Hot Summer Nights on Tenerife

Mon, August 27th, 2012 - By Linda

This summer is said to be the hottest on Tenerife for seventy years, and, sadly, may be remembered for the forest fires, which, I hasten to add, were never close to resort areas. Locals have their own ways of coping with the heat, which is definitely more intense inland, than it is on the coast.

Canarian traditional folk dancers


Up in the village of Granadilla de Abona a couple of weeks ago, the night air felt more tropical than subtropical, but returning to El Médano I could feel the temperatures dropping with each kilometre, until I arrived home to a cool, ocean breeze, and that’s the secret – coastal evening temperatures aren’t the humid nights of Florida or even mainland Spain, and escaping to the coast is the traditional way to spend Canarian summer.

It may seem odd to talk about summer in the Canary Islands, where our temperatures are so even throughout the year. We eat outdoors year round, but it’s summer when life moves onto the streets. Afternoon pavements are deserted as people siesta, but there is a buzz in the air once the sun goes down. You’ll find groups sitting on benches, walls, doorsteps and even just hanging out of windows gossiping. Those lucky enough to have a roof terrace often string up hammocks or drag mattresses up to sleep under the stars. There was a long tradition of camping on local beaches, returning home each morning to shower and change before going off to work as usual. Camping is discouraged on many beaches now, but folk still do it, literally fishing for their suppers, and being lulled to sleep by the waves.

Tenerife street food barbecued kebabs


Summer (verano in Spanish) is the busiest time for romerias and fiestas, which aren’t simply the processions and fireworks, but are celebrations lasting a week or two, with nightly dancing in the village squares, where kioskos sell hotdogs, kebabs and candy floss as well as copious amounts of quenching beer.

But apart from the traditional fiestas it seems these days that every village has something going on every summer weekend (if not during the week too). There are fashion shows, folklore concerts, amateur talent shows, displays of Canarian wrestling (Lucha Canaria), martial arts, beer festivals, wine tastings, gastronomic exhibitions, triathlons, cine de verano (when huge cinema screens are erected in the village square and movies are shown) and a zillion activities aimed at children.

Even in the cities hot, sleepless nights can be spent having fun. Santa Cruz for instance has its Terrazas del Verano, temporary venues with entertainment and drinks, catering for those “summertime insomnia.” Sleep can always be made up for with a siesta the following day.

There’s even a drink especially for summetime – tinto de verano, which is roughly half and half red wine and lemonade or fizzy water or orange. Something like a spritzer only with red wine instead of white. The tourist favourite, sangria, isn’t often drunk by locals.

Tenerife sunset


Although Los Cristianos, with its history as a fishing village, does hold some of these events, mainly you will find them outside of the coastal resorts, in Las Galletas (near Costa del Silencio), El Médano or Los Abrigos for instance. Well worth a short drive to find some local flavour, or you could settle for an evening stroll and one of our stunning island sunsets.

Posted : Monday, August 27th, 2012 at 9:49 am
Category : nightlife
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