Myself and herself had been chatting about going away on our first proper holiday for months.
We had been on numerous weekend breaks around Ireland but after well over a year and a half together, it was time to put things into action.
We’re both indecisive people. When it comes to casual dinner ideas, what to watch on Netflix or pub selections, we could spend three hours saying to each other ‘sure, whatever you want to do, I’ll be happy to do.’
But this time, I decided it was time to bite the bullet and just make a decision for the both of us for once.
So I decided Tenerife South was the place and it was just a case of finding a date that suited us both.
The original dates I had been looking at, clashed with her pre-planned night schedule at work so thankfully I had asked to look at her schedule for the summer before I went full steam ahead.
* Christmas present sorted.
It wasn’t long coming around and before we knew it, there was only a week to go and we hadn’t a thing planned.
But fear not, you can learn from my mistakes and add some of the things I came across on my travels to your to-do list.
Where To Stay:
Now don’t get me wrong, once I had booked the flights and told herself, I handed over the responsibility of finding a hotel.
And in fairness to her, she came across a fantastic one. Olé Tropical had everything to really get you into holiday mode after a five hour flight from Knock Airport.
There was two massive pools and a sun lounger for nearly everyone so there was no mad rush to throw a towel down at 7am in the 4-star hotel.
Not like getting up for 7am would be much of a problem with weather like that and a view of the nearest square which is filled with shops, pubs and clubs.
The outside bar beside the loungers made sure that we were always kept ‘hydrated’. Some of the alcoholic drinks on the list were free, most were charged to the room though and between pints of the local beer and Strawberry Daiquiris, the throat never went dry.
Breakfast was included in the plan and it was nice to tip down and get a feed into you before a day of activities. There was a different theme every night in the hotel and you could play bingo, pool, table tennis and volleyball on different nights all while being entertained by the various in-house bands.
What To Do:
Letting you all in on a little embarrassing secret of mine – I can’t swim. I went to lessons when I was younger and could, at best, keep afloat when I was a child but now I can barely doggy paddle.
But you don’t need to be able to swim to enjoy “the best water park in the world.”
Siam Park is a jungle of water-based fun. We were just a ten minute walk from the park where we were staying but there’s always buses going from various points all over Tenerife.
We headed down first thing in the morning and you really need a full day to get through all the different slides and still have the ability to chill out, sunbathe and float around the lazy river which is shown below..
I completed all the slides, except the one above which is called the ‘Tower of Power’.
I walked up along with herself and shat the togs at the top when I saw the sheer aggressiveness in the drop from top to bottom.
I wasn’t even half way down when I was met by herself screaming her head off, fair play to her for completing it though.
All the other slides have a difficulty level of green, yellow and red, red being the most ‘difficult’.
‘Difficulty level’ to me means ‘which one I’m going to scream the most on’ and I was told that “I screamed like a little girl on most of them”.
That comment was funny considering for one of the slides, a four person one, we were paired with a mother and daughter and the daughter, who was no more than 5-years-old, remained calm on the way down while I roared at the top of my lungs.
A visit to Siam Park, means that you have to hit up Loro Parque.
Tour guide shops will normally sell the two together in a deal so for the sake of an extra couple of euro, you’re better off to just go for it.
But, much like Siam Park, you need nearly a whole day here so make sure not to plan on doing the two together.
It’ll be the highlight of your trip if you are an animal lover and you should definitely bring the supplies for a picnic while visiting.
And, a spare change of clothes could come in handy too, especially when you’re looking at the famous dolphins who just love to make big splashes in front of a packed audience in the dome.
Siam Mall is within touching distance of the Water Park with the same name and is littered with two floors of amazing shops.
You can find: food, fashion, lifestyle and will get lost in shops like Bershka, Pull&Bear and L’Concept to name but a few.
It’s ideal for getting those last minute holiday presents for the family.
You can find a full list of shops here.
Crazy Mini Golf is a must because you can drink away while going around the course and showing off your skills.
Boat tours and water spots are massive in Tenerife. Surf Point, TenDive and Excel Scuba are three musts.
Most of the beaches have a professional on hand to give you deep massages with €20 giving you a half hour but if you want something more serious, Body Bliss Massage in Los Cristanos is well worth the 10 minute taxi journey.
And if you do plan on heading up the road to Los Cristanos, it’s worth doing it on a Tuesday or Sunday when the market is on.
Running from 9am to 3pm, you’ll find everything and anything in the 50 or so stalls. But, you really need to watch out for the pickpockets. While one is distracting you, another could be trying to steal the watch you just purchased.
Where To Drink And Party:
You won’t be stuck for a place to drink or party in Tenerife and the reps of the club will annoy the fuck out of you but you might get a free drink out of it so it’s kind of worth it.
Linekers and Tramps will scream out at you while walking because music blares out of both and the reps will lure you in with promises of two free double vodkas and a shots galore.
TIBU and Club Las Vegas are also pretty cool too and these are great places to go to get pissed and dance your head off.
But the one place you could stay from sunrise to sunset in is Lava.
It’s just on the corner down the road from the two places named above and is an amazing cocktail bar where the service is immense.
You’ll have barely sat down on your seat outside and someone will be up to you with a notepad out.
And better still, when they spot that your drink might be looking a bit dry, they are straight over to ask if you want “the same again or something different.”
We were over during the height of the GAA Championship so finding an Irish bar that had the match on was essential to both of us.
O’Neills, Murphy’s and The Dubliner are all top picks if you want to cheer on your county from afar or you know, have a warm pint of Guinness…whatever you’re into.
The Dubliner also has an underground late, late bar if you fancy hearing some Luke Kelly songs while looking at a sign that says it’s 25km to Kinsale.
Papagayo Beach Club is ideal for taking your relaxation to a new level and pride themselves on “elegance, comfort, innovation, pampering cuisine and cocktails”
Sure what more do you want.
Much like Lava, you could stay here for the whole day and watch as the day turns into night and the beach club turns into a nightclub.
Some other places worth visiting for a tipple are:
- Fresh Torviscas (a cocktail lover’s paradise)
- Bar Thirteen
If you’re not a major cocktail drinker like I am, the local beer goes for less than €1 in most places during the day.
The beer isn’t going to blow you away but as the man says, for €1, you’d drink it from a wellington boot.
All that day drinking and night drinking means that you need to keep fed. I think I suffered a bit from dehydration because although I was keeping cool, I was doing so while drinking alcohol and not water.
So when you’re going for your lunch or dinner, always make sure to get the water down the hatch then to make up for the rest of it.
Where To Eat:
If there’s one thing Playa De Las Americas has in abundance, it’s amazing restaurants.
Most of them are very romantic and entertaining and are just perfect for keeping the craic going but also feeling like it’s just the two of ye in the entire place.
There’s almost a complex of restaurants near the Hard Rock Café that will satisfy your every food need.
Hacienda Miranda has the best food in all of Playa De Las Americas. I went for the Chilli Con Carne and there was enough on the plate to do me for the next two nights. But of course, I scoffed it all down in one sitting and felt beyond stuffed.
We got our photo taken while wearing big Mexican hats and after considering for around one second, we decided to decline buying the photo as we looked like too eejits.
The Prime Steak House and Chinese Golden House do exactly what they say on the tin and meat lovers will be overwhelmed with the former while the latter is cosy and casual.
Krishna Tandoori took me by surprise as I’m not a big fan of Indian food but I left there thinking that I had been missing out on something massive all my life.
Sugar And Spices, Restaurant Thai Botánico and Delhi Delights also had very impressive menus from what I remember but at times, it was a case of just going into the first place we came across.
When it comes to Breakfast & Lunch, the choice is just as big and while we didn’t get breakfast over there, they would still be serving when we entered restaurants for lunch so you’ll never be stuck.
Las Rosas has some good sandwich choices and Cafe Bar Lormar and Café Epoca are better for those who want something more filling than a little bite.
I’m a big fan of frys and the hotel breakfast, although it did have the ingredients for a fry available, just wasn’t dirty enough when I did go for it.
I chose to try and keep healthy at breakfast time in order to make up for the amount of eating I was doing during the rest of the day but if you do want a dirty fry, The Shires Cafe Bar and Surfers Bar are renowned for doing a cracking full breakfast.
Just a few little things to have on your radar before you fly out to Tenerife.