New Fonsalía port will replace Los Cristianos as main connection centre for western islands within decade

Design projection: Guía de Isora Ayuntamiento.

Updated 19 September: Canarian TV has broadcast a piece including an interview with Guía de Isora mayor Pedro Martín on the forthcoming port at Fonsalía. The piece, in the video below (only in Spanish, I’m afraid), explains how the port will replace Los Cristianos within the next decade as the main centre for connectivity with the other western islands. As such, it is described as one of the most important upcoming projects for Tenerife as a whole. Mayor Martín himself explains in the video that it has been a chance to correct previous errors in port design to take full care of the environmental requirements of the Isoran litoral. Fonsalía will accommodate five ferries to connect with La Gomera, La Palma and El Hierro, as well as nearly 500 touristic, sports and fishing vessels.

Original post 27 April: The Tenerife Cabildo has announced that the preliminary procedures for the west coast port are starting. The new port, in Fonsalía on the Guía de Isora coast around midway between Los Cristianos and Los Gigantes, is planned as a vital point of communications and logistics for the four western islands which form the province of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, and the initial planning procedures now underway to designate the site as a port and service zone are a prerequisite for the Canarian Government to put the works out to tender.  The new port will be a floating platform in the form of an “island” of 15.5 hectares to house basic commercial, sports and fishing services, with the platform connected to the coast by a 220 metre bridge with four traffic lanes and pavements to the sides.

Photo: Tenerife Cabildo

The port is considered fundamental for both Tenerife and the Canaries generally, with Los Cristianos harbour inadequate for today’s sea traffic. Cabildo councillor Miguel Ángel Pérez, who met last week with Guía de Isora mayor Pedro Martín, stressed that Fonsalía would complete the network of main Tenerife ports and thereby improve docks logistics as well as passenger connectivity with the western islands, and of course would have particular positive economic significance for the towns of  Playa San Juan and Alcalá either side.

There will be space for five ferries connecting Tenerife and La Gomera, La Palma and El Hierro, as well as 470 other craft, thus accommodating touristic, sports and fishing vessels. With the port clearly now actually starting to happen, Mayor Martín has the bit between his teeth and is set on getting a fourth lane in the TF1 spur road to Fonsalía, as well as widening the TF47 from Armeñime to Alcalá.


  1. Very interesting to hear but the traffic a port will inevitably create are a grave concern.

  2. Yes you are right sir, traffic is already very dense on the TF47. Plus locals don´t have a clue how to behave at a roundabout (Armeñime) causing more problems on the TF47 then solving one. I understand there will be place for 5 ferries. I hope they think twice before they begin.

  3. Peter, I suspect its more a case of extrajaneros not knowing how to behave at a roundabout. The rules are different here. How do you think you should behave?

  4. I found this earlier post from Janet about using roundabouts (in the section on Driving).
    Despite popular mythology, there are clear rules for use of roundabouts in Spain. HERE is a Guardia Civil Tráfico page with links to explanations, including an infographic HERE. In a nutshell, the rules work exactly as in the UK except in the case of going straight on at a roundabout. In the UK, one can use either lane of a two-lane roundabout. In Spain, one must use the right hand (outside) lane, leaving the left hand (inside) lane for cars taking an exit more than halfway round the roundabout. All cars must exit the roundabout from the outside lane, so even if using the inside lane to go more than halfway round a roundabout, drivers must move into the outside lane before exiting. HERE is a Policía Local animation video of the correct way to use roundabouts. The speed limit on roundabouts, regardless of all other factors and unless explicitly stated otherwise, is 40 km/h.

  5. Does anyone know whether the port is likely to be predominantly cargo or cruise ships?
    What kind of an impact will it have on the surrounding areas?
    Will this mean that the beautiful towns of San Juan and Alcala are going to become more like Los Cristianos?

  6. Author

    as it says above, it will be a mix of leisure, ferry, fishing and sports craft. It is not going to be a cargo port. Granadilla port will be opening in the not too distant future so that will take any cargo coming to the south. As to the neighbouring towns, they will almost certainly develop somewhat as a result.

  7. will there be large (2500 passengers or more) cruise ships docking at this ‘island’?

  8. Author

    The plans are for “a mix of leisure, ferry, fishing and sports craft”. It doesn’t sound like it. It seems likely to me that with the infrastructure in Santa Cruz, that is where the bigger liners will continue to dock.

  9. Will sea creatures be harmed by the building of this port? Will there be pollution as well?

  10. Author

    The definitive answers to that will be in the environmental reports that are required in every such project, but evironmental organizations are particularly concerned that the crossing from the centre of the west coast will significantly impact on cetacean life … the dolphins and pilot whales, especially, that inhabit this strait between Tenerife and La Gomera.

  11. Fonsalia port is only one of all the projects on the waiting list where nothing happens for many years.

    Other examples are the train from Santa Cruz to the west coast, the train from Santa Cruz to the north coast, the extension of the tram no. 2 and the construction of another one (no. 3) at Santa Cruz city coast, the construction of a motorway from TF 1 to TF 5 (anillo insular) and the construction of a motorracing circuit for Formula 1 and motorbikes near the airport TFS.

    These are many good ideas, but there is no real action.

  12. Wolfgang, you have given good examples of projects that are the dreams of politicians that have been offered to the public like “pie in the sky” as we would say in English. These things tend to be announced as politicians try to engage the public, and get re-elected. For me, the only two I would support are the train and the completion of the ring road. For all of them money would need to come from either the EU or the national government and I doubt they are a priority for either of those institutions. The same thing happens everywhere, just look at the HS2 railway proposal in England, a politicians dream or a nightmare for local people. The third London Airport, the same. Only a few of these crazy infrastructure projects are realised and bring the benefits they should. One of the most successful in recent years is the Channel Tunnel, but I think Boris will close that when he becomes Prime Minister. 🤮.

  13. Stewart, only three short questions, please:

    – Why would you not support Fonsalia port ?
    – What do you mean by “third London airport”
    (maybe LHR 3rd runway) ?
    – Chunnel to be closed by Boris is a joke, isn’t it ?

  14. Wolfgang,
    Fonsalia – There is a possibility that the port will bring terrible environmental damage. Including harm to the population of whales that live off the coast of Fonsalia. It will also bring a lot more road traffic to the area which does not have the infrastructure to support it. I can’t see a sensible economic argument for it.
    London Heathrow – yes I meant the third runway although there have also been crazy ideas like “Boris Island” building an airport in the Thames estuary.
    Closing the tunnel- I meant it as a joke but who knows what might happe.

  15. Don’t keep biting to WOLFGANG Stewart.He is a wind up merchant.

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