Rising out of the Atlantic Ocean like a glittering emerald, the largest of the Canary Islands is just 4 hours away from the Channel Islands by air and the year round warm climate attracts over 5 million sun-seekers each year, many of them escaping the chilly winter months of Northern Europe.
Just a short drive from Tenerife South Airport, the south coast resorts stretching from Los Cristianos to Guia de Isora offer sun-baked beaches, winding promenades lined with cocktail bars and seafood restaurants, pretty harbour villages, and a range of accommodation to suit all tastes and budgets; from great value family-friendly self-catering aparthotels to 5* all-inclusive spa and golf resorts.
Many of these resorts have such a wide range of activities and facilities on site that you’d be forgiven for spending the entire holiday poolside, but that would be to do a disservice to everything else this Island has to offer.
Dominated by Mount Teide Volcano, which at a little over 3000m tall is the highest point in Spain, the landscape of Tenerife varies endlessly, from lush green palms and tropical plants, to arresting black sand beaches, fields of cacti and rocky volcanic moonscapes. The pleasant temperature, with a daytime average of 21c between February and April, lends itself to getting outside and exploring. A mecca for hikers and ramblers, Teide National Park offers a range of routes for all, from short and relatively flat routes to the thigh-burning ascent to the summit, where efforts are rewarded by spectacular views across the Island to the Ocean (those who prefer a more sedate vacation can cheat the system by hopping on the cable car and emerging at the top a mere 8 minutes later). Journey up Teide by night on an organised tour and enjoy some of the best star-gazing in Europe.
The mountainous topography combined with fresh Atlantic Ocean breezes create the perfect conditions for one of the most exciting and exhilarating of Tenerife’s activities. Silently soaring high above the coastline on a tandem Paraglide flight is an experience not to be missed for those with a head for heights.
It’s not all high altitude adventures on this delightful Island however. Holidaymakers who prefer to stay at sea level can take a boat trip from almost any resort and explore a marine environment that teems with life. From dolphin and whale watching excursions, to deep sea fishing trips, or kayaking out to snorkel with sea turtles there is a water-based activity for everyone. The naturally charming black sand beaches are interspersed with soft yellow sand alternatives, and families flock to Thai themed Siam Water Park in Costa Adeje or Loro Park Zoo on the north coast. Regular bus services serve both from the most popular resorts.
Visitors to Tenerife in February may be lucky enough to catch some of the annual Carnival, with parades and events going on throughout the Island, although the most extravagant and impressive of these take place in the capital Santa Cruz. The ‘Cabalgata’ or Grand Parade is considered second only to Rio Carnival when it comes to vibrancy, colour and party atmosphere.
Carnival time or not, Santa Cruz is worth a visit to experience a side of the Island far removed from the bucket & spade resorts of the south coast. The nearby old town of La Laguna is considered the most beautiful in Tenerife and was bestowed World Heritage status in 1999. To take a stroll through the colourful colonial streets is to step back in time.
Flydirect offer direct flights from Jersey to Tenerife weekly from 9 February to 12 April 2020. Flight prices start from £319 per person at the time of publishing, and a wide range of hotel and resort package options are available in the most popular southern Tenerife resorts.