Santa Cruz de Tenerife holidays dole out a has-it-all food scene, heaps of history and a smattering of quirky landmarks.

Capital charm

Santa Cruz de Tenerife – on the island’s north-east coast – has bagged the title of capital of the Canary Islands, along with Las Palmas over on Gran Canaria. Style-wise, this place plates up a balanced recipe of old-fashioned and fancy. The shopping scene tots up sprawling handicraft markets and swanky clothing boutiques, while a mix of family-run restaurants and classy waterfront bars are on hand for when your tummy starts to rumble.

Past and present

It’s the same story when it comes to architecture. If you’re all about history, the old quarter’s got everything you need – cobbled streets lined with Baroque-style buildings, a 15th-century church and antique-stuffed markets. Trundle over to the port, meanwhile, and you can stop by the city’s super-modern crowning glory – a pointy, 1,600-seater auditorium that looks like an eagle’s talon.

Nature reserve neighbour

Holidays to Santa Cruz de Tenerife plonk you within reach of one of the island’s biggest nature reserves, the Parque Rural de Anaga. It’s less than a 40-minute drive away, and offers up over 14,000 hectares of shark-teeth shaped mountains, forest walking trails and fruit-filled farmland to uncover. Plus, animal fans will be pleased to hear it’s a protected habitat for native birds, like ebony-coloured laurel pigeons – you might hear them twittering in the trees while you explore.

At a Glance

  • Leave footprints in Playa de las Teresitas’ Sahara-imported sands
  • Kick back with a few bevvies in a trendy cocktail bar
  • Go for a hike in the forest-filled Parque Rural de Anaga Nature Reserve