For low cost holidays Tenerife is a tough act to follow, which is probably why its one of the UK’s favourite destinations. We have a long standing love affair with Spain anyway, so it’s hardly surprising we find the Spanish Canary Islands so appealing. Tenerife, being the largest of the islands, has many thousands of British visitors every year, many of them making return visits for the second or third time.
While Spanish culture is so very different to our own, since around the 1960s and ’70s and the rising popularity of places like Benidorm, we’ve been going there so often it’s almost like a second home.
The siesta tradition is comfortingly familiar, and tapas bars are all over the towns and cities here now, too. Tenerife, being a relatively small and very tourist-oriented island, seems to offer us the best of both worlds. We’re charmed by the exotic, the beaches, warmth and palm trees, but at the same time we sort of know which way is up and what to expect.
Another similarity to home is that Tenerife also has something of a north/south divide. The southern part of the island is dominated by UK visitors, whereas the northern resorts and regions are favoured by the Germans. Climate-wise, the difference is similar too, with north Tenerife being slightly cooler. Not that the British tourist will find anything to moan about regarding the climate of either north or south. It’s all warm, after all, and the sun shines on the north coast just as it does on the south.
Activities and day trips are as family friendly as you like, making Tenerife holidays a great excursion abroad for those taking a young family for the first time. Kids, as we know, can be creatures of habit and quite able to take an instant dislike to anything that takes them outside their comfort zone. Anything that’s really appealing and adventurous looking, or that involves animals and rides, helps them get over the feeling of being out of their depth when their surroundings and routines suddenly change.
The really great thing about Tenerife is the way it manages to be all things to all people. Whether you’re in your party phase or you’d rather sip wine as you relax and watch the sun sink into the sea, Tenerife has a special welcome you won’t forget in a hurry.