Regulations and Laws for Camper Vans and Motorhomes in Tenerife: A Complete Guide

Is it legal to camp with a camper van anywhere in Tenerife?

Here's the translation of your text into English:---Many of you always ask me the same question. Is it legal to camp with the van anywhere in Tenerife? What are the differences between camping and overnighting in a camper van in Tenerife? Is overnighting the same as parking? With this article, I want to shed some light on the topic and answer all those questions that come to mind when you decide to rent a van in Tenerife.

First and foremost, it’s important to understand the difference between overnighting and camping.

Overnighting is considered when we spend the night inside our van without any element of it protruding more than the vehicle’s dimensions itself. In this case, national traffic regulations apply. It’s basically the same as being parked or parked.

While you’re overnighting, you can do the following:

  • Sleep inside the van
  • Cook inside the van
  • Read, work, use your mobile phone, play board games, or engage in any legal activity inside the van
  • Open windows (if they are sliding, not hinged), skylights, and retractable roofs
  • Use chocks (not levelers) if the vehicle is parked on a slope.

Things you can’t do:

  • Take out any element of the van such as chairs, tables, barbecue, portable stove, or any extra equipment inside the van.
  • Deploy any extra element such as awnings, tents, extensions, etc.
  • Use the outdoor shower
  • Empty any bottle, container, jerrycan, etc., with liquid (even if it’s clean water)
  • Use levelers

If any of the points mentioned in the last list are carried out, it will be considered camping, and the regional camping law will apply to you.

For those who are curious and want to know what that law says, they can consult it at this link:
https://www.gobiernodecanarias.org/boc/1993/120/002.html

So, to know if we can overnight here or not, the question you should ask yourself is very easy… Can I park the van in this place? If the answer is yes, you can park and stay there. However, if the answer is no, you’ll have to look for another option.

It’s also important to mention that in some municipalities, specific “laws” or “regulations” are being put in place to regulate this type of vehicle. For example:

  • In various areas of El Medano, it is not allowed to park your vehicle if it is more than 2 meters wide or 5 meters long.
  • In the Las Américas parking lot (where the Metrópolis bar is located and surfing is done), it is only for standard vehicles (not camper vans or motorhomes).

I only know about these two places… but it is advisable to pay attention to the signs in the area where you are thinking of parking (overnighting).

My top recommendation is to use the Park4night app (many of you already know it). Here you will find a camper community with many places where you can overnight, with comments from others who have been there before, what kind of attractions and facilities there are, etc.

Here are several areas for Motorhomes:
– Santa Cruz de Tenerife: Motorhome parking area
– Puertito de Guimar: Puertito de Güiimar camping area
– Abades: [Abades map link](https://maps.app.goo.gl/QwPGTqoATcaMFwhq7)
– Poris: [Poris map link](https://maps.app.goo.gl/vkBarKUegBZbHfpk9)
– Tajao: Caleta del Sordo Camping

If you want to not worry about these things, live an authentic camper experience where you can be relaxed with your camping table and chairs connected with nature, you’re in luck! Tenerife has 14 recreational areas where you can settle in, and they are also free! All you have to do is reserve your spot (they are limited and it is mandatory).

For more information and reservations, you can use the following:

https://www.gobiernodecanarias.org/boc/1993/120/002.html

Now, the most important thing when traveling in a camper van is to have good civility and common sense. Here are some good practices that will help you avoid problems with authorities or locals:

  • Be tidy. Don’t have all your belongings scattered around the van.
  • Pick up all your garbage and throw it in the appropriate container.
  • If you decide to break the law (which I do not recommend, and if you do, it will always be under your responsibility), don’t do it in the middle of an urban area during rush hour. It’s not the same to have a beer at 12:00 noon sitting in a camping chair in a parking lot in Santa Cruz de Tenerife as it is to take a shower outside at 7:00 am for 2 minutes on a dirt road in Ifonche.
  • Don’t light a fire outside the vehicle if it’s not allowed.
  • Don’t play loud music that may disturb other people.

And that’s all camper enthusiasts. Enjoy the island always respecting the rules and having respect for the local people and the environment.