Santa Úrsula

Santa Úrsula, named after the revered Saint Ursula, is a charming town and municipality on the picturesque north coast of Tenerife, the largest of the Canary Islands. This locale is situated just 6 kilometers east of the vibrant Puerto de la Cruz and 24 kilometers west of the island’s bustling capital, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, and offers tranquility and accessibility. With a population of 14,545 as of 2013 and an area spanning 22.59 square kilometers, Santa Úrsula showcases its beauty against a backdrop of lush greenery and an elevation of 290 meters above sea level. The TF-5 motorway gracefully traverses the municipality, facilitating seamless connectivity to explore the island’s wonders. Whether you seek natural serenity, cultural exploration, or simply a peaceful escape, Santa Úrsula beckons with open arms on the enchanting north coast of Tenerife.

Exploring Santa Úrsula: A Hidden Gem in Tenerife

Nestled in the northern part of Tenerife, Santa Úrsula is a picturesque town that offers an authentic slice of Canarian life. Known for its breathtaking landscapes, traditional architecture, and culinary treasures, this hidden gem is a must-visit for anyone exploring the Canary Islands.

The Charm of Santa Úrsula

Santa Úrsula may not be as famous as some of Tenerife’s other destinations, but it’s this very fact that preserves its charm and authenticity. The town is a patchwork of traditional Canarian houses with characteristic balconies and tiled roofs set against lush greenery and the sparkling Atlantic Ocean.

Historical Significance

Santa Úrsula, a picturesque town in Tenerife, holds a historical tapestry that stretches back to the times of the Guanches, the original inhabitants of the Canary Islands. This deep-rooted connection to its indigenous past is a foundational element of the town’s identity and can be keenly felt throughout the area.

Visitors to Santa Úrsula have the unique opportunity to delve into this rich heritage, exploring a past that seamlessly intertwines the Guanche culture with Spanish influences. The town’s museums are custodians of this historical legacy, offering insightful exhibitions that showcase artifacts, traditional Guanche crafts, and detailed accounts of their way of life. These museums serve as educational resources and bridge the present to an ancient past.

The architectural landscape of Santa Úrsula further reflects this blend of cultural influences. Wandering through the town, one can observe buildings that exhibit characteristic Spanish colonial styles yet subtly integrate Guanche elements. This architectural fusion is evident in the town’s older structures, some of which have been meticulously preserved or restored. Using local materials and traditional building methods in these structures provides a glimpse into a time when Guanche and Spanish cultures were merging.

Moreover, the town’s layout, public spaces, and residential buildings bear the hallmarks of Spanish colonial urban planning yet retain a distinct Canarian character. This is seen in the use of vibrant colors, wooden balconies, and courtyards, which are typical of Canarian architecture but influenced by Spanish colonial aesthetics.

Breathtaking Views and Natural Beauty

Santa Úrsula offers some of the most stunning views in Tenerife. The town is perched on a hillside, offering panoramic vistas of the Orotava Valley, Mount Teide, and the Atlantic Ocean. Nature lovers will appreciate the numerous hiking trails that wind through the surrounding countryside, offering opportunities to explore the unique flora and fauna of the region.

Culinary Delights

One of the highlights of Santa Úrsula is its gastronomy. The town is renowned for its local wines and traditional Canarian dishes. Guachinches, small family-run eateries, offer a taste of homemade Canarian cuisine in a rustic and cozy setting. Dishes like “papas arrugadas” (wrinkled potatoes) with “mojo picón” (spicy sauce) and fresh seafood are not to be missed.

Festivals and Cultural Events

Santa Úrsula comes alive during its annual festivals, a vibrant display of Canarian culture. The most notable is the Fiesta de San Luis, a celebration filled with music, dance, and traditional costumes. These festivals offer a unique opportunity to experience the local culture and mingle with the friendly residents.

Outdoor Activities

Santa Úrsula, nestled in the captivating landscape of Tenerife, is a paradise for adventure enthusiasts. The town and its surrounding areas offer diverse outdoor activities that cater to thrill-seekers of all levels. The opportunities for adventure and exploration are boundless, from the skies to the sea.

Paragliding is one of the most exhilarating experiences available in Santa Úrsula. Soaring above the stunning scenery, adventurers can experience a bird’s-eye view of the island’s unique topography, including its rugged coastline, lush valleys, and volcanic landscapes. This activity, suitable for beginners and experienced gliders alike, is a perfect way to experience the natural beauty of the Canary Islands from a different perspective.

For those who prefer to keep their feet on the ground, the coastal walks around Santa Úrsula offer a delightful experience. These trails meander along the picturesque coastline, providing breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean. The difficult walks vary, making them accessible to casual strollers and more seasoned hikers. Along the way, walkers can discover hidden coves, observe local flora and fauna, and enjoy the island’s serene beauty.

The nearby coast of Santa Úrsula is also a haven for water sports enthusiasts. The clear waters of the Canary Islands are ideal for swimming and snorkeling. These activities offer a closer look at the rich marine life that inhabits the island’s waters. From vibrant coral reefs to diverse fish and marine species, the underwater world here is a spectacle in itself. Snorkeling in these waters is not just a recreational activity; it’s an opportunity to connect with the natural aquatic environment of the Canary Islands.

Beyond these activities, Santa Úrsula’s proximity to other natural attractions of Tenerife, like the Teide National Park, opens up even more avenues for adventure. The region has much to offer, whether it’s mountain biking, rock climbing, or exploring volcanic caves.

Map of Santa Úrsula


Santa Úrsula is a destination with its unspoiled charm, rich culture, and stunning natural beauty. Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or an outdoor enthusiast, this quaint town in Tenerife offers a memorable experience beyond the typical tourist trail. Immerse yourself in the authentic Canarian way of life and discover the many treasures Santa Úrsula offers.

Whether planning your next adventure or just dreaming of sunnier climes, remember that Santa Úrsula in Tenerife awaits with open arms and countless hidden treasures. Visit for more insights and travel tips to maximize your Canary Islands experience.