Holiday Resorts in Tenerife
Although Tenerife isn’t all about beaches and resorts, it’s certainly got plenty of them, and fantastic ones at that. Whether you want cute and quiet like La Caleta or big and buzzing like Playa de las Americas, there are pockets of the island with your name on them. Here’s our guide to Tenerife’s most popular resorts.
In addition to the fantastic beaches, Tenerife boasts a great selection of resorts to explore, each with their own unique character and style. From mountain villages affording spectacular views to archetypal beach holiday towns, you're bound to find something to suit your tastes.
Costa Adeje is the new kid on the block in southern tourism. An amalgamation of everything stretching from Fañabe to Callao Salvaje, this is the place to park your suitcase if you like 5-star pampering and high-end shopping.
El Sauzal is the place to go if you’re in search of Tenerife without the tourism. Located on the north coast, you’re smack bang in the middle of wine country as well of the most lush and naturally colourful parts of the island. Camera and corkscrew are a must.
Guimar’s principle claim to fame as far as visitors are concerned is the famous pyramid park, but this pastoral haven halfway up Tenerife’s east coast holds many other lesser-known treasures, such as a cute harbour where you can buy seafood straight from the returning fishing boats.
A former fishing village in Costa Adeje, La Caleta is now a magnet for seafood lovers and those looking for ‘authenticity with ribbons’ i.e. a combination of real and man-made. The tapas restaurant on the rocks is a particularly recommended spot for a sundown drink and snack.
The main fishing harbour of the south has evolved into one of the most popular resorts in Tenerife. Two great beaches and a pedestrian shopping/restaurant area continue to draw a cosmopolitan crowd to Los Cristianos, who prefer a quieter base than neighbouring Playa de las Americas.
Named after the colossal sea cliffs that plunge into the briny, Los Gigantes is a man-made resort centred around a marina. Most of the shops and restaurants are located in a compact swirl of streets, while apartment blocks blanket the steep mountainside in swathes of white.
Playa de las Americas
Mention Tenerife and many people think of Playa de las Americas, a veritable playground of holiday facilities and attractions fronted by swathes of golden sand. Nowadays the south’s original resort has undergone a major facelift and is no longer just a Mecca for the nocturnal but also for families, golfers, shoppers and gastronomes.
With Playa de las Americas as the southern neighbour and Costa Adeje extending further north, Playa Fañabe is one of the busiest resort areas in the south. Expect a fun, family beach and a huge choice of accommodation, attractions and restaurants.
Playa La Arena
Part of a trio of neighbouring resorts in the northwest, Playa la Arena is a popular choice for those who like small-scale tourism with a local touch. A superb black sandy beach is the focal point for residents and holidaymakers alike.
Sandwiched between the cutesy hidden cove of El Puertito to the south and its big brother, Callao Salvaje to the north, Playa Paraiso is a quiet self-contained resort on the west coast. As well as plenty of British bars and restaurants, a spectacular saltwater lido is the centre of attention on hot, sunny days.
Puerto de la Cruz
Puerto de la Cruz was Tenerife’s first holiday centre and still draws a loyal following, particularly from the older set. A town of two halves (old and new) surrounded by lush vegetation, this large northern resort has plenty of attractions including the world famous Loro Park, a spectacular seafront lido and one of the island’s three casinos.
Jostling for space between Playa de la Arena and Los Gigantes, Puerto Santiago is a quiet resort popular with British holidaymakers and weekending islanders. The town is perfectly suited for exploring with Masca, Teide National Park and the playgrounds of the south all within half an hours’ drive.
Vilaflor is unfortunately overlooked by most Tenerife visitors as they drive past on their way to Mount Teide, which is a shame. As well as being the Canary Islands’ highest village it’s also one of its most attractive. Surrounded by pine trees and with flower bordered lanes, there’s a unique Alpine-like ambience in this quiet walkers’ paradise.