Comparing questions about Tenerife on Tripadvisor

Every so often we like taking a look at Tenerife’s Tripadvisor forum to compare the answers given to some questions we find most interesting (ones that aren’t just standard resort queries) with the answers we would give.

These are a selection based on queries over the last couple of weeks.

What are the best small tapas bars in Puerto de la Cruz?

Pintxos restaurant, Tenerife
A restaurant on Tenerife which specialises in pintxos – small tapas-like snacks from Northern Spain.

Some answers to any question about tapas on Tenerife on TA is guaranteed to bring on a bout of eye-rolling accompanied by an exasperated ‘POR FAVOR’ (a neighbour did this in a restaurant and it was the first time I’d heard it used in an ‘Oh, puh-leez’ way). Responses included tapas aren’t a Canarian thing (they’re not but that doesn’t mean they don’t exist – tapas routes are common) to the same recommendations for only a couple of places close to the main hotel areas, and even suggestions in Costa Adeje (not an area I’d choose to go for tapas). There are lots of good restaurants and bars in which to try tapas on Tenerife, and in Puerto de la Cruz. They might not look like exactly tapas bars in mainland Spain, but they are traditional Canarian tapas bars/restaurants. A couple of people gave more rounded and useful answers; one pointing the way to this site, which was appreciated.

Where to find flamenco or salsa dance classes on Tenerife?

Flamenco at Hard Rock Hotel, Tenerife
Flamenco, common on Tenerife, but not as common as Latino dances.

The question was mainly about finding flamenco/salsa dance classes in the south of Tenerife but nobody answered. The original question highlighted one of the difficulties there is in trying to come up with the best answers to some queries. The location was vague – the south of Tenerife covers a big area. The more specific a question is, the easier it is to answer. In this case there are lots of dance academies across Tenerife, the most suitable would depend on where the person was actually staying.

Way-marked walking routes and leaflets on Tenerife?

A free official walking leaflet - good luck trying to follow routes in in.
A free official walking leaflet – good luck trying to follow routes in in.

This was a question from someone who’d been to Fuerteventura and Lanzarote and liked the way walking routes were signposted there so were wondering if there was similar on Tenerife. I know we have a walking website so might come across as being biased, but I don’t understand people looking for specialist information on Tripadvisor. Whenever we’re researching walking in other locations (which we do a lot) we’d never dream of going near TA for advice. Some advice given was helpful – signposting of routes on Tenerife is very good compared to many other places. But that doesn’t mean they’ll get you from A to B successfully. Free leaflets from tourist offices are fine as pointers to where to find walking routes but, as one person pointed out, they’re not great. One of the reasons we started writing route directions was because of the questionable quality of information on free leaflets from tourist offices. I could tell you all sorts of stories about walking route ‘advice’ given by tourist offices, but that’s something for another day.

Recommendations for fish/Spanish restaurants in Playa de las Americas?

Paella, Costa Adeje
Paella – very popular in the purpose built resorts, but you won’t find many authentic tradition restaurants.

My automatic response for questions like this is, if you’re looking for traditional Canarian restaurants (what many people mean when using ‘Spanish’ when talking about Tenerife), don’t book a holiday in a purpose built resort. They do exist but they aren’t the same as restaurants in traditional towns. One of only two responses involved Los Cristianos, which at least does have its roots in being a fishing village. However, there are a couple of Spanish restaurants at CC El Camison on the las Américas/Los Cristianos border which regularly feature in gastronomic competitions on the island. Ironically, they may be too Spanish for some if some reviews are anything to go by.

Tenerife in November?

Rain in November, Tenerife
It’ll rain at some point in November on Tenerife. If it doesn’t it can be a bit of a disaster for the environment.

I prefer to steer clear of questions about Tenerife and the weather where possible but sometimes it’s impossible. This had two parts to it. One was about whether it rained a lot in November, the other was whether everything was still open. There are still a lot of people out there who don’t know Tenerife is a year-round holiday destination. Nowhere closes, except to give staff a much needed holiday at some point. As for rain in mid November? I’d have to strongly disagree with the person who advised there was little chance of rain. November is the month we advise friends and family to avoid if booking a week’s holiday as it’s one of the unpredictable months weather wise and can be one of the rainiest months on Tenerife. They ignore me of course. My sister has just booked for a ‘sunshine break’ for next week. Hopefully she’ll get it, but it’s a risk. She’s booked one of the sunniest spots on the island… and there’s a 75 to 85% chance of rain.

Why are the Spanish so rude and arrogant?

Tenerife amable
Our experiences of Canarios tend to look something like this.

It was really pleasing to see the overwhelming responses to this question that they aren’t. Tenerife is known as Tenerife Amable because people are so friendly, which has been our experience over the years. I do occasionally notice a difference in service between traditional areas and purpose built resorts and, after witnessing how some visitors talk to people who aren’t speaking in their first language, can understand why that is. One other point is many staff in restaurants and hotels in southern resort areas aren’t actually Canarios. They’re mainland Spanish or South American, something which is regularly debated in the Spanish language press.

Best place for whale and dolphin watching on Tenerife?

Whale watching from Puerto Colon, Tenerife
Tenerife, a fabulous place for whale and dolphin watching.

Replies suggested Los Cristianos, Playa de las Américas and Los Gigantes. All are good for whale and dolphin watching trips as the south west coast is best for whale and dolphin watching. Personally I prefer trips from Los Gigantes as the cliffs there add a spectacular backdrop.

The best way to travel to La Gomera from Tenerife?

Ferries in San Sebastian port, La Gomera
The easiest way to get to La Gomera from south Tenerife is by ferry.

This was from someone staying in Santa Cruz and the first answer matched the way we prefer to do it, jump on a Binter plane from Tenerife Norte Airport, it’s like catching a bus to island hop. But the other answers give were equally good, giving details about the ferries from Los Cristianos. Whenever a friend who lives on La Gomera travels between the two islands she does it by ferry, catching the free ferry bus from Santa Cruz bus station to Los Cristianos port. Either way, it’s easy to get from Tenerife to La Gomera, and also quite fun.

How to travel to Mount Teide from Los Gigantes?

Road to Mount Teide from south west, Tenerife
Road to Mount Teide from south west, Tenerife.

This question also involved asking advice for walks but was another which wasn’t specific enough – they didn’t say whether they would have a car or be relying on public transport. By car, it’s straightforward enough and also is an enjoyable drive into Teide National Park from the south west. By public transport is a different matter. Public buses into the park only run from the main southern resort area and from Puerto de la Cruz at the moment. One person suggested taking an excursion, but acknowledged this wasn’t any use for anybody wanting to walk in the park. The answers for this one were varied and useful (I’m not just saying that just because one of them referenced our walking guidebook).

Los Gigantes, Playa San Juan or neither?

Playa San Juan, Tenerife
Playa San Juan, I’d chose to stay there above quite a few of the purpose built resorts.

This was a case where the poster gave a lot of detailed information about what they hoped for from a location – a destination wish list – and wondered which would suit them best. The problem with too much ‘preference’ information is that it can make it almost impossible to suggest a perfect fit and can come across as being more of a “you decide for me” type question. These invariably result in people on Tripadvisor suggesting the places they like rather than somewhere perfectly suited to the person who asked the question. Which is what happened in this case. We get asked ‘which town/resort would suit me best?’ questions regularly. It’s impossible to answer this unless you know someone’s preferences exceedingly well. Which is why we’ve compiled bite-sized guides to different areas we can point people to when they ask the question.

And finally, where can you find mock bucking bronco/rodeo bull on Tenerife?

Rodeo bull, funfair, Puerto de la Cruz, Tenerife
Festive rodeo bull riding in Puerto de la Cruz.

There weren’t any answers to this one. Bucking broncos and rodeo bulls do exist on the island, and are usually found at funfairs which spring up at the bigger fiestas. We’ve watched them in the car park in Puerto de la Cruz and along the seafront in Santa Cruz. Christmas is especially a good time to track down a bucking bull… if you’re brave enough.

About Jack 475 Articles
Jack is co-editor, writer and photographer for BuzzTrips and the Real Tenerife series of travel websites as well as a contributor to online travel sites and travel magazines. Follow Jack on Google+

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