Señoras y señores, 4 out of 5 from the Canary Islands we discovered and with the post of today we finally come to the end of our Cruise “Canary Islands 2016”.
This time it is all about our Tenerife holidays.
Last time we visited the second smallest isle La Gomera and this time it is the largest one, Tenerife!
Interesting facts about Tenerife
The isle is located quite central within the Canary Islands and reminds (at least me) a bit of a small duck 🙂
Around 170 miles away from West Africa and around 1.000 miles away from Central Spain, the isle owns also the the Pico el Teide, the highest mountain of Spain with a height of 3,700 meters.
Tenerife is about 12 millions years old and still volcanic active.
Approximately One million citizen are employed mainly in the tourism sector or pending on this.
Mainland Spaniards are making ⅓ of this group.
The Great Crisis
For a long time Tourism was booming on Tenerife until the great Crisis also hit the island in 2008 and caused a collapse in the numbers of visitors.
Especially the building industry , which hit the anyway overheated Spanish market had very hard times. All was built up and planned for yearly growth and now this.
As an additional fact it happened that inter continental flights became more and more cheap and Tenerife is now competing with other travel destinations worldwide.
But slowly the island is recovering, which is good and important, since Tenerife offers endless possibilities to spend a fantastic vacation time.
Our Tenerife holidays
On July 13th 2015 we discovered from the cabin of our cruise ship AIDAcara the port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, the capital of Tenerife, located in the north east region of the isle.
Tenerife truly offers you everything – a paradise and secret tip for surfers, hiking-tours to Pico El Teide, a visit in the bird park “Loro Parque”, various old towns, nature reservoirs and wonderful forests.
Our program for today should be ideally a bit of everything. So we decided to charter a Taxi in the port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife for the whole day and make a cruise through the different landscape zones of Tenerife up to El Teide.
There are fixed taxi prices, but the further away we went from the cruise ship the more negotiation possibilities we had. We finally came to a price of 90,- EUR for a whole day or more concrete for the tour to Pico El Teide and back. Related to the distance of around 100 miles and a spent time of around 6 hours – fair enough!
With a taxi to
You can reach El Teide from nearly every point of the isle very good, since Tenerife has a pretty good traffic network. From many locations there are busses going, of course way cheaper than with the taxi, but therefor without the possibility to stop where you want, it takes longer and you have less privacy.
Some of the really interesting things next to visiting El Teide was the beholding of changing landscapes and climate zones in realtime.
In the valleys you have nearly everywhere green zones, a lot of vegetation with growing of plenty of plants including diverse types of palms.
After we left Santa Cruz, we went the serpentines pretty straight way up high into the heart of the isle.
Pico El Teide is located quite central in the heart of the isle and on the way starting from the coast the vegetation starts to change into wide forests with lush grasses.
This zone thins out the further you go on and the green forests disappear and make place for shrubs and grasses.
Of course sun is shining more and more intense and if you are on your way on Tenerife somehow “without roof”, it is essential to drink a lot water.
The sun can even burn that intense, that you need coverage in any case as soon as you stay bit longer anywhere outside. Just in case you do not want to get a sunburn.
So this is how we went on with some stops and breaks here and there for a small foto-session.
If you take the road TF-24 on the way to El Teide you pass except San Cristobal de La Laguna no other cities.
Yes, some points of civilization here and there for refreshments and buying some local specialities (you have to try the “tenerific” honey!).
Also here important: Do not forget to take enough water with you!
We made our first big stop at the Centro de Visitantes de El Portillo, the information center of Pico El Teide.
As a visitor you find here all you need to know about the highest mountain of Spain, its history and much more.
We watched a short documentary about the volcanic development history and visited the local museum.
All in all this was a good introduction for the visit of El Teide, even though we did not stay longer than around half an hour.
The landscape and vegetation is here already significantly different.
Lots of rugged slopes and hills and black lava rocks.
Moon landscape on Tenerife
It hasn’t been that far from here until we finally arrived on our top of El Teide, where the cable car to the very top starts.
A surreal landscape as far as the eye can see.
We finally reached our goal. What a sight!
A magnificent and unique landscape. Definitely worth a finale of our Cruise Canary Islands!
There would have been the possibility to take the cable car to the top of the mountain, but that was not our intention anyway for today.
Not to mention, that we had the complete wrong clothing and no provisions at all.
And by the way – to reach the top at all, you need to get an official permission beforehand, which you can apply from here: www.reservasparquesnacionales.es
Not the end of all things
Yes, dear sun…mention already quite some time here. From up here she was burning merciless in all its power.
We truly enjoyed anyway our moments here on top of the highest mountain of Spain in this surreal landscape, before we finally made our return to the port and our cruise ship.
I would love to tell you here at this point more experiences about surf beaches, the Loro Parque, wonderful old towns and much more. But this needs to wait until we re-visit Tenerife again. Next time then with more time to spend.
For us, 10 fantastic Canary holidays on a dream cruise ended here.
As a resume we can determine once again that travelling on a cruise ship is an incomparable and relaxing kind of travelling.
Many different locations in quite a short time, high comfort and standard 24/7, great food at any time, fitness possibilities and a lot of relaxation.
Simply a perfect Allround holiday!
Travelpeeps, we will report next time, not from the high sea but very grounded from our new home Switzerland with magnificent impressions from the picturesque Ascona and Lugano.
Always travelling with the Bird – Hendrik