We recently returned from a family holiday to Tenerife – a new location for all of us, and we had a fantastic time. We found that there was plenty to do and see, whilst allowing for lots of time around the pool too. The reason we chose Tenerife over the other six main Canary Islands is purely because some of my family have been, and they especially loved Mount Teide and Siam Park. Thanks to my mum and her holiday club membership, the accommodation for our holiday was free. We stayed in Costa Adeje, which is on Tenerife’s south coast and warm all-year round.
We couldn’t decide if we’d ever return to Tenerife, so we wanted to make sure that we visited all of the major attractions, and really got a feel for it. We hired a car for the week. During our trip, we drove to the north side of the island to see how lush it is in comparison to the south side, drove to Los Gigantes (a giant rock formation), visited El Drago (the oldest dragon tree in the world), went to the top of Mount Teide (the epic volcano that dominates the landscape in Tenerife), swam at Siam Park (rated the best water park in the world), played at a black sanded beach, wandered around Santa Cruz (the largest city) and spent a magical two hours whale watching. However, I felt so sick by the end of the boat ride (!)
We spent the first day getting our bearings, finding a supermarket and swimming in the pool. Then we loosely settled into a routine of going to the pool in the morning, venturing out for the afternoon, and often returned to the pool early evening, as it was still warm. We stayed in an apartment complete with a small kitchen and dining table, which is so handy with small children.
Three things that stand out from our trip are: firstly, how well the boys got on, and how glad I am that they have each other. They played in the pool for hours and hours (or until they got hungry!) and are great company – Win and Ru especially. Otto is hard work and wears us out, but that’s normal for him. The second was our drive through Teide National Park and cable car ride to the top of Mount Teide. It was unlike anything I have ever experienced – a magnificent volcanic landscape with beautiful trees and vivid colours, which felt totally surreal. It was so perfect, so vast and so remarkable.
The third highlight for me was our whale watching trip. The Atlantic Ocean around Tenerife is home to pods of short-finned pilot whales and bottlenose dolphins. On our trip we didn’t manage to spot bottlenose dolphins, but we did spot hoards of short-finned pilot whales and were lucky enough to spot a sea turtle too. The tour guides said that we were ‘total heroes’ for taking four young children on a two hour tour, but it was me that struggled the most out of the six of us. For the last half an hour I felt so sick, and was just trying to move as little as possible. I spent a good half an hour that evening watching videos that Jared had taken, teary eyed and a little pathetic, that we’d had the privilege of seeing such incredible creatures.
Our flight back to England was at 7.15pm, and we decided to spend our last day wandering around Santa Cruz. We did a lot of walking, went to the Museum of Nature and Man, bought gelato and I insisted that we ate some tapas too. We arrived home close to 2am exhausted and ready for a day indoors.
Points to note:
- Tickets for the cable car up to Mount Teide must be bought online in advance. You cannot buy them on the day.
- It is not advised to take babies under 3 up to the top of Mount Teide, so Jared and I took it in turns. Partly due to altitude, and partly due to the gasses emitted from Mount Teide.
- Siam Park is amazing, no doubt about it, but there are a few things to consider before spending a day there. It’s expensive, and busy. The ideal age is probably over 8, however, there is still plenty to do for younger ones. It just means that adults don’t get the most out of their day.
- We rented a car for the whole week and would do the same again.