Returning To El Teide

By Ben Whittard

I didn’t realise it until we pulled up to the bottom of the cable-car station, but the volcano of El Teide was somewhere I had been in the past. It must have been more than 10 years ago we had a family holiday to the Spanish island of Tenerife. When I visited as a young teenager, I waited in the car with my brother while my parents took the ride to the top in the cable-car. I was not at all interested in making the trip with them.

On Saturday we had the privilege of attending a wedding on Tenerife, so decided to make the most of the opportunity and make it a long weekend. We rented a car and visited the volcano that dominates the barren landscape. As we rounded the corner to park up I had a distinct feeling of déjà vu. But this time I would most definitely be visiting the summit!

I couldn’t help but think about how much things change as we grow older, and this was a fantastic spot for a brief moment of quiet reflection. I only wish I had better appreciated the travel opportunities I was lucky enough to have as a youngster.

Has your attitude towards travel changed over time? Maybe you’ve visited the summit of a volcano? I’d love to hear from you!


10 thoughts on “Returning To El Teide

  1. Sandra

    Hi! I’ve been on the summit of El Teide this november. And it was absolutely amazing.. the hike to the summit was kinda hard because of the low oxygen level in the air you breathe and the smell of sulfur…., but it was worth it, stunning view!

    1. Ben Post author

      Sounds like a fantastic experience! The air was certainly very thin, I’m not sure I would make it right to the summit. But I’d like to give it a go some day. Unfortunately all of the footpaths were closed due to ice at the weekend, so we could only visit the viewing platform right by the cable-car.

  2. Heyjude

    Great photo Ben. I have never visited Tenerife, but have been up to the summit on Mount Etna – very black! I grew up when family holidays meant a week or two in a caravan somewhere in the south-west, but I was always exploring, even then 😀
    Jude xx

    1. Ben Post author

      Thanks Jude, I’d love to make the trip to Etna too. How did you make the trip to the summit? Is it possible to do it by cable-car or is a hike required? I had many camping holidays as a youngster too, but I wasn’t doing so much of the exploring then! That’s a passion I’ve fortunately discovered fairly recently.

      1. Heyjude

        Well, I didn’t actually go right to the top 🙂 although I believe you can hike up there. I was on a coach trip so we went as far as the large parking area at Rifugio Sapienza then walked around the Silvestri Craters. There is a cable car to go further up and I think you can do 4WD tours too. It’s a big volcano!

  3. Stan

    Yes, I live “next” to Teide, also in Tenerife. I have been on the summit a couple of times and you can always enjoy very nice views. Now I think it is temporary closed because of ice…

    1. Ben Post author

      Hi Stan, thanks for stopping by. You’re right, all of the footpaths are currently closed which is a great shame. I think it’s still worth the trip though! The views from the viewing platform are also spectacular.

  4. Claire Edwards

    Great shot Ben 🙂 My attitude towards travel is definitely changing, and more so since I turned 40. Think it must be mid-life crisis and all that, but I’m getting more and more adventurous and realise there is more to the world than a sunny beach for two weeks every year.

    1. Ben Post author

      Thanks Claire. That’s great your attitude is moving toward the adventurous side, there is so much out there to be explored. Including the sunny beaches!


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