Tourist Tenerife – Breaking Away
Each year thousands of Europeans visit Tenerife. Only a tiny percentage of that leaves the resorts on the south of the island to explore. And what a pity, as Tenerife has so much more to offer! Just 40minutes away on local guaguas – green public transport buses – is Santa Cruz de Tenerife, which along with Las Palmas de Gran Canaria is joint capital of the Canarias Autonomous Region of Spain.
About 50 miles physically, many more culturally. Arriving in Santa Cruz feels like arriving in a different country. In the city there are no street sellers, no bikini clad tourists and no beaches. What you can find, is a typical Spanish city with an abundance of beautiful cafes, streets full of people and some amazing architecture.
Walking down by the water in Santa Cruz alone would be worth the trip up from the south, and as it is just across from the Intercambiador station, it is not easily missed. The amazing “Auditorio” theatre – instantly reminiscent of the Sydney Opera House – dominates the promenade, just beyond which you can see the many painted rocks of some of the world’s most famous people, something many locals hadn’t even heard of when I mentioned it after my initial visit to the promenade!
A little further along is the lovely Castillo Negro, or officially the Castillo de San Juan Bautista. This small castle is a 17th century fort which was once the second most important protecting the city, where each July locals re-enact the failed attempt by a British Admiral to invade the islands. Hard to believe so much exists away from the beaches right?
In my three months living in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, and during my subsequent visits the two following years, I only ever saw one tourist couple in Santa Cruz, and I still think it’s a shame! So next time you are in Tenerife, or any other sun holiday location, why not take a day to explore? You never know what you might find.