Tenerife has a wonderful climate; the average temperature is comfortable all year round, rarely dropping below 63°F (17°C) and more often above 82°F (28°C) during the day. The cooling breeze ensures that there is little humidity. During winter the evenings can get relatively cold. Rainfall in the summer months is almost non-existent, but showers are likely between October and April. In-land, particularly around Teide National Park, temperatures can drop far lower so dress for cool evenings and rainfall if exploring the high altitudes around the interior of the island.
There are plenty of metered taxis available in all resorts and a good, cheap bus service operates around the resorts and between all the main towns on the island; there is nowhere on the island that takes much longer than an hour to get to by bus. Local car rental companies have offices in all the main resorts, and are good value and popular with those wanting to explore the north of the island.
Spanish is the official language, but English is widely understood in areas frequented by tourists. Catalan, Galician and Basque are spoken in the relevant areas.
Spain's official currency is the Euro (EUR). One Euro is divided into 100 cents. Money can be exchanged at bureaux de change and major hotels, but banks give the best rates. All major credit cards and travellers cheques are widely accepted at most hotels, restaurants, and shops. ATMs are widespread and are generally the cheapest and most convenient method of obtaining money.
Tenerife is well geared for shoppers, with plenty of supermarkets in the larger towns providing all basics and foodstuffs for self-catering tourists, and plenty of markets and smaller shops all around the island for gifts and bargains.
Of course, the Canary Islands is a duty-free zone, so tobacco, alcohol and other goods are much cheaper than continental Europe. Take note of duty-free limits before returning home: technically you're only allowed to bring back 1 litre of spirits and 200 cigarettes, although in practice most countries allow enough for personal consumption. Clothing is also great value in Tenerife, a fact that many visitors take advantage of. Popular brands such as Zara and Mango have outlets around the island.
The best shopping is in Santa Cruz, particularly on Calle Castillo where all the fashion stores are. There is also a newly mega-mall - Meridiano on Avenida La Salle - and El Corte Ingles, an enormous department store. Just outside of town is the enormous Carrefour hypermarket.
Most of the resorts and small towns have weekly markets. The huge Sunday market in Los Cristianos is a fleamarket extravaganza selling everything under the sun from fabrics and books to knock-down property! In Santa Cruz, the African market is well worth exploring, with 300 stores selling fresh produce and interesting curios. On Sundays the area around the market becomes the El Rastro Flea Market, a good place to pick-up quality handicrafts and bargain souvenirs. Golf del Sur has a good market near the marina on Friday mornings; Los Abrigos puts on a decent night market every Tuesday evening; while Guaza has recently begun hosting a Sunday fleamarket.
Best buys in Tenerife, apart from booze and cigarettes, are the award-winning local cheeses and honey, leather goods such as shoes and belts, and Turrón, the almonds and honey confection available around the festive season. Avoid shopping at the airport where prices tend to be significantly inflated. Note that if you paying via debit or credit card you will need to show your passport. Many shops still observe the very sensible custom of closing over siesta (1.30 to 4.30pm) and will close all day Sunday.
There is much more to Tenerife than it's gorgeous beaches and exciting nightlife.
Local time is GMT +1 (GMT +2 between the last Sunday in March and the Saturday before the last Sunday in October). The Canary Islands: GMT (GMT +1 in summer).