Coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak in Tenerife

NB: If you feel at risk or infected first use the online test HERE then for further help if needed ring the free multi-lingual helpline 900 112 061. For general info use the Canarian authorities’ websites/official social media. Use 112 only for emergencies. 

Spain, including the Canaries, is in the New Normal, and Tenerife itself is in special measures: please see the top of the page of the New Normal post HERE for details. This post itself tracks the development of the outbreak and records case figures, islands in special measures, etc: it is a continuation of the original post HERE.

Updated 23 October: One more fatality again today, sadly.  

  • Total recorded cases 16,531 (5,769 TF, 8,473 GC)
  • Fatalities 268
  • Recoveries 10,162
  • Active cases 6,101 (272 in hospital, 45 in ICU)

 Although our figures have improved in Tenerife, they aren’t good enough and we, and we alone in the Canaries, remain in Special Measures until 6 November. The report from the semaphore is HERE.

Updated 22 October: One more fatality again today, the first recorded in this pandemic in El Hierro, but those active cases are down again.  

  • Total recorded cases 16,380 (5,648 TF, 8,447 GC)
  • Fatalities 267
  • Recoveries 9,980
  • Active cases 6,133 (279 in hospital, 47 in ICU)

I’ve cropped this post because it had become massive and unwieldy. This one now goes back to El Hierro’s removal from special measures last month, with all previous updates from the initial post in January HERE.

Updated 21 October: Four more fatalities again to record today, tragically., but the active cases do seem to be dropping, very slowly.  

  • Total recorded cases 16,227 (5,525 TF, 8,418 GC)
  • Fatalities 266
  • Recoveries 9,740
  • Active cases 6,221 (271 in hospital, 46 in ICU)

Updated 20 October: Four fatalities to record today, sadly.  

  • Total recorded cases 16,070 (5,459 TF, 8,366 GC)
  • Fatalities 262
  • Recoveries 9,467
  • Active cases 6,341 (276 in hospital, 49 in ICU)

Updated 19 October: And a second day, thankfully, with no further deaths to record.  

  • Total recorded cases 15,944 (5,408 TF, 8,299 GC)
  • Fatalities 258
  • Recoveries 9,137
  • Active cases 6,549 (282 in hospital, 52 in ICU)

Updated 18 October: Thankfully no further deaths to record today.  

  • Total recorded cases 15,815 (5,329 TF, 8,259 GC)
  • Fatalities 258
  • Recoveries 8,925
  • Active cases 6,632 (271 in hospital, 51 in ICU)

Updated 17 October: Six deaths in the last 24 hours, tragically, five in Tenerife, the island now the main focus for infection in the archipelago. Today, indeed, all other islands come out of special measures, with Tenerife alone remaining under maximum restrictions.  

  • Total recorded cases 15,693 (5,257 TF, 8,221 GC)
  • Fatalities 258
  • Recoveries 8,810
  • Active cases 6,625 (270 in hospital, 51 in ICU)

Updated 16 October: Sadly, another fatality in today’s figures.

  • Total recorded cases 15,561 (5,171 TF, 8,185 GC)
  • Fatalities 252
  • Recoveries 8,797
  • Active cases 6,512 (283 in hospital, 52 in ICU)

We know that Tenerife remains in special measures until at least the 23rd, but the weekly incidence rate has been updated HERE.

Updated 15 October: Thank heavens for a day with no further fatalities.

  • Total recorded cases 15,420 (5,066 TF, 8,156 GC)
  • Fatalities 251
  • Recoveries 8,530
  • Active cases 6,639 (286 in hospital, 55 in ICU)

Updated 14 October: Another two fatalities registered in the last 24 hours.

  • Total recorded cases 15,301 (4,984 TF, 8,126 GC)
  • Fatalities 251
  • Recoveries 8,463
  • Active cases 6,587 (287 in hospital, 57 in ICU)

Updated 13 October: Another fatality today, sadly.

  • Total recorded cases 15,237 (currently 4,949 in Tenerife, 8,099 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 249
  • Recoveries 8,204
  • Active cases 6,784 (289 in hospital, 58 in ICU)

A reminder that the official site is HERE for more detail … you can choose island figures, municipality figures, age groups affected, gender of fatalities … lots of info on it. 

Updated 12 October: Another fatality today, sadly, and the active cases are heading back towards 7,000 again.

  • Total recorded cases 15,175 (currently 4,919 in Tenerife, 8,080 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 248
  • Recoveries 7,977
  • Active cases 6,950 (283 in hospital, 57 in ICU)

Updated 11 October: Another two fatalities to record today, sadly, and that horrible milestone has now been passed. Total cases recorded in the Canaries have exceeded 15,000, and Gran Canaria sadly overtakes the 8,000 mark.

  • Total recorded cases 15,035 (currently 4,831 in Tenerife, 8,037 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 247
  • Recoveries 7,909
  • Active cases 6,879 (275 in hospital, 59 in ICU)

A reminder that for more detail, the official site is HERE

Updated 10 October: Three more fatalities to record today. Each time it’s terrible to post, and we’re approaching a horrible milestone in the total recorded cases too. 

  • Total recorded cases 14,909 (currently 4,759 in Tenerife, 7,999 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 245
  • Recoveries 7,904
  • Active cases 6,760 (273 in hospital, 61 in ICU)

Updated 9 October: Sadly today there’s again another fatality.

  • Total recorded cases 14,779 (currently 4,682 in Tenerife, 7,957 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 242
  • Recoveries 7,869
  • Active cases 6,668 (284 in hospital, 64 in ICU)

Updated 8 October: Sadly there’s another fatality in today’s figures.

  • Total recorded cases 14,593 (currently 4,556 in Tenerife, 7,908 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 241
  • Recoveries 7,639
  • Active cases 6,713 (278 in hospital, 65 in ICU)

Updated 7 October: Active case figures thankfully stay under 7,000 again and mercifully another day in which we have no more fatalities.

  • Total recorded cases 14,464 (currently 4,481 in Tenerife, 7,864 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 240
  • Recoveries 7,417
  • Active cases 6,807 (278 in hospital, 64 in ICU)

Updated 6 October: Active case figures thankfully dip under 7,000 again but sadly we have two more fatalities.

  • Total recorded cases 14,354 (currently 4,428 in Tenerife, 7,821 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 240
  • Recoveries 7,236
  • Active cases 6,878 (286 in hospital, 60 in ICU)

Updated 5 October: Thankfully no further fatalities for the third consecutive day.

  • Total recorded cases 14,279 (currently 4,393 in Tenerife, 7,786 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 238
  • Recoveries 6,996
  • Active cases 7,045 (291 in hospital, 60 in ICU)

Updated 4 October: Thankfully no further fatalities in today’s figures but we have sadly passed the 7,000 milestone for active cases.

  • Total recorded cases 14,154 (currently 4,337 in Tenerife, 7,721 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 238
  • Recoveries 6,794
  • Active cases 7,122 (286 in hospital, 60 in ICU)

Updated 3 October: Another fatality today, tragically, as total cases in the Canaries surpass the 14,000 milestone and active cases are sadly all too near 7,000.

  • Total recorded cases 14,013 (currently 4,263 in Tenerife, 7,667 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 238
  • Recoveries 6,782
  • Active cases 6,993 (271 in hospital, 57 in ICU)

I’d just like to leave a link to THIS article which has been deemed (see HERE) as very important by Prof. Christian Drosten, a German virologist whose research area is novel viruses and who was the recipient of this year’s Bundesverdienstkreuz (German Order of Merit) for his contribution to the COVID-19 pandemic … in other words, this is a real “expert” who knows what he’s talking about. 

The article in the link is based on what is now a great deal of accumulated data, and is quite clear that the problem areas are almost overwhelmingly poorly ventilated, indoor environments where many people congregate. Crucially the problem is not necessarily one big event, but places like churches, gyms, restaurants, and such that hold crowds, and over time.  I would include transport hubs and even transport itself in such a category. The article is not short, but it is also not unduly or overly technical. Please read it. 

Updated 10pm, 2/10: The latest semaphore published this evening has kept Tenerife in special measures; the situation will be reviewed again on 17 October. The same has been done for the other islands which were in special measures too, namely Gran Canaria, Fuerteventura, and La Gomera.

The latest accumulated incidence figures, which can be viewed HERE, show that the Canaries as a whole has 53.78 cases per 100,000 of population. Tenerife has 49.79/100,000. Islands are put into special measures when their rates are over 100/100,000 but although Tenerife as a whole has only half that, more than one municipality is over or near to that limit.  

Updated 2 October: Various authorities including the World Health Organization are considering why Spain is presently doing so badly generally, compared with other countries with similar behaviour patterns and official responses. Their conclusions are that the return to normality – the de-escalation phases to what was labelled the New Normality – might have been too rushed, with some regions coming out of their de-escalation phases as soon as devolved power was returned to them. The results in Madrid are only too clear, and the comparison with the UK seems marked.

The overwhelming message is that this has a way to go yet, and it is quite possible, if these scientific considerations have legs, that some restrictions will need to be reintroduced to slow things down again. THIS is one such recent report of the concerns, from El Pais in English. Meanwhile in the Canaries, there are sadly four new fatalities to record today, all in Gran Canaria where, however, the rise in case figures is slowing. Tenerife does not seem to be faring so well, though.

  • Total recorded cases 13,890 (currently 4,211 in Tenerife, 7,609 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 237
  • Recoveries 6,756
  • Active casess 6,897 (273 in hospital, 61 in ICU)

Updated 1 October: A second consecutive day with no new fatalities, but the active figures are up slightly.

  • Total recorded cases 13,688 (currently 4,085 in Tenerife, 7,561 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 233
  • Recoveries 6,569
  • Active cases 6,886 (279 in hospital, 66 in ICU)

Updated 30 September: Another day with no new fatalities, and another day with active numbers down, as are the numbers in ICU.

  • Total recorded cases 13,492 (currently 3,990 in Tenerife, 7,499 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 233
  • Recoveries 6,395
  • Active cases 6,864 (277 in hospital, 66 in ICU)

Updated 29 September: A glimmer of hope! No new fatalities in today’s figures, and an increase in recorded cases of only 78, the lowest daily increase for a considerable time, and the active cases are down today, as are the numbers in ICU, only by one but it has to start somewhere!  

  • Total recorded cases 13,347 (currently 3,935 in Tenerife, 7,439 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 233
  • Recoveries 6,195
  • Active cases 6,919 (275 in hospital, 71 in ICU)

Updated 28 September: Another two fatalities in today’s figures, and our active cases are now over 7,000.  

  • Total recorded cases 13,269 (currently 3,889 in Tenerife, 7,419 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 233
  • Recoveries 6,004
  • Active cases 7,032 (282 in hospital, 72 in ICU)

Updated 27 September: Another fatality, sadly, in today’s figures.  

  • Total recorded cases 13,106 (currently 3,833 in Tenerife, 7,335 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 231
  • Recoveries 5,882
  • Active cases 6,993 (275 in hospital, 70 in ICU)

Updated 26 September: Today’s figures are up again. There’s a tragic jump of nine fatalities, active cases are up by 111, and patients needing intensive care treatment rise further.  

  • Total recorded cases 12,952 (currently 3,792 in Tenerife, 7,242 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 230
  • Recoveries 5,857
  • Active cases 6,865 (270 in hospital, 67 in ICU)

Updated 6pm, 25/9: Tenerife has been put in special measures following the publication of the latest semaphore. Please see HERE for details, and HERE for the official announcement.

Updated 25 September: Today’s figures jump by 289 and prompt a rise in active case numbers after a spell of slow reductions. Also, sadly, today’s figures include two further fatalities, and the ICU figures are also up again, by one today.

  • Total recorded cases 12,778 (currently 3,693 in Tenerife, 7,191 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 221
  • Recoveries 5,803
  • Active cases 6,754 (275 in hospital, 65 in ICU)

Updated 24 September: Today’s figures thankfully include no further fatalities, the first day in eleven of rising deaths. The active case figures are down again too though the ICU figures are up again, albeit only by two.

  • Total recorded cases 12,489 (currently 3,610 in Tenerife, 7,036 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 219
  • Recoveries 5,600
  • Active cases 6,670 (274 in hospital, 64 in ICU)

Updated 23 September: Another two fatalities but those active case figures do seem to be dropping slowly. The number of those in hospital needing intensive care is worringly on the rise again, though.

  • Total recorded cases 12,353 (currently 3,552 in Tenerife, 6,978 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 219
  • Recoveries 5,416
  • Active cases 6,718 (274 in hospital, 62 in ICU)

Updated 22 September: Today’s figures include two more fatalities.

  • Total recorded cases 12,202 (currently 3,489 in Tenerife, 6,911 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 217
  • Recoveries 5,228
  • Active cases 6,757 (278 in hospital, 60 in ICU)

Updated 21 September: Today’s figures include a further fatality.

  • Total recorded cases 12,059 (currently 3,453 in Tenerife, 6,808 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 215
  • Recoveries 4,983
  • Active cases 6,861 (271 in hospital, 59 in ICU)

Updated 4pm, 20/9: Today’s figures include yet another two fatalities.

  • Total recorded cases 11,932 (currently 3,395 in Tenerife, 6,758 in Gran Canaria)
  • Fatalities 214
  • Recoveries 4,850
  • Active cases 6,868 (261 in hospital, 56 in ICU)

Updated 20 September: Following the publication on Friday of the latest accumulated figures report of cases per 100,000 of population, figures which were to 16 September, it was clear that El Hierro had dipped below the 100 mark. The island’s placement in special measures was due for review yesterday and as a result of the latest figures it has now been removed from the semaphore, which shows (HERE) that Gran Canaria and Lanzarote are the only two islands here now in special measures. Lanzarote’s figures themselves are considerably down now too, and that island’s placement is due to be reviewed next weekend. 

This post was started in January, and all previous updates from the original to 20 September are HERE. The whole thing was became too unwieldy to leave it intact.


  1. Hi Janet . You recently published an Incidencia Acumulada Casos for the week to 27 / 08 which I found very helpful . Any chance of having more of the same ?

    Sorry if this has already been covered . Regards Robin ?

  2. Author

    Robin, I’ve just moved your comment to the covid numbers thread, and yes, I’m happy to give the latest accumulated figures … the last one available is to 2/9, and I’ve updated above with it. I’ll keep an eye out now for further updates (seem to be weekly) and post when they’re available.

  3. Janet
    Would you mind clarifying the new rules on smoking and where one can smoke on the island as the UK press are publishing different interpretations of the new rules
    Sorry to ask and we are have actually cut down a lot but not there yet and our forthcoming trip is part of our cutting down process which will succeed

  4. Author

    The rules are explained in the new normal post HERE. As far as smoking is concerned, it is covered by regional and national rules:

    *it is permitted in outdoor public spaces (streets, parks, plazas etc) only if 2m distancing can be guaranteed.
    * It is banned in the outside areas of all bars, restaurants, etc regardless of distancing.
    * Spain had already banned smoking throughout the country in enclosed public spaces like bars, restaurants, airports, as well as outside schools, hospitals, etc.

  5. Hi there, We are a group of 5 families who have rented a large villa in October – I can find no official advice on Covid law in Tenerife regarding ‘the shared use of accommodation units by non-cohabitants’ Is it allowed/lawful?
    The villa was booked direct and is not offering a refund.

  6. Author

    yes it is, it’s fine, and in fact always was ok in independent dwellings like villas.

  7. Janet
    Sorry why are the figures for the 10 th and the 9th the same for Ten, and Gran when the figures are up over 300

  8. Author

    My mistake, David. Each day I copy the previous post and update the figures. Today I forgot to change the island data! Apologies, I’ve edited now!

  9. Janet
    Dont apologise you are our treasure on Tenerife.

  10. Just looked over at the side of the Auditorium (Cristianos) and already (at 19.30) there’s quite a crowd of youngsters – approx 15/20 already and not a single mask in sight. They surely can’t all live in same household. This happens most evenings (I live next door to this building) and I’ve recognised a few of the teenagers who told me (in Spanish and English) ‘to mind my own’ when I mentioned masks to them in the street recently. Police station only a few paces away from them but they are quite blatant about flouting the law. No wonder the daily figures are going crazy.

  11. Theresa. Worrying indeed. Just report it to the police. The government is asking the public to do that

  12. Hi There is there any updates what the current figure is in Tenerife for the cases per 100,000 or anywhere I can find this information. thanks

  13. Author

    Please see the 9 Sept update above. That is the latest available.

  14. Hi Janet
    Have you any idea why the Canaries are considered the same risk as Spain when the Portuguese islands and some Greek ones are not on the UK govt. quarantine list.

  15. Author

    no sorry, THIS from UKGov is all the information there is apart from what Transport Minister Grant Shapps announces and explains about policy underpinning decisions to UK media and on the DfT websites and social media.

  16. At the moment the Canaries numbers are just as bad as Spain if not higher. Tenerife is not too bad but only La Gomera would be below the UK limit.

  17. Hmmm. Wonder what the UK will do when they go over their own limit? (which could happen soon at this rate). Maybe they will then ban all citizens from leaving the country lol.

  18. The UK average is already well over the limit. I think it is around 29 / 100,000 / week and the limit for quarantine is 20.

    By the time Tenerife get back down to 20 we will probably be too high and quarantine will be needed in the other direction.

    If you have any border in the world there will always be a different rate each side and the people on the low side don’t want to allow people from the high side in.

    I think the only practical solution is to have tests on entry and exit. Possibly two a few days apart because they are not 100% accurate. It still won’t be 100% but medical staff and are allowed to work after passing two tests.

  19. Every body is full of their own ideas based on looking after their own health but there are no answers or solutions to a problem that is severely affecting some and having no affect on others. If there was a positive answer it would of course be implemented but like the Brexit debate the answer to most questions is that quite simply people don’t know at this current time as it changes daily and no amount of asking questions is going to give people the answers they need. If you wish to travel then you need to risk access yourselves and make your own decision and if you are unable to do that the best advise in my mind is don’t travel.

  20. Author

    Perfectly said, Nigel.

  21. The alternative is hibernation for the foreseeable – or just sticking your head in the sand perhaps!

  22. Hi Janet
    I note the rise in cases is above recent days but not the largest increase this month so I suppose the trend over the next few days will indicate direction.
    I arrived on the island on Monday partly because it’s the normal time for me to come over and partly to escape the big rise in UK cases.
    I know and have weighed up the risks and feel safer in Tenerife.
    I had my holiday head on last night and forgot to use hand gel Dispenser on entry into Superdino and was politely reminded by the security guard to do so.
    It’s things like this that helps the fight against the virus and follows the general feeling of enforcement that make Tenerife feel safer for me..

  23. Hello Janet – your blog is really an unparalleled resource for local info on the Covid situation, thanks so much for your work. I have a brief query (due to my son being on Tenerife for some citizen science volunteering this month): as far as you know, is there any possibilty of privately getting an antigen or PCR test for the virus on the island?

  24. Author

    Hi Philip, all comments are on pre-moderate so won’t appear instantly. There are private tests yes, but which particular type they are, I don’t know, but it’s already clear that the private tests seem to have a problem, disproportionately so, with false results. There have been instances where areas were severely affected because of false results from private tests that were contradicted by tests subsequently done by the health service. I wish I could be more positive, and maybe others will have better suggestions, but I fall back on the official advice that to get confirmed and reliable results without over-stretching resources the public should seek a test only if they have symptoms or are in vulnerable situations, and to do it through the official helpline.

  25. A glimmer of hope indeed Janet. Let’s hope that these first signs of recovery flourish.

    I’m still concerned that visitors, especially from mainland Spain, represent a significant danger to these Islands. This today from AP News:

    “With 290 cases per 100,000 people in two weeks, Spain is by far leading Europe’s infections during this second wave. The rate is particularly high in the capital, Madrid, with 775 new cases per 100,000 over the past 14 days.”

    Let’s just hope all visitors and residents do the right thing and abide by the rules/law.

  26. What a very interesting article in The Atlantic. Really well written and explains so well how tricky Covid19 has been to understand. It is always difficult to see the wood for the trees but spotting a cluster may just help us move safely forwards.

    Thank you for the Janet and your continued great reporting.

  27. Incredibly informative article in the Atlantic, Janet, and, as you say, he really knows what he is talking about. Thank you so much. If only people would avoid indoor places of any kind and have only their family members who live there in their own house.

  28. Thank you for directing us to the Atlantic article Janet. A very worthwhile read. It provides evidence that shows that the virus is over dispersed, that is it infects in clusters. Back tracing to find the source of clusters is extremely important and is not an activity practised universally. I take away from the article the requirement to avoid crowded confined and poorly ventilated locations, particularly where masks are not being worn. Super-spreaders and the Pareto principle apply.

  29. I do wish that the authorities would put less emphasis on PCR tests and “cases”. PCR tests do not show if a person is infected, and “case” numbers are not an indication of how many people are infected. These tests merely show that a fragment of DNA has been detected by amplifying its genetic signature over several cycles. By increasing the number of cycles you can show that every single person has these fragments inside him or her. The man who invented the test said that it should never be used for clinical analysis. ICU and death statistics are much more meaningful, especially when they are related to age and comorbidity statistics, but this data is usually badly presented.

  30. Hi there, we are about to travel to Canary Islands for and stay for a month in November, mostly cyling. What are the prognosis about such an outdoor activities, is it legal with regard to law and Covid restrictions? Thanks,

  31. Author

    The legalities are on the New Normal post, and there is a link to that in the very first bit in bold at the top of this post. As to prognosis, as I posted on that post, the Spanish Government is currently considering another national lockdown.

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