If you’re planning a trip to Tenerife over the Christmas period, then I can assure you that you’re in for a fantastic time. Tenerife gives you the opportunity to escape the Christmas commercial obsession that happens everywhere else. You can just lie on the beach, soak up the sun, and relax, forgetting about the stresses that you normally face back home. Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of your visit.
- You can still enjoy the fireworks. There are Christmas and New Year festive displays in Santa Cruz, Puerto de la Cruz and La Laguna, and on the evening of December 25th there is a free concert hosted in Santa Cruz with a performance by the Tenerife Symphony Orchestra. Other big towns have their own special events for their own specific communities. The Poinsettia flower is used as a traditional decoration and you’ll find it all over the island at this time of year.
- You’ll find some elaborate, lovingly decorated and amazingly detailed nativity scenes on display in shop windows and plazas, and some town halls will also have amazing scenes from biblical times set up at their entrances.
These scenes are known as Belén (Spanish for Bethlehem), and in some towns they are carefully structured and link from place to place so if you follow the route, you can watch a story play out. Lookout for Father Christmas too, he’ll be doing the rounds to take photographs with local children.
- Instead of flooding pubs and restaurants on Christmas Eve, most Canarios will opt to go home and spend time with their family. Local restaurants usually close early to accommodate this. With the resorts catering for tourists, it will be business as usual but if you want to dine out around this time, make sure you book in advance because it will be difficult to find availability if you don’t book early. There will still be families out and about, attending the Midnight Mass or the Misa de Gallo as it is known here and is a hugely popular tradition in both the north and the south of the island.
- Shops will close on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, so it pays to get your shopping done in advance. Where at home you’d likely be running around doing last minute shopping on those days, for people in Tenerife they are days of rest and for family time.
- Tenerife is special in that you can often head to the peak of Mount Teide to build a snowman on Christmas Day (enjoying your dream of a white Christmas), but you can also head down to the beach to relax and enjoy the warmth of the sun.
You get both types of weather…in December!
It’s a special feeling, and it means that you can head back home to start the year feeling radiant and refreshed, instead of down from the dull, miserable weather.
- Every country or island has its own special festive treat. In Tenerife it’s Turron, a small cake made from honey, egg and almonds. These Christmas Cakes are a traditional dessert which many Spanish people claim comes from the Valencia region. This is a subject of controversy; with some saying that the ancient Greeks invented it. Wherever it originally came from, we can all agree on one thing, the original cake is delicious, and some of the new flavoured ones that are more modern inventions are pretty tasty and worth trying too.
- If you’re staying for a while after Christmas, be aware that the 28th December is ‘Day of the Innocents’, which is similar to April Fool’s day. You’ll find that there are practical jokes being played on people everywhere, and the newspapers will be full of funny stories too. Don’t believe everything that you read!
All in all, Tenerife offers a very special time during the Christmas period and you have to experience it to feel the warmth and hospitality the island provides.
Take a look at Tenerife Forum for more information about the island of Tenerife.