Beaches of Tenerife
From all Canarian Islands, Tenerife is the bathing island par excellence; Numerous beaches at all sides of the island invite to sunbath and splash in the water. The natural beaches are typically pitch-black lava beaches, but there are also other sand colours at many artificially arranged beaches.
Nearly everywhere in the island one can enjoy a very good water quality. The beaches of the south west of the island are mostly windless, while in the southeast there are waves and wind during the whole year. If one lies on the beaches of the northern part of the island, one can enjoy an unadulterated view to the sea, as the sun is at one's back.
Have good fun during the beach tour through Tenerife; We start at the southwest of the island and continue in clockwise direction.
Playa de los Cristianos
Beside Playa de las Américas, Los Cristianos is the second important tourist centre in the southwest of Tenerife. Although the place has only a few thousand inhabitants and therefore it is in this concern as big as the place located in the northeast El Médano, it seems to be a big city because of the numerous hotel and appartment complexes. Today it is hard to imagine that the place some countless years ago before the airport Aeropuerto del Sur was opened, it was only a little fisher village. Los Cristianos is located at the southwest tip of Tenerife (see big map).
Los Cristianos has a home beach that is approximately 1 km long where the fisher village is directly connected to. Behind the fisher village there is a little ferry harbour from which one can go for example to the island La Gomera. Behind the beach there is a boardwalk with the typical shops and restaurants that make it to be a touristical place. Here, there is a lively hustle and bustle. Unfortunately, one is here continuously appealed for the purpose of advertisement for restaurants, partys, etc. Coziness is in Los Cristianos out of question.
In the numerous alleyways that lead from the harbour boardwalk in direction to the north, one finds a lot of colourful shops and thousands of drifters. The beach of Los Cristianos has a grey sand that was artificially provided; it is hard to bath there comfortably as the fishing harbour is too close to it. For those who really want to relax at the beach, the beach of the neighbour place that can be reached by foot, Playa de las Vistas, is recommended.
Playa de las Vistas
While the local beach of Los Cristianos is very conveniently located, due to the adjacent harbour it does not come across as inviting to have a bath there. Between the place Los Cristianos and the touristical centre Playa de las Américas, the beach Playa de las Vistas was artificially arranged. On a length of 1,5 km, the beach of light sand is extended. Several moles efectuate a protection from the waves of the sea in order that the beautiful sand is not flushed away.
The beach straight connects with Los Cristianos an. Thus, one can walk to there. Here, there is everything what a bather's heart desires: deck chairs for people who love comfort and devices for water sports for the more active people. Here, one also finds some quietness after the lively hustle and bustle that dominates at the boardwalk of Los Cristianos.
Playa de las Américas
In the southwest of the island, at only a few kilometres distance from Los Cristianos, there is the touristical centre Playa de las Américas. This is not only the name of the beach but also of the huge and permanently growing touristical place. Playa de las Américas was once a little place; today, the city goes wide up the hills and really ends at the motorway. This place can definetely not be described as a beautiful and relaxing one. Here, people who want action and fun - the whole night through - make holiday.
The real beach is extended over two bays that were artificially arranged that offer a lot of lying areas. Behind the beaches there is a long extended boardwalk where one can find any kind o shops and locals. Right behind it, one hotel complex ranks after the next; appartment complexes, shopping centres, big restaurants, shopping posibilities, etc. - everything can be found.
Blessedly, while lying on the beach of Playa de las Américas one hardly notices the hustle and bustle in the background. Those that already live close to the beach are lucky; as there are no parking places at all. On the beach, one lies comfortably on the fine lava sand. Toilets and showers are available, but nothing is for free.
Playa de la Arena
A few kilometres at the south of the Giants (Los Gigantes) one finds the two places of holiday that are grown together, Playa de la Arena and Puerto de Santiago. The beach of Playa de la Arena is one of the most fascinating of the whole island: the sand is pitch-black and extremely fine. Those who spread their towel there, find themselves repeatedely playing with the fine and clean sand.
But not only the sand is clean but also the water. Playa de la Arena is considered as a place with the best water quality of Tenerife. Unfortunately, there is no use for free of the sanitary arrangements. But for a few euros one gets showers, toilets and changing cabins right at the beach. Behind the beach there is a little promenade with restaurants and ice cream sellers. It is very nice to pace there up and down.
Playa de la Arena has a further particularity: the ground runs very fast and cliffy down to the sea. This why already by a light wind, the waves overturn themselves so tremendously, that there is a regular prohibition of bathing that many tourists consider as an invitation to bath; At good wind conditions, the waves of 2 metres height start to beat at one. It is a big challenge, but dangerous for kids to go against them.
Playa de San Marcos
Now here comes an absolute insider tip: numerous vacationers drive in the north of the island on the way from Puerto de la Cruz to Garachico, either to see the dragon tree, to get to the western end of the island or to make a round trip through the Teno mountains. The place San Marcos is normally not even noticed as an exit option from the main road.
From the main stretch one drives a few kilometres down to San Marcos. The little place is located in a cliffy bay that widely protects it against the wind and waves. At the very bottom, one finds a beautiful beach with pitch-black sand. During the week, the beach is practically extincted; but the restaurants and bars at the beach are opened. At the week-end, it teems with local people who of course know this bathing paradise.
The fine volcano sand is very nice to lie on, the water is so clear that I repeatedly swallowed it when I wanted to stand on the seabed that seemed to be so close. At only a few metres distance from the beach there is a big parking place on which one can place the car for free on a shady place during the week. Those who arrive late in the week-ends, have simply bad luck.
What a shame for the touriscal centre Puerto de la Cruz: the city has no real local beach; most of the tourists have fun in a huge public pool complex, but the real beach Strand Playa de Martiánez is practically not accepted.
So that Puerto de la Cruz nicht is not somehow called the tourist city without a decent beach, in the western side of the city a huge city beach has been arranged, the Playa Jardín, what means translated: beach garden. The beach is approximately 1 km long and has been arranged with dark lava sand. An artificial riff makes sure that the sand that was carried with difficulty is not taken back by the sea.
At the Playa Jardín there is much space duting the week to spread oneself out. Unfortunately, showers and sanitary arrangements are missing; Right behind the beach there is a huge tropical garden, this is why the name of the beach is Playa Jardín, beach garden. Here, one finds beautiful palms and other tropical plants. It is fun to walk through this garden, as one repeatedely discovers some fascinating plants. In order to see some pictures of this Garden, click Puerto de la Cruz.
Playa de las Teresitas
An absolute insider tip for vacationers in Tenerife is the beach in San Andrés, quite far in the northeast of the island. The place San Andrés has several thousand inhabitants, but has nearly nothing to do with tourism. Quite less tourists get lost that far into the north east of Tenerife. The trip to San Andrés is also not very pleasant, as therefore one has to cross the whole capital Santa Cruz de Tenerife.
But those who take this strain or is coming anyway from a round trip through the Anaga nountains, will be rewarded with one of the most beautiful beaches of Tenerife. With a length of 2 kilometres, the Playa de las Teresitas is the longest beach of the island. It was artificially arranged in the year 1970. Several vessels provided the most light desert sand form the sahara; numerous palms have been planted, so that today, the beach appears to be caribic.
During the week, one is nearly alone in this long beach. In the week-ends, thousands inhabitants of the capital stream into this lovely spot of the island. The beach offers a lot of space to spread oneself out and to play around. Also, numerous parking places are right behind the beach. There, there are also a lot of restaurants and kiosks. It is possible to rent some deck chairs right at the beach.
In order that the light sahara sand is not flushed back by the sea, the whole beach has been protected by a long extended mole. Thus, one has the feeling to swim in a giant sea pool. The water is clear and clean. Of course it is a must to swim up to the mole and climb up the stones. In the Playa de las Teresitas young and old people have good fun; A visit to this beach is highly recommended, but in no case at the week-end.
Playa del Médano
At the south east of the island at only a few kilometres from the airport, there is the place El Médano. On one side, the place is known because of its endless long beaches, and on the other side because of its good wind conditions. The place El Médano has only a few thousand inhabitants. Although the place had the best conditions to become a huge touristical centre, in El Médano mainly live only local people. What makes the place so famous, why is the place so well known in the world in certain circles?
In El Médano there is always a high to middle high wind. This is the reason why the place developed to be an absolute mecca for windsurfing. The place even belongs to the top 10 best surfer paradises worldwide. Here, not only vacationers who want to learn to surf in one of the numerous surf schools there, but here also surfs the world elite of the professional surfers.
For a normal vacationer at the seaside, the beach of El Médano is quite uncomfortable, as the wind permanently blows a lot of sand in one's face. But it is real big fun to watch the surfers in the water. I have never seen some windsurfers gliding over the water with such a velocity. Thus, in the Playa del Médano one mainly sees enthusiastic windsurfers and lonely girl friends watching their lovers riding on the waves...
Playa de Tejita
The Playa de Tejita still belongs to the place El Médano; Those who feel uncomfortable in Playa del Médano due to the permanent wind will find in Playa de Tejita some protection of the wind. The beach belongs to the longest ones of Tenerife. It extends in a length of 1 kilometre beneath the airport. In the north east, the beach is limited by the red mountain of a height of 171 m named Montaņa Roja. During the week, the Playa de Tejita is nearly deserted. The few bathers are concentrated right at the red rock, as it provides protection against the wind. There, it is also possible to rent some deck chairs.
On this beach, one can really relax if one needs calmness. By walking the beach up and down, one nearly feels to be in a desert island. Occasionally, a beach jogger comes across. The Playa de Tejita is located right beneath the airport Aeropuerto De Tenerife Sur. It is a fascinating spectacle to see the planes taking off and landing in immediate proximity.
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Copyright: Patrick Wagner, www.tourist-guide.biz