Puerto de la Cruz is a popular resort in Tenerife and ranks among the best vacation spots in the Canary Islands. It lies at the foot of the Teide volcano, has dark volcanic beaches and lots of activities for children and adults.
The city was founded in the period of great geographical discoveries, and in the 17th century it developed as a large port. The city center has retained its colonial charm. There are, for example, the baroque church of Nuestra Señora de la Peña de Francia, decorated with paintings by Luis de la Cruz y Ríos, and the San Telmo Chapel with a beautiful view of the sea. On the shore there is a partially rebuilt 17th-century fort Castillo de San Felipe, in which today exhibitions and concerts are held.
The coast in Puerto de la Cruz is lined with modern hotels and holiday complexes. Many of them have direct access to the local beaches. They are covered with black or dark gray volcanic sand. The most famous beaches in the area are Martiánez Beach near the Lago Martiánez water park, Jardín Beach with a wide range of recreational activities and water sports, and the tranquil San Telmo Beach.
One of the most important attractions of Puerto de la Cruz is the Loro Park Zoo. It is a combination of a zoo and a botanical garden. The animals can be viewed on large enclosures. Most of the aquatic animals live in huge pools. There are dolphin shows, and in Orca Ocean you can admire these amazing mammals. Children, on the other hand, love the underwater tunnel where the fish flow over the visitors' heads.
Puerto de la Cruz is a good starting point to climb Mount Teide, the highest peak of the Canary Islands and all of Spain. You can go up on it by cable car or go on a hiking trail. Excursions to the volcano are organized from the resort.