With over 1,500km of stunning nature trails, hiking is a deeply rooted sport on the island of Tenerife. Local guide Valerio del Rosario describes the richness that is attracting more and more walking enthusiasts to Tenerife every year.
Tenerife, the biggest of the Canary Islands, is located in the Atlantic Ocean, 300km off the west coast of Africa and spread across an area of just 2,000 sq.km – about the size of the English county of Surrey. The island features a vast array of beautiful trails, settings and landscapes ideal for a hiking holiday. And the great advantage that Tenerife has over other destinations is the mild spring-like temperatures all year round, which make hiking a delight both in summer and winter.
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Valerio del Rosario is a local guide and hiking enthusiast with more than 15 years experience. Professionally certified as a hiking guide and heritage Interpretation expert, Valerio considers himself very fortunate to have the opportunity to feed his true passion every day: showing visitors the beauty of the island.
Valerio is the director of El Cardón NaturExperience, a Tenerife-based outdoor...
At 3,718 metres, Mount Teide is Spain’s highest peak and the third largest volcanic cone in the world. It is without question Tenerife’s number one hike, and one of the most exciting anywhere in Europe. The path 7 from Montaña Blanca to the summit of the volcano will take you from a barren desert landscape to the cool heights, with stunning views across Tenerife and its neighbouring islands.
Hiking through one of the world’s last indigenous laurel forests (or laurisilva) is a wonderful experience. A recommended path in this area is the PR TF 10 Cruz del Carmen – Punta del Hidalgo (10.4 km), offering rugged landscapes and towering cliffs battered by the Atlantic Ocean.
The Malpaís de Güímar, covering an area of 290 hectares on the eastern side of the island, was formed by a series of volcanic eruptions. The biggest volcanic cone here is Montaña Grande (“Big Mountain”), 276 metres high, which provides a great vantage point to view the lava flows that shaped this magnificent landscape.
The lush Orotava Valley on the northeastern flanks of Mount Teide occupies a place of honour in the geography of the island and offers striking views of the volcano, best seen from the PR TF 35 Mamio – Pinolere route. The 13km route is fairly challenging.
This path (PR TF 43) starts in the northern town of Garachico and takes you to Tenerife’s most active volcanic area, where Montaña Chinyero is located. The mountain’s cinder cone was formed by an eruption that took place in 1909.
Best times to go:
It may seem a cliché, but with springlike temperatures all year round, any month is good for hiking here. Having said that, I would personally recommend the spring and autumn, when the island is quieter, and visitors may catch the spectacle of Teide National Park in bloom, for example. Also, those belonging to a professional hiking association should definitely come in March 2015 for the first Tenerife Walking Festival. Those interested can register online. Whenever you visit Tenerife, there are plenty of companies offering guided hikes with local experts to help you make the most of the trip.
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