Tenerife is the largest and most populous island of the seven Canary Islands; it is also the most populated island of Spain, with a land area of 2,034.38 km² (785.47 mi2) and 908,555 inhabitants, 43% of the total population of the Canary Islands. About five million tourists visit Tenerife each year, the most of any Canary Islands. Tenerife hosts one of the world’s largest carnivals and the Carnival of Santa Cruz de Tenerife is attempting to become a World Heritage Site. Tenerife is serviced by two airports, Tenerife North Airport and Tenerife South Airport, and is the tourism and economic centre of the archipelago.
Santa Cruz de Tenerife is the capital of the island and the seat of the island council (cabildo insular). The city is capital of the autonomous community of Canary Islands (shared with Las Palmas), sharing governmental institutions such as Presidency and ministries. Between the 1833 territorial division of Spain and 1927 Santa Cruz de Tenerife was the sole capital of the Canary Islands, until in 1927 a decree ordered that the capital of the Canary Islands be shared, as it remains as at present.
The island is home to the University of La Laguna, which was founded in 1927 and is the oldest university in the Canaries. San Cristóbal de La Laguna (World Heritage Site) is the second city of the island and the third one of the archipelago. The city of La Laguna was also capital of the Canary Islands until Santa Cruz replaced it in 1833.
Tenerife also has the highest elevation of Spain, a World Heritage Site that is the third largest volcano in the world from its base, El Teide. The island’s capital contains the architectural symbol of the Canary Islands, the modern Auditorio de Tenerife.