Get lost in the wild beauty of Spain’s Canary Islands on this adventurous 7-day itinerary. Explore ancient forests, rural villages, black sand beaches, and the towering Mount Teide on Tenerife, before journeying to the smaller island of La Gomera to discover lush volcanic landscapes and rich cultural heritage. Your final day takes you back to the mainland where you'll depart from the capital of Madrid.

Highlights

  • Hike through the Canary Islands' most spectacular landscapes
  • Climb the volcanic Mount Teide
  • See some of the world's last laurel forests
  • Get lost in the magical Garajonay National Park
  • Discover historic Canarian towns and villages

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Tenerife La Laguna
Day 2 Anaga National Park La Laguna
Day 3 Buenavista del Norte, Masca & Santiago del Teide Santiago del Teide
Day 4 Mount Teide Santiago del Teide
Day 5 La Gomera Playa de Santiago
Day 6 Garajonay National Park Playa de Santiago
Day 7 Depart the Canary Islands Madrid

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Tenerife

The pastel old town of San Cristobal de la Laguna.
The pastel old town of San Cristobal de la Laguna.

Welcome to Tenerife, the “Island of Eternal Spring.”

Make no mistake, Tenerife abounds with as much energy and excitement as it does tradition and amazing landscapes.

Upon arrival, you'll pick up your rental car and drive to your hotel. Settle in before heading out to explore the ancient capital of Tenerife (Santa Cruz de Tenerife) or nearby San Cristobal de La Laguna, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Start by visiting the many palaces and stately homes in the heart of the historic center. Check out the Palace of Salazar with its sumptuous baroque style door, or the Casa de LercaroCasa del Corregidor (town hall), and the Palacio de la Nava.

Day 2: Anaga National Park

Trail's through the ancient laurel forests of Anaga National Park.
Trails through the ancient laurel forests of Anaga National Park.

Day two is devoted to exploring the magnificent landscapes of Anaga National Park, a designated UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Embark on a rugged full-day hike to experience a wild paradise of prehistoric forests, hidden mountain villages, dramatic clifftops, and black sand beaches. 

Set off from the panoramic lookout of Mirador de Cabezo del Tejo, which offers magnificent views of the Cordillera de Anaga from Los Roques to Punta del Hidalgo. You’ll then cross through a rare, primeval laurel forest to discover the beautifully situated hamlet of Chamorga. Continue towards El Draguillo before finally reaching Roque Bermejo, where a lighthouse stands at the island’s remote northeastern tip.

Day 3: Buenavista del Norte, Masca & Santiago del Teide

The northern coast of Tenerife, near Buenavista del Norte.
Tenerife's northern coast, near Buenavista del Norte.

Today you’ll head west with a drive along the island’s northern coast. Pass stunning coastline dotted with picturesque coves, stopping at the charming village of Buenavista del Norte and winding through steep gorges and cliffs to reach the pretty hamlet of Masca. Your day ends in the seaside town of Santiago del Teide, a gateway to the 18,000-acre Teno Rural Park.

Day 4: Mount Teide

Views across Tenerife from the summit of Mount Teide.
Views across Tenerife from the summit of Mount Teide.

A full-day of adventure lies ahead, starting with a thrilling ascent to the top of Spain’s highest peak. Follow a knowledgeable English-speaking guide on a custom climb up the rugged Mount Teide, culminating in magnificent views from the 12,198 foot (3,718 m) summit. For a gentler hike, walk to the base station for lunch, then jump on the cable car for a spectacular ride to the top.

Looking out across the sweeping expanses of Teide National Park, you’ll understand why the 47,000-acre preserve was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. As the sun sets over the otherworldly volcanic landscape, you’ll head back to Santiago del Teide for the evening for a well-earned rest.

Day 5: La Gomera

La Gomera's lush, mountainous coast.
La Gomera's lush, mountainous coast.

Today you’ll bid Tenerife "hasta luego" and set sail for the magical island of La Gomera. This hidden gem is the second smallest island in the Canaries and known as a paradise for nature lovers. Its wild, mountainous landscape is full of contrasts; within a few miles, you’ll go from palm-covered valleys to vast canyons, arid coastal areas to dense, ancient forests. 

Catch a ferry from the southwest Tenerife port of Los Cristianos to arrive in the island's capital of San Sebastian de la Gomera, then head south down the coast to reach the quiet seaside town of Playa de Santiago. Settle into your accommodation and get some rest—tomorrow you'll set out to explore  “La Isla Magica” in depth.  

Day 6: Garajonay National Park

The fairytale laurel forests of Garajonay.
The fairytale laurel forests of Garajonay.

Venture inland today, into the fairytale forests of Garajonay National Park. The warm mists and fertile volcanic soils of this subtropical rainforest create a remarkable ecosystem, home to rare birds, lush laurel woodlands, and iconic rock formations.

Arrange for a guided hike to learn more about the park’s biodiversity, and gain a deeper understanding of the local culture and history—including a primer on the ancient Silbo language. This vast vocabulary of whistles originated with La Gomera’s aboriginal Guanches people and is still used today to communicate across the island’s deep ravines and narrow valleys.

Day 7: Depart for Madrid

Bid farewell to Tenerife's picture-perfect beaches.
Bid farewell to Tenerife's picture-perfect beaches.

This morning you'll leave your island paradise behind with a ferry from San Sebastian de La Gomera to Los Cristianos. From there, it's time to say adios to Spain and catch your flight home.