It is the second largest city in the Canary Islands and the main city on the island of Tenerife, with nearly half of the island’s population living in or around it.
The port is of great importance and is the communications hub between Europe, Africa and Americas, with cruise ships arriving from many nations. The city is the focus for domestic and inter-island communications in the Canary Islands.
The city is home to the Parliament of the Canary Islands, the Audience of Accounts of the Canary Islands, the Captaincy General of the Canary Islands, the Canarian Ministry of the Presidency (shared on a four-year cycle with Las Palmas), one half of the Ministries and Boards of the Canarian Government, (the other half being located in Gran Canaria), the Tenerife Provincial Courts and two courts of the Superior Court of Justice of the Canary Islands. There are several faculties of the La Laguna University in Santa Cruz, including the Fine Arts School and the Naval Sciences Faculty. Its harbour is one of Spain’s busiest. It is important for commercial and passenger traffic as well as for being a major stopover for cruisers en route from Europe to the Caribbean. The city also has one of the world’s largest carnivals. The Carnival of Santa Cruz de Tenerife now aspires to become a World Heritage Site, and is the second largest in the world.
The main landmarks of the city include the Auditorio de Tenerife (Auditorium of Tenerife), the Torres de Santa Cruz (Santa Cruz Towers), the Plaza de España (Spain Square) and the Iglesia de la Concepción (Church of the Immaculate Conception). Santa Cruz de Tenerife hosts the first headquarters of the Center UNESCO in the Canary Islands. In recent years the city of Santa Cruz de Tenerife has seen the construction of a significant number of modern structures and the city’s skyline is the sixth in height across the country, behind Madrid, Benidorm, Barcelona, Valencia and Bilbao.
- Auditorio de Tenerife (Auditorium of Tenerife): Designed by Santiago Calatrava, the Auditorium of Tenerife was constructed in 2003. The building has an organic and famous structure in the shape of ‘sails’ with white blue rollers. The auditorium has a big room for concerts, a room for opera and other smaller rooms. It is an emblem of the city and is one of the more photographed buildings. This building is in the Port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife close to the sea. It was inaugurated on 26 September 2003 with the presence of Felipe de Borbón, Prince of Asturias, and was also visited by former U.S. President Bill Clinton. The profile of the famous and majestic auditorium has become a symbol of the city of Santa Cruz de Tenerife. It is one of the main attractions of Tenerife and the Canary Islands.
- Torres de Santa Cruz (Towers of Santa Cruz): Twin towers finished in 2006 are the highest skyscrapers of the city and the Canary Islands, was the tallest residential building in Spain until 2010. The Torres de Santa Cruz are also the tallest twin towers in Spain.
- Plaza de España (Spain Square): is the largest square in the city of Santa Cruz de Tenerife and the Canary Islands. The square is located in the center of town, just meters north of the Auditorio de Tenerife. It is the heart of the city, stands the great artificial lake source or work of Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron.
- Tenerife Espacio de las Artes (Tenerife Space of Arts – TEA): Building designed by the Swiss firm of architects Herzog & de Meuron and directed by the Canary architect Virgilio Gutierrez Herreros. The building houses the contemporary museum Óscar Domínguez Institute, the Alejandro Cioranescu Island Library and the Center for Photography Island of Tenerife. In addition, the property has a hall, a restaurant, a shop, a public plaza, offices.
- Parque García Sanabria: is a public urban park in the heart of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, it was inaugurated in 1926. It is a large garden area, combined with fountains and architectural groups. It is the largest urban park in the Canary Islands. It has an area of 67,230 m2 (723,658 sq ft).
- Centro Internacional de Ferias y Congresos de Tenerife (Tenerife International Centre for Trade Fairs and Congresses): The complex was designed by architect and engineer Santiago Calatrava is configured as a multipurpose building that can host major fairs, exhibitions and conferences that take place on the island of Tenerife. The Great Hall, located on the top floor, took a total of 12,000 square meters, making it the largest covered space in the Canary Islands.
- Playa de Las Teresitas: is a beach in the village of San Andrés municipality of Santa Cruz de Tenerife. It is one of the most important beaches of the Tenerife and the Canary Islands.
- Museo de la Naturaleza y el Hombre (Museum of Nature and Man) is a museum of archeology and biology that has participated in international meetings on archeology, but his fame is mainly due to its formidable collection of Guanche mummies. For this reason, the Museum of Nature and Man is a world reference in regard to preservation of mummies.
- Masonic Temple of Santa Cruz de Tenerife: Is a Masonic Temple located in the on San Lucas street. It is considered the finest example of Masonic Temple in Spain. Similarly was even greater in Spain Masonic Center before it was occupied by Franco’s military.