Tips for your holidays in Tenerife

Tips for your holidays in Tenerife

Tenerife is one of the seven islands of the Canaries. The island group is part of Spain and located in the middle of the Atlantic, next to the Sahara. We went with part of our team on holidays in Tenerife to get to know this island where we now also provide some great sea tours. While “testing” some of our partners’ activities around Tenerife, we got to learn a lot of “inside” information about the island.

We flew from Lisbon to Madrid and from there to Tenerife

We flew from Lisbon to Madrid and from there to Tenerife

1. Flights for your holidays in Tenerife

From the main cities in Europe, you can find direct flights to Tenerife. Tenerife has two airports, Tenerife North or South. Choosing which airports depends a bit on where you’re planning to stay but actually, they’re not far away from each other, about 90 minutes by car.

We flew from Lisbon to Madrid (about one hour) with Easyjet and then from Madrid to Tenerife North (about 2,5 hours) with Ryanair. The total cost of this return flight was about 100€ per person at the end of April. We decided to also spend a night (one before and one after) in Madrid to also enjoy this city and make the journey feel “lighter”.

At some more local places, paying by card can be difficult

At some more local places, paying by card can be difficult

2. Language and currency

On the Canaries, Spanish is the official language. Not everybody speaks English but in the more touristic places, you’ll find a lot of English speakers.

The local currency is the Euro, like in Spain mainland. At most places, you can pay by card and you’ll also find a lot of ATMs around the island.

We went in April and had great weather

We went in April and had great weather

3. When to go on holidays in Tenerife

We decided to go on holidays in Tenerife at the end of April. For us, this timing was perfect. In fact, it was low season, right in between the busy seasons of Easter and Summer. We loved the empty beaches, calm roads and no queues at restaurants. We also loved this time of the year because nature is just stunning in Spring, especially in the jungly North part of the island. In addition to that, the weather was just fine. It was partially clouded in the North and sunnier in the South with temperatures around 25 degrees Celsius during the day.

During the Winter season, November to March, it gets quite busy at Tenerife with European tourists escaping the winter in central and Northern Europe. Then come the Easter holidays and then it gets busy again during the Summer, from June to September. In Summer, temperatures rise a lot and may become too hot for some people. If you like the feeling of a busy holiday destination and a wild party scene, Summer is ideal for you. If you prefer calmer holidays in Tenerife and want to enjoy nature, we recommend going off-season.

By car you're most flexible

By car, you’re most flexible

3. Getting around in Tenerife

Tenerife is too big to do by foot or bike (at least for most of us). As there are no train and bus connections are not the best, we recommend to rent a car. We rented a car from Hertz and it was perfect. We easily picked it up at the airport and dropped it off at the end of our holidays. The cost was 80€ for 3 days and we spent 30€ in fuel. Fuel is rather cheap on the island, we paid less than 1€ per litre.

The roads around Tenerife are amazing. They’re all very new and safe, even at the most remote places like in the Anaga Mountains. Easiest to get around is by using a GPS or Google Maps. After 3 days, we did not even need it anymore to get to the airport as we already knew how to get around.

Our lovely home in GuImar

Our lovely home in Guimar

4. Where to stay during your holidays in Tenerife

Most people that go on holidays in Tenerife stay in the South part of the island. As we were looking for a more local experience, we decided to look for something else rather than the big hotels. We used airBnB and as we were 5, we found a very nice 3 room apartment in Guimar. Guimar is a local town in between the North Airport and the Southern one. As we had a car and were planning to explore different parts of the island, Guimar was just fine. But as locals say, Guimar is in the middle of nowhere and nothing happens there. We loved the apartment and its location and would recommend it you if you’re travelling with a similar mindset to ours.

Officially the best octopus ever!

Officially the best octopus ever!

5. What to eat in Tenerife

Seafood and fish! On an island, of course, you should eat what’s “given” by the sea. Bananas are also a much as the island is full of the banana plantations. We had a great culinary experience on the island. As such, we decided to share our food experience in a post about the best local restaurants in Tenerife.

sailing tour in Tenerife

Discover the local wildlife on a sailing yacht

6. Things to do in Tenerife

Beside sea tours, Tenerife has many things to do. It ’s a true paradise for outdoor activity lovers! Our colleague Nathalie already wrote a nice article about the best things to do in Tenerife. In fact, most of the things we did while visiting this wonderful island are already listed there. You can find our personal experiences here.

We hope you have an amazing holiday in this natural paradise, also known as Tenerife! If you have any questions or recommendations, feel free to contact us!

Local restaurants in Tenerife SeaBookings 5

Best local restaurants in Tenerife

We went with part of our team on holidays in Tenerife to get to know this island where we also provide sea tours. While “testing” some of our partners’ activities around Tenerife, we got to learn a lot of “inside” information about the island. Some tips where of course about the best restaurants in Tenerife. So, every day we had some new local restaurants in Tenerife to check out. We decided to share our favourite spots. Be aware that we’re a fan of authentic, basic and good food, no luxury or fancy places.

This is our top 4 of the best local restaurants in Tenerife

Enjoying lunch at El Cine

Enjoying lunch at El Cine

1. El Cine – Los Cristianos

This restaurant had been recommended to us by one of our colleagues who had already visited the island before. Located in the touristy Los Cristianos, we were not full of expectations as we usually prefer more local restaurants in Tenerife. After walking a bit as we could not find the spot, we asked for directions to some people and they told us it was just around the corner but hidden behind the pharmacy. We then immediately found this literally “hidden” gem. We arrived around 13h30 and the mini restaurants with only seats outdoor, on a terrace, was packed. Fortunately, a table became free quickly.

El Cine is a fish restaurant, with both grilled and fried options. For the non-fish-fans, there are chicken wings, or eggs, which are a speciality too. We ordered some dishes to share and it was perfectly enough. We were 5 and ordered 4 dishes (fish of the day, grilled sardines, clamares – a huge fried squid – and chicken) with 2 portions of Canarian potatoes and two portions of salad. We were all fan of the calamares that was already recommended to us by Federico, the skipper of the sailing tour we had done the day before. The Canarian potatoes with the local red and green sauces (mojo) are incredible and the salad made out of tomato and onions was surely one of the simplest but most tasteful ones we ever had.

We’re sure this is one of the best local restaurants in Tenerife and will definitely come back if we’re visiting the island again.

The price we paid per person: 12€

Ordering without knowing what you'll get. That's a local experience!

Ordering without knowing what you’ll get. That’s a local experience!

2. Casa de Fernando – Playa de las Teresitas (San Andrés)

Casa de Fernando, is more a snack bar rather than a restaurant. It’s got a bar and only a 3-4 tables for 3/3 people each. This spot was recommended to us by Cao, our guide of the walking and kayak tour we did. Casa de Fernando is located near Playa de las Teresitas, one of the few white sanded beaches of the island. From there, we have very nice SUP and kayak tours. Be aware that on Google Maps, the name of the restaurant is slightly different: Bar Los Churritos.

Officially the best octopus ever!

Officially the best octopus ever!

As Cao, the kayak tour guide, said, at this snack bar, we should eat stewed octopus and mini fried squids (“Chopitos”) with Canarian potatoes (papas arrugadas) and “mojo”. We did not try the typical “Churros de Pescado” but will come back one day! Accompanied by some cold beer, this was just what we longed for after the kayak tour. We’re used to delicious Portuguese seafood, but we must admit this octopus and squids were incredibly fresh and well done. We strongly recommend this spot for a truly local experience.

The price we paid per person: 8€

Puchero: It may not look that tasty, but believe us, it is!

Puchero: It may not look that tasty, but believe us, it is!

3. Restaurant in the Anaga Mountains – Casa Nene

After our beautiful 3 hour hike in the Anaga Mountains in North Tenerife, Cao, the guide, took us for a typical lunch at a restaurant. We’re sure this is one of the most authentic local restaurants in Tenerife. The place is basically a garage turned into a restaurant. It’s quite a drive, but we totally recommend it as the food experience is unique and the drive is stunning. You’ll park on a lot with chicken walking around you.

To eat, we followed Cao’s suggestions and we had bread and local white goat cheese to start. We were drinking a very local red wine, rather fruity. After the cheese, we had a funny kind of dough made out of vegetables, grain flour and meat stock, called “Escaldón de Gofio”. This is eaten with a red sauce and raw onion. Half of the groups loved it, the other not so much… The main course was Puchero, a very local stew with beef and a lot of veggies, like sweet potato, normal potato, corn, cabbage, courgette and pumpkin. We all liked this dish and it reminded us of the Portuguese “cozido”. For desert, we accepted the suggestion of the local “sweet coffee” – Barraquito. Basically, it’s coffee with milk with condensed milk and a local liquor. It reminded us of a mini Irish coffee. Very sweet, but recommended too.

You can visit this restaurant on your own, but we actually suggest to go for a hike in the mountains with Cao before, the get the full experience, like we did.

The price we paid per person: 7,50€

The incredible view of this spot!

The incredible view of this spot!

4. Manfred´s soul cafe – El Médano

This town was recommended to us by Federico, the skipper of the sailing tour we did in Puerto de Colón. He said El Médano was like a cooler and layback town with a stunning beach and many small tapa bars on squares and along the beach with incredible views. As soon as we entered this town, we felt the vibe Federico was talking about. We were all immediately a fan of El Médano. As it was around 19h30, we decided to walk a bit around and look for a nice spot for some tapas. That’s when we ran into Manfred, a cool informal bar with a nice terrace with a view over the bay. While enjoying some reggae music, we ordered a jar of Sangria, the speciality of the house. We ended up ordering another one as it was indeed delicious. For tapas to share, we finally tried two local kinds of cheese we heard about: Almogrote Picantón and fresh grilled goat cheese with Tenerife honey and marmalade. Both were served with bread and a true taste explosion. The Almogrote Picantón is like a more mature minced cheese to spread on bread. On top of that, we had some Albondigas, nachos with guacamole and olives.

The price we paid per person: 12€

Let us know if you’ve got any more tips to share or if you’ve got additional feedback about these local restaurants in Tenerife. Buen provecho!

submarine tour in Tenerife5

We went on a submarine tour in Tenerife!

By Lianne, responsible for the Spanish market and content/translations at SeaBookings:

In Tenerife, I stumbled upon a new exciting activity to do. A submarine tour in Tenerife! Yes, you can go exploring the underwater world without getting your hair wet! For some people, diving can be pretty overwhelming experience but with this activity, it is possible to see the sea life without diving. Well, you will dive, but inside one of the few 15 commercial most hi-tech tourist submarines operating in the world today.

I went on a submarine tour in Tenerife!

I went on a submarine tour in Tenerife!

I wanted to try something new, so I decided to do this tour in a submarine tour in Tenerife. The harbor of San Miguel is very spacious and there is a large selection of boats and yachts, but it’s pretty impossible to ignore the yellow submarine down at the end of the harbor! You could immediately see many families and groups already excited by the idea of diving in a submarine. Families, friends, couples or as me (alone), everyone was welcome! This submarine tour in Tenerife is suitable for everyone! I have to say that immediately you notice that everything is very well organized, and you don’t have to worry about anything.

I had a warm welcome by the friendly staff and they gave me a quick explanation of the tour and I received my ticket to enter the submarine. I was introduced to Gioia who would lead the tour and explain everything we could see during the tour. If I had any doubts or questions, then she could explain it to me in detail.

A picture to remember the excursion

A picture to remember the excursion

Before departure, I was waiting in the sun and I saw buses arriving with people who also wanted to go on a submarine tour, I thought that was a great alternative to the logistics of bringing a car. Although I would definitely still recommend renting a car to discover the island as public transport isn’t as well organized as you would hope.

Before entering, the staff took a picture of each group on top of the submarine. Then they guided me to my seat and I was really amazed by seeing the captains place (yes, I was sitting really close!). Once everyone took their seats, Gioia, our tour guide, told us more about the submarine and we could see a live feed of the submarine disappearing into the water. We all have this general idea of what a submarine is, but when you actually sitting there experiencing the dive it’s all a bit crazy being underwater with 40 other people. While we were taking off, Gioia explained everything in three different languages (Spanish, English and German). It’s cool because when I asked her she told me she speaks five different languages fluently (Spanish, English, German, French and Italian). So there’s no need to worry about not understanding, from what I understood, all the guides are multilingual.

We could see a wreck and several species of fish

We could see a wreck and several species of fish

It was funny that from the very beginning there was one single fish swimming next to my window which I thought was already amazing, but as I was about to find out this was just the beginning! Shortly after I saw a shipwreck, different schools of fish and rays! During the tour there was always a support boat with us for extra safety as well as divers, which I discovered later were feeding the fish and all of a sudden there were so many, it was amazing!

This dive took us down over 30 meters below the Atlantic Ocean and it is so weird because I was just sitting on a chair behind a window and the atmosphere is totally normal. You don’t even notice you are diving that deep. And I can tell it’s deep because I dived before and my ears were hurting already at 23 meters.

The rays were impressive!

The rays were impressive!

I really recommend this tour to everyone because it is so much fun to do this and talk about what you are seeing during the dive (with a normal dive you can’t talk of course). So, even your old grandmother of 84 years old or your 2-year-old nephew can have this amazing experience!

And I got my certificate of this submarine tour in Tenerife :)

And I got my certificate of this submarine tour in Tenerife 🙂

In the end, everyone received their personal diving certificate stating that you have completed an underwater submarine voyage in the Atlantic Ocean. Oh, and the photo they took before departure is a gift as well. That is a very nice souvenir, isn’t it? Thank you very much Goia for the clear explanations during the tour, I really enjoyed it. If I go back to Tenerife I would definitely do this submarine tour in Tenerife again!

Find out more or book here!

The best things to do in Tenerife

The best things to do in Tenerife

Tenrife – The Island of Eternal Spring. No wonder that the biggest and most populated canary island is Spain’s most important tourist destination. Find out the things to do in Tenerife – why over 5 Million tourists visit this volcanic paradise every year. Not only do you find mild climate all year round, with temperatures always ranging between 20-30°C. The island also has a lot of things to do to offer! Nature, culture, relaxation or nightlife. In Tenerife, you have it all!

Being an island, the best things to do in Tenerife certainly have a lot to do with the sea. In Tenerife, you find beautiful sandy beaches as well as wild rocky beaches. And thanks to the vast volcanic landscape and the Teide, the highest peak of all Spain, there are also a lot of other things to do in Tenerife, that are not sea-related.

The beautiful island is perfect for all kinds of travellers. It is super family friendly, offering a lot of water parks and activities for kids. Hikers will love Tenerife for its many hiking trails through mystic laurel forests and up to the (sometimes snowy) peak of the Teide. And of course, lovers of watersports have plenty of things to do in Tenerife!

Due to volcanic eruptions many decades ago, the island has a unique and very special climate. If you cross the island from the south to the north, you will experience the amazing variety of microclimates. During Winter, you can sometimes lie on one of the sandy beaches and enjoy the sun, while looking up to the Teide and its snowy peak! This is what makes Tenerife so special and so popular as a holiday destination!

We want to share some of the best things to do in Tenerife with you, to make sure you enjoy this magic island to the fullest!

Some of our favourite things to do in Tenerife:

Trail Barranco del Infierno (Hell’s Canyon)

Like hiking? The Barranco del Infierno is a must!

Like hiking? The Barranco del Infierno is a must!

As already mentioned above, one of the best things to do in Tenerife is hiking. Of all the many hiking trails, the trail to Barranco del Infierno (Hell’s Canyon) is certainly one of the most beautiful ones. Hike through the wild, untouched nature of this Special Nature Reserve. There are guided hikes, that take about 3,5 hours.

Only 300 people are allowed to enter the Nature Reserve every day, so be sure to book in advance. This rule is to keep the nature as pure as it is and to not disturb the wildlife.  During your hike, make sure to look up: You will be able to see bird species like hawks, eagles and ravens. The highlight of this trail is the canyon of over 200m! A true natural beauty, that will amaze you and leave you in awe!

Sailing Tour in Tenerife 

If you like sailing, this tour is for you

If you like sailing, this tour is for you

Of course, we love sea-related activities, that’s why our next activity on the list of the best things to do in Tenerife is this beautiful sailing tour! In the waters of Tenerife live plenty of dolphins and whales, and this sailing tour takes you to see them! Seeing those wild animals in their natural habitat is one of those things you will never forget!

On the deck of the beautiful boat, you can also relax and get tanned. If it gets too hot, go for a swim in the ocean. The crew even brings along snorkelling gear! For us, this is a great way to spend your holidays and one of the best things to do in Tenerife!

Scuba diving in Tenerife

The Tabaiba Wreck is one of our favorite spots for diving in Tenerife

The Tabaiba Wreck is one of our favourite spots for diving in Tenerife

For people who would love to discover the underwater world of the island, but don’t want to do a full diving course, this is one of the best things to do in Tenerife! You get to go scuba diving in the local marine reserve or on a reef, where you can see the colourful life under water.

The diving school offers a small introduction before going down, and there is a diving instructor by your side during the entire dive! For about 40 minutes, you get to feel absolute freedom, diving through the waters of Tenerife together with a lot of fish and even octopus!

If you caught the diving bug after this experience, you can still do a full course during your holiday in Tenerife! Of course, we also have diving experiences for divers with a diving certificate.

Snorkeling with turtles

Kayaktour mit Schnorcheln auf Teneriffa

This experience is unforgettable

Animal lovers will love this kayak tour! This kayak tour in Tenerife takes you out to see and swim with sea turtles and rays. For many people, this is a dream come true! Usually, very soon the first few turtles come to greet you. Jump out of your kayak to swim with those beautiful and calm creatures. Go snorkelling and see some rays elegantly swimming beneath you. And at the same time, you get to stay fit and discover the beautiful coastline of the island. This is a very special kayak tour, and definitely one of the best things to do in Tenerife!

We hope you have a beautiful holiday in this natural paradise, also known as Tenerife! If you have any questions or recommendations, feel free to contact us!

kayaking with dolphins in tenerife

We went kayaking with dolphins in Tenerife

By Lianne, responsible for the Spanish market and content/translations at SeaBookings:

On our holidays we went kayaking with dolphins in Tenerife. I never sat in a kayak before, so that was pretty exciting already, and the idea to see dolphins was even more amazing!

Earlier in the week, it was a little stormy, and many tours were cancelled or rescheduled due to strong winds. But luckily enough, today was a sunny day and the sea was nice and quiet. As we went kayaking in the winter (still nice and warm) they gave us wetsuits so we would feel more comfortable during the tour. I was really happy I had one because it can be windy out at sea, and you never know as it was still my first time kayaking I could end up taking an unexpected dip into the sea.

Kayaking was a whole challenge but after a while it became a lot of fun

Kayaking was a whole challenge but after a while it became a lot of fun

After we changed, we walked towards the beach where the kayaks were waiting for us. On the beach, Nikola gave us a few instructions on what to do and what not do on the kayak. If you are with two people in the kayak it is very important you synchronize while paddling because otherwise, you can’t go forward at all. I can tell you, this was quite challenging at the beginning but then you get the hang of it.

As there were always small waves we needed to do our best to keep up with Nikola. She is doing this every day but still, she was on her own and we had the power of two people! It’s a whole workout! This kayak tour is the most ecological and friendly way to discover the ocean. No loud motor noises, only now and then the person behind you saying you are not doing it right… but that’s ok!

After about 20 minutes we could see some dolphins already further into the distance. Two by two they were swimming curiously around us. It is very impressive to see these wonderful creatures so close but still in their own environment. Nikola told us before the tour that she couldn’t guarantee that we would see the dolphins, but 95% of the time they were successful in seeing them, and so we did!

The dolphins are very curious

The dolphins are very curious

It is quite an amazing experience because you never know where they will show up. On a couple occasions, they came really close to our kayak!! You really don’t have to be afraid you will frighten them or that you disturb their natural habitat as they can, of course, go wherever they want! It is almost impossible to take pictures of the dolphins (unless there are a lot of them and you have experience in taking snapshot photos). But no worries, Nikola also took amazing photos and she sent them afterwards to everyone in the group. That way we could just sit back and enjoy the moment without worrying about taking photos.

This was a truly unforgettable experience

This was a truly unforgettable experience

Besides the fact that you get to see these remarkable creatures, kayaking with dolphins in Tenerife is also a very nice way to explore the area along the coast of the island. If you are lucky, the waters are very clear and you can see fish swimming. We were even lucky enough to see a sea turtle swimming under our kayak!

Kayaking with dolphins in Tenerife took about 2.5/3 hours and that was more than enough! Afterwards, you are pretty tired of kayaking all the time. This work-out made us hungry! The owners Paul and Diana were happy to give us some good advice about the best restaurants in the area of Los Cristianos. It was so nice to have this experience, we will definitely never forget it. Thank you Nikola for the amazing tour, you were an awesome guide to have with us. And thank you Paul and Diana as well for this unforgettable experience and all priceless tips you gave us.

We highly recommend kayaking with dolphins in Tenerife, feel free to book here.