The 8 Best Hikes In Tenerife
A little ways off the coast of Africa you will find the Canary Islands of Spain. Amongst these is the beautiful island of Tenerife. Most people come to Tenerife to relax on the beaches during the day and hit the clubs at night. But there are some that come to experience it in a different way, hiking.
Tenerife offers some of the best hiking trails in the world. You'll find a great mix of unique landscapes, lush green forests, and trails for every fitness level. It seems no matter what trail you do on the island you have picked the right one.
You are going to want to hit the trails as quickly as possible, so you will need to store your luggage just as fast as you can. Look for a luggage storage location in Tenerife and drop your bags off there, including any extra hiking gear you don't need to bring along. Do make sure you pack water, food, and a first aid kit before heading out on a trek, no matter the difficulty level.
Our Top Hiking Trail Picks in Tenerife
When we say you can't go wrong picking a trail in Tenerife, we mean it. It seems they are all stunning and offer something unique. So how do you pick? We have made it easier for you with a list of the best Tenerife hikes from easy to difficult in no particular order.
Tenerife Roque de Garcia Loop
An easy hike that will take you around Pico Viejo and past some spectacular rock formations including a very large rock called "the Cathedral". The starting point of the hike is Mirador de la Ruleta viewpoint in the Roque de Garcia parking lot. There is very little elevation gain throughout the 2.5-mile hike, about 600 feet.
Depending on how often you stop to admire the unique volcanic landscape, the hike will take about an hour and a half. The trail is clearly marked and there is a spot with a trail leading to the top of Pico Viejo, which if you take it, will add time and difficulty to the hike. This hike in Teide National Park is one of those rare hikes that offer satisfying views throughout the hike.
Punta del Hidalgo to Chinamada and Cruz Del Carmen
This hike gives you some flexibility in both how much time and effort you want to spend. It can be done as an out-and-back or one-way hike from Punta del Hidalgo or Cruz del Carmen. Starting from sea level, the elevation gain is almost 2,500 feet with views of mountains, the ocean, and changing scenery from laurel forest to vineyards.
Starting from Punta del Hidalgo it is uphill to the cave town of Chinamada, where you can head back or continue on to Cruz del Carmen. This is the difficult direction with steep uphill climbs. Going the reverse route will give this hike a moderate rating while still being able to enjoy the incredible views. The versatility and beauty of this Tenerife trail make it one of the most popular on the island.
Doing the 12-mile hike as an out-and-back will take about 7-8 hours as there are a couple of interesting side trails through tunnels to add some variation to the hike. If you decide to get from point to point there are buses that will take you from Punta del Hidalgo to Cruz del Carmen no matter which town you are staying in.
Santiago del Teide to Masca
This easy trail may not seem like much when you first start out on it but just keep going and you will be rewarded with some absolutely gorgeous views. It is a point-to-point 5.25-mile path that will lead you up over a 1000-foot elevation gain and down more than 2000 feet to Masca. The trailhead is a little tricky to find (like most hikes in Tenerife) so download or pick up a trail map to help you out.
During the 3-hour hike, you can opt for a highly recommended detour up to Little Gala (Pico Verde) for a great view of the small town of Masca and the valley. As you descend through the laurel forest of the Teno Mountains there is a nice little surprise, a cafe for some refreshment with a stunning view.
To get back to Santiago del Teide you can hop on the 355 bus, but check the schedule as it doesn't run often. Or if you have the time and want more of those gorgeous Teno Mountains views you can always walk back.
Afur to Taganana Loop
A trek to build up an appetite for a healthy brunch, this beautiful hike is a moderately difficult circuit trail that will take 5-6 hours to complete. Starting in the small village of Afur, with less than 100 people, you will be taken through the striking Anaga Mountains. You will pass Tamadite Beach, one of the best on the island, which you can go down to but beware that it is too dangerous to swim there.
The route will take you through laurel forests and sheer cliffs to the historical Taganana with its incredible architecture. This is 7.5 miles of some of the best Tenerife hiking that you can do to experience the natural landscape of the island. With over 2,000 feet of elevation gain throughout the route, this is a nice hike that gives you a good workout.
Montana Blanca to La Rambleta
This is a serious hike and takes 5-6 hours just to ascend to the 5.1 miles to the endpoint at La Rambleta, the highest point people are allowed to go without a permit. The steep trail has an elevation gain of over 14,000 feet so you need to have a good fitness level to try this difficult trail. The air will be quite thin as you near the end of the route, making the climb even harder.
As hard as the climb is, the view of the remarkable volcanic landscape is simply staggering. If you don't have a permit to summit Mount Teide and you can take one of two trails to La Fortaleza or the Pico Viejo viewpoints. You will need proper hiking gear too, such as hiking boots and proper outerwear.
Before you reach the end of the trail, you will find the Altavista refuge, where you can spend the night with a prebooking. Although there are no warm showers, it does have warm and comfortable bedding.
Lunar Landscape Loop
Part of one of the oldest hiking trails in Tenerife, it was once used by the Guanches to travel across the island. Today, it is used to cross the Lunar Landscape. There are two starting points to choose from, either from Vilaflor or drive to the starting point at La Entrada a la Ruta a un Paisaje Lunar. The hiking trail is rated as moderate due to its length, however, you should have proper hiking boots or your feet will get sore.
The name of the hike comes from the unique rock formations found along the route through the beautiful pine trees, you can also see Gran Canaria to the southwest. The path is clearly marked and will take around 4 hours for the longer version which is about 6 miles. It gets very hot so bring plenty of water.
If you are looking for a cool and unique hike that also provides great views, this will fulfill your needs.
Bosque de los Enigmas Loop
This loop trail around "The Enchanted Forest" has an easy rating and will take around an hour and a half. If you follow the trail to the right from the starting point at the Cruz del Carmen Visitor Center or Zapata viewpoint the steeper portion will be downhill. If the weather is good you can wear sports shoes, however, if there has been any rain you will want hiking boots as it gets very slippery.
There is an elevation gain of only 300 feet over the 3.5 miles, but it goes up and down constantly with a couple of short steep parts. If you are hiking Tenerife with kids this trail in Anaga Rural Park is a good one to choose. It has plenty of information boards describing the flora of the laurel forest and is easily accessed by public transport. This is a relaxing and beautiful hike that is not too strenuous. Start the day here and then head back to Tenerife for more things to do with the kids.
Callejon de Teno and Baracan Summit
The Teno trail starts from Las Portelas in the El Palmar valley and is a circular route that will take you around Teno Rural Park and through Buenavista del Norte. The Steep climb at the beginning and the distance make this a moderately rated hiking trail. The route is around seven miles of being surrounded by the stunning natural reserve with its cliffs and laurel forests.
The round trip will take around 4 hours to complete, depending on how many stops you make taking pictures or for refreshment at the bar in Teno Alto. Any effort you feel you have exerted will certainly be rewarded once you reach the summit area of Baracan de Masca. This is one of the best hiking trails not just in Teno Rural Park but on the Island of Tenerife.
Easy Hikes in Tenerife
You don't have to climb a mountain or even a hill to enjoy Tenerife hiking trails, one of the best places on the island with easy hiking trails is Anaga Rural Park. In fact, it has the easiest set of trails for anyone to enjoy.
Trail of Senses
If you have young children or looking for a looping walk through a tranquil forest this Tenerife hiking trail in Anaga Rural Park is perfect. There are actually three trails here, but if you take the "hardest" trail (Number 3) you will be doing the other two as well. Trail 1 is just over 1,000 feet, trail 2 is just under 2,000 feet, and trail 3 is less than a mile long.
The paths are wheelchair and stroller friendly and will take about 45 minutes to complete one lap. And, as the name suggests, you will be experiencing the forest of the park through three senses; sight, touch, and smell. There are information boards throughout the park with instructions explaining what to do.
Intermediate Hikes in Tenerife
For those that enjoy hiking not just for the pretty scenery but are looking to get a little exercise, Tenerife offers some excellent intermediate hiking trails. Here are two you don't want to miss.
Roque de Taborno
Even though this is a short hike it rewards you with fantastic ocean and mountain views throughout the route with a loop around the Roque de Taborno rock formations at the "end". The 2.5-mile lasso loop will take 1.5 to 2 hours to complete and only has a 300-foot elevation gain. The path is exposed to the weather, very narrow at points, and has sheer drops, so it is not recommended if you are afraid of heights.
Chamorga to Roque Bermejo
A 5.5-mile circuit trail starts in Chamorga and descends to the Roque Bermejo beach, back up to the Faro de Anaga Lighthouse, summits Tafada mountain, then back to Chamorga. This scenic trail has it all: wildlife, swimming at the beach, and priceless breathtaking views.
Difficult Hikes in Tenerife
Serious hikers love the hiking in Tenerife as they offer what they are looking for: challenging hikes with spectacular views that make the effort worth a while.
Parador Nacional to Montana Guajara Circuit Trail
Just over 6 miles long this hike in Teide National Park will test your fitness while providing amazing views of Mount Teide, plains of pumice and petrified lava. You will feel like you are standing in another world.
Santiago del Teide-Mirador Cruz de Hilda - Masca
A long enjoyable hike that has a challenging start and then it is relaxing and beautiful for the most part. The 10-mile out-and-back will take you around 6 hours. There is a wonderful cafe with a terrace for a rest stop and a great view of Masca.
Best Hiking Trails
While the hiking is incredible and it is easy to lose yourself in the countless hikes Tenerife has to offer, don't get lost or take chances. Make sure to check local conditions, use a trail map, and obey the rules of the trail. Now, go and enjoy the plethora of beautiful hikes on the island of Tenerife, prepared to tackle even the most difficult ones!