Knowing Tenerife’s traditions can make your trip feel more special and unique. Participate in some of our festivities and know the history of our land.
Tenerife is not just a place to enjoy a quick swim and sunbathe. This incredible island is a space filled with culture and stories that are worth getting to know. Tenerife is part of the Canary Islands and even if all the seven islands share similar characteristics, Tenerife’s traditions are quite unique and diverse, that’s why we want to make sure that you don’t miss any of them.
Tenerife is a volcanic island that emerged from eruptions around 20 millions years ago. Its first citizens were the Guanches, an indigenous group with its origins in Africa. They worked the land and made most of the traditions that we enjoy nowadays. This interesting community lived in caves around the islands, and we know a bit of their stories thanks to the myths and urban legends that have been going around for years.
The festivities and traditions that the island has today are a mixture of what its native citizens left and the merge they had with Spain thanks to the Spanish conquest. All around the island you can witness this mixture of cultures, we have huge statues that commemorate the Guanches and see the Spanish touch in the well known Canary Balconies.
A trip your tongue
Potatoes, mojo and gofio are just the tip of the huge diversity of dishes that you must try on our island. In Tenerife, we mostly produce and use our local products, a lot of our traditional dishes can only be done properly with the ingredients that our earth gives us, and it’s what makes them such a distinctive part of our culture. One that is a must-try on your trip in Ropa Vieja, a plate made with bean, chicken, beef and potatoes. This food is an example of what is now called “trash cooking”, a movement that uses leftovers to make other food.
If we are talking about food on an island, it’s only proper to try the huge variety of seafood that we offer. In Tenerife, we have a lot of seafood dishes that can make you want to stay, but our most special dish is eating a “Vieja”. This is a fish that is mostly in our sea and that has an incredible taste and a special color. It doesn’t matter how you try it, this fish is gracious in all its forms, and it always comes with some potatoes and mojos that will light up your mouth.
Between traditions and culture
Tenerife is a land that takes a lot of pride in its traditions, and that is why we have a lot of celebrations during the year that are a fundamental part of our culture. It’s mostly known that the Carnival of Santa Cruz de Tenerife is our biggest celebration, but another of our festivities that show this incredible love for traditions is the celebration of the Corpus Christi in the town of La Orotava. This is celebrated on June 23 and has as its main attractions the Alfombras del Corpus. These are big carpets laid out in the street and that are made by its own citizens with flowers and volcanic sand.
Another of our festivities that make our island known, are the romerias. These traditional parties are celebrated all around the island between the months of April and October. In these parties, the people are dressed in the traditional gown from its town, and they eat traditional food from all parts of Tenerife. The night before this party, we usually celebrate the Baile de Magos, a dinner in which you can hear traditional music and see our dances.
Know more about Tenerife
If during your stay you want to know a bit more about the history of Tenerife and of the Canary Islands, we have museums that have exhibitions about our history and culture. In the Museo de la Naturaleza y Arqueología en Santa Cruz de Tenerife you can see the permanent exhibition of the origin and nature of our land, and also see the collections of archaeology and art from centuries ago. You can also visit the Museo de Historia y Antropología de Tenerife to get to know our island in more depth.