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Tourism.

With over five million tourists a year, this has become one of the major attractions of the Canary Islands. Many are the reasons why Santa Cruz de Tenerife enjoys this privilege, which thus translates into a greater economic and social development.

More than half a century ago, in 1955 to be exact, this city was considered “of tourist interest”. Nowadays it has excellent hotel and spa facilities, both natural and man-made. A good example is the pools with a gigantic man-made lake that was created thanks to the dreams of artist Lanzarote César Manrique.

Now then, what could be uttered about Orotrava valley? How could we not mention Teide’s unparalleled natural beauty? They are both national treasures par excellence in the main tourist park located on the northern part of the island.

The wide range of man-made facilities complements all that nature has contributed with. Comfortable first-class hotels are built to satisfy even the most demanding tastes.

At the same time, for those who choose this place to rest, spend the summer or simply to get to know the people who live here, there are various facilities outside the hotels including restaurants for typical and international food and those specialized in regional dishes, dance-halls, coffee-shops and all kinds of places to give visitors an appropriate entertainment, according to their age.

Here you will find places like Puerto de la Cruz (the Cross Port) with an uncommon attraction and sites such as San Telmo, Plaza del Charco, the fishing quay, La Ranilla, San Amaro and La Paz neighbourhoods, Taoro park and the Botanic Garden, where plants and trees from all over the world are carefully and zealously treasured.

Attractions are countless and reference should also be made to some of the churches and hermitages that are worthy of being included in your tour. This is the case of Our Lady de la Peña of France’s church. Religious services are rendered every Sunday for different kinds of religious practises and the hours are set before hand by parsons at the church door.

Libraries, cinemas, telegraph and post offices, telephone boxes, sports hall, an Olympic swimming pool, various tennis courts and gyms are also available at Santa Cruz de Tenerife, as well as a wide range of water sports for those who prefer this option taking into consideration the environment.

Likewise, Puerto de la Cruz (the Cross Port) is a departure place for trips to the rest of the island through various travel agencies, taxis or car rentals. It is also useful to know that roads TF-31 by the Botanic Garden and TF-32 by Las Arenas link to north highway TF-5. Puerto de la Cruz has one of the most famous casinos in Spain, Taoro Casino, situated at the park with the same name.

The most popular festivities are Carnivals in the winter and those of a Patron Saint, in July, but entertainment lasts all year round with a lot of varied options. Loro (parrot) Park is a real paradise of 12 hectares in area, housing the world’s largest parrot collection, something that is truly unique of its type.

It is also a local pride to have the largest dolphinarium in Europe and among its additional attractions are the orchid–house, the African market, the tiger’s island, parrot-vision and other places. Moreover, the dolphinarium’s facilities have been extended and the new options include the penguinery, the sea lions show, the Thai village, the underwater aquarium with an underwater tunnel and other beauties created by man’s talent.

Saint Philips’ Castle and the Customs House could be of great interest and should be included in your list of places to visit. There is a long section of coast from the Castle to Punta Brava, for which 200, 000 cubic meters of volcanic sand extracted from the adjoining sea bottoms were used.

This attractive place was given the name of Playa Jardín ( Garden Beach), with more than 15 000 square meters of landscaped surface, a project that became a reality thanks to César Manrique’s artistic direction.

Many other attractions could be listed in an attempt to attract more visitors, but what’s most important is the traditional affection and hospitality shown by the people of Santa Cruz de Tenerife to anyone who visits this piece of the Canary Islands in search of peacefulness, quiet and tranquillity.

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