Hiking in Tenerife

The contrasts of the South of Masca and the north of Anaga

La isla de Tenerife belongs to the Canary archipelago which is located in the Atlantic ocean. Tenerife is the most populated island and the most touristic one so many villages are overcrowded. The best way to know the island is hiking in Tenerife with our help!

Generally, is much more beautiful for those who want to hike in the island to explore the north and central area. In this last area  is located the National park of Teide, where the geology is exceptional. Though being a small island, it has a maximum altitude of 3718m and offers many different types of hikes and difficulty. Hiking in Tenerife is a great option to avoid the touristic resorts.

Practical Information

How to get

Is possible to arrive at Tenerife from the outside of the archipelago by plane and by boat.

With Trasmediterranea and Naviera Armas there are connections from Cádiz and Huelva.

The better option to take to fly to the island may vary depending from the place of departure. The southern Airport is the one that has more connections with Europe. The northern Airport has more national and regional connections.

From UK, Germany, Ireland and Spain, Ryanair is one of the airlines that have really cheap connections with Tenerife and other Canary Islands.

In Spain and France, the Spanish airline Vueling have daily connections from different cities and offer as well low prices.

From France, Switzerland and UK can be interesting to have a look to Easy Jet.

In the Scandinavian countries Norwegian and SAS have direct flights and for those who are under 26y.o can be interesting to check out the prices because in the price is already included a 23kg baggage. From Spain, Norwegian can be a good option as well.

How to get around

 

Renting a car in Tenerife can be a good option for travelling around the north coast and the summit area if the costs are shared. Cars can be rented for less than 15 euros per day and petrol is really cheap (below 1€/l in 2018).

In Tenerife, there are different roads where is not allowed to do hitchhike, those that the signal is in blue colour (motorways and dual carriageway. Anyways is possible to do it in the entrances of this roads always before the traffic signal that notices you are getting on the motorway. Can be really useful to go and ask directly to drivers in touristic parking lots or in petrol stations. Is maybe the hardest island to hitch-hike.

Public transport

There’s a good public transport network in all the island. The north and summit area are the parts where is harder to get with public transport of Tenerife. On the northern coast, there are only a few lines running and some of them once a day. For going to the National Park, there are only 2 different lines running from Orotava and Costa Adeje. The prices of the buses are not as cheap as expected, especially in the south where the tourism is focused. Google Maps works perfectly with the public transport option and shows the fastest way to go and schedule.

Notice that every time you change the bus you need to buy a new ticket, so for going from A to C stopping by B you will need to buy a ticket in the bus for going from A to B and from B to C afterwards. In case you can avoid changing lines is going to be cheaper cause every time you pay for a ticket you are already paying more than 1 euro for getting in. In the following link can be found the prices of the bus and the different routes that run the island. PricesLines

 

Accomodation

Wild camping or bivouac in Tenerife is regulated, as in other regions of Spain, by every town and rural municipality and it’s hard to know all the regulations but in general, is NOT allowed. Here we are not going to tell you where we stayed without being caught, we will post only the legal places to pitch your tent. In Tenerife, there are 13 camping areas where having a permission is completely free to stay with your tent for a maximum of a week. You can fill the form (only in spanish)  here. These areas are equipped normally with toilets and drinking water.

In the hiking areas, there are a few hostels you can find in Hostelworld that can be a great option after some days doing wild camping.

Airbnb can be as well a good resource in those cases where there’s not a hostel or when you are a group of 3 or more. You can get 25€ off for your next trip here!

 

Using Couchsurfing can be easier than in other islands due to the amount of population is living in Tenerife. At the north and in the summits area is almost impossible to have the experience.

What to see and do

Discover the wild north coast of Tenerife and the Natural Park of Anaga, the must be hiked area.

Explore the National Park of Teide and hike to the top of the summit or to the best viewpoint Alto de Guajara. Is possible to hike to the top of Teide only with a permission.

Delve into deep canyons of the south and east part of the coast. Try to avoid the ones that must be paid as Barranco del Infierno.

The south-west area has very impressive hikes around Masca and Los Gigantes. Hikes that cross the mountains through tunnels and showing the stunning views.

Weather

Tenerife has 3 parts that are way different, a very rainy and windy north, a rainy and foggy west area and the east and south part that is dry and sunny. The weather in the north and northwest of the island can be opposite to the east and south. Rainy days are focused during winter and during summer it doesn’t rain. Temperatures at sea level oscillate between 18-26ºC but in the summits area are way colder.  During winter temperatures can go from 5ºC to minus 10ºC at the summits and snow may fall.

When to go

The Canary Islands and how not Tenerife, are characterized by a wonderful weather, an endless spring. Any time is good to explore the Canary Islands. The average temperatures in summer are between 23 – 25ºC and in winter between 17 – 19ºC. Because of these, it can be a good getaway during winter though it is the touristic high-season though is the rainy season.

In the rainy areas can be very rainy during winter. If you are thinking about going to hike to the summit of Teide or to the north of the island, avoid going from the end of November to February. It doesn’t have to be raining during all days but is the season when the storms come and go.

Dangers and tips

Be aware of the weather conditions while hiking and driving. Heavy rain causes flash floods in the steep valleys and rockfalls may occur, especially in the canyons of the south of Tenerife.

 In general, Tenerife is safe but if you are hiring a car, be careful with your belongings because there might be some thieves that try to steal the stuff that you carry on the car.

Protect your skin from the sun, all year round. Know when you will be able to refill your reservoir. Carry enough water, more during summer when temperatures can reach 40ºC. Avoid hiking during the midday.

There’s no danger of being attacked by animals. Only jellyfishes can hurt you while swimming especially during winter. Several beaches have very strong currents.