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Family Activities in Tenerife - From Mount Teide to Pine Forest Picnics

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Tenerife's mild climate facilitates a host of family activities all-year-round. You can choose between a visit to Teide National Park or take a whale and dolphin trip out to sea. A bevy of museums, theme parks, hiking trails, water sports, and zoos also offer fun times in the sun. It is worth noting that most restaurants are family-friendly.

Tenerife’s volcanic wonders

 

Tenerife’s volcanic landscape is one its most unique features. Mount Teide - Spain's highest mountain - towers over the surreal panorama of an ancient crater. Other volcanic phenomena include a “Lunar Landscape” in Vilaflor, or Cueva del Viento; stretching 17 kilometers, it is the longest lava tube in Europe.

 

Teide National Park

 

To see Mt Teide you can drive by car, take a bus tour, or a cable car and hike. Either way, a permit is required to summit. The visitors' centre in El Portillo has eye-opening videos about Tenerife's volcanoes.

 

Teide National Park

 

Teide National Park website

 

Cueva del Viento

 

The entrance to one of the largest lava tubes in the world lies in the village of Icod de los Vinos. Hard hats are supplied, but wear sensible shoes.

 

Calle Los Piquetes 51, 38430 Icod de los Vinos. Tel: + 34 92 281 5339

 

Cueva del Viento website

Water sports in Tenerife

 

Warm winter temperatures encourage year-round water sports. You can learn to surf in Playa de las Américas, or SUP (Stand up Paddle), sail, and kayak in Los Cristianos. In El Médano, winds favor windsurfing and kiteboarding. Some beaches offer parasailing and water scooter hire, and scuba diving is available around the island.

 

Escuela de Vela Los Cristianos

 

This sailing school in Los Cristianos also teaches SUP and kayaking. All ages are welcome, and English is spoken.

 

Playa de Los Cristianos, 38650 Arona. Tel: + 34 61 080 1200

 

Escuela de Vela Los Cristianos website

 

Surf centre Playa Sur

 

This family-run business has been in El Médano since the 1980s. All equipment is provided for windsurf lessons.

 

Calle La Gaviota s/n, 38612 El Médano . Tel: + 34 92 217 6688

 

Surf centre Playa Sur website

 

Theme parks and zoos in Tenerife

 

There are 2 water parks and a zoo in the south of the island, and a theme park and botanical gardens in the north. Youngsters love Pueblo Chico - a miniature village. In the Orotava Valley, Mesón el Monasterio is several attractions in one; including a network of restaurants, historical buildings, and gardens.

 

Mesón el Monasterio

 

Once a monastery, Mesón el Monasterio is great for keeping toddlers happy, while still enjoying good food. Try brunch at Café Mirador, which has sweeping views to the coast, before visiting the petting zoo.

 

La Montañeta 12, 38410 Los Realejos. Tel: + 34 92 234 0707 

 

Mesón el Monasterio website

 

Pueblo Chico

 

Pueblo Chico presents the island in miniature. Fun and educational, adults enjoy it as much as the 2-year-olds do.

 

Camino Cruz de Los Martillos 62, 38300 La Orotava . Tel: + 34 92 233 4060

 

Pueblo Chico website

 

Whale and dolphin watching in Tenerife

 

The waters off southwest Tenerife are home to resident pilot whales, as well as visiting dolphins and turtles. Boat trips depart from Los Cristianos, Puerto Colon, Los Gigantes, and Las Galletas. Environmental laws are very strict, so swimming with the whales and dolphins is not allowed under any circumstances.

 

Mustcat Catamaran Trips

 

Mustcat Catamaran boats depart from the fishing village of Las Galletas for 3 or 4½ hour trips.

 

Calle Dionisio Gonzalez 22, 38631 Las Galletas. Tel: + 34 92 217 0493

 

Mustcat Catamaran Trips website

 

Lady Shelley Whale and Dolphin Cruises

 

Lady Shelley is a motor vessel based in Los Cristianos. Transport to the departure point is provided for those staying elsewhere on the island.

 

Puerto Los Cristianos s/n, 38640 Arona. Tel: + 34 92 275 7549

 

Lady Shelley Whale and Dolphin Cruises website

 

Family-friendly museums and stargazing

 

Larger museums have interactive exhibits aimed at making learning fun for children. Tenerife's night skies are famously clear, attracting international astronomy projects. The Teide Observatory - one of the most important in the world - offers guided visits.

 

Teide Observatory

 

Situated at over 2,300 meters above sea level on Montaña Izaña, Teide Observatory offers tours in English and other languages from April to October.

 

Calle Vía Láctea s/n, 38200 La Laguna . Tel: + 34 92 232 9110

 

Teide Observatory website

 

El Castillo de San Cristóbal

 

This tiny museum is situated beneath Plaza de España amongst the ruins of the original city walls of Santa Cruz. It is home to the cannon that shot off the arm of the British Admiral Horatio Nelson.

 

Plaza de España s/n, 38001 Santa Cruz de Tenerife. Tel: + 34 92 228 5605

 

El Castillo de San Cristóbal website