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Why go? Yes, Playa de las Americas is your common or garden holiday nightmare, and hunks of the largest Canary Island have been butchered by package resorts. But don’t dismiss all of Tenerife. Get away from the south coast and you’ll discover a surprisingly varied and traditional island, where fiestas are preferred to discotheques and the land has been left to go wild. Perhaps wildest of the lot is 3,718m Mount Teide, Spain’s highest peak and the pinnacle of a weird, lunar-ish, lava-ed landscape that might see snow, even while ‘lobsters’ are basting on the beaches below.

Tenerife has myriad microclimates, best experienced via footpaths hacked by the Guanche (the original islanders); head to the northern valleys of Masca and Gufmar for the most splendid isolation.

When to go: Year-round. Best are spring and autumn – balmy, but without the summer crowds. November can be rainy. It’s still shorts-weather in December-January.

How to go: Many airlines fly from the UK to Tenerife Sur airport (from 4.5hrs), which is 20km east of touristy Playa de las Americas.

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