Teide National Park is one of Spain’s 15 national parks and stands out for several different reasons. It is home to the tallest peak in Spain, Mount Teide, that stands 3,718 meters and, its considered to be one of the 12 treasures of Spain and is a UNESCO World Heritage site. It is also Spain’s largest national park (over 19,000 hectares), it’s the most visited national park and one of the oldest national parks in Spain.
Mount Teide is actually a dormant volcano. When it was active the volcano scarred the surrounding landscape as it spewed lava, creating beautiful rock formations and creating a unique ecosystem.
The last significant eruption that occurred was in 1909, but Mout Teide still lets out the occasional plume of smoke and steam, reminding everyone that it is by no means a dead volcano, but merely a resting one.
TEIDE VISITORS' GUIDE
What to do in Teide national park?
There is no shortage of companies in Tenerife that offer guided tours of the park. No matter where you are on the island, you will find someone that can help you traverse the park. Where you will find most of these services are in the south of the island since that is where most of the tourists that visit the island concentrate.
Keep in mind that the altitude at the top of Mount Teide can be an issue. If you have heart issues, respiratory problems or are pregnant, you may want to skip visiting the peak.
Also, we suggest wearing several layers of clothing or packing it at least since, depending on where you are in the park, the weather can change drastically. It can get rather chilly at the top of the mountain. Make sure also that you wear good walking shoes.
Cable Car up Mount Teide
One of the most popular activities you can enjoy in the park and for good reason. The cable car will take you up the mountain effortlessly as you sit back and enjoy the SPECTACULAR views. The whole ride takes about 9 minutes and will drop you off just a few meters from the mountain’s peak. The cable car operates continuously from 9am and 4pm.
There is also a special evening tour you can book that will allow you to enjoy the amazing sunset with a bottle of bubbly and a special Canarian dinner. Definitely, the most romantic way to enjoy the Teide.
Stargazing on the mountain
There is no better place in Europe for stargazing. The low levels of pollution and low light contamination allow the stars and the moon to shine as bright as possible.
There are several companies that offer stargazing sessions in the national park: The state-run mountain guides offer a session and there are also independent pros like Astro Amigos and Teide Astro that you can also hire. If you want “the full experience” the Tenerife Observatory offers guided tours and is completely fascinating.
Los Roques de Garcia
Los Roques de Garcia is a collection of otherworldly rock formations that run from the north of the island to the south along the main caldera in Teide National Park. They sit at over 2,000 meters above sea and are incredible at 1,700 meters below the peak of Mount Teide. Roque Cinchado is the most famous and recognizable of the Roques de Gracia formations because of its gravity-defying, contorted shape.
There is no shortage of hiking and walking routes in the park. Whether you are a novice hiker and an advanced hiker, or you just want to take a leisurely stroll there is a route for you in Teide National Park. Teide is the top sight for hikes in Tenerife, bu tthere are more!
As the altitude changes, so does the landscape. The higher you go, the more arid, volcanic, and alien the landscape becomes. If you just want to enjoy a delightful stroll through the park, head over to the crater at Samara. The pathway is easy and will take you along lava flows with views of the neighboring island of Gomera. It’s a round trip that takes about an hour and a half to two hours depending on your speed.
If you want more of a challenge, why not just scale the Teide. It takes about 7 hours to complete, but there is no more rewarding experience you can enjoy on the island, and when you have earned the view, it is that much more spectacular.
If you are more of a daredevil there is one activity you can enjoy that will get your blood pumping. Paragliding is a very popular activity in Tenerife with more than 40 launch sites and a large selection of clubs offering jumps. Whether it is your first time taking the leap, or you are an experienced glider, there is an option for you.