10 Things to Do in Tenerife in December

During the month of December, Tenerife offers several cultural and recreational activities for visitors and locals alike.

Ana Caballero

Ana Caballero

10 min read

10 Things to Do in Tenerife in December

Night in Puerto La Cruz | ©ROOM MAN

Although December in Tenerife is somewhat colder than other seasons, you won't have to worry about snowfalls or long periods of rain. Therefore, during your stay on the island you will have no limits for fun.

During your visit you will find many things to do in Tenerife. Among other options, you will be able to do outdoor activities to enjoy the emblematic landscapes, walk through the streets freely, enjoy the nightlife, among other options.

1. Walk the streets of Tenerife and enjoy the Christmas lights in December

Streets of Tenerife| ©Bruto2011
Streets of Tenerife| ©Bruto2011

It doesn't matter if you only plan to stay 3 days in Tenerife, because throughout December you will be able to enjoy an atmosphere of celebration. When the sun goes down, the streets are illuminated with hundreds of Christmas lights.

In addition, in the squares you will see a series of decorations and nativity scenes, which provide an ideal backdrop for exploring and taking photographs.

You can do the tour at your own pace, either on foot or on two wheels, as there are plenty of options for renting bicycles. You can also opt for a guided tour to learn about the history of the city's monuments.

Some of the main squares you can visit include:

  • Plazoleta de República Dominicana (Santa Cruz de Tenerife), where you will see a huge Christmas tree.
  • Plaza del Príncipe de Asturias (Santa Cruz de Tenerife), with a beautiful decoration that simulates a tunnel of lights, food stalls and seasonal music.
  • Rambla de Santa Cruz de Tenerife, where you will see a series of light cones, illuminated trees and monuments.
  • Plaza del Centro Cultural de La Villa (La Candelaria). There, you will enjoy a Nativity Scene, decorations in the garden areas and colourful lights.
  • Plaza de La Catedral ( La Laguna), with a gigantic illuminated metal sphere.
  • Plaza del Cristo (La Laguna). You will see an interactive Christmas tree.

Rent a bike in Tenerife

2. Attend the International Storytelling Festival in Los Silos

Los Silos International Short Story Festival| ©AvisosCana
Los Silos International Short Story Festival| ©AvisosCana

If you are a literature enthusiast and you are in Tenerife during the month of December, you have an appointment at the Los Silos International Short Story Festival, which takes place in the municipality of the same name in the north-western part of the island.

This is an annual festival that has been held for more than 20 years. There, from mid-November until the first weeks of December, you can find a wide-ranging narrative exhibition, featuring national and international literary works.

You will also have the chance to take part in workshops, storytellers' round and storytelling sessions. You can also enjoy music concerts to keep you awake at night and visit the exhibitions at the book fair to buy a copy.

Useful information

  • Price: from €2 per person (the price varies according to the activity you wish to participate in).
  • Opening hours: from mid-November to the first weeks of December (10:00 to 13:00 and 16:00 to 20:00).
  • Where: Los Silos International Storytelling Festival, Silos Municipality.

3. Come to the Tenerife Regional Crafts Fair

Tenerife Fairgrounds| ©Juan Ma Fernandez
Tenerife Fairgrounds| ©Juan Ma Fernandez

The Regional Crafts Fair, which has been held annually on the island for over 30 years, is another of the best activities in Tenerife that you can enjoy during your stay in December. There, you will witness the work of over 100 craftspeople from the island and the rest of the Canary Islands who come together for this event.

Just go to the Tenerife Fairgrounds during the first two weeks of December, from 11:00 am until 9:00 pm. In this way, you will be able to see a wide range of handicrafts, consisting of:

  • Basketry, made from banana leaves.
  • Pieces of pottery, made by hand without the use of a potter's wheel.
  • Silk weavings.
  • Knives, with some ornamental details on their handles, made from bones.
  • Gold and silver work, with pieces made of metals and alloys.
  • Traditional gastronomy, with sweet and savoury foods, characteristic of all the Canary Islands.

Useful information

  • Price: free admission.
  • Opening hours: from 11:00 to 21:00 (first two weeks of December).
  • Where: Tenerife Regional Crafts Fair, at the Tenerife Exhibition Centre.

4. Join one more edition of Plenilunio de Tenerife

Tenerife Full Moon| ©Sergio Méndez
Tenerife Full Moon| ©Sergio Méndez

To make the most of your 4-day visit to Tenerife in December, you can join one more edition of the Santa Cruz Plenilunio. This is an annual event that offers you a wide range of cultural activities: theatre, music, crafts, gastronomy, art and much more.

The series of cultural activities of the Plenilunio usually take place during the first weekend of December (two consecutive days). For this, the island's town hall selects more than 10 open and closed spaces, which you can visit.

  • García Sanabria Park, with the "Le Good Market", where you will see a trendy street market and traditional and gourmet food stalls.
  • Plaza del Príncipe, with circus activities and musical performances.
  • Plaza la Candelaria, ideal if you are in Tenerife with children, as it offers puppet shows, a toy library and other children's activities.
  • Plaza de España, where you can enjoy a street market and parrandas canarias.
  • Special activities in enclosed areas. This is the case of some of Tenerife' s museums, such as the Casa del Carnaval, the Museum of Nature and Archaeology, and the La Recova Art Centre, among others.

Useful information

  • Price: free admission.
  • Opening hours: the first weekend in December (two consecutive days).
  • Where: Plenilunio in the main squares and museums of Tenerife.

5. Come to the Tenerife Children's and Youth Park (PIT) and offer the children a fun afternoon

Tenerife Children's and Youth Park| ©M. Nieves Santos
Tenerife Children's and Youth Park| ©M. Nieves Santos

If you have travelled to Tenerife with children after the second half of December, then you can't miss the Parque Infantil y Juvenil de Tenerife (PIT).

There, the little ones will have a great time with a range of fun, educational, sporting and leisure attractions.

This annual event has more than 20 years of tradition on the island, so when you arrive at the park you'll find a large number of locals and tourists.

In total, both you and your children will be able to enjoy around 40 play areas for family fun. Some of them are:

  • Mechanical rides.
  • Artificial ice rink with skate rental.
  • Stage with theatrical, circus and musical shows.
  • Sports areas.
  • Short workshops on handicrafts, make-up, balloon twisting, etc.

Useful information

  • Price: from 9€ per person.
  • Opening hours: from mid-December to the first weeks of January (10:00 to 20:00).
  • Where: Tenerife Children's and Youth Park (PIT), at the Tenerife Fairgrounds.

6. Glide over the ice rink at the Isla de Hielo in Tenerife

Skating rink in Tenerife| ©kirbycolin48
Skating rink in Tenerife| ©kirbycolin48

Ice skating is a typical December activity that you can enjoy during your stay. All you have to do is go to the lake in the Plaza de España to enjoy a fun experience on the famous Isla de Hielo rink.

You can glide around the rink at your leisure, as this is a very large covered space with a capacity for up to 120 people. And if it's your first time, you won't have to worry, because the staff at the Isla de Hielo will be happy to explain the basics of skating to you.

You should also know that the rink is open to the public every day in December from 10:00 until 22:00. You can buy a ticket to stay at the rink for as long as you want (from 30 minutes) and you will have access to a pair of skates.

Useful information

  • Price: average ticket price €5 (adults) and €4 (children).
  • Opening hours: Monday to Sunday (10.00 am to 10.00 pm).
  • Where: Plaza de España, Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

7. Take a stroll through Tenerife's Christmas markets in December

La Candelaria Christmas Market| ©Sarraf Ahmed
La Candelaria Christmas Market| ©Sarraf Ahmed

Christmas markets are one of the things to do in Tenerife at Christmas.

You can enjoy an atmosphere of celebration with music, lights and beautiful decorations. In addition, you will find a variety of stalls where you will have the opportunity to buy local products, fashion, seasonal decorations, souvenirs, handicrafts, gastronomic tastings and much more.

La Alameda Market

It is organised annually by the island's town hall to offer locals and tourists a range of Latin American handicrafts. Also, throughout the month of December and until the first days of January, you can find handicrafts, costume jewellery, handbags and wallets, among other products.

Rinconcito Christmas Market

The Rinconcito Navideño market is located in the Plaza de la Candelaria and is usually only open during the first three weeks of December. Here you will find Christmas decorations and flowers, stalls with traditional sweets and children's attractions for the little ones.

Guía de Isora Christmas Market

This market is held every year by the island's commercial sector. You can buy a wide variety of Christmas food typical of Tenerife and the Canary Islands. You will also find stalls with handmade products.

Guía de Isora Christmas Market

The Guia de Isora Christmas market opens its doors for just four days in December. Here you'll find casual and festive clothing by local designers, art, gastronomy, crafts and much more.

8. Take a trip to Tenerife's theme parks

Jungle Park in Tenerife| ©Maria Hernandez
Jungle Park in Tenerife| ©Maria Hernandez

Whether you're in Tenerife for 2 or 7 days, taking a trip to the island's best theme parks during December is usually a good option. This is due to the good temperatures and cool weather prevailing in this month.

Jungle Park in Tenerife

When you enter the Jungle Park in Tenerife, you will see a great variety of birds of prey and some shows where they are the protagonists.

Also, in this zoological park you will be able to see more than 500 animals: lions, tigers, seals, among other species. You will be surrounded by an amazing natural scenery (rainforest) and you will walk through tunnels, paths, caves, bridges, while contemplating some lagoons and waterfalls.

Book your tickets to Jungle Park in Tenerife

Tenerife Forest Park

In the Tenerife Forest Park you can live an adventure in direct contact with nature (amazing landscapes and numerous Canary Island pine trees). You can do fun sporting activities, including climbing walls, climbing rope ladders, jumping on lianas and flying through the air on a zip line, among others.

9. Dive into the waters of Tenerife in December and discover the marine fauna

Enjoy snorkelling| ©Jakob Owens
Enjoy snorkelling| ©Jakob Owens

Tenerife is an island whose volcanic nature gives it varied underwater landscapes and allows the water to remain between 20 and 22ºC during the winter season. So if you're visiting in December, you'll have no problem diving off any of the beaches on the north or south coast.

You can venture out on a kayaking and snorkelling experience in Tenerife or kayak among dolphins and dive with turtles. In this way, you will contemplate the marine fauna of this island.

In addition, during the activity you will have the opportunity to see sponges, octopus, rays, seahorses, crabs and seaweed. If you're lucky, you may even spot an angel shark.

Useful information

  • Price: from 38€ per person.
  • Timetable: the experience lasts 3 hours (approx.)
  • Where: North and South coast of Tenerife.

Book a kayaking experience with dolphins and snorkelling with turtles in Tenerife

10. Enjoy New Year's Eve in Tenerife

New Year's Eve party| ©Jack Montgomery
New Year's Eve party| ©Jack Montgomery

Tenerife has quite a busy nightlife and New Year's Eve is no exception. Therefore, if you have planned to spend the last day of the year on the island, you will have several options to enjoy yourself.

Parties and discotheques

One option for celebrating New Year's Eve is to visit Tenerife's nightclubs, where you can enjoy live music and DJs. In fact, many of these places join forces to offer special tickets that allow you to enter several discotheques for the same price (approximately 30€).

Then there are the cocktail bars, which tend to offer a quieter atmosphere with unlimited drinks for between €15 and €30.

Celebrate on the beach

If you want to get away from the crowds and celebrate in a different way, then spending New Year's Eve on one of the island' s beaches (Puerto Santiago, Bollullo, Puerto Santiago, Los Gigantes, among others) is a good alternative.

All you have to do is prepare a few bags of cotillion, the traditional grapes and your favourite alcoholic drink. You can watch the fireworks and enjoy with friends or family.

Cruise along the coast of Tenerife

Another way to spend New Year's Eve on the island is by joining a cruise along the south coast of Tenerife, which usually incorporates dinner, drinks and music by a DJ. Plus, you'll get to see the scenery and watch the fireworks from a different perspective as you sail the waters off Tenerife.

Temperatures in Tenerife in December

December in Tenerife| ©Anton's Photostream
December in Tenerife| ©Anton's Photostream

Despite the fact that December is a winter month, you will rarely see the thermometer in Tenerife drop below 20ºC or rise above 26ºC. In fact, on a daily basis, the temperature variation is usually as low as 1ºC. Furthermore, the days are characterised by cloudy weather and the percentage of rainfall is very low.

Therefore, you will enjoy a pleasant climate during the month of December on the so-called island of eternal spring, and you can enjoy all kinds of outdoor activities: whale and dolphin watching in Tenerife, strolling through the main squares and streets, among others.

What to pack for a visit to Tenerife in December?

Travel luggage| ©Swansway Motor Group
Travel luggage| ©Swansway Motor Group

Temperatures in Tenerife are not usually very low during the month of December, so when you pack your suitcase you won't just need to pack coats and jumpers. You can also pack cool clothes: shirts, shorts and cotton T-shirts.

You can also add a swimming costume, hiking boots, a hat and a hiking backpack to your suitcase, as you could join day trips in Tenerife or any other outdoor activity.