Winter is Coming on Tenerife

Fri, January 15th, 2016 - By Jack Montgomery

Actually winter has arrived on Tenerife and the white walkers with it. But in this case the white walkers (more like strollers) will quickly turn into pink walkers before finally turning a nice shade of golden brown.

On the first weekend in January we booked into the Hotel Bouganville Playa in Costa Adeje, arriving at the hotel’s reception at the same time as a group of holidaymakers who’d just flown in from Scotland. By the time we dumped our stuff in our room and headed to the pool, me wearing a polo shirt, long trousers and socks, everyone else was in swimwear, the bone-chilling temperature’s at home becoming a distant memory. The temperature was mid 20sC.

Bouganville Playa Hotel, Costa Adeje, Tenerife

Mid 20C in January might not sound like winter, but whatever any guidebook says about the weather varying by only a couple of degrees throughout the year, there is a winter on Tenerife.

When is winter on Tenerife?
The coldest part of the year is January to March. We judge winter as being the time we have to light a fire at night. Normally that’s between January and 20 February. Don’t ask me why 20 Feb, it just usually seems to be that date. This year we haven’t lit the fire yet and it’s 13 January.

Snow in Teide National Park, Tenerife

What are winter temperatures on Tenerife?
There’s a drop in shade temperatures and at night from the end of December. Although it can be 25C in the sun, in the shade it’s a few degrees lower which is why weather sites often show daytime forecasts of between 17-20C during winter months. In over 10 years of living here, the coldest day I’ve experienced at coastal level was one afternoon in Los Cristianos when it was 13C. That was a freak year where the snow came lower down the hills than anyone could remember. This year in Puerto de la Cruz at 4am on New Year’s morning it was 17C. Winter is usually as hot as the best summers in Britain.

January, Playa Martianez, Tenerife

What to wear in winter on Tenerife?
Although locals might dress up like it’s the Arctic, visitors should mostly be comfortable in T-shirts and shorts during the day. A light jacket and jumper is useful for night. If planning on heading inland you’ll need warmer gear. This week two elderly Belgians were rescued from Teide National Park suffering from hypothermia because they’d dressed inappropriately. Whilst the forecast for Costa Adeje as I’m writing this is 25C, in Teide National Park it’s 12C and -2C on Mount Teide.

What is the sea like in winter?
Sea temperatures vary by only a few degrees throughout the year. Because the sun is less hot in winter than in summer, it can feel colder. I swim in the ocean year round here with only the occasional sharp intake of breath. But big waves and strong currents can be dangerous and accidents are all too common because people stray out of their depth and don’t take as much heed of conditions as they should. Basically treat the sea with respect and know your limitations.

January waves, Costa Adeje, Tenerife

Are bars and restaurants open in Tenerife in winter?
There are times when Tenerife might not be so busy during the year but there isn’t a low season when bars and restaurants shut.

Winter might be coming on Tenerife but unlike the characters in Game of Thrones we’re not really too bothered.

Posted : Friday, January 15th, 2016 at 11:38 am
Category : about tenerife
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