I’ve been on holiday to Tenerife in the Spanish Canary Islands a couple of times and on both occasions opted to stay in Puerto de la Cruz in the north of the island. The north is generally wetter, so greener than the sunnier, drier south. Here are my suggestions for things to do when staying in Puerto de la Cruz.
What started as a parrot park has now morphed into a zoo with chimps, tigers, penguins, dolphins, Orca and sea lions. The parrot show is great fun with parrots doing all sorts of tricks such as roller skating and riding bicycles. It costs 32 Euro for ages 12+ and 21 Euro for kids aged 6 – 11. For an additional charge you can go on a Discovery Tour to see what goes on behind the scenes. The on site restaurant has a 3 course fixed price menu, currently costing 15 Euro.
This man made set of seven sea water pools, designed by Canarian designer Cesar Mannique, is my favourite place in Puerto de la Cruz. It’s been beautifully landscaped incorporating volcanic rocks. I’m not a very confident swimmer so the fact that I knew I could stand up in any part of the complex encouraged me to swim more than I’d dare to in the open sea. There are also shallow areas for kids. It costs 3.5 Euro for adults to get in and 2 Euro for kids.
This volcanic sandy beach lies to the west of Puerto de la Cruz. We walked there but it’d be a bit far with kids or a lot of beach gear. It was pretty windy and wavy the day we were there so I didn’t go into the sea. There are gardens bordering the beach.
The Botanic Garden offers some colourful displays and plenty of shade. We spent a few hours there reading in the cool shade. It was established in the 18th century with plants brought back from Spanish colonies.
Day trips from Puerto de la Cruz
This is the largest water park in Europe and is located close to Playa de las Americas in the south of Tenerife. You can have fun in a raft on the Meekong Rapids, experience the stomach lurching 28 metre drop off the Tower of Power or mosey down the Lazy River. It’s costs 30 Euro for ages 12+ and 19.5 Euro for kids aged 3 – 11. You can buy a twin ticket which also includes entry to Loro Parque which at 52 Euro for ages 12+ and 32 Euro for 6 – 11 years; this is cheaper than two single tickets.
The Mount Teide volcano is the 3rd highest volcano in the World and a UNESCO world heritage site. It’s Spain’s highest mountain and if you reckon you’re energetic enough to climb up all the way, you’ll need to apply for a permit. There is a cable car which will take you to within 170 metres of the summit. You need a special permit to ride the cable car right to the top.
Prices correct in July 2010.
Posted : Friday, August 6th, 2010 at 11:46
Karen Bryan is the founding editor of the UK based, multi author Europe a la Carte Blog which features Europe travel tips about the best places to visit in Europe.