About The Real Tenerife
We relish experiencing the differences in cultures when we travel and, despite the way it is generally portrayed, Tenerife is a destination that has tradition and culture by the bucket load – black, volcanic sand bucket load clearly.
Simply put, The Real Tenerife is aimed at travellers with similar tastes to us. It won’t suit, or probably be liked, by anyone who only wants to spend a fortnight snoring on the sand but hey, there are plenty of other websites around for them. Our continuing mission is to promote those aspects of Tenerife that we think would appeal to those discerning travellers out there.
In some ways it is a love letter to Tenerife but, like most love affairs, there are the occasional spats – so not everything in The Real Tenerife is presented through rose-tinted spectacles.
Who Are We?
We are Andrea and Jack Montgomery – professional travel writers. In 2003 we swapped our lives in Manchester for the north of Tenerife. Since then we’ve written guidebooks about Tenerife (Real Tenerife Island Drives & The Real Tenerife – The Insiders’ Guide, the Rough Guide Tenerife and La Gomera) and contributed to others, including updating the DK Eyewitness Travel Guide for Gran Canaria.
We also write walking guides (Island Walks) and work closely with specialist travel company Inntravel to develop Slow Travel holidays in the Canary Islands and across Europe. In the past we’ve managed a Tenerife blog and the social media for the travel company Sunshine.co.uk and were Tenerife destination experts for The Telegraph and Simonseeks until we expanded our travel horizons beyond Tenerife. We’re owners of the travel website Buzz Trips which specialises in hiking and dining on and off the beaten track. We’ve written travel articles and provide photographs for newspapers (Independent, Telegraph), travel magazines (Ling, Thomas Cook, Easyjet, GEO) and websites (Cosmos, Monarch, Huffington Post, Viator, Spain-Holiday). The upshot is that we know – and have written – a lot about Tenerife.
In recent years we’ve authored books. First, The Banana Road by Andrea, a personal account of our life on Tenerife that has surprised and shocked even close friends. The follow up to that is Camel Spit & Cork Trees by Jack which, although it does include bits about Tenerife, is about a year of Slow Travel through Portugal.
Contact Real Tenerife: If you’d like to chat to us about anything, then just drop us a line at email@example.com
What Makes The Real Tenerife Different?
The Real Tenerife is different from most websites about Tenerife because we have actually experienced the things we write about.
We’ve watched sunrise from the summit of Mount Teide and bathed in midsummer waters at midnight; belted out This Sex is on Fire in bars in Playa de las Américas and cried to Ave Maria at fishermen’s fiestas; downed too many mojitos in Cuban salsa bars and shared vino del pais from goatskin bottles with caballeros in the mountains; slept in palatial hotels and under canvas all on our lonesome in the pine forest; cross-dressed at carnaval and been spellbound at silent, religious parades; battled Atlantic rollers and floated in the rock pools at Garachico, trekked through ravines to remote hamlets and followed tapas trails through Tenerife’s capital. We’ve also spent hours sitting in libraries pouring through volumes of Spanish text translating mind-numbingly boring prose in order to find obscure details that just aren’t mentioned anywhere else. And we have conducted business within the Canarian community as well as the ex-pat one, so The Real Tenerife isn’t just about information for visitors.
We don’t just write about Tenerife; we experience Tenerife – the good, the bad and the ugly bits – then we write about it.
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I have read so much about Masca and would love to walk it but not with all the traffic of people that do it. I understand that these trip walkers end up on the coast get picked up by boat and get shipped off to Los Gigantes. Is it possible to do it the opposite way round ie. Take the last boat from Gigantes and walk up the Maca Valley with no one coming down and enough light and catch a bus to eventually get me back to Peurto de la Cruz, early October would be the plan.
It’s a super walk David. We last walked it a few weeks ago and got there early enough to be ahead of the big groups so only encountered a few people along the way. It’s definitely possible to do it by catching a water taxi from Los Gigantes to Masca Beach and walking up to Masca, plenty of people do it that way. The later you leave it though the logistically more problematic it becomes where public transport is involved. Your main problem would be the service which connects Masca with either Santiago del Teide or Buenavista del Norte (you can pick up a bus to Puerto from either depending on times) as there are only about 6/7 buses a day between Santiago and the last stops relatively early as there’s no demand outside of main tourist visiting hours. The other thing is you might encounter groups heading down the barranco anyway as I think the last water taxi from Los Gigantes is quite a bit earlier than the last boats leaving Masca Beach (I could be wrong though). The bottom line is the Masca walk is so popular that if you’re restricted to public transport it’s going to be difficult to avoid walking groups. This could all have changed by next October as there are currently plans being discussed to restrict numbers to Masca. We’ll be posting any updates on our Walking Tenerife website.
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Hey Jack and Andrea! I’m Stevie, and my husband is Tree, and our soon-to-be 6yr old daughter is Soleil. We moved to the island a year ago after traveling through North and mostly South America in a van for 7yrs, and then moving to mainland Spain for a year. Our intention was to only spend a year here and then continue on with our nomadic lifestyle, but we’ve fallen in love with Tenerife. We currently live in Santa Cruz and have found your website to be incredibly helpful. Thank you! I hope we run into you somewhere. We’d love to buy you a bottle of Listan Negro and share stories. Warmest wishes–Stevie
Hi Stevie and apologies for the late reply. We’ve been travelling in the south of France and then the Scottish Highlands throughout September and internet access has been of the ‘Slow Travel’ kind. Travelling through South America by van must have been quite an experience, we’d love to hear about your adventures. We drove part of the Carretera Austral in Chile a couple of years ago and it was an incredible experience. It would be great to share a bottle of Listan Negro, but at the moment we’re working on writing projects in Portugal. We’d planned to pop back to Tenerife this month but have had to put that on hold for the time being.
We have been using the 2015 edition of “walk this way Tenerife” and have completed a number of most enjoyable walks. We have encountered one problem however and that is the GPS locations in Appendix 14 for the start of some walks appear to be incorrect when compared with my garmin gps and google maps.
Specific examples are: Erjos Pools – page 80 GPS per app 14 28.19071 -16.48272. Actual GPS 28.3176764 -16.8050852
Chinyero circular p 86 GPS per app 14:- 28.17078 -16.45749. Actual GPS 28.2845278 -16.7624729
Holiday Mountain, Los Cristianos also has an incorrect gps
I should be grateful if you could review these aexamples and comment. If indeed they are incorrect could you issue an amendment, perhaps on line.
You are spot on John. I’ve no idea what happened with the GPS. We have an updated list with all the correct GPS locations which we’ve been sending to buyers who use GPS who contact us. I’ll email you the full list. We’re also in the process of updating the book itself.
Glad you still enjoyed the walks. The book was partly written out of frustration at an over use of GPS in a couple of guidebooks we’d used when we first started walking in Tenerife. So although we do record routes using a Garmin we tend to keep the GPS side of things to a minimum.
Hi Jack and Andrea, we’ve been spending the last 2 weeks in Tenerife and have completed two of your North Island walks (Los Organos and the shorter alternative route La Caldera to Aguamansa). Both walks were stunning and the directions spot on – thank you for writing them, they’ve been highlights so far. In case helpful, the ‘broken down wooden picnic shelter’ on La Caldera walk seems to have been removed but the mound is still there. We also unlaced the boots at Paso Del Teide which we can highly recommend. La Caldera bar/restaurant looked permanently closed.
Thanks again and happy travelling.
We’re really pleased you enjoyed the routes, Los Organos would be in our top five of Tenerife walks. I’m not surprised to hear the broken shelter has completely gone, there was less and less of it each time we passed. Also not surprised the Caldera bar was closed. I guess it will be some to before we see who and who doesn’t survive the current situation. I’d be surprised if that one stays closed though as La Caldera gets absolutely rammed at weekends and holidays (during normal circumstances). We’ve never actually eaten at Paso del Teide, so thanks for the tip.
I visited Tenerife many years ago and my niece now lives there. We visited a large old house in the north. In the past the family who lived there had a scottish nanny and had the “selkirk grace” painted in a border around the nursery. She has not hear of this and I cannot remember where it was. It is a long time ago. Can you help please?
Sorry for the delay in replying, we’ve been off grid for the last week. I know exactly where that is, it’s the Abaco mansion on the outskirts of Puerto de la Cruz. It’s a fabulous place.