Brits call Tenerife hotels to ask if it’s safe following media reports of anti-tourism protests

Is Tenerife safe
By Linsey McNeill
12/04/2024
Home » Brits call Tenerife hotels to ask if it’s safe following media reports of anti-tourism protests

A Tenerife hotelier says British guests are calling ahead to check it’s still safe to visit following news of anti-tourism protests on the island.

Jorge Marichal, President of the Spanish Confederation of Hotels and Tourist Accommodations, told a local radio station he said he was concerned the protests were damaging the island’s reputation.

While the number of protests is increasing, holidaymakers are also being confronted by ‘Tourists go home’ graffiti in some parts of the island.

“One of the problems I am facing is that clients are beginning to call and ask what’s happening here and whether it’s safe. It’s happening in some hotels,” said Jorge Marichal.

An anti-mass-tourism demonstration was held in Tenerife’s historic town of La Laguna yesterday, where five members of the protest group Canarias Se Agota (Canaries Sold Out) have gone on hunger strike to try to persuade authorties to block the building of two new hotels on the island.

Construction of the Hotel La Tejita and Cuna del Alma, both in the south of the island, had been halted on order of the authorities due to environmental concerns, but construction work has recently resumed.

The protestors also want local and regional politicians to protect Tenerife from the worst excesses of mass tourism, including sea pollution, traffic gridlock and lack of cheap affordable housing linked to the increasing property prices because of Airbnb-style holiday lets.

Demonstrators are planning marches in Tenerife as well as Gran Canaria, Lanzarote and La Palma on 20 April.

The protestors insist they’re not against tourism, but Canarias Se Agota says it wants it to be more sustainable.

However, Mr Marichal told local media in Tenerife that he was concerned of the ‘unintended’ consequences of the planned 20 April protests on tourism to the island.

Of the 17 million British visitors to Spain last year, almost a third went to the Canary Islands, according to the Spanish National Statistics Institute.

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