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La Orotava is located 335 metres above sea level in the valley that was once described by the German explorer and naturalist, Alexander Von Humboldt, as “that charming country, of which travellers of every nation have spoken with rapturous enthusiasm.”
Before the Spanish conquest of Tenerife, this was the Guanche kingdom of Taoro and was ruled over by the mighty Mencey Bencomo, considered the greatest of the island’s nine Menceys (Guanche kings).
The fertility of the soil and abundance of water sources of the Orotava Valley placed a high price tag on these lands. The wealthy settlers who came here following the conquest planted its slopes with sugar cane and built their homes alongside the saw mills and gofio mills of the small settlement that had begun to grow around the church of Nuestra Señora de La Concepción; Tenerife’s aristocracy had arrived.
With today’s availability of cheap flights to Tenerife, La Orotava isn’t only accessible to the rich, but in our opinion it’s still the classiest town on the island; the whole of the old town is an open air museum of perfectly preserved sixteenth, seventeenth and eighteenth century mansions. Whilst it bustles with visitors during the day, drawn by its colonial beauty, at night La Orotava’s streets are equally vibrant as residents congregate in its bars and restaurants and to browse the town’s smart shops.
Restaurants in La Orotava
La Orotava boasts one of the best restaurants on the island as well as offering a choice of wonderfully atmospheric traditional Canarian tascas and even contemporary Asian cuisine.
La Orotava Old Town Walking Route and Guide
Our town walk is more than simple directions, it is also a detailed guide to the old town and includes places most visitors overlook as well as the main highlights. Read more
Accommodation in La Orotava
No bland 70s blocks or 5 star resorts with 'wannabe' aspirations. La Orotava's hotels are the real deal in matters of good taste. Hotels in colonial houses are exquisite time machines for true travellers.
Beaches in La Orotava
La Orotava's coast boasts three of Tenerife's best beaches in Playas Bollullo, Ancón and Patos. These black beauties are worlds away from their manicured, man-made counterparts elsewhere on Tenerife.
The Pick of What to do in La Orotava
La Orotava rewards those who explore its streets. Casas de los Balcones are worth a visit and don't miss the Iglesia de la Concepción, the botanical gardens or the Victorian Gardens with their two-fingered salute to the Catholic Church.
The Real Tenerife Guidebook – in Print & on Kindle
For visitors to Tenerife who want to experience the best of Tenerife:- The 'Real' Tenerife guide to Tenerife's resorts, towns and villages is written with insight and passion by travel writers who have spent years treading the streets of every town and village, trekking along goat trails in the mountains and revelling at fiestas until dawn... [Find Out More]
Walk this Way – Tenerife
More than just a collection of the best walking routes for the island, Walk This Way Tenerife is a complete guide to self-guided walking on Tenerife. Available from Amazon. [Find out more]
Town & City Walking Routes
Tenerife has some fascinating towns, yet many visitors miss out on the best bits of them. But not those who have our Town & City Guides. With routes to our favourite sights, museums, galleries, parks, plazas, restaurants and more, these guides are your key to Tenerife towns & Cities. Routes for Santa Cruz, Puerto de la Cruz and La Orotava now available.
Real Tenerife Island Drives
People in over 30 countries have discovered the best of Tenerife by car with Real Tenerife Island Drives, scenic driving routes through the best of Tenerife's countryside. On sale in PDF and Kindle formats. [More Information...]
Real Tenerife Island Walks
Discover verdant valleys, plunging ravines, sweeping forests, remote corners, tiny hamlets and vistas galore with our series of detailed walking routes, Island walks . On sale in handy PDF format. [More Information...]
The Real Tenerife Hotel Reviews
Our hotel reviews only include hotels across Tenerife we've stayed in. We haven't been paid to write them or to advertise any hotel and we don't earn anything if anyone books a hotel after reading one. These simply represent our experiences. [More Information...]