Not everyone wants to hire a car when they travel abroad, but when part of your holidays in Tenerife involves pulling on the walking boots and heading into the great outdoors, you need to know what options you have for getting around independently.
Firstly, having the use of a car is quite simply the best option for getting the most out of walking and hiking on Tenerife. It opens up every part of the island; from the most popular walking areas to the most remote corners where local buses visit infrequently, or not at all. Having a car means you can plan where and when you want to walk without having to carry out logistical planning exercises.
Saying that, the bus service, TITSA, on Tenerife is excellent. Buses are clean, cheap and reliable and routes cover a good percentage of the island.
The good news is that some of the best areas for walking on Tenerife are well served by a regular bus service. Anyone wanting to explore the beautiful Valle de Santiago, or the breathtaking Orotava Valley should have no problem doing so by public transport. Anywhere close to a decent centre of population will have a bus service, but the more rural spots and those not on main routes might involve having to change buses, depending on where hikers are based. Even some good walking areas quite close to the main southern resorts can be difficult to reach by public transport.
The bad news is that the most spectacular area for walking on Tenerife (in our view), the Anaga Mountains, is a nightmare to get around using local buses. There are buses to some hamlets, but they are very infrequent and the effort of travelling to them, from the south of Tenerife especially, can deter many from exploring their treasures. Similarly, the Mount Teide crater has one bus in from the north and south and one bus out every day.
To try to make life easier for public transport users, in our walking guides for Tenerife we include what bus routes walkers would have to use to get to the starting points of each walking route from the main southern, northern and south western resorts. If we think it’s too convoluted we’ll say.
The bottom line though is that whether you use a car, or stick to local buses – there’s going to be a whole load of incredibly diverse and wonderful walking options within reasonably easy access wherever you’re based (well some places more so than others) on Tenerife.