The sun was high in the sky so we set off for Tajao the small traditional fishing village that is famous for its tempting restaurants and bars.
We weren´t going to eat, although there are a couple of places I would recommend. One of the most popular is La Laja situated on the main road leading down to the village. As you enter, a large display of seafood from which to choose catches your eye even before you take your seat in the dining area. For me it is a bit too big rather like a canteen but the food cannot be faulted. Directly across the road is Las Arenas another legendary restaurant and very popular with locals and tourists alike. Again on the large side, large enough to have a fountain in the centre of the dining room…… but I digress.
Today I just want to get a feel of the slow pace of life offered by the past and where better than in one of the tiny coastal hamlets that persists in ways that have changed little in hundreds of years. The economy of Tajao, like so many other villages, has been dependent upon the sea, catching fish and harvesting seafood for generations.
We park the car in a convenient slot by the church that sits opposite the small crescent shaped harbour. As we walk along to the pier, a few locals sit outside their homes enjoying the early afternoon sun and the cooling breeze that drifts across the water. I have noticed in these somewhat isolated villages people are more inclined to pass the time of day with you if you have a dog in tow. They see the dog and immediately think island residents so feel comfortable.
As we walk around, the rocky fingers of the harbour provide a safe haven for the village fleet of boats. No pleasure craft or ultra modern yachts moored here, just fishermen and their families going about their daily routine. Two young men work away at odd jobs on deck and a cat snoozes in the sun high out of reach of the washing waves on a pile of nets that are strewn between the upturned wooden boats.
Children out of school, without a care in the world, play on the shingle beach, an old couple share a romantic moment in a dinghy and the surface of the sea shimmers like glass. It is such a lovely setting they probably weren’t too concerned if others looked on as long as they did not disturb the tranquillity
If the romantic in you wants to gaze out over a small fleet of fishing boats, wander down to a wharf and eat paella, then rent a car and drive up the coast. You will soon find one of these quaint, old, unspoiled, places that have in the main escaped the tourists.
What was the “Catch”? It was sold to the restaurants for the daily special on the menu.