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Tenerife - Playa de las Americas

Playa de las Américas is a purpose-built holiday resort in the northern part of the Municipality of Arona, close to the adjoining Municipality of Adeje in the south of Tenerife, one of the Canary Islands. It was built in the 1960s beside the town of Los Cristianos and stretching northward to the Costa Adeje. The resort area features bars, nightclubs, restaurants, attractions, and beaches, most of which are man-made with imported sand from Africa due to the darkness of the native volcanic sand. Playa de las Americas is a centre of nightlife in Tenerife. Nightlife is spread around the resort and includes the Veronicas Strip, Starco Commercial Centre and the Patch.

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Playa de las Americas is without doubt the most popular holiday and tourist resort in the Canary Islands and for over 40 years has remained the busiest resort for hotels, bars, restaurants and nightlife.

As most people know, Playa de las Americas is the top resort for nightlife in Tenerife and is also the main location for many of the other major tourism attractions of Tenerife.

Playa de las Americas is a totally purpose built resort which boasts an array of man-made beautiful clean sandy beaches whilst offering world class facilities and entertainment. After dark, Las Americas really comes into its own as the multitude of bars, discos and nightclubs gradually seduce you to its own brand of partying - Tenerife style.

"Las Americas" as it is more commonly known, is a mecca for sun worshippers who enjoy the wilder side of life. It is very popular with the younger generation as this resort really comes to life after dark. It is bright, vibrant, brash and exciting; this resort is a pleasure seekers paradise and a sun worshipper's idea of heaven. Everyone is catered for and the wealth of leisure facilities are truly endless.

As you would expect in Tenerife's number one tourist resort, Playa de las Americas has an endless supply of bars, clubs and restaurants; everything and everyone is catered for with its wide variety, from the usual overseas British pubs offering every conceivable imported beer and English products, all the way up to award winning international and local cuisine. If it is foam parties, booze cruises and wild nights out that you seek, then you will certainly get all that in town. Alternatively you will also find traditional fiestas, fine food and family entertainment venues.

The main centre for nightlife revolves around the Veronicas / Starco areas, generally referred to locally as "the strip". This area has recently gone through a regeneration process and now houses many different late night establishments over three floors and five buildings. Veronicas and Starco are only a 100 metres apart, so wandering between the two complexes is easy and with most clubs not closing until 6 a.m. even the hardest party revellers can enjoy dancing the night away.

Another fine area in Playa de las Americas to explore is the Safari Centre. You will find the Safari Centre where Playa de las Americas and Los Cristianos meet. It is full of designer label shops, but also a thriving commercial area full of bars and restaurants and great nightlife. The shops stay open until around 10 p.m. so is always busy with shoppers and people milling around.

Lovers of watersports should head to Puerto Colon. It is located on the beachfront walkway between Playa de las Americas and Fañabe. Here you will find another busy commercial area packed with bars, street café's and restaurants. Puerto Colon also enjoys the luxury of a wonderful sand beach that is extremely safe for swimming. The beach is known as Playa La Pinta and is adjacent to the Marina. It's fine golden sand is ideal for those who enjoy playing beach games or just sunbathe on a towel.

In Puerto Colon many different whale and dolphin trips are available - some half day, some full day and even some that go for just a couple of hours. Some of the boats have a glass bottom so that underwater viewing is made easy. Puerto Colon's reputation as the premier water sports centre for the south of Tenerife is built not only from its diving and boat excursions but also as it provides yacht and power boat charters, deep sea fishing excursions and jet ski or seadoo hire. If you wish to do some parascending or any of these other activities, even just hire a pedalo, then look no further than Puerto Colon and La Pinta Beach.

Playa de las Americas is a buzzing resort offering a bewildering choice of bars and restaurants with every imaginable type of accommodation available.

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Tourism Tenerife

Puerto de la Cruz, in the North, during winter, featuring background snowy mountains
Puerto de la Cruz, in the North, during winter, featuring background snowy mountains
Sea of clouds through the road to Teide
Sea of clouds through the road to Teide
Santa Cruz de Tenerife
Santa Cruz de Tenerife

Tourism is the most prominent industry in the Canaries, and it is one of the major tourist destinations in the World.

In 2005, 9,276,963 tourists (excluding those from other parts of Spain) came to the Canary Islands. Tenerife had 3,442,787 arrivals that year, excluding the numbers for Spanish tourists which make up an additional 30% of total arrivals. According to last year's Canarian Statistics Centre's (ISTAC) Report on Tourism the greatest number of tourists from any one country come from the United Kingdom, with more than 1,600,000 tourists in 2005. In second place comes Germany followed by Belgium, The Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Norway, Italy, France, Austria, Ireland and Switzerland.

Tourism is more prevalent in the south of the island, which is hotter and drier and has many well developed resorts such as Playa de las Americas and Los Cristianos. More recently coastal development has spread northwards from Playa de las Americas and now encompasses the former small enclave of La Caleta. After the Moratoria act passed by the Canarian Parliament in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, no more hotels should be built on the island unless they are classified as 5 star-quality and comprise different services such as Golf Courses or Congress facilities. This act was passed with the goal of improving the standard of tourism service and promoting environmentally conscious development.

The area known as Costa Adeje (Las Américas-Los Cristianos) has many world-class facilities and leisure opportunities besides sea and sand, such as quality shopping centres, golf courses, restaurants, waterparks, animal parks, and a theatre suitable for musicals or a Congress Hall.

In the more lush and green north of the island the main development for tourism has been in the town of Puerto de la Cruz. The town itself has kept some of its old-harbour town charm mixed with northern European influences. Still, the tourist boom in the 60's changed the outlook of the town, making it cosy and cosmopolitan at the same time, and a favourite for the more mature traveller (notably the German and Spanish tourist).

As indicated in the previous paragraphs, the economy of Tenerife, like the other Canary Isles, is based on tourism. In the 19th and most of the 20th century large numbers of foreign tourists came, especially British, showing interest in the agriculta of the islands.

Much later, with the world wars, this sector weakened, but the start of the second half of the century brought new forms of tourism. At first emphasis was on Puerto de la Cruz, for the kindness of the climate, and for all the attractions that the Valle de la Orotava concentrated, but following the attraction of the sun and beaches, around 1980 was born the tourist boom of south Tenerife, where emphasis was on cities like Arona or Adeje, shifting to tourist centres like Los Cristianos o Playa de Las Americas, that today house 65% of the hotels that were on the island. Tenerife receives more than 5,000,000 tourists every year, of the canary islands Tenerife is the most popular. However, this data also reflects the large quality of resources that tourism consumes (space, energy, water etc.)

The Torres de Santa Cruz, are at 120 m (394 ft) high ,the tallest sky-scrapers in the archipelago, and residentially are the tallest towers in Spain.

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