If come to Tenerife you might want to hike El Teide — the highest mountain in Spain. El Teide is an active volcano in the heart of Tenerife. You can always use cable car to get almost on top, but if you want to see a sunrise from the top you will have to make some compromises.
Total ascends: 1400 m (Parking lot in Montana Blanca – Eggs of Teide – Refugio Alta Vista – Teleférico – Teide ), down the same way
Distance: 12 km (one way)
Time: ~ 5 h one way (ascend)
Teide: 3718 m
Refugio Alta Vista: 3270 m
How to prepare
- If you want to get to the very top, you need to get a permission beforehand. It is absolutely free but it’s better to book at least 1 month in advance. However, if you leave before 8:30am you may skip the booking as there are no permits for earlier than 9am. Here is a link to book your permit.
- Get a warm sweater even if it is a summer. At night temperature drops and the higher you go, the colder it gets. Having more than one layer of clothes definitely helps. You can buy a sweater for 5 Euro at the nearest Primark or a similar store.
- Get plenty of water. You don’t need 3 litres of water per person since at night it is not that hot. But having 1-1.5 litres would be helpful. Get some snacks with you as well.
- Wear comfortable shoes. This is not a park in the city centre so if you do not wear apropriate shoes you might get hurt.
- Get a hand/head torch.
Your journey will start at Montaña Blanca parking lot around 2am (but you should check what time is the sunrise).
Usually going up takes 5-6 hours depending on your level of fitness. There is a refuge Alta Vista closer to the summit where you can have a rest, drink hot coffee and just get warm. There is also free wi-fi. You can stay in Alta Vista for the night if you like to make it easier for yourself but you have to book in advance.
At some point you will find that going up becomes more difficult. Not only is this because you are tired but also because the oxygen level is decreasing. This is not dangerous, but it is something you should be aware of. You will stop quite often to catch your breath.
Once you get to the Teleférico station the path becomes very steep. This is the most difficult 150m of the journey.
This is an active volcano so it will smell of sulfur. The stones on top will also be quite warm. At this point you can find a comfortable spot and wait for the sun to rise.