Location: Tenerife, Spain
Length: 41.1 km
Maximum incline: 8,3%
Width: 5 m, 2 lanes
Surface quality (out of 5): 5
Highest point: 3555 m
Operating times: all year round
Route: Puerto de la Cruz to Teleferico Mount Teide
Description of the TF-21
Do you know the saying” all roads are leading to Rome”? Well, not on the Tenerife island, because here, it looks like all the roads are leading to Mount Teide and the drive there is something you will want to do.
Mount Teide is also known to be the third largest volcano in the world and the highest peak in Spain. This, together with the barren landscape and good quality roads can make your driving trip a unique one. To get to Mount Tiede, you will have to take the road named TF-21. Prepare yourself and your car because, on your way there, once you pas Orotava and you get in the forest, there aren’t many gas stations or shops for you to stop by at. Instead, what you will find is a road filled with tight curves leading you through the forest, then towards the peak of the mountain, where you will be surrounded by nothing but a red tinted land and cactuses, plenty of them.
A great drive
What’s great about this road and the ones in Tenerife, in general, is that the landscape is pretty diverse and the roads as well. What doesn’t lack is quality. Covered in asphalt, most of them will offer you a great drive on neat surfaces. This way, you can enjoy the curves, the landscape and even the heat because that’s what you will find here.
The Tenerife road TF-21 is certainly a spectacular one. And not only because of the contrasting landscape, but also thanks to the twists and turns you have to take to get all the way to the Teide National Park.
There are a few different types of sections you will come across when driving the TF-21. As you drive away from Puerto de la Cruz, the roads will be pretty much straight and you will get to see some amazing coastal views, accompanied by some banana plantations, a popular sight on the island.
Driving along the road, you will pass through Orotava, a historic town with 17th and 18th century Canary Island architecture. You can stop by and stroll along its streets for a while, if you feel like making the most out of this trip. Continuing the drive on the TF-21 road, you will finally arrive on one of the best sections, the one surrounded by the forest with many twists, including some hairpin turns.
The road is usually pretty empty so you can enjoy it, without having to pay too much attention to the other traffic participants. Moving along, the road will start to get higher in altitude and the landscape will change once again. Continuing the drive, you will get closer to the Teleferic and once you do that, you will see more cactus plants and red soil. You may think you are on another planet. That is what the volcanic landscape can make you think.
It’s best to start the drive as the sun sets so that you can get closer to the peak, at a higher altitude when it’s dark outside. Why is that? Because Mount Teide is one of the best places for star gazing and there are many places where you can stop along the road, made just for that. It is said that you can observe up to 83 of the 88 constellations from up here.
Overall, the TF-21 is a great road to drive. The scenery is as beautiful as it is diverse. The road quality is great and you can enjoy the many twists and turns you will come across. Because of these, you cannot increase the speed that much, so the average will be around 60km/h. Also, because of the altitude, some of the times you can find hail and icy patches, so drive carefully.