November arrives and the Canarios want to eat a lot. That’s how it feels on Tenerife anyway as there are gastronomic offerings galore this month with chestnuts and wine being the dominant theme. It is the month where summer really ends and temperatures drop a few degrees to the lower half of the 20s in the shade. It’s still hot in the sunshine but there’s a noticeable difference after dark. With the change of seasons comes the chance of rain. November is a rainy month… by Tenerife standards. It happens every year (unless there’s a drought) but it still seems to take people by surprise.
It’s also the month when the island starts to fill up with Northern Europeans and long term visitors returning for the winter months. Although there’s not much on the fiesta front, culturally there’s masses going on.
November is the month the island’s bodegas throw open the doors of their wine cellars to launch their new wines on the world.
It’s a month to eat, drink and be merry.
The Best Fiestas on Tenerife in November
Fiesta de San Andrés, Puerto de la Cruz (29 November)
The night the kids enjoy most is the 29th when they get to drag pots, pans, car engines and anything that clangs or bangs around the streets as part of the celebrations called Arrastre los Cacharros. But the best thing about celebrating San Andrés (St Andrew) is the wine and chestnut stalls set up around the harbour throughout the month. These are usually joined by a wine fair and live music in the days around the 29th.
Arrastre de las Tablas, Icod de los Vinos (29 & 30 November)
The celebrations in Icod de los Vinos are a bit wilder and involve mostly, not always, younger residents sledding down the town’s streets on trays (no snow required – the streets are seriously steep) to crash into a mountain of car tyres. Who needs Playstation? This takes place throughout the day becoming increasingly more daring after darkness falls. Although the downhill racers bring something different to the party, it’s all about the new wine and there is plenty to be downed from stalls outside bars along the main street.
Although these are the most popular events, there are celebrations of wine and chestnuts in towns all along the north coast and in some areas of the south as well.
The Best Festivals and Music on Tenerife in November
Keroxen, Santa Cruz (El Tanque, Fridays and Saturdays till 7 December)
The Keroxen festival at Tenerife’s coolest music venue is massive this year with concerts taking place over 5 weeks and featuring over 30 bands and artists including a few from Britain including Emptyset, D.WattsRiot and King L Man.
Aguere Music Festival, La Laguna (Plaza del Cristo, 16 November, 8pm, €10)
The big music fest in La Laguna features Green Cohete, Anoder Vaina, Pachumba, Lirico and Alphelus from the UK. Nope, I don’t know any of them.
Noche en Blanco, La Laguna (30 November)
It’s only the 4th November so it’s probably a bit much to expect that the organisers would have worked out the programme for Noche en Blanco in La Laguna at the end of the month (and yes, just in case it wasn’t clear, that was sarcasm). What is known is that there will be less of a focus on music and more on culture. Which means less headbanging rock but maybe a bit of jazz and plenty of street theatre. Whatever it ends up, there will be a lot going on.
Dorada Festival, El Médano (16 November, 11.30am)
There are a load of bands and at least eight varieties of beer and cider to get through in a 13 hour music and beer fest.
Nabucco, Santa Cruz (Auditorio de Tenerife; 26,28 & 30 November; tickets from €20)
The big cultural offering this month is Giuseppe Verdi’s tragic Nabucco – a cheery (not) Biblical tale of the persecution of the Jews by Nebuchadnezzar.
Tribute to Queen, Santa Cruz (Teatro Guimera, 14 November, 9pm €5)
It looks as though it’s the month of 80s tribute acts with even the Guimera Theatre hosting Kind of Magic, a tribute to rock legends, Queen.
Festival of Theatre and Dance, Adeje (8, 15, 22, 23 and 29 November, tickets from €5)
There are some really interesting performances in Adeje this month for the XVI Festival de Teatro y Danza, ranging from romantic tales to surrealism to cinematic divas.
A Mixed Bag at Auditorio Infanata Leonor, Los Cristianos
Los Cristianos’ auditorium has a couple of interesting and contrasting concerts in November. Goya Tovió’s Noche de Boleros Cubanos promises to be a musical extravaganza featuring sultry Cuban sounds (8 November, 8.30pm, €10) whereas Overbooking’s Dire Straits Tribute (9 November, 9pm, €10) features the sort of music you’re more likely to hear in the bars in the neighbouring resort of Las Américas.
Foodie and other Events on Tenerife in November
Agatha Christie Festival, Puerto de la Cruz (4-10 November)
Agatha Christie visited Puerto de la Cruz in 1927 and didn’t like it ( to be fair, she wasn’t in the best frame of minds at the time). Her bitter words hasn’t stopped the town holding a festival in her honour. The festival includes movies, musical and theatrical performances and conferences.
Noche de Castaños y Vinos, Valle San Lorenzo (5 to 10pm, 29 November)
Celebrating wine and chestnuts in November is traditionally more of a northern than southern tradition on Tenerife so it’s good to see some municipalities joining in by encouraging local bars and restaurants to put on a theme night promoting wine and roasted chestnuts.
Canarian Food Fair, Los Cristianos (Explanada Casa del Mar; 10am to 8pm, 9 and 10 November)
A chance to try the best of Canarian products only a few steps from the beach. Two days of wine, cheese, honey, gofio and all sorts. There’s no excuse for anyone staying in the area not to try a bit of local nosh.
Mándate Una Tapa, Granadilla de Abona (15 November to 15 December)
It’s a foodie frenzy in Granadilla de Abona over the next few weeks with a tapas route that has everything in it but the kitchen sink – probably only because you can’t actually eat a sink. There are 36 participating bars and restaurants, including a selection in El Médano and Los Abrigos, where €2.50 gets you creative tapas and a wine or beer. You can add on a special desert for €2 and a cocktail for €3. There are loads of interesting looking tapas, the funniest must be the Sponge Bob burger.
Ruta de la Tapa, La Orotava (till 17 Nov)
More tapas in Tenerife’s classiest borough. There are participating restaurants throughout the municipality and even a taxi service to get you around them. But with 20 bars and restaurants in the town itself, we’ll be strolling the old cobbled streets looking for the most creative tapas at €2 a go (without drink).
This month there are also tapas routes around Punta de Hidalgo/Bajamar, Acentejo, Guia de Isora and Candelaria.
Whilst these are our pick of the most interesting events on Tenerife, there is an overwhelming amount of interesting activities on Tenerife each month. Cultural Centres are excellent places to find out what’s happening wherever you are on Tenerife.
Jack is co-owner, writer and photographer for BuzzTrips and the Real Tenerife series of travel websites as well as a contributor to lots of other places. Follow Jack on Google+