Arrive in any city without having carried out any research at all and there’s a danger of missing all the best bits and finding instead only the seedy and unsightly parts.
The capital of Tenerife, Santa Cruz, is no different.
Although Santa Cruz isn’t a big city and is easy to get around on foot; however, if you don’t know which direction to head when you step off the bus or ferry it can amount to playing the lottery.
On a travel website recently a first-time visitor commented they understood why there weren’t many tourists in Santa Cruz as there wasn’t much to see – a dead give-away that they’d missed the attractions. Last week a friend, visiting the city from Puerto de la Cruz, had to redirect a pair of fellow tourists who were heading in the wrong direction after arriving by guagua (local bus).
So, unless you have a real interest in walking around the outside of an oil refinery, this is our brief guide to which direction to take when you arrive in Santa Cruz to get to the centre of the city.
Arriving in Santa Cruz by Bus
Everyone travelling from Los Cristianos or Puerto de la Cruz will end up at the intercambiador (bus station). Currently all the buses from the resorts ‘berth’ at the upper level opposite El Corte Inglés; an immediate magnet for shopaholics. Continue beyond El Corte Inglés, away from the coast, and you’ll find more shops and cafés but not a lot else.
For those in Santa Cruz to explore its cultural side, head downstairs and through the main hall. Off to the right are the unmissable curves of the Auditorio de Santa Cruz, which now has a great bistro. Beyond the Auditorio is the Black Fort and the new Palmetum, but not a lot else.
The centre of the city is to the left (sea on the right). A fifteen minute stroll leads past the tower of the Iglesia de la Concepción to the large pool at Plaza España where there is also the tourist office. Follow streets inland from the plaza to experience the heart and soul of the city.
From the bus station you could jump on the tram which heads in the same direction, but it does turn inland to La Laguna just before it reaches the centre.
Arriving in Santa Cruz by Ferry or Cruise Liner
There are painted lines leading from the port to the city so, in theory, it is relatively easy to get to the centre. Plaza España is a good starting point for exploring Santa Cruz and, whether arriving on a cruise or ferry from one of the other islands, it’s reached by heading left toward the stone tower of the Monument to the Fallen only a few minutes walk from the Fred Olsen ferry terminal.
Port to the Bus Station
Finally, for anyone just passing through the city, it’s about a 20/25 minute walk from the bus station to the port or vice versa. It’s a bit of a trek if there’s also luggage in tow, in which case taking a taxi is best. It should only cost a few euros as it’s only a short journey, but check the price with the driver first.
Category : about tenerife
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