Teide National Park
Teide National Park ©
The Parque Nacional de las Canadas del Teide was declared a protected area in 1954, and has become recognised as offering one of the most spectacular landscapes in the world, including an enormous volcanic crater with a circumference of 30 miles (48km), out of which rises the highest peak in Spain, Mount Teide. It is the largest, one of the oldest, and the most visited national park in Spain and has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Since 2007 it has also been one of the 12 Treasures of Spain. In contrast to the coastal regions of Tenerife the temperatures in the reserve can be extreme: winter in the park, which lies at about 6,562ft (2,000m) above sea level, brings snowfall and gale force winds, while in summer temperatures can soar to above 104ºF (40ºC). A cable car carries visitors to the summit of Mount Teide, but many prefer to hike the route to experience the flora and fauna, including rare specimens like the violet of the Teide, the Tajinastes, as well as the many varieties of lizards and birds. There is a refuge near the summit which you can book to stay in, and reserving this accommodation includes the permit you will need to climb Mount Teida. Many well-known movies have used the dramatic and unusual scenery of the park as a setting.
Opening times: Cable car operates between 9am and 4pm daily, weather depending