My Top 5 Favorite Photogenic Tenerife Churches

Wed, January 30th, 2013 - By Linda

Many Canary Islands churches are very photogenic, white towers contrasting with blue skies, and that colonial feel taking you back in time. Choosing my favourite churches to snap in Tenerife was harder than expected though.


Basilica, Candelaria


The first was easy. The basilica of Our Lady in Candelaria holds a special place in the island’s history and heart. Home to the “Black Madonna,” who is photo-worthy in herself, the church’s interior is exceptionally pretty, tranquil, and not the over-ornate place you expect. The exterior, viewed from across a spacious, open square, picturesquely sited by the Atlantic, has the added attraction of the imposing statues of Tenerife’s first rulers, the Guanches, to add visual and historical interest.


La Concepcion, La laguna


My second choice was easy too. La Laguna, Tenerife’s original capital, is home to the island’s cathedral, but I prefer La Iglesia de la Concepción when it comes to taking snaps. One reason is its situation. Walking past the narrow, beautifully restored buildings of this World Heritage Site, you get glimpses, which come into focus as you approach the tower, waiting for you at the end of a street. Walking around the building, you can take a step back to admire its architecture, whereas the approach to the cathedral is narrow and limited. Best of all, however, is that for just €1 you can climb the bell tower of La Concepción and gaze over the whole of La Laguna and the surrounding countryside – you are usually given a warning about the pealing of the bells, which ring out every 15 minutes!



Next three, not such easy choices, but I decided that San Fernando Rey in Santiago del Teide had to get a mention. It’s picture-pretty outside, snuggled beneath surrounding hills, but inside is a revelation, chock-ful of statues, icons and artwork. Only 30 minutes drive from the resort of Los Gigantes, this lovely, little church is light-years away in atmosphere.


El Sauzal


Now my task gets harder because it’s so easy to stumble over quaint churches here, some plain and pretty, others more elaborate than you might expect. However, I plumbed for San Pedro in El Sauzal next, and principally because the setting is just so gorgeous. The church sits high, with lovely views from its square towards Mt Teide and the ocean, and has a distinctly eastern feel with an almost Moorish-style dome.


Church, Adeje


Finally, I opted for Santa Ursula in Adeje. I know that the building itself is not the most interesting architecture, nor does it have the most beautiful interior, but its situation overlooking Barranco del Infierno is quite breathtaking, and especially so since the re-modelled, modernized church square was completed. The contrast and blend of old, modern and countryside, of history, contemporary architecture and Nature is, for me, simply perfect.

These are my personal choices. I know that friends have other ideas, and that there are still dozens of island churches I haven’t seen. If you are out and about sightseeing, do stop for a moment to look at these slices of the island’s history. Usually, photography is allowed, though it might be advisable not to use flash, and if there is a collection box I usually leave a few coins, but when in doubt ask.

Posted : Wednesday, January 30th, 2013 at 10:40 am
Category : about tenerife
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