Montaña de Guaza Tenerife



Last week I was vacationing in Los Cristianos with my aunt, taking a much-needed break. I won't detail the whole week but it involved a relaxing mixture of sunshine, running, swimming, cocktails, and great local food. I thought I would give you a snapshot of my holiday, of a morning active jaunt up the Montaña de Guaza in Los Cristianos Tenerife.

Montaña de Guaza
As seen from behind our apartments.

The Montaña had been teasing me all week long- peeking out from behind the terraces at our apartments. I rose before the sun and ran down from our hillside perch, along the Ave de Amsterdam, to hit the trails on the Montaña de Guaza. A lot of the hiking in Tenerife is further out into the countryside but this 428m high hill is absurdly well placed just beside the town and sea. The route leaves from Calle la Marea in the east/southeast corner of Los Cristianos, where it intersects with Calle Bergantín. There are a thousand paths off of this street but try to take the real one at the intersection as many of the others are farming tracks that just disappear at some point in the early slopes.

The trail starts rocky, climbing up the right hand shoulder of the hill on to the first plateau. It then joins the dirt jeep road leading to the summit. On the first plateau stick to the trail you are on that sits on the edge of the hillside, or if you want to wander the thousand paths that cover the flat land just make sure you turn left on the jeep road up to the top. Even when you join this road the trail is still pretty steep on places but it's super runnable - mostly soft dirt and rocks, including the 'road' section. 

Farm trails.

Sunrise over the farmlands to the north.

Looking back at Los Cristianos.
I thought I was the first one on the mountain at 7am but when I got to the summit there were runners already returning. I passed a further three runners on my way down, all male. The summit is marked by antenna and a weather station. I fast hiked lots of the trail and took water and photography breaks and still only took about 40 minutes to the summit. Apparently hiking from the monkey park side is a lot steeper and more like a scrambling hike.

Gorgeous desert landscape.

The summit.
On the way up the views were mixed- I got a stunning sunrise to the north but lots was obscured because of the haze that sits on Tenerife in the early mornings. I could hardly see inland at the summit. It might be worth braving the heat later in the day to see the clear views of the other mountains including on really nice days the tip of Mount Teide. I did get some views of the nearby Roque del Conde near Playa de las Americas, which felt like it was whispering 'climb me' across the gap. She's a stunner with a long flat top and dramatic cliff edge.

Better views after sunrise.

On the way down you need to keep an eye on your feet- I felt like I tripped every time I looked at the view, so eventually adopted a 'stop to look' rule. As I said the trail is great but it has some deep sandy pockets and is pretty rocky. On the ascent I had passed a DIY stone arrow where the path hits the jeep road and arrogantly thought that it was hardly necessary. Needless to say I almost whooped past the turn on my descent. Luckily my brain caught the tail end of the arrow on the ground! The total run out to the summit and back to the trailhead hits around 4-4.5 miles (my Garmin has decided not to work, so who knows for sure).

The life-saving arrow.

Looking back on the Montaña.

Once you are down keep going just a few metres past the original start area towards the coast and you'll find you can join the coastal path winding right towards the town centre and beaches. My aunt walked down to meet me at the beach and we grabbed some fruit smoothies from one of the many cafes. There is nothing like a swim in the sea after some sweaty hill running, so just dive in! I love the salt and freshness of open water and somehow my fear of dark water has gone too. The only disappointment is that it is hard to swim in the sea in Tenerife without being on a public fake sandy beach- the rocks and waves at the organic coastline make things difficult.

I love the colours of the rock.

Beautiful coast back along to the town.
On the beach looking back towards the Montaña.
Now starving after all that movement, we headed to Panaria bakery on the Calle Amalia Alayón for the best coffee and pastries we had consumed all week. Highly recommended. We spent a lazy afternoon dozing in the sunshine back at the apartment- reading and taking intermittent dips in the pool. At night we walked right along the seafront to Playa de Las Américas and ate at Bianco, which was both the most expensive and the tastiest restaurant we ate in all week. We finished off the day with our best barraquitos at Perbacco, which is perched on the stairs of Paseo Madrid off of the Calle Juan XXIII.

Barraquitos at Perbacco.

That, my friends, is how to spend a wonderful day in Los Cristianos, Tenerife. Tenerife has hiking galore and great surfing up north so I suspect I will be back for an active holiday in future. This break was a wonderful relax and I'm glad I also got to indulge my love of the hills.


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Have you been to the Canary Islands?

Do you exercise on holiday?


Post written by Scallywag and published on Scallywag Sprints on 19/08/16

2 Comments:

  1. Love Tenerife, we went late last year and really enjoyed it. We stayed in Costa Adeje and ran most days along the coastal path, so lovely.

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  2. Ahhh looks gorgeous! Love that restaurant as well with the tables on the stairs - how quirky!
    I do like to exercise on holiday. I find running in the early hours can be the best way to really see a new place - before the heat, the crowds and hubbub.

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