While they might not be the first destinations that come to mind for a stargazing tour, Tenerife and Lanzarote are actually top spots for keen astronomers. Located in the stunning Canary Islands, with the Sahara Desert on one side and the deep blue of the Atlantic on the other, both islands offer the epitome of peace and quiet, especially if you’re in search of constellations.
Fancy spotting a shooting star? Here are our top tips on finding the best stargazing spots in the Canary Islands.
One of the Canary Island’s largest holiday haunts, and increasingly one of the most popular, Tenerife is favoured for its pleasant climate and blissful beaches. But what you might not have considered is that the island is also one of the best destinations in the world for stargazing, rivalling that of Hawaii and Chile.
Visit Tenerife after dark and you’ll immediately notice the jet black night sky, which is down to the area’s very little light pollution. Since 1975, Tenerife has also been home to the Canarian Institute of Astrophysics, a leading observatory, which puts the island’s high altitudes and clear skies to good use. There is even a dedicated event, Starmus, combining stargazing in Tenerife with music and educational sessions in a celebratory festival of all things cosmic.
Stay with us and get close to the action – with 5 hotels in Tenerife, you’re guaranteed to catch a glimpse of Tenerife’s spectacular star-scattered skies.
Best places to see stars in Tenerife
If you want to make the most of Tenerife’s celestial offerings, you’ll need to head for higher ground. Mount Teide is Spain’s tallest mountain, with a summit 3,700m above sea, and is home to the island’s solar observatory.
Mount Teide is also one of the world’s biggest volcanoes, with most of the island made up of debris from its eruptions – thankfully the last one was way back in 1909. There are a number of ways to reach its peak, with several walking paths and a cable car. Off-road vehicles can frequently be seen ferrying holidaymakers to and from its summit.
Stargazing on Mount Teide isn’t unlike visiting a set from a sci-fi film. Wild pine forests edge barren lava fields against an ink-black surround, offering a dramatic backdrop to a unique experience. In stark contrast, the observatory is housed in a white-dome like building, where visitors can use special telescopes to capture a view of some of the galaxy’s most spectacular light shows. After all, what could be more romantic?
A quick hop over the water and you’ll discover the vast island of Lanzarote. Embrace the traditional combination of sunshine and sea and you’ll find a number of beaches and hidden sandy coves. Resorts like Puerto del Carmen boast bustling beach spots alongside bars and restaurants, while family-friendly destinations like Playa Blanca are hemmed in by sand, with shorelines perfect for water sports.
Aside from its sweeping coastlines, there’s more to this holiday spot than meets the eye. Like Tenerife, Lanzarote also benefits from very little light pollution. As a result, you’ll often find a place to observe the sky and catch a glimpse of falling stars or impressive meteor showers. The island’s deserted beaches and majestic mountains offer perfect conditions for stargazing in the Canary Islands, as well as the ideal setting for a relaxing getaway.
With 4 hotels based in Lanzarote, there hasn’t been a better time to spend your day by the pool, topping up your tan, and rounding it off with a star-studded evening lineup.
Top astronomy spots in Lanzarote
Known as the highest peak on the island at 670m, the Penas del Chache lookout is a prime viewing point for Lanzarote’s spectacular night sky. The lookout is located in the north of Haria and can easily be reached by car – it’s no surprise that seasoned astronomers and photographers make their way there in search of an evening gazing at the stars.
Another little-known place to take in some stargazing is the Mirador del Rio, a viewpoint created by famous island inhabitant Cesar Manrique. With an expanse of blue water and a sky that appears to go on forever, you’ll be able to see all the way across to the island of La Graciosa and its secluded beaches. By night, however, the limited light pollution in this area makes it a great setting for a stargazing session. Keep your eyes peeled and you might even catch one of the sky’s meteor showers.
Want in on the action?
Fancy Tenerife? Then check out our Blue Sea Callao Garden and Blue Sea Interpalace resorts. If Lanzarote is more to your liking, our Blue Sea Costa Bastian and Blue Sea Costa Teguise Beach provide the perfect base for stargazing. Wherever you decide to stay, be prepared for a spectacular night sky – it’s bound to take your breath away! You might even be lucky enough to see the most amazing sight of the Milky Way, as well as the two constellations Sagittarius and Scorpius.