On a clear day in Tenerife all you have to do is look to the sky! From almost everywhere on the island you can look up and see the sharp peak of Mount Teide in the distance. One of the best days we had on Tenerife was taking a drive to get up close and personal with this monster volcano. Whether you’re planning on hiking Mount Teide or simply going for a ride to see the Tenerife volcano from afar, we got you covered. Cruise with us through Teide National Park, learn about the tram, hiking permits, and experience an unforgettable day of volcano hunting!
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Our Driving Route to Teide National Park
The drive to Mount Teide National Park is honestly something you’ll never forget! Starting in the south of the island, we decided to do one massive loop on our trip.
From Costa del Silencio we made our way from the east to the center of the island. Snaking our way up the winding roads and hills, it took about an hour to get to the official park entrance.
After exploring the Tenerife Volcano (more about that below) we drove past old lava fields and saw incredible views of the other Canary Islands. The views on both the ascent and way down are equally as stunning, and completely different depending on what side of the island you’re traveling on.
5 Facts About Mount Teide in Tenerife
1. Mount Teide is considered a dormant volcano and hasn’t erupted in over 100 years!
2. In 2007 it was officially named a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
3. Mount Teide isn’t just the highest point on Tenerife… It also happens to be the highest mountain in all of Spain.
4. With over 4 million travelers a year, Teide National Park is one of the most visited national parks in all of Europe.
5. In the winter you can even ski at the Teide Sky Resort on the Tenerife Volcano. Yes, that means you can swim in the ocean, and an hour later be hitting the ski slopes.
Teide Volcano Scenic Drive and Viewpoints
For the best views of Mount Teide, drive from Museo Etnográfico Juan Évora to El Portillo Visitor Center. This 20-25 minute stretch can easily turn into several hours.
It can all depend on how many viewpoint stops you make, or if you decide to complete any of the scenic hikes. When you pass the visitor center make sure to stop in quick to learn about the volcano and the history of its development.
Our Favorite Teide Volcano Viewpoints
Llano de Ucanca Vista Point: This small pull off along the main road has an amazing view of the Teide Volcano and La Ruleta in the distance.
La Ruleta Vista Point: As one of the most popular views it’s worth at least taking the 10 minute walk up into the Roques de García. However, if you have more time there is a 40 minute loop that has even better views of Mount Teide.
Tabonal Negro: One of the first viewing points coming from the north of the island. Here you not only see the Teide Volcano peak in the distance, but all of the beautiful valleys and mountains as well.
Random Pullovers: Don’t be surprised to see cars pulled over everywhere, and you should be doing the same! Just simply parking on the side of the road and jumping out can hold some of the best and often most secluded views of Mount Teide.
Mount Teide Hiking & Cable Car
The Mount Teide hiking rules and permits can be a little confusing. Unfortunately, to actually summit the Teide Volcano you have to apply and register online for a specific date and time.
Since these time slots fill up months in advance we weren’t able to make the trek. Yet, that didn’t stop us from having a blast exploring the area! We had a lot of questions before visiting Teide National Park so we hope the information below can be helpful to you.
1. First, you need a permit to go to the top of the volcano. This is only for the peak, and you do not need a permit to hike the surrounding trails inside Mount Teide National Park. Official Permit Reservations can be found here.
2. The permits book out months in advance so be prepared. If you do get one don’t forget to arrive with your passport!
3. There is a cable car that takes you close to the top of the Tenerife Volcano and costs 13 Euros each way. If you don’t have a permit you can still take the cable car to the top and admire the view. However, you are limited to 1 hour at the top, and aren’t allowed to hike any of the trails. Click here to buy Teide Cable Car Tickets.
4. If you don’t want to take the cable car or are unable to get a permit for your dates, there are plenty of other hikes in the area surrounding the famous volcano.
Giant Lava Fields of the Mount Teide Volcano
On either the way in or out of the park make sure to stop at the humungous Mount Teide lava fields. At one point the road cuts directly through and there will be hardened lava on both sides of you.
Depending on where in the park you are you will see black or brown igneous rock. Igneous rock is actually the name that lava takes on once it hardens and is no longer in magma form. We were surprised to feel how light, but sharp the rocks are now!
Mirador de Las Narices Del Teide: Here you can view the massive field of black lava and cruise on the road that was built into it.
Mirador de los Poleos: At this lava viewing point the rocks are brown and sharp with small trees growing in the distance.
Our driving loop was three hours, but we easily spent half a day exploring Teide National Park. This was definitely one of our favorite experiences in Tenerife! The best advice we can give you is to book your tickets to hike the summit as soon as you have your travel plans locked into place.
Have any questions about the Tenerife Volcano, Mount Teide hiking, or want to share your own experiences? Please do so in the comments below!
Brigitte & Jake
Where in the world are we? Follow our daily adventures on Instagram @nothingfamiliar!
Where To Stay In Southern Tenerife
Ultra Luxury (High End) – Royal Hideaway Corales Beach – This ultra high end hotel is an adults only escape with massive open concept rooms, onsite restaurant, spa and an infinity pool you’ll never want to leave.
Fun Vacation (Mid Range) – H10 Atlantic Sunset – This new modern hotel and property is perfect for a fun vacation. Rooms are beautiful with large balconies and upscale amenities, with onsite pools, restaurants, spa, and gym.
Hostel Life (Budget) – Hostel chillax costa Adeje – Set in this hills of Costa Adeje, this is one of the few hostels located on Tenerife island. Beautiful views, large balcony, shared kitchen, and washing machine available. Both private twin rooms and dormitory beds are available.
For more places to stay near Mount Teide Tenerife you can explore the latest prices here!
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Spain Travel Planning
Flights: We always find the best flights using Skyscanner. Sometimes it’s cheaper to fly between cities in Spain than driving or taking the train!
Rental Car: We use Discover Cars to explore when traveling. Consider renting a car in one city and dropping it off in another for an epic Spain road trip!
Tours: Check out Get Your Guide for thousands of activities around Spain. You can book a tour of the Madrid Royal Palace, skip the line and explore the Alhambra de Granada, or even jump on a Tenerife Dolphin cruise!
Travel Insurance: Never travel abroad without protection! We’ve been using SafetyWing for the last few years on the road and they are there when we need them.