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Tuesday, July 20, 2021

6 best hiking trails for the whole family

Parque Rural de Anaga

Many people in Tenerife who since the end of the lockdown have seen in the mountains and ravines of the island the ideal place to develop leisure activities of the so-called new normal. Given the difficulties of moving outside the archipelago due to the global pandemic, the zero possibilities of nightlife due to restrictions and the cancellation of cultural activities, hiking has become the best option. It is more fashionable than ever, even more so in Tenerife, a hiking paradise with a large number of paths, as well as different types: coastal, mid-range, high mountain. In total, it has 200 approved trails, which together exceed 500 kilometres.

EL DÍA has compiled the best trails, both for those who want to take their first steps in hiking or want to go as a family and for those who are looking for greater challenges in nature and are well prepared. Experts in the field have participated in this selection, such as Pedro Millán, director of the Sustainable Santa Cruz Foundation and head of Rural Development of the Spanish Federation of Mountain Sports and Climbing, and Javier Martín, mountain guide on the island of Tenerife. There is extensive information on these trails on the internet, on the websites of public and specialized administrations.

For the entire family

Below are the details of the 6 best trails with low difficulty and for the whole family.

El Pijaral (Anaga)

The El Pijaral path, located in the Anaga Rural Park, is considered the most beautiful in Tenerife. Known as The Enchanted Forest, it is one of the few – together with Pico del Teide and Masca – for which permission must be requested from the Cabildo de Tenerife – it is free and it is done through this website – to avoid severe fines if it is done without authorization. It is a very attractive option for those who want to start in the Tenerife mountains.

Part of the La Ensillada area, passing the Montes de Anaga hostel, crossing the El Pijaral Natural Reserve, its fern forests, in particular the one that gives the area its name, enjoy extraordinary conditions of humidity and temperature since it is embraced by the trade winds. This laurel forest - a plant dinosaur exclusive to the Canary Islands, Madeira and the Azores - hides one of the best views of the Natural Reserve. It is a 6-kilometer circular path with a route of low difficulty, lasting about four hours, ideal for families to be accompanied by the little ones.

Without leaving the Anaga Rural Park, another option to get started in this sport is the Pista de Las Hiedras, which starts from the TF-143, the El Batán road, at kilometre 0.7. With sections adapted for people with reduced mobility, it is also a circular track. The distance is not a problem either since the total route of this track is 4.5 total kilometres. It is one of the least demanding trails of the selection, ideal to combine it with other activities during the day such as a visit to the different rural towns in the area. It is a path surrounded by abundant laurel forest and heath, with very little unevenness.

Aguamansa-El Dornajito (La Orotava)

In the upper area of ​​La Orotava is the Caldera de Aguamansa Recreational Area, from where a network of trails begins that runs through the Orotava monteverde bordering the pine forests. There are a dozen possible routes. The experts recommend the Aguamansa-El Dornajito trail due to its low difficulty and its route –10 kilometres without major ascents. The starting point is at kilometre 15 of the road from La Orotava to Teide, at the height of Aguamansa. Parking is located next to Los Andes restaurant. It is a circular route that begins and ends in the Los Pajares ethnographic park, where there is a picnic area. On the outward section, we pass through the Cruz del Dornajito rest area, a place with a lot of history. It is a spring that has been referred to by naturalists of the prestige of Alexander von Humboldt for being a place of rest and water supply on the ascent to Teide.

Malpaís de la Rasca (Arona)

It touches a coastal path, one of the many in Tenerife that crosses the badlands. Located in the municipality of Arona, it is a completely different landscape from the laurel forests of the north of Tenerife, totally flat, salted by the ocean. As it is another circular route, visitors can enjoy the convenience of traveling in their own vehicle and picking it up at the end of the journey.

The Rasca Special Nature Reserve is a vast country, famous for its vegetation, its archaeological sites and its lighthouse, which is usually the target of hikers who enter this small volcanic desert. About 10 kilometres long, it is an ideal route to do with the family because it does not have great slopes. It is advisable to bring plenty of water and sun protection, since if the sky is clear, there will not be many shady places to shelter. In addition, given the proximity to the sea of ​​this route, there are accesses to some coves and ponds where you can bathe to regain strength. The trail begins in Palm-Mar, just before the place where buildings appear. To enter it is to enjoy the coastal thyme, the sea grape, the cardón and the tabaiba, characteristic species of the island's coastal places.

Malpaís de Güímar

Continuing with the coastal landscapes, the Güímar badlands is another option. This Special Nature Reserve is located in an ideal enclave for endemic species such as cardonales and tabaibales to flourish, which can be appreciated during the 6-kilometer walk. It is also another route that, due to its few slopes, is ideal for family groups who want to enjoy nature with the little ones. Also noteworthy are the abundant volcanic tubes and caves such as Cueva Honda, more than 100 meters long and 5 meters high. The recommendations for this excursion are similar to the previous one: water and sun protection to avoid heat stroke.

Fasnia Volcano (Teide National Park)

On one of the slopes of Teide, the Fasnia volcano rises, where this route is located. With 8.5 kilometres in length, it enjoys the comforts already mentioned of the circular tracks. The route begins and ends in front of the Corral del Niño car park and has an estimated duration of 3 hours. This route stands out for the abundance of the endemic species of the blue tajinaste. This species also enters into bloom between the months of April and June, so this walk around the volcano takes on a greater value. If the day is clear, from some points of the trail you can see the islands of La Palma and Gran Canaria, as well as Mount Teide.

Afur-Taganana (Anaga)

Located in the Anaga massif, this 12-kilometer-long trail is classified as easy since its slopes are not very steep. Its cliffs with views of the multiple rocks that populate the landscape of the Reserve and the access to the virgin beach of Tamadite make this track one of the most precious in the area. 

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