star gazing in tenerife

Star Gazing in Tenerife – How And Why You Should Do It.

Everyone loves a starry sky at night, but star gazing in Tenerife from Spain’s highest mountain, is remarkable. Get a different view of the Canary Islands on Mount Teide, 2,400 metres above sea level.

I asked Frances Ryan, a regular visitor to the Canary Islands, about her recommendations on things to do in Tenerife. One of her suggestions was star gazing on Mount Teide, a trip which is accessible from all holiday resorts in Tenerife. As one of the three best places in the world to observe the sky, star gazing in Tenerife is something special…



We were picked up from near our hotel by Volcano Teide Experience (the company which operates the cable car at the top of Teide), for our night time adventure. After a few brief stops while we collected people from other hotels, we were on our way. We reached the top after about 50 minutes’ drive from the coast, through the clouds to a dazzlingly clear blue sky and brilliant sun.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Volcano Teide Experience (@volcanoteide) on



Our trip included a visit to the astronomic observatory on Teide. This spot and the neighbouring island of La Palma are one of three designated protected star gazing locations (dark sky reserve) in the world. Incidentally, the other two in Chile and in Hawaii. No aircraft can fly over the area and there is no light pollution – the altitude provides optimum conditions to study the sky.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Volcano Teide Experience (@volcanoteide) on



The observatory has many telescopes owned by countries (UK, Germany, Belgium) and companies to research areas of cosmic microwave, infrared, solar and nocturnal skies. The oldest telescope, from the 1960’s, is actually their most productive one, the one which is used the most. While we were there, physicists from University College Dublin were carrying out work on this telescope.


As the sun set, so did the cold!  TOP TIP: At an altitude of 2,400 metres, cold winds gave us a feel of -10 degrees, so if you are visiting make sure to take thermal clothing and wrap up.

We then were driven to the cable car area where we could warm up with coffee and hot chocolate, while our guide Jesus and his colleagues set up the observation activity in the car park.

star gazing in tenerife
Photo Credit Turismo de Tenerife



They cut off all lighting in the car park to see the sky better and handed out blankets which we all welcomed. After showing us some of the constellations in the sky such as Orion and stars such as the North Pole Star, we then took turns viewing, through a powerful telescope, a new star (which was blue because of gases) a binary star (two joined stars) and part of the Milky Way.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Volcano Teide Experience (@volcanoteide) on



The guides were enthusiastic and fun. The experience of the sky at night, which we don’t often take time to look at, was fascinating and humbling in its sheer scale and enormity.  This trip can be arranged through all holiday resorts on the island, so why not try star gazing in Tenerife during your next visit. 



Star gazing in Tenerife is only one of many tours and activities available on Mount Teide. There is also a cable car available if you just want to go to the top and explore on your own, during the day. For more details visit


Like this post? You might like:

Dolphin and whale watching in Tenerife

Go off the beaten track in Tenerife, Visit Garachico



The Travel Expert

Similar Posts