Visit Anaga Rural Park
Anaga Rural Park is in the north of Tenerife close to the capital Santa Cruz de Tenerife. The park is inland in the north eastern tip of Tenerife and has steep craggy mountains of the Macizo de Anaga mountain range much of which is covered in ancient Mercedes forests.
Explore the Anaga Rural Park
Spain This Way comment: The Anaga Rural Park is one of the most beautiful parts of Tenerife and there are lots of walks.
The Anaga Rural Park has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Biosphere Reserve and is a mountaineous area formed by volcanic eruptions over 7 million years ago. On average the mountain range is 850 meters above sea level and between the peaks are some deep valleys.
On the slopes and in the valleys are thick woods of laurel trees called laurisilva which is a type of sub-tropical forest which grows in areas of mild temperatures and high humidity. The trees have evergreen leaves and are covered in moss and lichen.
The Anaga Rural Park is home to the highest number of endemic species in all of Spain and whilst walking you will not only enjoy the deep ancient forests but also the incredible display of moss and lichens and birds and butterflies.
There are many hiking trails in the Anaga Rural Park with various levels of difficulty including the 'Trail of the Senses' which starts at Mirador Cruz del Carmen and is designed to be accessible to everyone. Many of the other trails are steep and not suited to young children or people with reduced fitness. The Mirador is an excellent spot for getting a great view and photo of Mount Tiede.
Hiking the El Pijara trail, or the 'Enchanted Forest' as it is known is a pleasure but numbers are restricted to preserve the unique landscape. Permits are necessary and you will be fined if you walk in the woods without one. Only 45 permits are given out each day and so for summer visits it is best to book early. Permits are free and can be booked up to 90 days in advance.
There is a visitor centre at Cruz del Carmen and a popular walk from here is to the small village of Taganana which is home to one of the oldest churches of Tenerife. Another popular walk is the walk from Cruz del Carmen to Punta del Hidalgo which is a rocky, coastal path with the mountains forming a beautiful backdrop.
On the southern side of the Anaga Park Rural is one of the prettiest of Tenerife's beaches, the Playa de las Teresitas, which is a little north of Santa Cruz de Tenerife at the village of San Andres.
Various archaeological finds have been discovered in the area including the Mummy of San Andres which is a mummy of one of the ancient Guache people who were indigineous to the Canary Islands. The mummy is on display in the Museum of Nature and Man in Santa Cruz de Tenerife.
Where to visit near to the Anuga Rural Park?
As well as Santa Cruz de Tenerife on the coast near the park there is the attractive inland town of San Cristobal de La Laguna which is considered to be the cultural capital of Tenerife and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its elegant 15-17th century houses and mansions.
You can find more local travel ideas in the Western Canary Islands guide.