At first glance Tenerife seems like it has been colonized by British and German tourists, and demographically speaking, they have. English breakfast and German sausages are more ubiquitous than authentic island food will ever be. But this popular Canary Island does still have hints of Spanish culture, and it’s a matter of getting away from throbbing tourist spot like Santa Cruz de Tenerife and exploring its quieter towns and parks.
If you’re adventurous you might begin by hiking or taking a cable lift up El Teide, which happens to be the highest mountain in Spain. If you rent a car, take the scenic mountain roads to charming village of Masca and hike down the mountain to its stunning little harbour.
Though sometimes crowded with tourists, Loro Parque Zoo should high on your list, if any other reason than to see some of the 3,000 species of exotic parrots.
Of course, water sports are important here, and even in the winter the sea is still warm and perfect for canoeing, wind-surfing and snorkeling. Have lunch at La Hoya del Camello in the old capital and UNESCO Heritage Sight of La Laguna, and visit the botanical garden near Puerto de la Cruz.
Come in February for the popular Carnival celebrations and return home with some beads and a tan.