Tenerife with a twist: winter sun, plus wildlife and wine

A world away from the Canary Islands’ touristy Tenerife, the north offers cloud forests, lava fields, vineyards and friendly towns – and some winter sunbathing, too

We are racing along the coast road, passing banana plantations, goat herders, little bars, and whitewashed houses. To our right the ocean crashes against the black, rocky shore. The waves – huge and rolling – are the pale ice blue of a glacier. Yesterday we trekked through a prehistoric forest; tomorrow we will climb a volcano.

This place feels exotic and strange. I had always thought of Tenerife as a beach destination: bland chain hotels squatting on black sand. Two for one cocktails. Pizza and chips.

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