[Teide Peak]

opportunities for
[Las Teresitas Beach]
Personal impressions
of May 2002

  Tenerife   [Spain] [Canary Islands] [Tenerife]  
Tenerife is the largest of the Canary Islands lying in the Atlantic Ocean off the North-Western coast of Africa to the North of the Tropic of Cancer. Tenerife belongs to "Canarias" Autonomous Region of Spain. It is one of the most attractive destinations for tourists and holiday makers from Europe due to its mild subtropical climate permitting outdoor activities, including bathing and sunbathing, almost all round the year.
Tenerife is a volcanic island of about 80×50  km dimensions with a complex surface relief, and with a highest point of the Peak of Teide rising to a height of 3,718 m above the sea level. Tenerife is offering to the tourists an immense variety of most fascinating landscapes and types of vegetation, differentiated on so small a space by both "horizontal" and "vertical" climatic zones. Permanent trade winds from the open ocean bring more humidity to the Northern coast of Tenerife, which is favourable for verdure and for the agriculture: vineyards, banana plantations, and vegetable growing. Many tourists also prefer the milder climatic conditions of the North, and particularly, the seaside town Puerto de la Cruz with its gorgeous subtropical vegetation located at the bottom of a picturesque Orotava Valley dominated by Teide Peak. However, the most popular tourist destination on Tenerife has become the arid South-West. The sunshine there is almost permanent due to the high mountains fencing off this part of the island from humid Northern winds. More than a half of about 3 million tourists coming to Tenerife every year are staying in an area often called by the common name Playa de las Américas: a stripe stretching some 10 km along the South-Western coast of Tenerife formed by a few grown together towns and urbanization zones: Los Christianos, Los Morritos, Playa de las Américas proper, San Eugenio, Torviscas, Playa Fañabé and Duque (the four latter taken together are also called by the common name Costa Adeje).
One easily can find a lot of information about the Canary Islands in general, and about Tenerife in particular, both in printed literature and on the net. There is a great volume of advertising in all the languages imaginable by tourist agencies which offer a great variety of travel packages to Tenerife. I am not going to review all that here, confining myself to a much more limited task of providing a brief information about the opportunities for naturists on Tenerife, basing primarily on first-hand impressions and experience of my two-weeks’ stay on Tenerife in mid May 2002.
[Tenerife Map]
[Agfa ePhoto] I am also inviting to give a glance to a few photos (not naturist ones) I have taken with an Agfa ePhoto digital camera on Tenerife in May 2002; those who may be interested, please follow up this link.

  Naturism on Tenerife   [FKK-bar]
The naturist opportunities on Tenerife are rather scarce and a great deal more limited than, e.g., in the mainland Spain. With the local population of about 800,000 and 200–300 thousand of foreign holiday makers constantly staying on Tenerife, there seems to be no more than a few hundred people present at all the naturist beaches of Tenerife at any given moment.
[Naturist beach] That appears rather strange, since, first, Germans, the nation most famous for being keen on a naturist recreation, comprise at least one third of the foreign tourists, and, second, the locals seem to have no open inhibitions against public nakedness on the beaches too, regarding both the public opinion and the attitude of official authorities; moreover, it is just the locals rather than foreign tourists who seem to take initiative in the propagation of naturism on Tenerife.
Though limited, naturist opportunities do exist on Tenerife, but they are not broadly advertised. Thus one may be advised to get prepared in advance to find one's way about without spending too much time on a search for the necessary information when already on place.
It also must be noted in parenthesis that 20–30% of the women on all the Tenerife's beaches sunbathe topless – that refers both to foreign holiday makers and to the locals.
Despite the above reservations, I personally would highly recommend naturists' coming to Tenerife for the following reasons:
[Naturist Site Map]
A systematic information about naturist beaches on Tenerife with photos and schemes of access can be found on the Tenerife page of Spanish Federation of Naturism (Federatión Española de Naturismo). Still there are some minor inaccuracies in the descriptions, cross-references and maps, and some exaggerations too: what is noted as an acknowledged and recommended naturist beach, may turn out being just a small secluded place in practice, with a handful of people assembling there, and a part of them venturing to undress at times.
I also can advise looking up a very good German-language site Kanaren Virtuell: there is a big section on Tenerife there, and inside it, a special page about naturism ("FKK auf Teneriffa"). A base for the scheme above this paragraph is taken from that site.
A brief information on the naturist places on Tenerife also can be found at the Spanish-language official site of Tenerife Island Government (Cabildo Insular de Tenerife) on their page on Naturist beaches, and at a Spanish site "Naturist Life" ("La Vida Naturista") on the page on Tenerife.
I can provide a few general remarks about such things as renting and driving a car on Tenerife, riding by route buses, booking organized excursions, adjusting one's schedule to the local time zone and to the climate, etc. [TITSA bus]
[Ford Fiesta] Many have got their own experience too, or rather would prefer making it their own way in any case.
Still those who possibly may deem such recommendations of mine of some use, please follow up this link.

 Naturist places on Tenerife 

I am giving here a list of links to separate pages on which a few naturist beaches are described: their location, local conditions, my personal impressions and assessment, as well as ways of access with schematic maps.
La Tejita
The only well organized naturist beach on Tenerife, located in the island South at about 2 km to the West of the town El Médano. A lovely place comprising a cozy designated naturist area under the cliffs of Montaña Roja mountain and a broad "clothes-optional" beach, the both covered by thin white sand.
La Pelada
A small naturist beach 2 km to the East of the town El Médano in the Tenerife South, mostly used by inhabitants of "La Jaquita" naturist village. A secluded place located in a small bay under rocky cliffs. Is composed of black volcanic sand gently coming down into the water.
El Médano
El Médano has no naturist facilities itself, but everyone going for La Tejita, La Pelada, or to "La Jaquita" naturist village, possibly cannot miss this nice quiet town, also renowned as a windsurfing center. It has got a few hotels, pensions, and all the necessary infrastructure for the tourists' staying there.
The naturist beach closest to the Playa de las Américas resort area in the South-West of the island. Is located in a cozy bay of the same name in a natural reserve near the village La Caleta at the North of the developed area. The beach is composed of light-gray volcanic sand. Accessible only by foot.
Las Gaviotas
The naturist beach preferred by inhabitants of the Tenerife capital city Santa Cruz. Practically accessible only by car: some 15 km on the road from Santa Cruz further to the North-East. Is located under steep cliffs, and is composed of black volcanic sand. The beach is frequented by the local surfboard fans.
Punta Callao
The beach at Punta del Callao immediately closing from the South the big urbanization zone of Los Christianos – Playa de las Américas is randomly used by naturists. Currently it is a rough place, rather uncomfortable. But it may have prospects, if the local authorities do take care of naturists' needs in the future.
Other Places
There are indications at some other naturist beaches on Tenerife that I had no chance to check during my stay on the island. As far as I can judge from by my overall impressions, that must be mostly some secluded "nooks" under the cliffs where naturism can be optionally practiced by tourists.

—  Naturist village La Jaquita
—  Hotels with naturist solariums
[Jaquita] There is one naturist village on Tenerife: Finca "La Jaquita" near the town El Médano in the island South. A few hotels both in the South and North of Tenerife have got naturist areas at their solariums and roof terraces.
Those who may be interested in more details, please follow up this link.

 Links to my other personal materials: 
 naturist places in Russia and Ukraine 

[Odessa] Odessa
Odessa is a big city, of an almost 1 million population, at the Black Sea coast of Ukraine. It is a place remarkable by 19th and early 20th century architecture and an interesting urban milieux. The city has a good naturist beach attended by many hundreds of people, both locals and tourists, on hot summer days.
This link refers to a sketch of my personal impressions of August 2000.
[Koktebel] Koktebel
Koktebel is a small Black-Sea town and resort in the Eastern Crimea in Ukraine. It has long-standing "bohemian" traditions, attracting many people of arts, and is also celebrated for very picturesque surroundings and for the good local wines. The place boasts a big naturist beach with thousands of holiday makers assembling there.
This link refers to a sketch of my personal impressions of August 2000.
[SPb - Dunes] The Dunes
  St. Petersburg
The Dunes is a renowned naturist place at a coast of the Baltic Sea on Karelian Isthmus, 30 km to the North-West of St. Petersburg. The climate of Northern Europe is not very favourable for outdoors recreation. Still thousands of naturism adepts come down on this beach in summer, the most keen of them starting the sunbathing season in April and ending it in September.
This link refers to my personal site devoted to The Dunes beach, first launched in 1999.

Andrei Samartsev, St. Petersburg, Russia