When we left La Laguna, we followed the TF24 road up to Mount Teide. This is a wonderful road to drive along. It does wind up the mountain, but is nowhere near as bendy or twisty as a lot of the mountain roads we used. It was actually built by the military in the 1940's and is mainly used by local people when they want to drive up the mountain. Apparently it is rarely used by tourists - amazing, since the road is wide, well maintained and a pleasure to drive along. This was good for us though, as we seemed to be about the only car using it and had it all to ourselves.
We left La Laguna and headed for La Esperanza and El Teide. We drove past the airport - it is much smaller than the southern airport - you get a great view of the runway. As you drive along, the scenery starts to change from city suburbs to fields.
La Esperanza is a small town, not really worth stopping in, except if you are low on fuel. Apparently this is the last petrol station for about 60 kilometres, so worth knowing if you are venturing on to Mount Teide.
The road winds up the mountain, and there are some amazing views to be had all the way as it climbs ever upwards. We loved the drive through all the pine and eucalyptus forests. Be sure to open your car windows as you drive through the forest. The scent of eucalyptus is heady and strong and really clears your head.
Keep looking to the left and right as you climb - there are wonderful views both sides of the road and numerous viewpoints or miradors to stop. You keep glimpsing the sea - we stopped 5 or 6 times, the views are so tempting.
As you climb higher, to the right you can see the Anaga Mountains and Santa Cruz. On the left hand side is Guimar and the coast, and on the right the view over La Orotava Valley and Puerta de la Cruz is stunning.
Chimogue and Chipeque are 2 really great viewpoints and I would definitely recommend stopping at these. From here you get views over the north and the south of the island. It is a bit of a bumpy track up to the first viewpoint, these are a bit off the beaten track and most tourists go past them. From Chimogue you can see Gran Canaria on the horizon. Chipeque is higher up and as well as stunning views of the valley and Mount Teide, you can sometimes see La Palma on a clear day.
A word of caution though about these 2 viewpoints. We felt totally safe, the drive up is very bumpy and along a track, but watch out at all times for your valuables. Thieves lurk around here, despite the serenity, the fact you are half way up a mountain and it seems deserted, we left a bag on the backseat of our hire car for a couple of minutes, walked to the front of the car to take a picture and when we got back the bag was gone. This literally happened in a couple of minutes and we saw and heard nothing. Fortunately there was nothing of value in the bag - cue disappointed thief, but you do need to be careful, keep a tight hold of all valuables and lock the car, even if you are just stepping outside for a second. All the other viewpoints have signs warning of the thieves in the area - this one didn't, but just beware.