10 Best museums in Tenerife

Tenerife is an island with a large number of museums, so it can be overwhelming to choose which ones to visit. Here is a list of the essential ones.

Ana Caballero

Ana Caballero

10 min read

10 Best museums in Tenerife

Tenerife, Garachico | ©Eduardo Arostegui

The museums of Tenerife tell the history of the island in an interesting way. Therefore, through the temporary and permanent exhibitions in each of these museums, you can discover the main contributions that this land and its people have made to the human, artistic, social, architectural, scientific, etc. fields.

There are certainly a large number of museums on the island, whose visits can be included among the best things to do in Tenerife. For example, you can visit the Museum of Nature and Archaeology to discover Guanche finds, the Canary Islands Military History Museum to learn all about military art, or the Casa de los Balcones Museum, where you can travel back in time to learn about the domestic customs of Canarian families.

1. Museum of Nature and Archaeology

Museum of Nature and Archaeology| ©Jasna S
Museum of Nature and Archaeology| ©Jasna S

The Museum of Nature and Archaeology is housed in an old neoclassical building built in the 18th century.

There you will be able to enjoy interesting Guanche finds that explain the past of the island's aboriginal culture. You will also learn about the natural wealth of the region.

Archaeological area

In this part of the tour you can learn about the aboriginal Guanches, who inhabited Tenerife before the European conquest. To do so, you can access the following exhibitions:

  • Biological anthropology: contains valuable archaeological finds, such as the Guanche mummy, which dates from between the 11th and 13th centuries. You will also find funerary objects, bowls, instruments and other Guanche antiquities.
  • Didactic classroom**:** in this area there are a series of educational activities focused on the island's culture. It is the ideal place if you are visiting Tenerife with children.
  • Gallery: through various images you will learn about the aspects that forged the identity of the Guanches and how this influenced the new civilisations.

Nature area

In this room you will find an extensive collection of nature that serves as a testimony to the changes that have taken place on the island over the centuries:

  • Botanical samples**.**
  • Mineral samples**,** with some amethyst quartz, silica crystals and a series of rocks, including some lunar rocks.
  • Recreations of fossil sites with tropical marine fauna. Also, terrestrial vertebrates and invertebrates.

Details of interest

  • Price: the average entrance fee is 5 euros per person.
  • Opening hours: Monday to Saturday (9:00 to 19:00) and Sundays (10:00 to 17:00).
  • Where: Museum of Nature and Archaeology. Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

2. Canary Islands Military History Museum

Canary Islands Military History Museum| ©Felicia Gañan
Canary Islands Military History Museum| ©Felicia Gañan

If you want to make the most of your 3-day visit to Tenerife and learn about the evolutionary process experienced by the military art of the islands, you must visit the city's Military History Museum.

During the tour you will discover the chronology of the collections conserved in its rooms: Conquest of the Canary Islands, Fortifications and Militias, Gutiérrez's Victory over Nelson, Civil War and Economic Command and Spanish West Africa.

In these rooms you will see models showing what the island was like in the past, plans with war strategies, white weapons, collections of flags, cartography, telemetry, artillery, measuring and calibration instruments.

In the garden area of the museum, you will see heavy equipment such as the so-called Hercules Cannon, gunboats of the sea front and a series of historic vehicles, among others. Furthermore, from the top you can enjoy a privileged view of the coastline and the city's port.

Details of interest

  • Price: free admission.
  • Opening hours: Tuesday to Friday (9:00 to 15:00), Saturdays and Sundays (10:00 to 14:00).
  • Where: Museo Histórico Militar de Canarias, Acuartelamiento de Almeyda.

3. La Casa de los Balcones Museum

La Casa de los Balcones Museum| ©Sebastian S
La Casa de los Balcones Museum| ©Sebastian S

One of the best activities in Tenerife is a visit to the house-museum La Casa de Los Balcones. This is an old family building built in 1632 and now converted into a museum.

There you will see an exhibition that explains the domestic customs of Canarian families through a series of antiques exhibited in its rooms.

When you arrive at this three-storey colonial house, you will feel as if you have been transported back in time. You will immediately notice its façade, which features a central stone window and, above it, a total of nine windows framed in sgraffito wood (an ornamental technique). You will also see a continuous balcony, characteristic of the island's traditional architecture.

Once inside the house-museum, you will have the option of dressing up in the attire of the period and taking the tour in a different way, thus being able to observe:

  • The objects of daily use of the former owners of the house: furniture, beds, artefacts, art, among others.
  • Inner courtyard, which offers a peaceful natural atmosphere, surrounded by palm trees and a beautiful blue sky, for you to rest.
  • Visitors' shop, where you can buy handicrafts or typical products of the island.

Interesting details

  • Price: 5€ per person.
  • Opening hours: Monday to Friday (8:30 am to 6:00 pm).
  • Where: Museo La Casa de Los Balcones, Calle San Francisco.

Buy your ticket for La Casa de Los Balcones

4. Casa Chacona Museum

Casa Chacona Museum| ©Jonny D
Casa Chacona Museum| ©Jonny D

If you plan to spend 4 days in Tenerife, you will have enough time to visit the Casa Chacona Museum, where you will learn a little about the societies of other times.

The museum is located in the Pirámides de Güímar Park. It is a 19th century building that opens its doors every day from 9.30 am to 6 pm.

When you enter the museum, the first thing you will see is an imposing recreation of the statue of the pre-Inca sun god (Kon Tiki). Next, you will find several rooms:

  • Engravings and sculptures, which will reveal some of the gods belonging to the cultures of Mexico and Peru.
  • Cultural objects, prevalent on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean and which serve to exemplify the theory of the Norwegian anthropologist, Thor Heyerdahl, about cultural parallelism.
  • Reed boats, made by the Mesopotamian and Egyptian civilisations, as well as others built by the natives of Bolivia and Peru. In addition, you will see some maps showing other places where these legendary vessels were used.
  • Photographic collection showing a large number of step sculptures (pyramids), discovered all over the world.

Details of interest

  • Price: from 18 ¤ per person.
  • Opening hours: Monday to Sunday (9:30 am to 6:00 pm).
  • Where: Casa Chacona Museum, Ethnographic Park of the Pyramids of Güimar.

Reserve your ticket for the Pyramids of Güimar

5. Sacred Museum "El Tesoro de la Concepción"

Sacred Museum
Sacred Museum "El Tesoro de la Concepción".| ©Freyr Reynison

Another destination to include in your itinerary is the Sacred Museum "El Tesoro de la Concepción", where you will find important collections with artistic and textile pieces, dating from the 16th century to the present day.

During the visit, you will go through a total of seven rooms, which house a historical sample of more than 500 years old:

  • Collection of textile art, in which you will see a series of ecclesiastical vestments.
  • More than a thousand works of art, including sculptures, paintings and furniture.
  • Objects of religious art, including chalices and a Gothic Manuelist monstrance from 1520, considered to be a goldsmith's treasure of great historical and cultural value. You will also see the imposing filigree cross (2.45 metres high), carved in solid silver by Jerónimo de Espellosa, in Cuba, during the 17th century.

The museum is usually open until 1.30pm, so after the visit you will have plenty of time to do other activities, such as sailing in Tenerife to admire its marine landscape, visit one of the theme parks, explore the historic centre at your own pace, etc.

Details of interest

  • Price: from 4€ per person.
  • Opening hours: Monday to Friday (9:00 to 13:30).
  • Where: Museo Sacro. La Orotava, Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

6. Municipal Museum of Fine Arts

Municipal Museum of Fine Arts| ©Olivier Blaise
Municipal Museum of Fine Arts| ©Olivier Blaise

In the rooms of the Tenerife Municipal Museum of Fine Arts you will find paintings, sculptures and minor arts.

All of them are artistic examples dating from the 16th to the 19th century. You will see important works by renowned Canarian artists and the Flemish school.

On the first floor of the building you will have access to a space dedicated to the storage of sculptures and paintings. You will also find the research and restoration workshop, where the value of each of the collections is studied.

On the first floor you will be able to see a large collection of paintings, organised chronologically:

  • Flemish paintings from the 17th century, which show the relationship between the Canary Islands and the ports of Flanders during this period of history.
  • Canarian Baroque painting from the 17th and 18th centuries, in whose works the central theme is religion.
  • 19th century paintings, which refer to illustrations and portraits.
  • 19th century Historicist painting, with representations of Christian historical events of the time.
  • 19th century Canarian landscape painting, with a series of works that show the natural beauty of the island from different perspectives.

Details of interest

  • Price: free admission.
  • Opening hours: Tuesday to Friday (10:00 to 20:00), Saturday and Sunday (10:00 to 15:00).
  • Where: Municipal Museum of Fine Arts, Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

7. Science and Cosmos Museum

Science and Cosmos Museum| ©Juan Ma Fernandez
Science and Cosmos Museum| ©Juan Ma Fernandez

With so many cultural venues on the island, you might not know what to do during your 5-day stay in Tenerife. If this is the case, a good alternative is the Science and Cosmos Museum. There, you will learn while you have fun interacting in each of the rooms.

During the tour you will notice that this museum escapes from the conventional, as in its rooms you will not see exhibits with findings of significant value. On the contrary, you will find a series of modules with objects and brief explanations that will help you to discover science on your own:

  • The sun, you will understand the importance of the sun for life on earth.
  • The human body, you will learn about cells, the senses, embryonic development, etc.
  • How it works, you will learn how some devices work and the principles of some scientific phenomena.
  • The Earth, you will discover the permanent changes experienced by the Earth and the atmosphere.
  • The Universe, you will be introduced to the subject of astronomy and the immensity of the cosmos.
  • Microcosmos children's room, with activities that stimulate the senses and creativity of the little ones.

Details of interest

  • Price: average ticket price is 5 euros per person.
  • Opening hours: Monday to Saturday (9:00 to 19:00) and Sundays (10:00 to 17:00).
  • Where: Science and Cosmos Museum, San Cristóbal de La Laguna.

8. Tenerife Wine Museum

Tenerife Wine Museum| ©Nadine F
Tenerife Wine Museum| ©Nadine F

If you want to enjoy the culture of wine, then Tenerife is the place to be. You can go to the wine museum-house and enjoy a pleasant experience, where you will learn in detail about the process of growing and making the so-called drink of the gods.

The museum is located in an old 17th-century Canarian hacienda, so you will have the chance to see this emblematic architectural ensemble. You will also enjoy a garden setting and a privileged view of another of the island's main attractions: Mount Teide, which you can reach on an excursion.

The museum's permanent exhibition will help you discover the history, traditions and secrets of the island's wines. All this, through a chronology of images.

You can also taste some wines in the tasting room, buy your favourite vintage in the wine shop, explore the gift shop in search of souvenirs and sample the gastronomy of Tenerife in the restaurant area.

Interesting details

  • Price: average ticket price is 12 euros.
  • Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday (10:00 to 20:00) and Sunday (10:00 to 18:00).
  • Where: Wine Museum,

Book a visit to Bodegas Monje with wine tasting and mojo sauce workshop

9. Museum of Contemporary Art Eduardo Westerdahl

Eduardo Westerdahl Museum of Contemporary Art| ©Lucas J
Eduardo Westerdahl Museum of Contemporary Art| ©Lucas J

The Eduardo Westerdahl Museum of Contemporary Art is another good option to visit during your 7-day stay in Tenerife.

Here you will find permanent exhibitions with samples of national and international art from the 20th century and also some temporary exhibitions in the rooms of the building.

Throughout the exhibition rooms you will see works of art belonging to emblematic Canarian artists:

You will also have the opportunity to appreciate the work of painters and sculptors from outside the Canary Islands:

  • Wolfgang Paalen (Austro-Mexican surrealist painter).
  • Luc Peire (Belgian painter dedicated to Flemish expressionism).
  • Eduardo Úrculo (painter, sculptor and the greatest exponent of pop art in Spain).
  • Angel Ferrant (Spanish surrealist sculptor and geneticist).

In addition to all these art exhibitions, you will be able to contemplate the architectural design of the famous "Casa de la Aduana", considered one of the oldest buildings on the island.

Interesting details

  • Price: the average entrance fee is 3 euros per person.
  • Opening hours: Monday to Saturday (10:00 to 14:00).
  • Where: Museum of Contemporary Art, Calle Las Lonjas.

10. Fisherman's Museum

Fisherman's Museum| ©Nor B
Fisherman's Museum| ©Nor B

The Fisherman 's Museum is a small space with a total of two floors. Here you will find a large exhibition with objects of great cultural and craft value that tell the marine history of the island of Tenerife.

In the rooms of this museum you will find an important collection of old photographs and a series of scale models, through which you will learn about the different types of boats and how they have evolved over the years.

You will also be able to see images of all the fish found in the waters of the island, organised according to each region.

You will also see an exhibition of fishing tackle, made up of hooks, lures, weights and all the elements that are tied to the end of the line when fishing.

Details of interest

  • Price: free admission.
  • Opening hours: Friday to Monday (9am-2pm) and Tuesday to Thursday (9am-4.30pm).
  • Where: Fish Museum in Puerto de la Cruz, Tenerife.