The Tricky Business of the Tenerife Weather

For centuries the Canary Islands have had the reputation of enjoying an almost perfect climate. The Canary Islands – not a corner of Tenerife, or a promontory on Gran Canaria, or a particular cove on Lanzarote.

It’s a point which often gets overlooked, left out possibly, during the many, many debates there are about the weather on Tenerife.

We all have different likes and dislikes and one person’s idea of perfect weather isn’t always another person’s.

South North Tenerife

A few weeks ago on Tripadvisor a destination expert for Ibiza mentioned on the site’s Tenerife forum that the Balearics had better weather than the Canary Islands over the summer months. She meant it was hotter. Ironically at that time Spanish TV was running an advert which showed people trying to escape the heat by climbing into fridges etc. It was an advert promoting the Canary Islands; a destination where, traditionally, many Spanish swap the oppressive summer heat of mainland Spain and the Balearics for ‘better’ weather in the Canaries (i.e. cooler temperatures – it’s only  a sizzling 30C or so here).

It’s all relative, but subjective interpretation makes understanding the Tenerife weather extremely complicated for Tenerife newbies (and even some people who have visited many times or actually live on the island).

Thank goodness then for the existence of webcams. They show the weather exactly how it is all across different parts of Tenerife.


Look at these two pictures. One shows a part of Los Cristianos on an overcast day. The other shows another part of it on a beautifully sunny day.

Sunny, Cloudy South Tenerife

These photos were taken on the same day at the same time.

Same with these two at Puerto de la Cruz.

Sunny, Cloudy North Tenerife

Same day, same time.

All I did both times was point the camera inland and then turn and point it toward the sea.

On both the north and south of the island cloud tends to gather on the hillsides, whereas the coast and out to sea can be clear.

A webcam pointing towards the mountains can show cloud a lot of the time, even when it’s sunshine on the coast.

And a webcam pointing towards the sea will show sunshine much of the time, even when there can be cloud on the coast.

It’s just another little ‘trick’ that further complicates the understanding and interpretation of a climate that really isn’t that complicated.

The Canary Islands enjoy a wonderful climate. The Canary Islands – not a corner of Tenerife, or a promontory on Gran Canaria, or a particular cove on Lanzarote.


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+


  1. we have been going to puerto de la cruz for a long time and enjoy it very much . the weather is usually very good and dont mind a bit of cloud from time to time . thats when you still have to wear sun protection as the rays can still burn you .

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