Situated on the island of Tenerife, Teide National Park features the Teide-Pico Viejo stratovolcano that, at 3,718 m, is the highest peak on Spanish soil. Rising 7,500 m above the ocean floor, it is regarded as the world’s third-tallest volcanic structure and stands in a spectacular environment. The visual impact of the site is all the greater due to atmospheric conditions that create constantly changing textures and tones in the landscape and a ‘sea of clouds’ that forms a visually impressive backdrop to the mountain. Teide is of global importance in providing evidence of the geological processes that underpin the evolution of oceanic islands.
Pico Viejo and intervening black lavas viewed from the summit of Pico Teide.
Outstanding Universal Value
Teide National Park, dominated by the 3,781 m Teide-Pico Viejo stratovolcano, represents a rich and diverse assemblage of volcanic features and landscapes concentrated in a spectacular setting.
Criterion (vii): Mount Teide is a striking volcanic landscape dominated by the jagged Las Cañadas escarpment and a central volcano that makes Tenerife the third tallest volcanic structure in the world. Within this landscape is a superlative suite of landforms that reveal different phases of construction and remodeling of the volcanic complex and highlight its unique geodiversity. The visual impact is emphasized by atmospheric conditions that create constantly changing textures and tones in the landscape and a ‘sea of clouds' that forms a visually impressive backdrop to the mountain.
Criterion (viii): Teide National Park is an exceptional example of a relatively old, slow moving, geologically complex and mature volcanic system. It is of global importance in providing diverse evidence of the geological processes that underpin the evolution of oceanic islands, and these values complement those of existing volcanic properties on the World Heritage List, such as the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. It offers a diverse and accessible assemblage of volcanic features and landscapes in a relatively limited area. The area is a major centre for international research with a long history of influence on geology and geomorphology especially through the work of von Humboldt, von Buch and Lyell which has made Mount Teide a significant site in the history of volcanology.
The property is well managed and resourced, with a six-year management plan in place which is due for renewal in 2008. The property is afforded the same legal protection as other national parks in Spain and is surrounded by a buffer zone. Key management issues include the management of tourism, the potential impact of climate change, and effective coordination of management responsibility between national and regional levels of government.