Tenerife Road Trip Itinerary

Tenerife Itinerary: 7 Day Road Trip for Hikers and Outdoor Lovers

Tenerife, the largest island of the Canary Islands, is one of the most striking islands in the world. People come here for a variety of reasons. Some want to escape the Northern European winter. Others want a quintessential beach holiday. And, a growing number are passionate about exploring Tenerife on foot.

If you belong to the latter group, you’re going to love this Tenerife itinerary. In one week, you’ll experience the most dramatic and remote corners of the island. You’ll also hike in Tenerife’s most spectacular regions, including Anaga Rural Park, Teide National Park, and Teno Rural Park.

This Tenerife road trip isn’t for everyone. We’ve purposefully cut out all major tourist hubs and developed areas (e.g. Costa Adeje, Los Cristianos, Playa de las Américas, etc…), with the exception of Los Gigantes. If you’re like us and you cherish the outdoors and local places to eat, this route is for you.

Driving in Tenerife

Driving in Tenerife isn’t difficult. The roads are in great condition and signage is pervasive. However, many locals drive quite haphazardly.

On a number of occasions, oncoming drivers would whirl quickly and negligently around corners (e.g. cutting into our lane), causing us to break unexpectedly. If you want to be safe, drive defensively.

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Tenerife Road Trip Itinerary

Tenerife Itinerary

  • Day 1: Arrive in Tenerife (North or South Airport), San Cristóbal de La Laguna
  • Day 2: Anaga Rural Park, La Laguna
  • Day 3: Anaga Rural Park, La Laguna
  • Day 4: Northern Tenerife, Punta de Teno
  • Day 5: Santiago del Teide to Masca, Los Gigantes
  • Day 6: Teide National Park, Vilaflor
  • Day 7: Teide National Park, Arona
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Teno Rural Park, Tenerife

Tenerife Road Trip Map

One Week in Tenerife
Tenerife Road Trip Destinations
  • Day 1: La Laguna
  • Day 2: Anaga Rural Park
  • Day 3: Anaga Rural Park
  • Day 4: Northern Tenerife
  • Day 5: Teno Mountains
  • Days 6 & 7: Teide National Park
  • Day 7: Arona
Mirador De Jardina, Anaga Mountain Road, Tenerife

Day 1: Arrive in Tenerife, Drive to La Laguna

Arrive in Tenerife

There are two international airports in Tenerife. You’ll either arrive in the Tenerife South Airport (Tenerife South–Reina Sofía Airport) or the Tenerife North Airport.

After picking up your rental car, drive to San Cristóbal de La Laguna (La Laguna). It’s a 40-minute drive to reach La Laguna from the South Airport and a 5-minute drive from the North Airport.

Explore La Laguna

San Cristóbal de La Laguna, endearingly referred to as “La Laguna,” is a city in Northern Tenerife, located 11 kilomters inland from Santa Cruz, the capital of Tenerife. We recommend making La Laguna your home base for the first three nights of your Tenerife trip.

The historical center of La Laguna is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. With its Spanish colonial style, beautifully preserved buildings, charming city center, animated marketplace (Mercado Municipal De La Laguna), and plethora of dining options, La Laguna is the loveliest place to stay in northeastern Tenerife.

Most importantly, La Laguna is located at the foot of the Anaga Mountain Range. From the city, you’re well-positioned to drive to trailheads and tackle all of the best hiking trails in Anaga Rural Park.

Learn More: How to Visit Anaga Rural Park

Dinner in La Laguna

Here are two excellent options for dinner in La Laguna.

Stay in La Laguna

Budget | Casa Lagunera is a newly renovated apartment-style accommodation in the quiet neighborhood of El Coromoto. The owners offer a free shuttle service from the Tenerife Norte Airport. With its small, but mighty kitchenette, you can prepare your own breakfast and lunch supplies for hiking.

Mid-Range | Casa Del Casco Historico is a centrally located guesthouse in La Laguna, walking distance to many restaurants and cafés in the historic center. Guests have access to a shared kitchen, lounge, garden, and terrace. Coffee, tea, and cookies are provided.

Luxury | Sogno Di Gio is a comfortable bed and breakfast located just 1 km from the city center (15-minute walk). A continental breakfast featuring homemade cakes is included in the room rate. Guests also love eating dinner in the hotel’s Italian restaurant.

Book your stay in La Laguna.

Roque de Taborno, Anaga Coast, Tenerife

Day 2: Hike in Anaga Rural Park

Benijo - Taborno - Anaga Mountain Road

Day 2 of your Tenerife itinerary takes you deep into the Anaga Mountains. Get an early start, because parking is limited at your first stop.

Drive to Benijo

You’ll start the day by driving to the tiny hamlet of Benijo. To get to Benijo, drive first to Santa Cruz. From Santa Cruz, take TF-11 along the coast to San Andrés.

At San Andrés, head inland on the TF-12. This narrow and windy road cuts through the Anaga mountain range. After about 30 minutes (18 km), you’ll turn right onto TF-134, which you’ll take all the way to Benijo.

This is one of the most beautiful roads in Tenerife.

Benijo Loop Hike

At Benijo, you’ll embark on your first hike in Anaga Rural Park.

To start the hike, head to Restaurante El Frontón and follow signs to El Draguillo and Trail PR – TF 6.

The trail hugs the coastline along a flat road. As you progress, you’ll see two striking rocks jutting out of the ocean, known as Roques de Anaga. It takes about 30 minutes to walk 2 km to El Draguillo.

From El Draguillo, you’ll turn right in the direction of Chamorga. You’ll hike uphill for almost 1 km (270 m elevation gain) to an intersection. From here, turn right, and start the glorious return journey to Benijo. The views of the Anaga coastline and Taganana village are spectacular.

If you’re interested in a longer loop hike, you can continue to the Faro de Anaga lighthouse and return to Benijo via Chamorga. We’ve outlined this hike in our Benijo to Faro de Anaga trail guide.

Another nearby hiking option is to walk from Taganana to Playa de Tamadite. You can read more about that option in our guide to the Best Hikes in the Anaga Mountains.

Lunch in Benijo, or Taganana

Here are a few eating options close to Benijo. When we visited, every restaurant was closed. Hopefully, you’ll have better luck than us. But, definitely bring hiking snacks with you just in case.

  • El Mirador in Benijo
  • Restaurante El Frontón in Benijo
  • Restaurante Playa Casa Africa in Taganana
  • Restaurante Los Roques Casa Pepe in Taganana
  • Bar-Restaurante La Ola in Taganana

Hike around Roque de Taborno

After lunch, drive back up TF-134 and then turn right onto the Anaga Mountain Road (TF-12) in the direction of Cruz del Carmen. Your next destination is the tiny hamlet Taborno.

From here, a short (1:30 hours), but extremely pleasant hike circuits Roque de Taborno, a distinct thumb-shaped rock that rises 706 meters above sea level. As you encircle Roque de Taborno, the views of the Anaga coastline unfold spectacularly.

Read more about this hike here: Best Hikes in the Anaga Mountains.

Anaga Mountain Road

After your hike, continue driving the Anaga Mountain Road back to La Laguna. There are a few viewpoints you shouldn’t miss:

  • Mirador Cruz del Carmen – This viewpoint can be accessed from the parking lot at the Anaga Park Visitor Center. You’ll see the city of San Cristobal de La Laguna and Mount Teide in the distance.
  • Mirador de Jardina – Beautiful view of the fertile valley of La Laguna and Mount Teide.

Stay in La Laguna

Budget | Casa Lagunera

Mid-Range | Casa Del Casco Historico

Luxury | Sogno Di Gio

Book your stay in La Laguna.

Punta del Hidalgo to Chinamada Hike, Anaga, Tenerife

Day 3: Hike in Anaga Rural Park

Punta de Hidalgo - Chinamada

Today, you’ll head to Punta del Hidalgo and hike to Chinamada and Carboneras. We decided to drive to the Punta del Hidalgo trailhead and do a return (out-and-back) hike.

Alternatively, you could take a bus to Cruz del Carmen and hike down to Punta del Hidalgo, and then take the bus back to La Laguna. Of course, the latter option is easier but requires a bit more planning.

Hike from Punta del Hidalgo to Chinamada and Carboneras

It’s a 28-minute drive from La Laguna to Punta del Hidalgo. To find the trailhead, head to the lookout and traffic circle: Mirador Punta Del Hidalgo. We’ve described this hike in detail in this Hiking in Anaga Mountains post. Here’s a quick summary:

  • Total Distance: 16.1 km
  • Elevation: 800 m ascending / 800 m descending
  • Difficulty: Moderate – Difficult
  • Time Needed: 6 – 7 hours

Highlights of this trail included rugged mountain scenery, the terraced fields around Chinamada and Carboneras, and lunch in the cafe-restaurant Restaurante La Cueva (Open Wednesday – Sunday) in Chinamada.

Take a Dip in the Natural Pool at Punta del Hidalgo

After your hike, head to the natural swimming pool at Punta del Hidalgo (marked on the map). You can savor the sea safely in a large sheltered natural pool.

Stay in La Laguna

BudgetCasa Lagunera

Mid-Range | Casa Del Casco Historico

Luxury | Sogno Di Gio

Book your stay in La Laguna.

Punta de Teno Sunset, Tenerife

Day 4: Northern Tenerife

La Orotova - Icod de los Vinos - Punta de Teno

Drive the North Coast of Tenerife

Day 4 of your Tenerife road trip takes you to some of Tenerife’s most charming villages. You’ll follow TF-5 along the north coast. There are a few notable places to stop on your route, including Puerto de la Cruz, La Orotava, and Icod de Los Vinos.

Puerto de la Cruz is the tourist hub of the north and it can easily be skipped. However, if you can look beyond the tacky tourist shops, Puerto de la Cruz harbors some of Tenerife’s most beautiful black sand beaches: Playa Jardin and Playa Maria Jiménez.

Eat Lunch in La Orotava

La Orotava is an exceedingly lovely town with beautiful architecture and a distinct local atmosphere. We recommend eating lunch at Bar Los Castillos (Address: Calle Cólogan, 10, 38300 La Orotava). Featuring Canarian home-cooking, this authentic restaurant was one of the culinary highlights of our trip.

Stop at Mirador de San Pedro

As you continue west on TF-5, make sure to stop at the lookout point Mirador de San Pedro.

You can take a walk through banana plantations and along the coast if you follow the Rambla de Castro walking path.

Or, simply grab a coffee at Restaurante Cafetería Mirador San Pedro, the restaurant located at the viewpoint. We don’t recommend eating here.

Visit Icod de los Vinos

The city of Icod de los Vinos is another worthy stop on your drive today. People flock here to see the famous thousand-year-old Dragon Tree, reaching a lofty height of 22 m. While the tree can be admired at a distance, there is a fee if you want to see it closely.

Beyond the impressive umbrella-shaped tree, Icod de Los Vinos is a tranquil destination filled with verdant plazas (e.g. Plaza San Marcos) and alluring places to eat. We had a delectable meal at El Mortero (Address: Calle San Sebastián, 7, 38430 Icod de Los Vinos).

Walk around Garachico

Your drive continues to Garachico, a picturesque coastal town known for its beautiful lava rock pools. The Piscinas Naturales el Caletón was formed as a result of a massive volcanic eruption that destroyed the town completely in 1706. When we visited in January 2020, the pools were closed (temporarily).

Visit Punta de Teno

Punta de Teno is a rocky headland that forms the northwestern tip of Tenerife. Marked by a lighthouse, this cinematic location in Teno Rural Park (Parque Rural de Teno) delivers godly views of the Los Gigantes cliffs (Acantilado de Los Gigantes).

There are a few ways to visit Punta de Teno. We’ve outlined all your options in this guide to visiting Punta de Teno. Note: the road to Punta de Teno is restricted during most of the day. Depending on when you visit, you may need to take Bus 369.

Stay in Buenavista del Norte, or Los Silos

Budget | B&B Buenavista del Norte is a charming and economical B&B located in an 18th-century house in Buenavista del Norte. Guests have access to a shared kitchen and garden. Note: bathroom facilities are shared.

Mid-Range | Luz Del Mar is a lovely hotel in Los Silos. It’s nice to unwind in the hotel’s sauna or take a dip in the outdoor pool, before treating yourself to dinner at the hotel restaurant.

LuxuryMelia Hacienda del Conde is an adults-only, luxury hotel in Buenavista. When you want a peaceful place to stay with access to top wellness facilities (fitness center, sauna, Turkish bath, pools), this is the #1 place to stay in Northwestern Tenerife.

Book your stay in Buenavista del Norte or in Los Silos

Masca Village, Tenerife

Day 5: Teno Rural Park

Santiago del Teide to Masca

Hike from Santiago del Teide to Masca

From Buenavista del Norte, or Los Silos, drive the TF-82 to Santiago del Teide. The drive takes about 40 minutes. This point-to-point hike from the town of Santiago del Teide to the village of Masca was our absolute favorite hike in the Teno Mountains.

For trail directions, read Hiking in the Teno Mountains

Eat Lunch in Masca

Masca is one of the crown jewels of Tenerife. After your hike, walk around the village and pick out a place to eat.

Take the Shuttle Bus back to Santiago del Teide

To get back to your car in Santiago del Teide, take the shuttle bus line 355. This bus schedule was accurate when we visited in Jan 2020. Please double-check bus times before setting off.

  • Weekdays: 9:25 am, 10:25 am, 12:30 pm, 3:15 pm, 4:10 pm, 4:15 pm, 6:25 pm
  • Saturdays: 10:00 am, 12:30 pm, 4:15 pm, 6:25 pm
  • Sundays & Holidays: 10:00 am, 12:30 pm, 4:15 pm, 6:25 pm

Stay in Santiago del Teide

Stay in Santiago del Teide if you crave local, authentic places to stay, and you want to avoid huge tourist hubs.

Budget | Casa Fina is an exceedingly charming and peaceful place to stay in Santiago del Teide. With its private courtyard, cozy beds, and a communal fully equipped kitchen, you have everything you need to feel right at home.

Book your stay at Casa Fina.

Find a place to stay in Santiago del Teide.

Or, Stay in Los Gigantes

Stay in Los Gigantes if you want to end your day on the coast. Though highly touristic, Los Gigantes boasts staggering views of Los Gigantes Cliffs and divine places to swim, like the natural pool Piscina Natural Acantilado De Los Gigantes.

There are tons of tourist traps in Los Gigantes, but we can wholeheartedly recommend the no-frills Bar-Restaurante Paraiso for Canary cuisine and Restaurante Pizzeria Mamma Lucia for Italian classics. If you can’t get a reservation at Mamma Lucia, you can always order pizza to go.

Luxury | If you are looking for comfort, relaxation, and ocean views, we recommend you Royal Sun Resort in Acantilado de Los Gigantes. The hotel features outdoor swimming pools with fantastic views of the coast. Each apartment offers a private terrace, kitchen, and big bathtub. Next time we will stay here!

Book your stay in Royal Sun Resort.

Find a place to stay in Los Gigantes.

Teide National Park TF-21 Road, Tenerife

Day 6: Teide National Park

Explore Teide National Park

From Santiago del Teide or Los Gigantes, take TF-38 into Teide National Park.

There’s a lot you can do in Teide, including summiting Pico del Teide (permit needed), hiking across the Las Cañadas caldera, and driving across the park. Read our How to Visit Teide National Park to figure out what to prioritize during your time in the park.

With one full day, we recommend combing two of these hikes:

  • Montaña de la Botija and Montaña Samara Circuit Trail – Easy, 2 hr Circuit Trail
  • Roques de García Loop Trail – Easy, 1:15 hr Circuit Trail
  • Parador Nacional to Montaña Guajara Circuit Trail – Moderate, 4 hour Circuit Trail

If you want to summit Pico del Teide, read how to get permits and how to pick your ascent route in our Teide National Park guide.

Learn More: Best Hikes in Teide National Park

Stay in Vilaflor

Tonight, you can stay directly in the park at Parador de Las Cañadas del Teide, or head to the town of Vilaflor.

We loved eating dinner (twice) at Fuente Hermano Pedro, a casual restaurant in Vilaflor serving regional Canary dishes. They also have a tantalizing selection of cakes, which are worth sampling more than once, especially when paired with espresso.

Mid-Range | Hotel Spa Villalba is the perfect place to end your trip in Tenerife. Surrounded by forest and located in the mountains below Teide National Park, this peaceful hotel encourages you to unwind and relax. Guests have access to a wellness area featuring saunas and an indoor/outdoor pool. Bedrooms are comfortable and spacious. But, our favorite thing about staying here was the breakfast buffet, featuring local specialties and everything else you’d ever want. It’s possible to eat dinner at the hotel, but we’d recommend eating in the town of Vilaflor instead.

Book your stay at Hotel Spa Villalba.

Find a place to stay in Vilaflor.

Teide National Park, Tenerife, Spain

Day 7: Teide National Park

Morning Hike in Teide National Park

Your Tenerife itinerary concludes with one final hike in Teide National Park. Use our Teide National Park hiking guide for inspiration.

Another option is to explore the nearby Paisaje Lunar (Lunar Landscape). This 12.9 km loop hike takes about 4 hours.

Or, simply have a luxuriously slow breakfast at Hotel Spa Villalba

Lunch in Arona Town

If you’re flying out of Tenerife in the late afternoon, or evening, head to the small inland town of Arona for lunch. Here are two places we particularly enjoyed:

  • Restaurante El Cobijo for local Canary food
  • La Cocina de Jose miniño for Spanish food

Depart Tenerife

From Arona (town), it’s a 20-minute drive to the Tenerife South Airport and a 1-hour drive to the Tenerife Norte Airport.

How to Expand this Itinerary

If you have more time in Tenerife, definitely stay another night in Buenavista del Norte/Los Silos. That way you can hike the Camino Risco Path to Punta de Teno Circuit (learn more: Teno Mountains).

I’d also add another night in Vilaflor or Teide National Park, so you can have 2 full days exploring the park.

When we visited Tenerife (Jan 2020), the Masca Gorge was closed. If it’s open during your visit, then consider adding another night in Los Gigantes, or Santiago del Teide.

Path of the Senses Forest Walk, Anaga Rural Park, Tenerife, Spain
  • Gran Canaria.

We‘re so excited to put on our hiking boots once again and hike in the Canaries.

If anyone is looking to escape the cold winter in mainland Europe, consider a trip to the Canary Islands. The hiking season here runs from November until May.

We have a bunch of Tenerife guides on the blog and soon we‘ll have a series on Gran Canaria. 

Have you been to Gran Canaria? If so, what was your favorite trail, beach, restaurant, town?

📍Tamadaba Natural Park
  • Ra Gusela - one of the most iconic towers in the Dolomites. 

📍Belluno, Italy
  • Sunrise captures of Lago di Braies/Pragser Wildsee in the Braies/Prags Dolomites in Northern Italy.
  • We’re going hiking! 

Can you guess where? 

Hint 1: Scenes from season 1 of the Witcher were filmed there. Anyone else love Yennefer???? 

Hint 2: It’s an island. 

Hint 3: It’s in a 7-island archipelago.

📍View of Lagazuoi near Passo Falzarego
  • Three things I wish someone told us before we stayed at the Aqua Dome Hotel in Tirol, Austria.

1. You can check-in to the hotel as early as 9 am. Though you won’t have access to your room until 3 pm, you will get full access to the Therme. The reception will give you a spa bag with a towel, bathrobe, and flip flops.

2. Swim in the floating basins and pools between 7 am and 9 am, before the public opening. 

3. Enjoy the Spa 3000 on your day of arrival. You won’t have access to it on your day of departure.

For more tips, read our full guide:

📍Ötztal Valley, Tirol, Austria
  • Tofana di Rozes burning like fire during sunset. 

📍Ampezzo Dolomites, Belluno

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