Many people know about Tenerife, that beautiful patch of paradise that marks the end of the Canary Islands. If you asked someone to conjure up an image of Tenerife, they’d probably reply with talk of seaside resorts, crowded beaches, and colorful cocktails. That’s certainly one side of Tenerife – the southern side. But take a trek up north and you might just discover a completely different aspect to this scenic Spanish getaway, a tale of two islands as it were. Tenerife North isn’t a separate island by a stretch of the imagination, but the atmosphere up there is so different that it might as well be.
There’s no great distance between the upper and lower regions of the island; you can get from one to the other in under an hour. But the lush, rustic heartland of the north is a whole world away from the bright lights and drunk tourists of the south. It’s got an altogether more traditional vibe going on and wears its Spanish heritage on its sleeve. There’s still a lot of activity in Tenerife North, but it’s based more on cultural festivals than liquor-soaked nightclubs. If you’re looking for a secluded paradise which moves to its own rhythm then this could be the place for you. Check out BUCKiTDREAM and see if any other travelers have ventured north on this island paradise, then keep that BUCKiTDREAM planner close at hand as we guide you through the undiscovered paradise of Tenerife North!
Hike the Masca Walk The Masca Walk is not for the faint of heart; but for the adventurously minded, it’s one of the first excursions to hit up on the north side of the island. The trial begins in a mountain village, and unfolds from there, bringing you through a deep (and rather steep) gorge before leading you to the oceanside. The walk isn’t particularly long, but it’s quite demanding terrain, so taking it slow is definitely the way to go. Also, remember to wear comfortable, durable shoes; you’ll fit right in with the many mountain goats you’ll see hanging out as you make your way down. There are many different forms of wildlife hanging out around the walk, so keep your eyes peeled for some of the island’s native inhabitants. If you don’t feel like trekking back up, hop on a ferry to grab a tour of the nearby islands and land back in a nearby town.
Adventure Around Los Silos This central Tenerife North town is situated in the top corner of the island, and is a must visit spot for adventure tourists. Whether you like to clamber across challenging hiking trails or take to the sea to hang ten on some serious waves, Los Silos is the place for you. Surfing and hiking abound in and around the town; so you can grab your board and your boots and indulge in the best of both worlds (not simultaneously, of course). You can also take a dip in some volcanic rock pools, formed by the island’s explosive topography; or if you happen to be there on Sunday, peruse the fantastic local farmers’ market and pick up some sumptuous local produce for the week ahead.
Tackle the Volcano The stunning Mount Teide is the third highest volcanic structure in the world (and the most voluminous on the planet). It’s situated in Teide National Park, which offers over thirty different trails to eager hikers. You need a special permit to visit the summit, however, so make sure you book that one in advance. If you don’t fancy the hike up, you can avail of a breathtaking cable car ride to the peak, and if you don’t feel like coming back down right away, you can lay your head down at the free dormitory at the summit and catch one of the most stunning sunrises in the world.
Chow Down on the Local Grub There’s plenty of fantastic food to investigate once you’re all hiked out. One of the most popular joints in town is La Escuela Pizzeria, which serves up a delicious take on the classic Italian dish. It’s open from Thursday to Sunday and there’s not a lot of room in this cozy little authentic restaurant, so get there early (around 7 p.m.) if you want to snag a table. Restaurante Luz Del Mar is a German-owned eatery who do a fantastic chessboard, while Restaurante Las Piscinas, a beautiful beachside club restaurant, is a great place to catch a sunset. Their steak is delivered to you on a hot plate, and you do the cooking honors yourself. For traditional Canarian food, the best place to head is El Mocán, which serves up delicious local favorites like chickpea soup, baby squid and goat dishes for very reasonable prices.
The northern region of Tenerife might not have the modern trappings of the south, but for a totally different trip, it’s well worth throwing it down on your bucket list. If you’re planning a tour of the Canaries, why not do both? You can explore the adventurous terrain of the north, then let it all hang loose in the south. As always, there are so many options and so much which lies waiting to be explored. Just make sure to snap lots of photos and share your adventures with your fellow BUCKiTDREAMERs!