Puerto de la Cruz is one of Tenerife’s most popular cities. It has one of the most beautiful town centres on the island, and the best way to get to know it is by walking aimlessly through the city, discovering each corner of this impressive coastal town, which has managed to maintain its traditional charm despite its touristic development.
The city owes its name to the tremendous importance that its port used to have. The first port was built in 1506 in the area where you can now find Playa Jardin. It is known as “Puerto Viejo” (Old Port) and today you can find a bronze sculpture which pays homage to the fisherman’s wife, who would be a key figure in the origins of Puerto de la Cruz.
The current port, known as “Puerto Nuevo” (New Port), is located next to the Batería de Santa Bárbara, and in front of the Casa de la Aduana (The Custom House) in Plaza de Europa, the largest and most emblematic square in Puerto de la Cruz. In the square, you can find the Casa Consistorial (Town Hall), a magnificent building with traditional Canarian architecture, and the aforementioned Batería de Santa Bárbara with its defensive walls and 18th Century cannons, which was built to defend the city from pirate attacks.
Some of its most popular spots are:
- Barrio de La Ranilla. One of the most charming neighbourhoods in Puerto de la Cruz, which is popular for its traditional architecture and the art and culture throughout its streets.
- Parque Taoro. The lungs of Puerto de la Cruz, a magnificent park with spectacular views over Puerto de la Cruz and the La Orotova Valley.
- Anglican Church. Inside Parque Taoro. A church with clear British influence in Puerto de la Cruz.
- Botanical Gardens. Another of the city’s green spaces.
- Paseo de San Telmo. One of the busiest spots in Puerto de la Cruz. It stretches along the whole coastline, bordering the Playa de San Telmo. The path is lined with palm trees and has a multitude of different shops. The western part of the path is the highest part, from which you have a wonderful panoramic view over the entirety of the path, the coast, and the cliffs, all the way to Costa Martianez.
- Punta del Viento. A viewpoint with excellent views of the coast and the cliffs.
- Christopher Columbus Avenue (Avenida de Cristóbal Colón). One of the most travelled and busiest parts of the city. It borders the coastline up to the Martianez cliffs. From here, you can access Costa Martianez and Playa Martianez. There are lots of souvenir shops, hotel complexes, restaurants and cafes along the road.
- A residential complex sits atop the Martianez cliffs, which consists of houses, apartments complexes and hotels. In the area, you’ll find an amazing square with a bust dedicated to Agatha Christie, as well as the San Amaro Church and the La Paz viewpoint, with clear views of the beach and Costa Martianez.
- Church of Our Lady of Peñafrancia. 17th Century Catholic church. The square that it stands on is one of the most beautiful in the town.
- Castle of San Felipe. Built to defend the Old Port from pirate attacks and has now been converted into a Municipal Cultural Centre.
- Archaeological Museum. Dedicated to the origins of the island and the Guanche people, located in the La Ranilla neighbourhood.
- On Calle Mequinez in the Barrio de La Ranilla, there are also several chapels: small churches with whitewashed facades, which were built between the 19th and 20th Centuries.
- Plaza Concejil. Surrounded by old houses and small palaces in a traditionally Canarian style, as well as lots of restaurants and bars.
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