Abandoned and Exceptional Places in Tenerife - Kelionės su vaikais
Abandoned and Exceptional Places in Tenerife
Apleistos ir išskirtinės Tenerifės vietos

Abandoned and Exceptional Places in Tenerife

Jolita from Travelling with Kids shares information about the most interesting abandoned, exclusive and less touristy places in Tenerife. Almost all of them are safe to visit with children.

Abandoned and exclusive places in Tenerife are abandoned or otherwise interesting buildings that attract people because of their history, purpose and unique appearance.

Paseo de los Corazón – the Path of Hearts

A place unknown to tourists, and sometimes even to locals, it is not only for its street art – the hearts. It’s a small, cosy town with quaint narrow streets and a lovely beach.

Bocacangrejo is a small town in Tenerife, belonging to the municipality of El Rosario, just a 10-minute drive from the capital Santa Cruz.

The heart-printed promenade features a small beach, traditional fishing boats and white houses.

Be sure to say hello to Rafa, the artist of these drawings. He lives in a small house and often welcomes visitors with music. A “simple” and ”special” man who, according to his neighbours, does not use a mobile phone and has a spring of ”holy water” next to his white house.

You will see brooms and buckets on the walls of his house – Rafa manages the seafront promenade himself and asks visitors to respect their neighbours and the environment.

Despite the fact that Rafa’s paintings have led to an increase in the number of people visiting Bocacangrejo, the artist has been warned by various authorities that he could be fined for altering public property. However, the man has received the support of his neighbours.

Take a stroll through the other streets, sit down with the locals and enjoy one of the several restaurants.

For exact coordinates, see the Tenerife Attractions Map on Travelling with Kids®.

Leprosy Sanatorium (Abades, Arico)

The very first such place we visited was a complex of abandoned buildings in Abades. The church of this complex is visible from the southern motorway. You can stop at the Punta de Abona lighthouse. This is one of the most mystical places in Tenerife.

This complex was supposed to be a place of isolation for leprosy patients. However, they were never accommodated here because the project was not even finished. It is now a deserted, graffiti-painted place with a slightly uncomfortable atmosphere, but it is a place that attracts people with its size and history.

The Canary Islands used to have rather poor hygiene and limited access to drinking water. Food insecurity, lack of medical knowledge and lack of qualified staff were also the causes of various epidemics. Tenerife eventually had the ‘honour’ of being the Spanish province where leprosy was most commonly diagnosed.

History and Advice

In 1943, the Cabildo de Tenerife imposed isolation measures and ordered the construction of the Sanatorio de Abades. The plan was to build a hospital, a crematorium, schools, administrative buildings and a concrete church with a large cross. The style was neo-Canarian and, above all, post-war Franciscan, expressing the national-Catholic ideology of the regime.

As was to be expected, the sanatorium has never accepted lepers. The success of new medical treatments and the progress of a citizen’s mentality that was not in favour of the closure of the sick turned it into a useless complex of buildings.

With no alternative use in the 70s, the complex was used as a military cantonment for target practice. The military were housed in the best preserved buildings. The area was subsequently demilitarised, but remains of barbed wire, bushings and graffiti can still be found, indicating military shields.

In 2002, the land was sold to an Italian developer who wanted to do business by building a Pharaonic-style tourist complex with almost 3 000 tourist seats. Of course, this project was not financed and was not built because of its unreasonableness.

Unfortunately, the site is now completely abandoned. It is usually a meeting place for paintballing and night-time revelers.

Advice: Please note that access to the buildings of the Sanatorio de Abades is prohibited due to the risk of collapse. In addition, this is private property, although there are in fact no physical barriers preventing passage. The decision to visit it will therefore be at your own risk. It is safer to see the buildings from the outside. Under no circumstances wear slippers; the ground is full of sharp objects.

For exact coordinates, see the Tenerife Sightseeing Map on our website.

Ruins of La Gordejuela water pumping station (Los Realejos)

These ruins are located in the municipality of Los Realejos, in a beautiful location with an even more stunning view. It is a coastline of stunning beauty and spectacular ruins on the edge of a cliff.

According to the records of the Los Realejos town hall, the building was built in 1903 and was used to pump spring water at an altitude of around 200 metres from the Gordejuela springs to the nearby banana plantations.

The installation was designed by the military engineer José Galván Balaguer, together with his colleagues León de Torres and León Huerta. In its time, this work was an important event, as it housed the first steam engine on the island of Tenerife. At the beginning of the twentieth century, it was very important to bring water up the Orotava Valley.

However, the pumping station was only operational for 15 years. Once electricity advanced, it was no longer as efficient and necessary. Both the pumping station and the industrial complex above it were abandoned.

The original configuration of the industrial complex consisted of three buildings, a tank and a large chimney, as well as different water diversion infrastructures.

Tips: feel free to take the path above the pumping station, it is easy to walk with children. Take some water and enjoy the magnificent views and the ”royal” view of the ruins.

For the exact coordinates, see the Tenerife Sightseeing with Kids® map.

Thermoelectric antenna (El Médano, Granadilla)

We call this place the “space saucer”. An impressive saucer with an even more impressive and mystical story.

In December 2008, construction began on a solar thermal power plant. The budget was impressive and exceeded EUR 100 million. An engineer from Tenerife designed a solar power plant that produces electricity and hydrogen, runs 24 hours a day and produces silicon. The cost/productivity ratio was said to be much better than with solar technologies such as cylindrical-parabolic collectors.

It was to become the best solar thermal technology in the world. However, the people living in the neighbourhood opposed the project, which did not have all the permits. As if that wasn’t enough, it was being built on protected land.

What was supposed to be a solar thermal power plant ended up becoming one of the most abandoned places on the island. A few metres from Montaña Pelada, in the El Médano area, the giant antenna still stands.

Recently it has attracted photographers and other visitors for its interesting pictures, especially at sunset, when incredible colours and contrasts are created.

Tips: as the site is deserted, some people use it as a dumping ground and the surrounding area is full of rubbish – chairs, sofas, etc. You can safely visit this place with children, but be careful of the litter and the already broken mirror glass of the antenna.

For the exact coordinates, see the Tenerife Sightseeing with Kids® map.

“El Esqueleto” (“The Skeleton”) in La Matanza

As is often the case on this island, this project was started without the necessary building permits and without obtaining environmental approval.

The project is two huge 15-story metal and concrete structures dating back to the 1970s. And this was supposed to be a hotel. The City Council had to close it off with high fences a few years ago because it was one of the most daring attractions to walk along this path overlooking the cliffs. A few years ago, the decision was taken to demolish the walls. The local authorities have never been able to identify the true owners of the ruins.

Tip: It is not possible to get close to the ruins at the moment, but it is certainly safe to ‘look’ from above.

Watch this video to learn more about The Skeleton.

For the beautiful photos of the Skeleton we thank Andrius, a traveller and “discoverer” of Tenerife’s most beautiful places. Read about Andrius’ discoveries on the blog “stories along the way”.

The Ruins of the Neptune Hotel in Bajamar

On 16 April 1964, Bayamoor was declared a tourist hotspot, with virtually no hotel rooms available in August.

Hotel Neptuno, which is still remembered by many today, was an emblematic place of relaxation, of enjoying the exquisite view and even of organising weddings and other celebrations.

In 2009, the hotel was sold. The hotel had 92 rooms and 27 independent villas, a garden, a swimming pool and a car park. The asking price at the time was EUR 3 000 000.

The emergence of more and more alternative leisure and tourist destinations on the islands led to the end of the hotel’s ‘golden days’. Since then, the complex has been more frequently mentioned in vandalism and fire summaries.

Plans to revive this legendary place are becoming more and more common, but unfortunately, for now, it is still just a matter of plans and talk.

Tip: see this complex of buildings and you will realise how painful the experience has been when you go to admire the battle of the Bayamar waves or the beautiful beach of Punto de Hidalgo.

For the exact coordinates, see the Tenerife Attractions Map on Travelling with Kids®. Also consider watching the video about the hotel available here.


Abandoned places in Tenerife

Abandoned places in Tenerife

Statue of Santa Ursula

This is by no means an abandoned or similar place, but it is unique and different. An impressive statue of a woman with flowers.

The giant statue, 4 metres high, is located in the La Quinta garden in Santa Ursula. It is a symbol of the municipality and it has become a great place for amazing photographs.

For the exact coordinates, see the Tenerife Attractions Map on Travelling with Kids®.

Whale Skeletons in Los Silos

The skeleton of a large whale in Los Silos has become one of the most attractive features of the town’s waterfront. It is a sculpture of a real whale skeleton, about 15 metres long, built in 2008.

Baleen whales are large migratory whales that cross the oceans every year, from the cold waters of the Arctic to the warmer tropical areas where mating takes place.

These whales are very large, typically exceeding 16 metres in length and weighing over 20 tonnes. It is one of the largest animals in the world.

This skeleton is the body of one of these whales, which was found floating in the waters off the island of Gran Canaria.

For the exact coordinates, see the Tenerife Attractions Map on Travelling with Kids®.

Punto Teno Lighthouse

It’s a wonderful place to catch the sun and travel to Tenerife’s “edge of the world”. Personally, it reminds me of Icelandic scenery, which only adds to the impression.

Punta de Teno is one of the least known corners of Tenerife, which only adds to the charm of this secluded place. It is the westernmost point of Tenerife and is home to a postcard-perfect lighthouse. Simply magical!

The park has been isolated from the rest of the island for centuries, due to its difficult accessibility on foot and by road. The inhabitants of this remote place had to travel four hours by narrow path to the nearest town, Buenavista del Norte. However, this isolation has allowed the landscape of Punta de Teno to remain untouched throughout Tenerife’s history. Vertical cliffs, laurel forests and volcanic rocks coexist in the same space, creating a unique island environment.

From the small bay of Punta de Teno, you can see the cliffs of Los Gigantes and the panorama of La Gomera.

Punta de Teno is a spectacular old red and white lighthouse that crowns the landscape. It is one of the seven lighthouses on the island and was built in 1897. Previously, it was under the care of two lighthouse keepers who maintained and managed the lighthouse and lived there with their families. Today, the lighthouse operates automatically.

How to get to Punta Teno

Punta de Teno has been a protected area for several years, which makes it necessary to regulate traffic and avoid crowds. For this reason, the only way to get to Punta de Teno is to take bus number 369, which departs hourly from the Buenavista Norte bus station, in autumn, winter and spring from 10 am to 7 pm, and in summer from 9 am to 8 pm. The bus ticket costs EUR 1 each way. The journey from the bus stop to Punta de Teno takes about 20 minutes and the road is really narrow and high. You will get stunning views of the cliffs.

At other times before 9/10 and after 19/20 you can drive your own car.

To walk to Punta de Teno, drive to Teno Alto (780 m), a small village in the Teno mountains. From this small village, a hiking trail descends all the way to Punta de Teno and back. However, this is a strenuous hike and is not suitable for children and is not feasible for every adult.

For the exact coordinates, see the Tenerife Sightseeing Map on our website.

Abandoned places in Tenerife

Abandoned places in Tenerife

Useful Articles

You may find the following articles useful:

This article is an original article prepared by Travelling with Children®. Reproduction and use without permission is strictly prohibited.

Do not forget to follow us on social networks. For more information about travelling in Lithuania, please follow us on Facebook at “Travelling with Kids” and on Instagram at “Travelling with Kids.”

For more information about travelling around the world, please visit our Facebook account “Travelling the world with children” and Instagram account “Travelling the world with children.”

Looking for more places to visit with kids in Tenerife, travel tips and recommendations? Join the Travelling with Kids in Tenerife group. Here you are also welcome to share your travel experiences in Tenerife.

If you want to share your trip or your experience of travelling with children, send us an email.

Abandoned city, Discovering the wowrld, Most interesting places in Tenerife, Ruins, Tenerifė, Tenerife attractions, Tenerife map, Tenerife with children, Traveling abroad, Traveling families, Traveling with children, Unique places in Tenerife