Tenerife, which belongs to the Kingdom of Spain, is the largest island in the Canary Archipelago, which consists of seven islands, every one of them special in their own way, but with all of them being volcanic in origin. Tenerife is often called “the island of eternal Spring” because of the fact that, throughout the year, the island temperature is constantly between 17 and 30°C. Tenerife is even more beautiful thanks to the Teide mountain, the highest peak of which stands at 3718m above sea level. Tenerife is the most visited tourist destination of the world, with an annual influx of around 5 million visitors.
Judging by what was found in the archeological locality of Icod de los Vinos, it is thought that Tenerife was first inhabited in the 6th century BC by the Guanchos. This indigenous population was once thought to have come to Tenerife from the north of Africa, but scientific research has debunked this theory when it was confirmed that the Guanchos had no genetic similarity to African people. The Guanchos were described as tall people of fair complexion, with the women being described as beautiful and, interestingly, blue-eyed, which is not characteristic for African people. It is thought that the number of the Guanchos in Tenerife reached around 20 thousand before the Spanish conquered the island.
In 1464, the first attempt by the Spanish to conquer the island took place. However, no larger clashes were seen, as a peace treaty was promptly signed, which saw the Guanchos allow the Spanish to build a fort at the island. Unfortunately, the peace was broken in 1472, when the Europeans were ousted off of the island. In 1494, Spanish commander Alonso Fernández arrived at the island’s Santa Cruz de Tenerife pier in order to re-negotiate peace conditions with the indigenous people. As these negotiations led to no solution, mostly due to the wish of the Spanish to gain full control over the island, conflict began. In the battle known as Matanza de Acentejo (roughly translated as “The Slaughter of Asentejo”), several thousand Spanish soldiers died, and their commander was forced to flee to Gran Canaria.
After he gathered reinforcements, Alonso Fernández attempted to conquer Tenerife once again, as it was the only unconquered island in the Canary Archipelago. He was victorious this time, mostly thanks to the fact that the Guanchos’ defense was further weakened by the outburst of a disease that struck the island, a disease that scientists today assume was either the plague or typhus. In May of 1496, devastated by sickness and endless clashes, the Guanchos surrendered, marking the beginning of Spanish rule over the island.
The conquering of Tenerife, as well as the crimes committed throughout the conquest, were long considered a taboo in Spain, especially during the reign of Francisco Franco. Thankfully, today, this topic is much more freely discussed, many victims are rehabilitated, streets are named after Guancho leaders, and monuments are erected in honor of the indigenous people.
The Romans called the Canary Archipelago “The Garden of Hope”.
Cristopher Columbus visited the piers of Tenerife during his trips to the New World.
La Matanza de Acentejo is a town on Tenerife which got its name thanks to a famous battle from which the Guanchos emerged victorious over the Spanish invaders, forcing them to flee to Gran Canaria.
It was long thought that the Canary Islands got their name from the name of a bird. However, we now know that the Romans are responsible for the name, which was derived from the Latin word “canario”, a breed of dogs that is indigenous to this island.
Tenerife is a magnificent island of volcanic origin that belongs to the Canary Islands. Often called the island of eternal spring, Tenerife is an ideal place for a year-round vacation. From the amazing volcanic beaches characterized by black sand, popular beaches such as Las Americas, to the endless Mount Teide with the highest peak in Spain - 3718 meters. It is easy to fall in love with this island.
Gran Canaria is surely one of the last remaining European Paradise islands, situated in the Atlantic Ocean, some 200km away from the coast of Africa. It is the third largest of the Canary Islands, neighbored by Fuerteventura and Tenerife. The capital, Las Palmas, is situated in the northeast of the island. Gran Canaria is the island of contrasts, bursting with culture, an unbelievably beautiful coast and spectacular sunny beaches, the perfect destination all year round. From its cold climate in the north, to the sunny south, this perfect holiday island has everything even the most demanding traveler would wish for: a great specter of climates, lush forests, exotic flora and fauna, volcanic craters, as well as a strange sediment of snow at the highest peaks.