This Metropolitan Area is the heart of Tenerife's bustling life. Together, Santa Cruz and La Laguna provide many of the cultural, shopping and leisure options you will find on the Island, as well as boasting a wealth of historic and architectural heritage, museums, large parks and squares. Tradition and modernity merge in Tenerife's two largest cities, which are perfectly connected. They also have beautiful natural landscapes and their own beaches.
San Cristóbal de La Laguna is the only city on the Canary Islands to have been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It combines the essence of a majestic Canarian city with the American colonial spirit, featuring wide pedestrian streets framed by buildings that date back several centuries. In this laid-back city, monuments and palaces meet modern life, leisure pursuits, shopping and a university vibe that defines La Laguna. Tourists can also explore the city's charms by taking free guided tours and walking routes around some of its historic buildings, or take a break on a sunny terrace beside one of the city's unique monuments sipping a cup of coffee or a refreshing drink. The coast of San Cristóbal de La Laguna has several bathing spots, such as the popular swimming pools of Bajamar and Punta del Hidalgo.
Santa Cruz's climate and its open-air shopping areas make it a great place for shopping or savouring its range of gastronomical delights. From rows of shops on Calle del Castillo to a variety of international restaurants in the historic quarter or avenues and parks full of lovely gardens, Santa Cruz has something to suit all tastes. Boredom is not an option when you can visit the impressive Tenerife Auditorium after sampling some traditional wrinkly potatoes with mojo sauce in the popular Plaza de España square, or catch your breath under the shade of the trees in the García Sanabria park after an afternoon's shopping. You will find a visit to the Guimerá theatre or the Nuestra Señora de Africa marketplace an unforgettable experience right in the city centre. Santa Cruz has a City Sightseeing tourist bus that tours its streets and reveals its most significant monuments in the easiest and most convenient way possible. A few miles out of the city centre is the beach of Las Teresitas, spanning roughly 1,300 m (4,265 ft) in length, which is sheltered from the waves and currents by a stone breakwater.