Tenerife’s beaches are famous the world over, and for good reason. As well as being drenched in year-round sunshine, the numerous pristine stretches of sand on the largest of the Canary Islands are lapped by warm, clean and safe waters.
Unsurprisingly, the island has established itself as one of Europe’s top travel destinations, with tourists booking cheap Tenerife holidays throughout the year in order to get their fix of sun, sea, sand and sangria.
But while the island’s main beaches may be overrun with holidaymakers, with a little effort, the savvy traveller can find their own little piece of paradise in one of Tenerife’s many unspoilt and hidden coves.
What’s more, many of the finest secluded beaches are located just a few miles from the island’s main resorts, making it possible to enjoy an afternoon of tranquil sunbathing before heading back to the hotel for the all-you-can-eat evening buffet or the night’s entertainment.
Top of the list for holidaymakers keen to enjoy some peace and quiet should be Playa El Puertito. Though it’s just a short distance from the lively and hugely popular resorts of Costa Adeje and Playa de Las Americas, this historic fishing community feels a million miles away.
Here, while the local fisherman go about a way of life that has largely remained the same for centuries, tourists can relax on the fine black sand. Thanks to the secluded nature of the cove, wind is rarely an issue, making this oft-overlooked beach ideal for sunbathers.
This lack of wind also makes the warm waters ideal for swimming, and bathers can enjoy fine views of the fishing cottages as they take a dip.
A little more developed, yet still offering more than enough space to lay down a towel without having to worry about intruding on someone else’s space, is Playa de Las Gavitos. Located just past Las Teresitas – which is very much on the tourist map – the small cove boasts one of the most picturesque and beaches on the island, minus the crowds.
Unlike Playa El Puertito, the waters here can get choppy when the wind picks up, making this a popular spot for water sports enthusiasts, while the rugged cliffs encircling the cove offer some welcome shade from the summer sun. Playa de Las Gavitos also has a selection of kiosks and cafes to service the needs of holidaymakers.
Although these beaches appear tranquil compared to Tenerife’s most popular spots, they are still relatively accessible, particularly to tourists following the lead of the locals and hiring scooters to zip around the island.
In order to experience true seclusion you’ll need to leave your scooter or car behind and trek through the island’s dramatic volcanic landscape.
Play Bullullo, for example, can only be accessed along a single-track road, with the going tough even for experienced walkers. Unsurprisingly, this makes it more or less out of bounds for families enjoying cheap Tenerife holidays, but determined sun seekers, as well as surfers keen to enjoy some of the island’s best breaks, do make the walk – with many recounting their find in the bars and taverns of nearby Puerto de la Cruz once the sun has gone down.
So while Tenerife’s main resorts and beaches can feel unbearably overcrowded at times, with a little imagination and a bit of effort, it’s easy to leave the masses behind and enjoy some sun-soaked serenity. And remember, if in doubt, politely call upon the knowledge of the locals, who can point you in the direction of the island’s top secret spots.
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