Tenerife Top 10 Essential Activities

1. Mount Teide National Park

The backbone of the island of Tenerife is the volcano known as Mount Teide (Pico del Teide in Spanish) which last erupted in 1909. The summit is 3,718-metre (12,198 ft) and is the highest peak in Spain. The volcano and its moonscape surroundings was declared a National Park in 1954 and a World Heritage Site in 2007.
A must see experience, a Cable Car ride goes from the car park to near the summit, with fantastic views of the moonscape caldera, the whole island and beyond. Unfortunately, the path to the summit itself is by permit access only, but this does not distract the experience. The national park has numerous trails through the moonscape and further hikes onto the pine forests that rest below the caldera.

Mount Teide Cable Car Information

Excursions are available from Los Cristianos by vendors on the sea front, alternatively if you have a car then enjoy the lovely drive up through the pine forests.

A car journey of around 43KM taking a bit over an hour

2. Visit the Tenerife Theme Parks

Tenerife has two of Europe's top theme parks.

Siam Park is a water park near Los Cristianos / Playa Las Americas

A fantastic day out, this Tenerife water park is one of the world’s best from a multitude of water slides and coasters, winding pathways through its Thai Jungle theme with rivers and fish, pools with artificial waves and much more. Whatever your age, Siam Park will delight you.
There is a free bus service from Los Cristianos and Las Américas.
These links will provide more information:

Check out the excellent YouTube Video:
Siam Park Water Slides

Tenerife Siam Park information
Siam Park Rides information

Loro Parque is a Theme Park and Zoo near Puerto de la Cruz in the north of Tenerife.

The world’s largest collection of parrots and other wildlife attractions including orcas, dolphins, sea lions and penguins live in its beautiful tropical gardens. A wonderful sight is the underwater tunnel that runs through the aquarium. See birds in their natural habitat with the new Katandra Treetops and take the young ones to "Kinderlandia” - children's playground or visit the parrot baby station. This is a full day out with plenty to entertain all the family.

Loro Park Tenerife information

Las Águilas Jungle Park This jungle park is few miles inland from Los Cristianos, offers the real jungle experience with around 300 animals with daily shows of exotic birds, birds of prey and sea lions. Besides the jungle and animals, there is the Jungle Raid with a 300 metre circuit via ropes, bridges and tunnels and the 800-metre-high speed bob track - loads of fun for the kids. There is a free bus service from Los Cristianos and Las Américas.

Las Águilas Jungle Park Information

3. Explore the Underground Lava Caves

Cueva del Viento (Cave of the Wind) is a 17km (10 mile) labyrinth of underground tunnels formed by lava flows from the nearby volcano Pico Viejo, located in Icod de los Vinos, in the northeast of Tenerife. It is the fifth largest lava cave in the world and the largest in Europe and provides fine examples of Lava Cascades, Stalactites and lava lakes. A well designed and informative guided tour including visitor centre will inform you about the Geology, the Volcanoes, the Botany, and Local History of the area. Long trousers and good foot-ware are essential. Daily tours are available and reservations essential.

Cueva del Viento Information

4. Whale Watching

In the warm Atlantic water between Tenerife and La Gomera, the rich warm waters are full of marine life, where colonies of bottle-nosed dolphins and pilot whales feed on a constant tide of fish making this one of the best places on the planet to see these mammals in their natural habitat.

Check out the operators from the harbour at Los Cristianos.

There seems to be good reviews of the Travelin' Lady here:

Travelin' Lady Information
Travelin' Lady Facebook Page

5. Explore just a few of the many Beaches

Tenerife has some beautiful beaches and coastlines.

Playa de Las Vistas
Located just west of Los Cristianos Harbour in the direction of Playa De Las Americas, this fine long beach of around 800 metres of golden sand imported from the Sahara is divided into 2 bays. A blue flag beach with excellent disabled facilities - a beach that caters for all ages. It is protected by a water breaks at each end, reducing the size of the waves making it great for children. Beach water sports (Jet ski, banana boat, paddleboat) are available plus Sunbeds & parasols, changing rooms, toilets & showers, Red Cross Centre with life guards and Beach flags indicating the safety of swimming. Restaurants, pubs, cafés and a shopping centre is situated directly along the promenade.

Playa del Camison
Located to the west of Las Vistas beach in Playa de Las Americas this fine golden yellow beach features soft, gentle aquamarine waters. The middle of the beach can be quite stoney but either side is fine. Get there early as its only a small beach and can get quite busy. The beach has facilities and services available including sun bed and parasol hire, toilets and showers and along the promenade there are loads of competitively priced cafes, bars and restaurants.

El Medano Beach
One of the longest beaches in Tenerife, this beach runs from the town of El Medino to Montaña Roja (Red Mountain) via a boardwalk. Ideal for walking, it can be a bit windy at times, attracting Surfers and kite-boarder. But it is a beautiful stretch of beach and along with El Medino town itself, well worth a visit.

Just beyond Montaña Roja is:

Playa de La Tejita
A long golden beach stretching for around 1.5Km, again can be windy at times but the views are exceptional. The beach is easy to access by car, and there are parking spaces in both ends of the beach where there are sun-loungers and parasols. However bring your own food and drink.

Further away are:

Playa De Las Teresitas
Situated around 7 Km north East of the capital Santa Cruz at San Andres, this 1.5Km beach with it palm trees and golden sand is a very popular destination. Parking is aplenty and the sea is shallow, protected from the strong waves by breakers. There are numerous bars and the nearby San Andreas offers many seafood restaurants.
Perhaps a quick swim and some lunch before heading inland along the TF-12 into the beautiful Anana Mountains.

Playa de Benijo
Situated on the Punta de Teno, this very scenic beach has black Volcanic sand with gorgeous sunsets. You can park at the restaurant El Mirador at the entrance of the village of Benijo and go down the steps (steep) to the beach. Not a beach for swimming in, but just to admire the power of the Atlantic Ocean as large waves crash in. There is just one road going there from Santa Cruz de Tenerife (the TF-12), crossing the beautiful Anaga mountains range, then take the TF-134 through a road tunnel onto the coastal side of the Mountains giving spectacular views. Bring food and drink with you as this is a completely natural beach with no commerce. However, you can easily eat or drink in nearby village of Benijo (or other villages on the road, Taganana, Almaciga). The whole of this coastline is just breath-taking, even if you don’t walk to the beach and all overlooked by the beautiful Anana Mountains.

Important: Please check the following link to recap on Water Safety on Tenerife beaches which includes cold water shock and the meaning of Beach Flag indicators:

Staying safe in Tenerife waters

6. Santa Cruz

Spend a day or more in the lovely Tenerife capital Santa Cruz. Explore the museums, plazas, parks, visit art museums, theatres and of course some fine dining.
Sites such as:
Museum of Man and Nature
Municipal Museum of Fine Arts
Military Museum
The Guimerá Theatre
Visit the famous beach: Playa de Las Teresitas
Visit: César Manrique Maritime Park
The Auditorium

Buses leave Los Cristianos every 30 minutes, however the direct bus route Number 110 (Santa Cruz - Costa Adeje) leaves on the hour and takes around 1 hour to reach Santa Cruz.
Once there a tram system gets you round parts of the city - see details below:

Santa Cruz Metro

7. Masca

Visit the beautiful Masca village and valley. Situated in the scenic Teno area of Tenerife, the area offers many walks and stunning scenery.
There are Excursions from Los Cristianos to Masca (many include the pretty town of Garachico and Icod de los Vinos - Drago Tree as well) available from many vendors on the sea front.
If you have a car and feel more energetic, then you could walk down the Masca valley to the coast. For more information - see Walking and Hiking page.

8. Anaga Mountains

If you have a car, why not go and visit the Anaga mountains and take a stroll or drive through the mountains and follow the road to Benijo where there is some fine sea food restaurant along this amazing north coast. The Anana Mountain is a sub-tropical rainforest, and wooded with Laurel and many wild flowers with beautiful views of the north coast of Tenerife.
There are many walks / nature trails in these mountains for all abilities - go to the park centre in Cruz del Carmen.

9. Visit Playa San Juan

Beautiful spanish fishing village with lovely sea front, beaches and some nice restaurants. Not too far from Los Cristianos - around 25KM and just over a 30 minutes car drive or take a bus - catch the 477 or 473 bus. These buses run every 40 minutes from Los Cristianos, Destination: Los Gigantes at a fare of 3.60E each way. Go to Titsa Website for Timetable for these bus services.
Tenerife public buses
Just off the Harbour of this delightful spanish fishing village is an imported sandy beach with some pebbles. The whole area is lovely with a traditional seaside village, a harbour, a lovely promenade and many places to eat at very reasonable prices. A great place to spend the day and chill out.
On wednesdays (9am-2pm) there is an outdoor market selling fruit, vegetables, pastries and quality craftsmanship goods

10. Visit Nearby Island - La Gomera

Catch a ferry to La Gomera from Los Cristianos Harbour - a 50-minute sea trip and visit the capital of San Sebastian. Alternatively, there are coach excursions from Los Cristianos which include a tour of the island including the Garajonary National Park and the beautiful forest of “El Cedro"

Further Ideas

Check out the excellent YouTube Video: Tenerife Travel Guide: Top 10 Things to do

For other suggestions then please visit the following websites - amongst many that are available:

Tenerife Top Attractions
Tenerife Guide