For serious peak baggers, 3,718-metre Mount Teide is Tenerife’s biggest summit tick. It’s high enough to induce altitude sickness in some walkers and a permit is needed to reach the summit after sunrise and before sunset – but the views from the mountain’s volcanic cone are well worth the effort.
The classic ascent from Montana Blanca car park takes around nine hours with 1,400 metres of ascent to tackle. Follow Sendero 7 up a dusty track, passing lumps of black lava that are known locally as the ‘eggs of Teide’. The path zigzags endlessly up Teide’s eastern flank and skirts the Refugio Altavista at 3,270 metres before climbing finally to the summit cone.
Retrace your steps to descend, or – if you’re feeling the altitude – whizz back down on the convenient teleferico (cable car). Another alternative for walkers who haven’t got round to applying for the summit permit is to stay at the Refugio Altavista and make the top of the mountain in time for sunrise.