Tenerife. You know it for its vibrant nightlife, for its well-equipped beach resorts, its glorious year-round climate and that soaring summit at its epicenter. There are tons of Tenerife hotels of every size and shape imaginable, and a long list of attractions ranging from family days out to historic sights.
But how did it all begin - and what's the story of Tenerife, that most famous of Canary Islands?
Millions of years ago, volcanic eruptions began to form the island we know and love today. Webtenerife.co.uk states that the oldest rocks on Tenerife have been dated to around 7 million years, when submarine eruptions gripped the island, which gave way to some of the earliest known volcanoes - the remains of which can still be explored today, namely Teno, Anaga and Adeje.
More recently, within the last few hundred years, Tenerife has been rocked by major eruptions that have continued to craft and shape its landscapes. Considerable damage occurred during a 9-day eruption in the early 18th century, while later blasts happened in the late 18th century - when the longest-lasting of all recorded eruptions on Tenerife took place over 3 months - and in the early 20th century.
Volcanic activity aside, you can find an interesting history of Tenerife on Wikipedia. This source states that the earliest known human settlements on the island dates to around 200 BC, by people known as the Guanches. Various regions were marked out, the names and rough boundaries of which - for the most part - are still used today.
In 1493, Spain attempted to conquer the Canary Islands. Although they eventually succeeded, it was not without a fight - and control of Tenerife was only achieved after many battles with the native people. And in 1797, Admiral Horatio Nelson unsuccessfully invaded Tenerife and reportedly lost his right arm from cannon fire.
From the late 19th century, tourism took off in Tenerife and the island experienced a rapid rate of development over the ensuing decades. Today, it's a holiday favorite for travelers from all walks of life, and continues to draw in crowds of sun-seekers all year