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Where to stay in Tenerife – a guide to the best places to stay on the Island of Eternal Sunshine

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Most holiday-makers are drawn to the islands southern tourist hubs; attracted by the allure of the luxury resorts, attractions, entertainment and lively nightlife. For those who want a quieter escape the northern and western coasts are home to some hidden jewels. <span style="text-decoration: underline;"></span>

Joe Cawley

My Destination local expert on


Playa de las Americas


Tenerife’s main holiday center, Playa de las Americas, has undergone an extensive makeover, replacing clichéd tourist tat for designer labels, international dining and extravagant landscaping that at times will make you feel as though you are in Vegas. Golden sands and turquoise waters coupled with a thriving and energetic nightlife scene make it the perfect place for those who want to enjoy the best of both worlds.


Los Cristianos


Los Cristianos has grown from a quaint fishing village into a popular destination for families and mature travelers. For those who enjoy a spot of retail therapy the pedestrianized streets of Los Cristianos are home to an array of shops selling everything from souvenirs to sporting goods. For entertainment during the day there is a variety of aquatic activities including numerous water sports, whale and dolphin watching and fishing trips while Las Aguilas Jungle Park is only a short drive away. Los Cristianos is also home to two large beaches, one with a free service for those with limited mobility featuring specially adapted wheelchairs and a lifeguard to accompany less able visitors while they go for a dip.


Costa Adeje


Costa Adeje is the new and upmarket face of Tenerife, oozing class and boasting an expansive coastal stretch of stylish hotels and modern attractions. This area is distinctly chic making it the ideal destination for the discerning sun seeker. Costa Adeje has unparalleled facilities and endless water based activities including sailing, jet skiing and parascending. To keep the kids, and some adults, entertained there is also go-karting, ten pin bowling and a seven-screen cinema. Costa Adeje is also home to superb golf courses and a variety of elegant spas.


Santa Cruz


Santa Cruz, Tenerife’s capital city, is a popular stopover for cruise ships. The city is bursting with shops, markets, botanical gardens, art galleries and restaurants to suit every taste – a fantastic spot for a city break and of course the best place to experience Carnaval! To escape the tourists, the locals’ beach of choice is the palm-studded Playa de las Teresitas which can be reached by bus number 910. The waves here are gentle, making it a nice family beach.


Quieter resorts and hidden gems


Close to the three main resorts of the south are charming towns and villages such as El Medano and Los Abrigos, a picturesque fishing harbor boasting fantastic quayside restaurants. Inside the Teide National Park there is only one hotel, the Parador de las Cañadas, perfect for those who enjoy nature and want a break from the beaches for a couple of days. Much of Tenerife’s northern coast remains fairly undeveloped. The town of Garachico is arguably the jewel of this region with cobbled streets, a small harborside fort and rock pools formed by a volcanic eruption in 1706. The Hotel San Roque is a boutique hotel offering beautiful rooms and a delicious breakfast. Puerto de la Cruz in the north is kept tropically lush by cooler temperatures and occasional winter rainfall and is surrounded by banana plantations and vineyards; perfect for wine enthusiasts. Los Gigantes, located on the west coast, offers glorious sunshine and beautiful beaches without the crowds of the south. Moving down the coast you will find a quiet, traditional fishing village called Alcala, a fantastic place for those who want a more authentic experience. Off the Island’s west coast lies La Gomera, a small green island carved up by deep valleys and blanketed with forests. This island is fantastic for either a daytrip or a longer stay.