Puerto de la Cruz is most famous for being one of the first tourism destinations in the world. Located on the north coast of Tenerife Island, Puerto de la Cruz’s warm climate and serene atmosphere attracted the first privileged tourists in the early 19th century.

    Today, the climate’s still warm and the atmosphere’s still serene, but the island is slightly busier. From the Old Town to the splendid black sand beaches, and from gigantic pool complexes to quaint bars and seafood restaurants, there’s quite a good choice of things to see, do and experience in Puerto de la Cruz.

    What are the best things to do in Puerto de la Cruz?


    Plaza del Charco

    Take in the atmosphere of Puerto de la Cruz

    Positioned in the north of the Old Town, a few steps away from El Muelle Beach, Plaza del Charco (Puddle Square) is a lively green spot covered with taro, Indian laurel and palm trees. Boutiques, restaurants and ice cream stalls surround the square, which also hosts a small children’s playground. As the main meeting point in Puerto de la Cruz, Playa del Charco is buzzing until late at night and it seems there’s always something going on here. The ideal location to pick your apartment or hotel, stay near Plaza Charco.

    Location: 38400 Puerto de la Cruz, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain


    photo by Jens Steckert (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified


    Puerto de la Cruz Old Town

    Walk around the beating heart of the city

    The Old Town is the beating heart of Puerto de la Cruz. The city dates back to the early 16th century and has been known as a tourist destination for privileged people since the end of the 18th century. Stretching around Plaza del Charco, it’s like a maze of narrow streets interspersed with squares. Lined with boutiques, bars and restaurants, Puerto de la Cruz Old Town curiously looks rather modern and features only a few historical buildings and pedestrian paved lanes. It’s nevertheless a pleasant area to hang around. 

    Location: 38400 Puerto de la Cruz, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain


    Lago Martiánez

    Frolic in the sea water at a gigantic pool complex

    Lago Martiánez is a huge open-air swimming pool complex located 600 metres northeast of Plaza del Charco. Filled with sea water, the 6 pools and the lagoon are very clean, and the size of the complex means it's never too crowded. The sea around Tenerife is quite rough, so Lago Martiánez offers a safe place to swim and have fun. The complex entrance fee and the many bars and restaurants in the water park are reasonably priced. When picking your accommodation, choose a hotel conveniently located nearby in San Telmo Promenade.

    Location: Av. de Cristobal Colón, s/n, 38400 Puerto de la Cruz, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain

    Open: Daily from 10 am to 7.30 pm


    Casa de la Real Aduana

    Visit Puerto de la Cruz tourist office and contemporary art museum

    Built in 1620, Casa de la Real Aduana is the only remaining civil building of this period left standing in Puerto de la Cruz. Its historical value makes it one of the most photographed landmarks in the city. Today, Casa de la Real Aduana hosts the tourist information office, the Museum of Contemporary Art Eduardo Westerdahl and interesting artisanal and cultural exhibitions. It’s the place to go to get the latest information about music and festive events held in Puerto de la Cruz.

    Location: C/ Las Lonjas, s/n. Casa de La Aduana, 38400 Puerto de la Cruz, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain

    Open: Monday–Friday from 9 am to 8 pm, Saturday–Sunday from 9 am to 5 pm


    photo by Oliver Abels (CC BY-SA 4.0) modified


    Puerto de la Cruz Botanical Garden

    Stroll in Puerto de la Cruz historical gardens

    Founded at the end of the 18th century, the Puerto de la Cruz Botanical Garden (officially named Jardín de Aclimatación de la Orotava) is a great place to wander around tropical and sub-tropical plants. Located in the southeastern part of the city, it covers 20,000 square metres, and is considered one of the most important botanical gardens in the world due to the rare species of trees it hosts. Meander through the alleys of this oasis-like garden that offers a pleasant break from the hustle and bustle of the city. When picking your hotel, browse the options situated in the La Paz area.

    Location: Calle Retama, 2, 38400 Puerto de la Cruz, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain

    Open: April–September: daily from 9 am to 7 pm. October–March: daily from 9 am to 6 pm


    photo by Upp75 (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified


    Playa Jardin beaches

    Enjoy the beautiful black sand beaches of north Tenerife

    Designed by Canarian artist César Manrique, Playa Jardin is an urban garden with 3 black-sand beaches: Castillo, Charcon and Punta Brava. Filled with local plants and featuring stone walls and waterfalls, the garden is a cool area to cross to get to the beaches. With beach clubs, a children’s playground, sun-loungers and umbrellas, toilets and showers, Playa Jardin offers all the facilities required to spend a day on the seaside. The only downside is that swimming here is hazardous, but there plenty of pool hotels located in the area of Garden Beach you can choose from.

    Location: Calle Luis Lavaggi, 14, 38400 Puerto de la Cruz, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain


    Puerto de la Cruz Municipal Market

    Shop in a 3-storey modern market

    Located 700 metres southwest of Plaza del Charco, Puerto de la Cruz Municipal Market is in a modern 3-storey building. You’ll find a large choice of goods from fresh fruits and vegetables to honey, meat and fish, as well as second-hand items. There’s no better place to mingle with locals than at a market. Go to the roof terrace to find the most interesting goods. Snacks and drinks stalls are also at hand for you to sample local favourites. 

    Location: Av. Blas Pérez González, 4, 38400 Puerto de la Cruz, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain

    Open: Monday–Saturday from 8 am to 8 pm (closed on Sundays)

    Phone: +34 922 38 61 58


    Muelle del Puerto de La Cruz

    Friendly bars for a nightcap

    • Couples

    The area around El Muelle Beach and Muelle del Puerto de La Cruz offers a lively bar scene, making it a popular spot for drinks after dinner. Established on Plaza de Europa, The Molly Malone is a lively and friendly Irish pub where live Irish folk tunes are played every night. Overlooking El Mueller Beach, La Fragata is a small venue that offers a warm and inviting atmosphere to its patrons. 100 metres away, on Calle Agustin de Bethencourt, don't miss the excellent cocktails and convivial ambience of Africa Gastrobar.

    Location: Calle de la Marina, Puerto de la Cruz, Spain


    Sample Canarian specialities at the port

    Snack on local street food

    Puerto de la Cruz is close to El Muelle Beach and walking distance from the Old Town. It’s quite a small port but it offers a cool place to stroll around as it hosts a cool choice of chiringuitos (stalls selling snacks and drinks) at which you can sample delicious Canarian specialities. From papas arrugadas (wrinkled potatoes) covered with mojo picón (local spicy sauce) to sancocho canario (whole-cooked fish salted and spiced), you’ll certainly enjoy the fresh and authentic Canarian cuisine. You also can enjoy traditional Spanish favourites such as tapas and paella.

    Location: Calle de la Marina, 6, 38400 Puerto de la Cruz, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain


    Dine on seafood in the Old Town

    Sample local products in local restaurants

    Seafood is widely available at most restaurants in Puerto de la Cruz's Old Town. The area holds a fair choice of excellent seafood restaurants, but we’ve selected 3 of them that stand above the lot. Dine on mussels and grilled fish while enjoying the sea view at Cofradia de Pescadores, located on Plaza de Europa. Restaurante Régulo, at the corner of San Felipe and Perez Zamora Streets, serves pan-fried sole and gambas in garlic. Another famed venue is El Pescador on Calle Puerto Viejo. It serves an array of seafood dishes as well as delicious paella. 

    Location: 38400 Puerto de la Cruz, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain

    Stephan Audiger | Compulsive Traveller

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