Located on the south-east coast of Tenerife, just a short distance from the Tenerife South Airport lies the resort of El Medano. In spirit, El Medano is miles and miles from the bustling southern resorts of Playa de las Americas, Costa Adeje and Los Cristianos. Known as the surfing and kite-boarding capital of Tenerife, expect a much more laid-back, surfer-dude kind of vibe, with young families, a completely international array of tourists and plenty of bars, restaurants and cafes that cater for them.
With a choice of such excellent beaches - we’ll get into that in a second - El Medano is really perfect for those looking for a chilled-out Tenerife holiday. You may have visited the island before and had your fill of the buzz of the other southern resorts. Sometimes there’s only so much Playa de las Americas you can take, and although we love it, every now and then you need a holiday with a more relaxed vibe. El Medano is the answer. With a lack of British pubs, very few fast food restaurants and next-to-none late night bars, El Medano instead provides a chilled-out promenade around the main Playa el Medano beach.
El Medano offers gourmet dining and cheap eats. From Pizza to Chinese food, from French fine dining to cocktail bars serving yummy, fresh cocktails, El Medano has a real mix to cater for the variety of tourists that descend on its streets each summer. Don’t forget. There’s plenty of tapas and beer to be enjoyed in the main square Plaza de Principe de Asturia and the little streets that wind away from it.
El Medano has all the facilities you need for a family holiday without all the chaos of the larger resorts. Well, Los Cristianos isn’t chaotic, but it is a lot bigger and could be overwhelming for a family with small children. Although the winds are strong here, the main beach, Playa el Medano, is ideal if you want to lounge and play. We wouldn’t recommend the other beaches though unless you’re out for a walk because the winds can stir up a lot of the sand and ruin those sandwiches. With calm evenings, a quaint atmosphere and plenty of hospitality, El Medano feels more like a traditional Canarian village rather than tourist-focused megaresort. If that sounds like your kind of family holiday, what’re you waiting for?
Did we mention El Medano is the surfing capital of Tenerife? Oh? Did we? If you like surfing then you don’t have to look any further. Big winds, big waves, big community.
There are excellent beaches in and around El Medano. Known as a top surfing and kiteboarding spot, you can imagine that the surf is high and the beaches busy, which they are. However, Playa el Medano lies at the heart of the resort and has a very different vibe. With gently shelving sand, restaurants and bars everywhere you turn and a children’s playground in the main Plaza de Principe de Asturia, this a top pick for a family day out.
Alternatively, you could head east to the beautifully natural Playa La Tejita. You can actually reach Playa la Tejita by foot from El Medano along the coastal path that hugs Montana Roja, the large rocky outcropping it's literally impossible to miss. Playa la Tejita is flanked by gorgeous sand dunes where you can find a peaceful spot for some sunbathing, or you can head to the beach bar which serves up cold beers. Delicious and peaceful.
There are other beaches, too, including Playa Machado, almost entirely full of surfers, Playa de La Pelada is infamous as one of Tenerife’s most popular nudist beaches and Playa el Cabezo, one of the best beaches for surfing on Tenerife and home to international competitions.
Don’t get us wrong, El Medano is no Playa de las Americas, but the little village does have a charming bohemian feel once the sun goes down and the restaurants and bars open for the evening service. Expect some live music here and there, friendly waiters offering up excellent service to the many varieties of nationalities that step over their doorstep and one or two bars open until late. Ideal for families who like to enjoy atmospheric evenings or for couples looking for a romantic spot, El Medano is perfect.
Like we mentioned, El Medano has a real ‘cool’ vibe. Surfer dudes, young families and a mix of nationalities give this resort a different sort of feel that you might expect from your classic Tenerife holiday. Forget the cheesy British pubs and karaoke bars, El Medano is all about chilling out and relaxing in the quintessential Canaries sunshine with some tapas and a bottle of cold beer. With plenty of lovely restaurants, hotels suitable for a lovey-dovey couple and transports links to enjoy the rest of Tenerife, El Medano might be your unexpected romantic holiday spot of the year.
El Medano still holds on to some of its traditional aspects mostly because it hasn’t been gobbled up in quite the same way as Los Cristianos. One example is the Saturday morning market, or rather, the Mercado del Agricultor. Pick up some tasty fresh fruit, ingredients for a culinary storm in the kitchen of your self-catering apartment, or just for an early morning walk through some yummy smells