Santa Cruz de Tenerife – Hottest Carnival in Europe

Tenerife Carnival Future

Santa Cruz de Tenerife is the second largest Carnival in the world. Famous for its cross-dressing dancers and hot glamour models, there are fun times to be had before Ash Wednesday.

Bring your feathers and throw some beads in the Canary Islands this February. Attracting visitors looking for a good time on vacation, Tenerife has plenty of low cost hostels and boutique hotels available.

Picture: AFP/GETTY

Carnaval de Santa Cruz de Tenerife comes second only to Rio de Janeiro and is perfect for party goers on a budget. It’s celebrated in every town and village on the island, but the hottest Carnival celebrations take place in Santa Cruz de Tenerife and Puerto de la Cruz.

Santa Cruz de Tenerife Carnival

The ‘Carnival Of The Future’ will be running from February 11th – 21st, and travellers are encouraged to book their tickets well in advance. Taking place 40 days before Easter, Carnival is the final party before Ash Wednesday and Lent.

How to enjoy Carnival in Tenerife

On the opening night, there is the election of the Carnival Queen. The winner is crowned during a spectacular gala in which hundreds of amateur performers take part: these performers are the glamour quotient of Carnival.

During this glittering show, ‘Carnival Queen’ candidates are paraded on stage dressed in fantastic costumes.

Picture: Philippe Teuwen

The festivities start before Carnival Tuesday (Mardi Gras, or Shrove Tuesday) with a flamboyant opening parade and climaxes with thousands of revellers dancing until dawn.

The partying continues until Ash Wednesday and on that day Santa Cruz de Tenerife residents celebrate the “entierro de la sardina” (burial of the sardine), and declare Carnival officially over.

Tenerife Carnival Entierro de la Sardina

Fortunately, the festivities start again the following weekend and this is known as the “piñata”. Carnival is a hot experience for travellers looking to have a good time over February. Guaranteed to get the heart pumping and samba girls dancing, there is nowhere better to celebrate life than Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

Where to stay in Tenerife 

Acd Tenerife Surf House

  • Acd Tenerife Surf House is a super friendly hostel situated in in the south of Tenerife. Rooms are available from €13.00 per person.
  • Friendly Rooms is a sunny outgoing hostel less than 200 metres from the main bus station. Perfect for young travellers arriving in Tenerife for the first time. Rooms are available from €22.37 per person.