Costa Adeje - Tenerife
We have been to Tenerife a few times mostly as a winter destination flying direct from Aberdeen. The last time we went was in January 2008.
We have always had great weather during our winter breaks there with very little in the way of cloud sometimes it can be cloudy in the early morning but this burns off quite quickly as the day warms up. The temperatures are usually in the low to mid twenties degrees C during the day and about 15-18 degrees at night. It can feel a bit chilly sitting outside in the evenings so it is advisable to take a couple of jumpers with you.
We stayed in the Costa Adeje area which is just along the coast from Playa De Las Americas. Costa Adeje is a lot quieter than PDLA but still offers a good choice of bars and restaurants to cater for all tastes and budgets. There are a couple of Centro Commercials (shopping centres) which are full of small bars and restaurants the largest one being next to the beach. If you fancy a bit more in the way of nightlife PDLA is only a couple of miles away and can easily be walked. We walked from our hotel to Los Christianos one day and it didn’t seem to take that long just over an hour I think. It took a bit longer to walk back as we had a few stops for drinks on the way.
Our hotel, the Fanabe Costa Sur was OK nothing really wrong with it but just OK. When we were checking in there was an old couple who were in front of us and they were offered no assistance with their luggage just pointed in the general direction of the lifts. We checked in and were processed by a rather surly check in girl who again just gave us our room key cards and pointed in the general direction of our rooms. Our room was large clean and comfortable if a bit well used but it was a ground floor room which looked out onto a tennis court with a huge concrete wall at the other side. Before unpacking I went back to reception to ask if we could move room just to be told they were too busy to do anything then but to come back in the morning. Now how much time does it take to give us the key to another room which had a view that wasn’t a concrete wall ? . We half unpacked in anticipation of being moved the next morning. After breakfast we headed to reception to see about changing room. Once again I was given shot shrift from the reception staff, they said the hotel was full and there was no chance of a move, now correct me if I am wrong but there are people vacating rooms every day and they could allocate us one of those they just didn’t seem interested in trying to help me. I have on previous occasions in other hotels asked to move rooms and have always been treated very courteously and been moved with no problems. As it turned out being next to the tennis courts meant that you had no peace and quiet in your room whatsoever. They were used for everything from aerobics first thing in the morning to kids football tournaments in the afternoon. There was no chance of an afternoon siesta. I went back to reception a day later and asked to be moved as the noise was unbearable and guess what………… they didn’t give a stuff.
The hotel itself was a bit of a concrete monstrosity, it is built in a U shape around the pool and because it is quite high the pool area always had one half in the shade so sun beds in the sun were almost impossible to get and they were so cramped together. The pool area was just a big concrete area with very little effort to make it look attractive, there was also music blaring from the pool bar most of the day.
The food in the hotel was OK, breakfasts were the usual fare but the selection was very poor compared to other hotels I have stayed in. There was no fruit juice for instance, only some lurid coloured sugary water and the coffee was just a brown liquid that didn’t resemble coffee in any way.
Evening meals were buffet type and once again were just OK, The food was pretty uninspiring with limited choice which was the same every day. The food was always pretty cold as well.
The hotel was well kept and had obviously been refurbished to a decent standard but other than the bar area there was nowhere to sit and have a quiet drink. There was a bar with a few seats inside and a large seated area outside. The Inside seated areas was very small and if you were lucky enough to get as seat you were subjected to the torture that was the so called “entertainment”. Now a guy playing cheesy tunes on a keyboard, while some woman murdered the songs karaoke style is not entertainment in my book. So the only option was to sit outside, there were loads of tables crammed into an area outside the bar next to the car park which was below street level. It was also next to where the coaches stopped to drop off and pick up guests. So while you were sat there you spared the torture of the entertainment as it was drowned out by the rumble of diesel engines and the traffic coming in and out of the car park.
The bar service was non existent, it took aged to get a drink and for some reason you had to pay for every round as it was delivered to your table, you were not allowed to build up a tab as you normally would. I am not sure if this was a ploy to get more tips for the staff but once you paid it could be over half an hour before you say your change and quite often people had to ask for it .
After the first 2 days we didn’t bother with the hotel bar and went elsewhere for some decent service and comfortable surroundings.
We hired a car for 4 days while we were there and spent a couple of days sightseeing. We booked it through Autoreisen and the service was good. The pick up was very efficient and the car was well prepared they also operated a full-full fuel policy. The only minor thing was the car was a bit tatty and had seen a few K but it was clean and well maintained.
We headed up the coast one day stopping off at los Gigantes which was a very nice small resort, small enough to be quiet and friendly but big enough to have a bit of variety as well. There is a small beach of dark volcanic sand and a marina with a selection of bars and restaurants on the sea front.
We then travelled North along the coast to a small town called Masca which is reached by a very steep narrow and twisty road. It has loads of hairpin bends and if you meet a bus on the road you have to reverse back until they can get past. The effort is worth it though, Masca is a small village situated at the top of a gorge which runs down to the sea some 3-4 miles away. The round trip walk is supposed to be spectacular but takes 2-3 hours each way so you need to be well prepared before you go. The Village is very pretty and a perfect stop of point for a spot of lunch and a wander round. The descent into the village is by foot only and is over steep rough stone paths so not suitable for anyone unsteady on their feet.
We spent another day exploring the Teide National Park which is spectacular in its own way. It is very stark and barren but offers amazing views. We didn’t do to the top of the volcano as Mrs H wouldn’t go in the cable car (and there was a long queue of people waiting to go up) once again you can walk up if you come well prepared. Warmer clothing is needed as it is much colder at those altitudes. We stopped at a few places for a walk and found it quite cool but we hadn’t come to well prepared. There are a few places you can stop off for lunch many of then cater for coach loads of tourists but we found a small place away from the crowds which served very tasty fare at reasonable prices.
We also headed up to Santa Cruz but it seemed to be just one huge traffic jam and we spent an hour stuck in some very unattractive urban areas and eventually gave up and headed back the way we came. We stopped of at Candelaria to stretch our legs and have some refreshments. Candelaria is a charming small town which is off the normal tourist map. It has a large open square in the middle of town which id dominated by the impressive Basilica and is a perfect place to sit and watch the world go bye.
I appear to have almost no pictures of the hotel so it must have been very average, I didn’t take many pictures in Costa Adeje either.
A couple of pics from the hotel roof
The beach at Los Gigantes
Candelaria where we stopped off for lunch one day
Teide National Park