Don’t just see Spain’s highest volcano from afar: float to the top on the Teide Cable Car (Teleférico del Teide). The journey is an effortless one, transporting visitors from the easily accessible lower station (situated at 2,356 meters), then up and over a diverse volcanic landscape to the 3,718-meter-high upper station — and in just 8 minutes.
From this high-in-the-sky vista you can return to the bottom, or set off on routes to three different destinations. La Fortaleza vantage point offers views of the northeastern part of the island, including the Orotava Valley; the Pico Viejo vantage point looks out over Mt Chahorra’s crater and beyond to La Gomera; and then the mother of them all is the trek to the top and center of El Teide. Though, take note: this last hike requires a special permit, which should be acquired well in advance, and can be obtained for free online.
The lower station includes free parking, and a rest area complete with restrooms and a coffee shop. Note that weather can get especially cold up top, so be sure to bring extra layers. If you plan to go on one of the three routes, bring water and food as well, as there is no coffee shop at the upper station. The cable car can be reached via the TF-21, or by public bus 348 (from Puerto de la Cruz) or bus 342 (from Playa de las Americas).