the Montaña Roja crater, although I also suggest going into the nature reserve to see the mountain’s red volcanic landscape and its unique flora and fauna. This natural area is a haven for birdwatching, so keep an eye out for rare species like the Kentish plover.

There are other cool things to do in El Médano, too, like seeing the Cave of Santo Hermano Pedro. Now a Historic Site and Asset of Cultural Interest, the cave is a sanctuary dedicated to Pedro de San José Betancur, known as Santo Hermano Pedro, who as a child used the caves as a resting place while shepherding the family’s sheep.

19. Go surfing, another fun thing to do in Tenerife, Canary Islands

There are other places in Tenerife where you can go surfing, so if this is one of your hobbies, you’re in luck. People surf and kitesurf along the island’s coast year-round, so no matter where in Tenerife you are, there is a nearby beach where you can ride the waves.

This is one of the top outdoor activities in Tenerife not only because of the perfect surfing conditions but also because there are various environments where you can practice. Whether you want fine sand beaches or volcanic rocks and reefs, you’ll find it here. Just take note that the stronger waves are to the north, while southern Tenerife has calmer waters.

Surfing, things to do in tenerife spain

19. Go surfing, another fun thing to do in Tenerife, Canary Islands

Some of the most popular surfing beaches in the north are Igueste de San Andrés, El Callao, El Charco, El Socorro, and La Caleta. In the south, I recommend Las Conchas, Punta Blanca, Las Palmeras, El Conquistador, and Las Galletas.

If you want to surf, but you didn’t bring your equipment, or you’re a complete beginner, these surfing lessons in Playa de Las Américas are very good.

20. Go diving or snorkeling, another adventurous thing to do in Tenerife

In addition to surfing, scuba diving and snorkeling are two popular water activities in Tenerife. The seabed off the coast of the island is a treasure trove of tropical fish, marine life, and coral reefs, so it’s something to see during your trip.

Also, don’t worry if you’re inexperienced since you can find guided tours throughout Tenerife. This way, you can safely explore the ocean floor and its aquatic creatures with a trained professional. Depending on where you dive, you can see nearly 100 feet under the sea, so it’s an incredible experience.

Snorkeling, top things to do in tenerife canary islands

20. Go diving or snorkeling, another adventurous thing to do in Tenerife

I think these types of excursions are one of the best tours in Tenerife, and I had a blast during my dive. The first time I visited the island, I did this guided dive, which was perfect for beginners, and in Puerto Colón, an area with lots of sea turtles. If you prefer snorkeling, I recommend this day trip, which leaves from Puerto Colón and includes all the necessary equipment.

Yet another option is this kayak tour from Los Cristianos, in which you’ll sail on a boat in search of dolphins, then take a break to snorkel with the sea turtles. Whichever excursion you choose, I guarantee it’ll be one of the most memorable experiences in Tenerife that you’ll have.

If getting wet is not your thing but you still want to explore the underwater wonders, you should have a look at the Tenerife submarine.

21. The lunar landscapes of Vilaflor de Chasna, an unforgettable place in Tenerife

Vilaflor de Chasna is one of those places in Tenerife that we overlooked the first time we traveled to the island. However, during our most recent trip, we decided to check it out, and it ended up being one of our favorite spots.

This charming town is in the highest region of Tenerife, so it has a mild and pleasant climate. It’s also known for its cobbled streets and old plazas that have traditional architecture from the 17th and 18th centuries. One of the coolest places here is the Church of San Pedro Apóstol, although I also recommend visiting the Sanctuary of Santo Hermano Pedro.

Vilaflor de Chasna, best place in tenerife

21. The lunar landscapes of Vilaflor de Chasna, an unforgettable place in Tenerife

That said, the absolute icing on the cake is the area’s lunar landscape, which looks like it belongs in a science fiction movie. The best way to experience it is to begin in the town of Vilaflor and hike the 8-mile round-trip route back to the starting point. It’s a moderate hike and took us about 4 hours to complete, even though we took our time admiring the peculiar rock formations and reddish hues.

To maximize your time so you can fully discover Vilaflor and its unique environment, I recommend staying in one of the nearby rural hotels.

22. Go stargazing, the best thing to do in Tenerife at night

While I suggest spending the day sightseeing in Tenerife, I also recommend spending a couple of hours in the evening observing the starry skies over the island. There are three Starlight reserves in Tenerife, which have been recognized for providing privileged views of the dark night skies.

Each of these three viewpoints offers stunning nighttime views and stargazing opportunities. These areas are protected by the Law on the Astronomical Quality of the IAC Observatories, so they have minimal light pollution. Specifically, the Guajara Mountains, the Parador Nacional de Turismo, and Izaña will leave you breathless.

Stargazing, outdoor activities in tenerife

22. Go stargazing, the best thing to do in Tenerife at night – Efrén Yanes

You can visit these lookout points and see stars with the naked eye, but if you want to learn more about astronomy, I recommend this stargazing tour on Mount Teide. Another great option is this guided night walk through the Cañadas del Teide, an iconic Tenerife viewpoint. We loved observing the unpolluted skies here, especially since we’re interested in astrophotography. If you want to bring your equipment, I suggest reading our guide on how to photograph the Milky Way so you can get the best shots.

Keep in mind that if you’re short on time or the sky conditions aren’t ideal, you can still visit the Teide Observatory, which is considered the largest solar observatory in the world.

23. Candelaria, another lovely town in Tenerife to visit

Candelaria is another place in Tenerife that stands out for its historical traditions. It’s located in the eastern part of the island, along the coast, and what I like the most about it is that it’s not as crowded with tourists as some other towns.

Candelaria, cool places in tenerife canary islands

23. Candelaria, another lovely town in Tenerife to visit

This place has a rich history as a religious center and a fishing village, so it’s quite unique. It’s nice to just wander the streets, browse the shops, and mingle with the friendly locals. As a coastal town, Candelaria has a beautiful beach with black volcanic sand where you can take a stroll or admire the landscape. Back in town, I recommend going to see the Basilica of Our Lady of Candelaria, the Crafts Center, the Plaza de la Patrona de Canarias, and the Old Camino Real.

You can see these Tenerife attractions and more on this guided tour (in Spanish), which details the legends of the indigenous Guanche people who once inhabited the area.

24. Celebrate Carnival in Tenerife, a unique thing to do in Tenerife, Canary Islands

While the festivities in Rio de Janeiro are the most famous, the Carnival de Tenerife is the second best-known carnival in the world. It has even been declared a Festival of International Tourist Interest and is recognized by UNESCO.

Carnaval de Tenerife, sightseeing in tenerife

24. Celebrate Carnival in Tenerife, a unique thing to do in Tenerife, Canary Islands

Witnessing this traditional party for yourself is one of the best activities in Tenerife, and something you won’t find anywhere else. The celebration includes the election of the Carnival Queen, as well as performances, songs, and elaborate costumes. The creativity and cheerfulness of the people parading through the streets are remarkable, and something to see in Tenerife at least once in your life.

We have yet to experience carnival in Tenerife, but it’s on our list of things to do! We are familiar with the Carnival Museum in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, which houses all kinds of exhibits and costumes related to the festival. It’s one of the best museums on the island and it’s free, although you need a ticket to get in.

25. Costa Adeje & Los Cristianos, the best places in Tenerife to party

Finally, if you love the nightlife, you can’t miss two of the best places in Tenerife to party: Costa Adeje and Los Cristianos. These cities are home to several of the top nightclubs in Tenerife where you can dance, mingle, and enjoy the best cocktails and music.

Monkey Beach Club, tenerife experiences

25. Costa Adeje & Los Cristianos, the best places in Tenerife to party

Both Costa Adeje and Los Cristianos are very touristy, with all kinds of daytime entertainment and nighttime activities in Tenerife. During our trip, we went to the Monkey Beach Club, which had awesome views of La Gomera. If you go here, I recommend going a bit earlier so you can watch the sunset. Le Club – Tenerife Beach Club was another place we liked since it had great music and a restaurant.

Given all the activities and attractions in these towns, I recommend spending the night. There are beautiful hotels in Los Cristianos, and the accommodation options in Costa Adeje are plentiful. This way, you can spend a day at the beach or taking a tour, then refresh yourself at the hotel before partying until the wee hours of the morning.

Where to stay in Tenerife – Best hotels in Tenerife

There are plenty of places to stay in Tenerife, and all kinds of accommodation options, so you won’t have any trouble finding somewhere to spend the night.

That said, if you want some recommendations, I’ll tell you that one of our favorite hotels in South Tenerife is the Iberostar Selection Sábila. It’s in Costa Adeje, so it’s a great resort to book if you want to explore the best things to do in south Tenerife. If you’re spending time in the northern part of the island, I recommend the H10 Tenerife Playa in Puerto de la Cruz, one of the best hotels in North Tenerife. Both of these hotels have bright and spacious rooms, as well as all the amenities and services you need for a comfortable stay. We enjoyed the restaurants, pools, and other facilities, as well as the hospitable staff.

H10 Tenerife Playa, places in tenerife

Where to stay in Tenerife

We also had positive experiences staying at the Albergue Montes de Anaga near Anaga Rural Park, and the Altavista Mountain Refuge on Mount Teide. While these accommodations had fewer amenities, they were well-located so we could do more sightseeing in Tenerife’s most popular attractions. To be clear, the Altavista hostel had just three communal dormitories and no shower or restaurant.

For more places in Tenerife where you can spend a restful night, here are some other options:

Best restaurants in Tenerife

Along with hotels, there are lots of great restaurants to eat at in Tenerife where you can fuel up for your adventures and try authentic Canarian food.

One of our favorite restaurants is El Rancho de Nino in Arona, which was recommended to us by another traveler. This place specializes in grilled meats, and it has delicious dishes at a great price. We also liked La Parada in Icod de los Vinos, which has a wide selection of dishes and fairly reasonable prices. The treatment by the waitstaff was super friendly, too. I recommend the Canarian tetillas and the Uruguayan powder for dessert.

La Parada restaurant, what to visit in tenerife

Best restaurants in Tenerife

If you plan on visiting Masca, I suggest eating at El Guanche. It’s the perfect place to refuel after your hike, and it has several vegetarian and vegan dishes on the menu.

These are just our top recommendations, so if you want more options, check out our guide on the best restaurants in Tenerife.

Map of Tenerife, Canary Islands

I mentioned a lot of different attractions in Tenerife, so here is a map to help you quickly locate them all:

You can download this map and keep it handy as you plan your trip. I also suggest looking at our other Tenerife maps to get a closer look at some specific places in Tenerife.

How to get around Tenerife

The best way to get around the island is by renting a car in Tenerife. A rental car will let you access more remote places, plus you can go where you want on your own schedule. We always get our vehicles through DiscoverCars since they offer the best deals from different rental companies.

Another option, in case you want transport and accommodation all in one, is to rent a camper van in Tenerife. It is undoubtedly an excellent option if your idea is to enjoy the freedom and direct contact with nature. In this case, I recommend you check out Yescapa, which is the site we use to rent this type of vehicle.

Things to do in Tenerife by rv

How to get around Tenerife

Of course, if you don’t want to drive, you can use the public Canarian buses or guaguas. The transportation network is pretty good and connects to all the main towns on the island. However, it’s designed for locals, not tourists, so getting around will take much longer. I recommend checking the bus schedules and routes here so you can plan accordingly.

Finally, you can travel throughout Tenerife by taking a tour. While this option is much faster, it’s also more expensive. Even so, many of the best tours in Tenerife are reasonably priced and include visits to some of the most popular attractions on the island.

Best Tenerife itineraries

Now that you’ve discovered the best things to do in Tenerife, as well as where to stay and how to get around, it’s time to plan your trip. I know it can be overwhelming, which is why we’ve created sample itineraries to help you make the most of your time visiting Tenerife.

You can check out our guides on what to see in Tenerife in 5 days or how to spend a week in Tenerife and use them to plan your route around the island. Feel free to add, remove, or replace any Tenerife attractions so it suits your travel plans, budget, and preferences.

Visit other Canary Islands, something to do around Tenerife if you have time

If you have time, you can take advantage of your trip to Tenerife by exploring some other Canary Islands. All of the islands are connected by ferry or plane, and there are day trips you can take from Tenerife to La Gomera, La Palma, El Hierro, and Gran Canaria. You can even hire a boat in Tenerife and explore the other Canary Islands.

However, choosing the best Canary Island to visit during your trip is difficult since they’re all unique, but here are some ideas to help you decide:

La Gomera is one of the smallest Canary Islands, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t full of natural beauty. This tranquil island has a lot to offer, so I recommend spending at least one night here.

Garajonay Natural Park, trip to la gomera from tenerife

Visit La Gomera from Tenerife

If you want to see the main attractions in La Gomera, you can take this tour from southern Tenerife (there is also this option from the north). Both excursions will take you to La Gomera’s most beautiful places, including the Roque de Agando, Laguna Grande, and the towns of Agulo and San Sebastián de La Gomera.

You’ll also visit Garajonay National Park, the most famous site on the island, and a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. If you thought Anaga Rural Park was a magical place, then Garajonay will really take your breath away. Also, don’t miss your chance to listen to a demonstration of the silbo Gomero (Gomeran whistle), the ancient language of the island.

La Palma is another lovely island to visit from Tenerife, especially if you want to spend time outdoors and escape from the tourist crowds. As one of the quieter islands, La Palma offers a nice refuge from the crowds, and it’s a great place to go hiking and stargazing.

La Palma, visit la palma from tenerife

Visit La Palma from Tenerife

You can discover the best things to do in La Palma by booking this excursion, which includes ferry transportation from Los Cristianos, Tenerife to La Palma. You’ll see the Tajogaite Volcano, also known as Cumbre Vieja, which was the last volcano on the island to erupt and had the longest eruption in La Palma’s history.

The tour also goes to Santa Cruz de La Palma, the picturesque town of Tazacorte, and the viewpoints of La Concepción and Tajuya. All of these places are worth your while, so if you have time to spare, I highly recommend booking this trip from Tenerife.

El Hierro is another small island, but you shouldn’t pass it by. The entire island has been declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, so it’s a haven for those who prefer a natural environment. Here, you won’t find shopping centers or fancy resorts. Rather, the main attractions of El Hierro are the majestic cliffs, valleys, and scenic coastline.

El Charco Azul, visit el hierro from tenerife

Visit El Hierro from Tenerife

The island is especially popular among scuba divers and hikers, but if you prefer to get a general overview of El Hierro, check out this tour. It departs from Los Cristianos, Tenerife, and takes you to El Hierro’s most famous landmarks, including the Jinama lookout, the parish of Nuestra Señora de Candelaria, the La Maceta natural pool, and Hotel Puntagrande, the smallest hotel in the world.

Finally, you’ll make a brief stop to admire the La Peña viewpoint. This beautiful spot is the work of César Manrique, the most iconic artist from the Canary Islands, who also built the restaurant here.

Last but not least, Gran Canaria is another Canary Island that you can visit from Tenerife. Gran Canaria is more touristy than the other islands I mentioned, so it has something for everyone, from white sand beaches and pristine landscapes to city centers with lots of history and culture.

Gran Canaria, visit gran canaria from tenerife

Visit Gran Canaria from Tenerife

If you want to go here, I recommend taking this ferry early in the morning to make the most of your day. That said, your best bet is to stay overnight so you have plenty of time to discover Gran Canaria’s main attractions.

For example, the Maspalomas Dunes are a 990-acre nature reserve and an iconic part of Gran Canaria’s terrain. You should also check out the capital city of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria as well as Nublo Rural Park, which is known for its interesting rock formations. If you have time, walk through the Tilos de Moya or Tamadaba Natural Park, and explore the charming mountain village of Tejeda.

Here is our guide on Tenerife by ferry in case you decide to travel to the Canary Islands by boat.

That’s it from me! Now you know the best things to do in Tenerife, and beyond. I hope this guide helps you plan your perfect trip to one of the best Canary Islands. Of course, don’t hesitate to leave me a comment with any of your questions or suggestions. Have a safe and wonderful time on Tenerife!

Share with your friends


Hey there, I'm Ascen, your personal trip planner on a mission to help you craft the most incredible adventure of your life. While I'm based in Las Vegas, you won't find me there often. As a full-time traveler, I'm always on the go, exploring new destinations and capturing the world through my lens. From the enchanting shores of Almeria, Spain, where I grew up, to the far reaches of the globe, I'm here to provide you with detailed travel guides and practical tips to make your trip planning a breeze. Find out more about me here.
Don't miss out...

6 replies on “25 Best Things to Do in Tenerife, Canary Islands

    • Ascen Aynat says:

      Hi Maria,
      Thanks so much! I’m always finding something new to do in Tenerife every time I visit! 🙂

  1. Ingrid R. says:

    Great article!!! It really sounds like a wonderful place to visit and so many things to do. I had known idea of what else Tenerife could offer besides the beaches.

  2. Diana GS says:

    This is the BEST article I have ever read regaring traveling to Canary islands!

    IMPRESSIVE!! It has every detail, personal view, way to travel, discounts, booking suggestions, eating.. everything.
    Please thank the author/s, because this is just wow. Thank you so much!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.