The oldest resort in the Canary Islands, Puerto de la Cruz exudes a quaint charm despite its popularity with tourists. See its elegant promenades, architect-designed beaches, lovely parks and gardens and traditional restaurants. Escape the party-oriented beaches in the south by visiting this lovely northern town.
Puerto de la Cruz was initially established as a port for the prosperous town of La Orotava. International merchants arrived in the 19th century and the town soon began to draw wealthy tourists with its pleasing sunny climate. Walk around the historic harbor area, where you’ll find colorful fishing boats and food stalls serving traditional Canarian dishes.
Busy Plaza del Charco is the ideal spot to begin exploring the city. A popular local gathering place for centuries, this pleasant square is lined with bars, cafés and restaurants. Stay for a while and you might catch an impromptu performance by some of the city’s many street musicians.
Lounge on the beautiful black sands of Garden Beach. Created by Canarian architect and designer César Manrique, this unique beach is bordered by a landscaped garden of cacti, tropical flowers and a small waterfall.
Head to Lago Martiánez water park. Another design by local artist César Manrique, this park consists of seven saltwater pools fed by ocean water. Bring the kids or escape to the quiet adults-only pool.
Visit spectacular Loro Parque, where more than 30,000 animals from around the world are housed in recreated natural habitats. The park has among the world’s largest collections of parrots, a special penguin enclosure and one of the largest underground aquariums.
Go to the Botanical Gardens and see more than 5,000 plants and trees from around the world. Look for the appropriately named drunken trees, which appear as though they could topple over at any moment.
September and October are some of the best times of year to visit Puerto de la Cruz, when crowds are minimal but temperatures are still warm. November through February is the rainy season.