Sunday, June 24, 2012

Visit The Stunning Tiede National Park

September 19, 2011 by  
Filed under Activities, Attractions, Travel Guide

Anyone planning their holidays in Tenerife should make the time to visit the incredible Tiede National Park.

This UNESCO World Heritage Site, located on the island of Tenerife in Spain, has one of the most spectacular volcanic landscapes in Europe.  Tiede National Park is dominated by the impressive Tiede-Pico; at 3,781 metres, this is the third highest stratovolcano in the world.

The atmospheric conditions which exist around an Atlantic island such as this creates amazing tones and textures, and some very unusual cloud formations can be seen.

The volcano, which is usually referred to by tour operators as Mount Tiede, can be accessed on foot or by cable car, but the mouth of the volcano is several hundred metres above where the cable car stops.

To get there you will need a permit from the officials in the park’s office in Santa Cruz if you are climbing alone, or you can join a guided climb, which is perhaps the best option.  A reasonably good level of fitness is required for this as the climb takes around four hours.

There is no great variety of fauna in the park; there are the usual selection of geckos and lizards, and about 20 species of birds – notably the wild canary which gives the Canary Islands their name.

The lack of animal life is more than made up for by the flora to be found in the park.  There are over 168 species of plants, 33 of which are endemic to Tenerife, and the best time to see them in flower is in May and June.

With 130 sq kilometres to explore, the park is a good choice for a short break, and there is a large parador offering accommodation within the park.  Night time is magical here – light pollution is practically non-existent, so it is an astronomer’s paradise.

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