True: if it’s the height of summer, you may not feel like shifting far from the (beach) bar stool or sunbed but, at other times, it’s good to know that there are plenty of activities available, ranging from the obvious gentle breaststroke in the sea to those that involve a backpack with muesli bars and several litres of water.
Getting Active on Tenerife
Possibly no other island in the archipelago offers so many opportunities to burn off calories than Tenerife. Windsurfing, kitesurfing, diving, hiking, fishing, golf and cycling are all not just possible here, but almost impossible to avoid. For water sports most facilities are concentrated in and around the southwestern resort areas, although the north coast has a wide variety of surf spots.
Tenerife is marvellous for hiking and climbing with plenty of scope, ranging from easy rambles to ravine hikes and mountain assaults. For the most dramatic scenery, choose from the many trails within the Parque Nacional del Teide, but remember if you wish to hike to the summit, you will need to reserve a permit well in advance (often several months ahead). Other attractive areas are the Anaga mountains in the northeast and around the Valle de la Orotava. There are numerous companies offering guided walks, as do the rangers at El Teide. Check the following websites and ask at any tourist office for details:
When you are virtually guaranteed perfect weather for 12 months of the year, you need to be out in the open. Hiking or walking is the most popular activity here and there is plenty of choice, ranging from gentle seafront strolls to adrenaline-fuelled ravine hikes, as well as climbs up Mt Teide. Alternatively, several world-class golf courses can help you practise your swing. Beaches in the larger resorts generally have a volleyball net and a game going on, while tennis clubs are quite plentiful. Throughout the resorts, the seafront is a fine setting for a jog or a spin, with the norm of a bike lane separate from traffic and pedestrians. Tenerife is also a major destination for cyclists, with roads of varying difficulty, from easy to punishing.
Many trails criss-cross the island; some are historical paths used before the days of cars and highways. The Parque Nacional del Teide and the Anaga mountains, in particular, offer a variety of superb hikes, ranging from easy walks to thrilling volcanic or mountain climbs. The beachside promenades are also great for strolling. Keen walkers should avoid the peak summer heat of July and August.
Getting Away From it All – Tenerife Spas
Holidaying can be tough, especially when there’s so darn much to see and do. Thank goodness for day spas.
- Aqua Club Termal Escape to this sophisticated aqua club, which claims to have the most complete urban thermal spa circuit on the island. It has 6000 sq metres of floor space, all dedicated to pampering. Don’t miss the Turkish bath.
- Vitanova Spa Located on the Costa Adeje, this spa offers massages and facials as well as scrumptious delights such as a chocolate massage, an anticellulite scrub with seaweed and grapes, and a Dead Sea mud wrap.
- Mare Nostrum Part of this major resort in Playa de las Américas and sure to spoil. There are enticing-sounding fungal wraps and electrotherapy for serious spa-goers, and massages and steam baths for those seeking to de-stress.
- Hotel Botánico Spa This exclusive hotel has a spa centre offering wellness therapies and treatments, plus a Thai pagoda surrounded by lush gardens for traditional Thai massage, and a hammam (Turkish-style steam bath).