Santa Cruz is the largest city of Tenerife, and together with Las Palmas acts as the capital of the Canary Islands. It is known primarily as a popular holiday resort with a wide, sandy beach. Its symbol is the modern Auditorio de Tenerife.
The city was founded in the 15th century by the Spaniards on the site of an earlier local village. For centuries it was a center of trade in bananas and tobacco. As a tourist resort it developed only in the mid-twentieth century. Santa Cruz is the only sandy beach in Tenerife. It is not natural. Sand was brought here from Africa. Thanks to this, the city began to compete with Gran Canaria's more frequently visited beaches.
Built practically from scratch in the 16th century. Santa Cruz has a nice, built-up house with old-fashioned houses. You can see, among others, the Church of the Annunciation with a high, square tower referring to the mudejar style. The interior of the temple is decorated with baroque sculptures and paintings.
In the past, the whole area of the Old Town was surrounded by forts. One of them is standing at the port of Castillo de San Juan Bautista. Right next to it is the modern body of Auditorio de Tenerife built at the turn of the 20th and 21st centuries. The remains of the older, 16th century castle Castillo de San Cristóbal can be seen in the underground gallery. Another attraction of the city is the botanical garden opened in 2008 on the site of the former garbage island. For fresh fruit, vegetables and other food items, head to the indoor market Mercado de Nuestra Señora de África.