In an EMERGENCY – help is at your fingertips.

This morning I went to the Arona Gran Hotel in Los Cristianos for the launch of the British Consulate Safety leaflet campaign. Other invitees included Charmaine Arbouin the British Consul for the Canary Islands and Andalucia, Helen Keating, Vice-Consul in Tenerife, the Director of Tenerife South airport, the Director of 112 Canary Islands, Jorge Marichal, President of Ashotel, representatives from Arona and Adeje National Police, as well as tour operators and of course social media contacts like myself.

We all know if something happens, be it illness, theft, accident, how stressful and upsetting this can be and if we are in a foreign country it seems even worse. Fear and confusion set in as most people don’t know what to do, or who to contact to make things better. This is where the British Consul holiday advice leaflet comes into its own. It highlights key messages that will help people, specifically holiday-makers who find themselves in unfamiliar situations and is the brainchild of Penny Gomez, Consular Officer here in Tenerife.

The points stressed are:

Be aware of your surroundings: Keep your valuables safe at all times, however, in case of any theft, ask your tour operator for instructions. If you don’t have a tour operator, call 0034 902 102 112 this will take you to a police number which is available from 9am to 9pm (Monday to Sunday) and your call will be answered in English. As well as saving hours in a police station, the service prepares your police report for you and you can choose at which convenient local police station you pick it up. This should be done within 72 hours of making your telephone report/complaint.

If your call is about a lost or stolen passport remember you cannot travel using a police report because you need appropriate ID to board your plane. You will need to get in touch with the British Consulate in Santa Cruz and organise an emergency travel document which will allow you to return to the UK. You can do this online HERE or phone 0034 928 262 508.

In an emergency: Call the emergency services on 112. It’s free of charge, and is the equivalent of the UK’s 999!

I spent time talking with José Domingo Linares, the Director of 112. I’m fortunate that I have never had to use the number but in a real emergency I wanted to know what to expect rather than be taken by surprise. Sr. Linares said if I called in English, French, Italian or German I would be answered immediately in one of those languages, however the service has access to 15 different languages and your call no matter what you speak will be processed within a few seconds. The other point I found particularly useful was if I was making a call and needed for example an ambulance I should state that it was an emergency and I needed a National Health ambulance to take you to the nearest public hospital. Often tourists find that if they call an ambulance they will have to foot-the-bill for the call-out charge as well as any medical attention required – hence medical insurance is imperative.

Finally in my latest blog I wrote about the high number of drownings  we face on the islands so yet again it must be stressed…..

Respect the beach warning-flags at all times: Red flag: No Bathing Allowed. Yellow flag: Bathe with caution. Green Flag: Safe to Swim. Orange flag: Lifeguard not on duty.

Thousands of leaflets are being printed and will be distributed via tour operators such as TUI, Jet2 and Thomas Cook. Jet2 alone will require some 200,000 and told me they will issue these individually to tourists in their welcome packs, along with copies at their hotels. There will also be leaflets prominently displayed in police stations and of course it is hoped that there is a good response to the initiative on social media.

While nobody wants to be a killjoy where holidays are concerned it is far better to be prepared in case the unforeseen happens and these leaflets will help put a lot of people’s minds at rest, just knowing help is only a phone call away.

Check Queenie’s Daily Snippets for Tenerife news & for daily weather updates 
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Enjoy the sea without the risks.

Last year in Tenerife, 21 people died, victims of drowning and this year already has seen the number of deaths at sea stand at 9. The vast majority were foreigners who spent their holidays on the island and with summer finally upon us, I would like to remind the thousands of tourists that while they may enjoy bathing, they should also ensure they are safe in the water.

The following points are worth remembering in order to safely enjoy a day at the beach and avoid as many incidents as possible.

  • In a situation where you fear danger, always call the emergency telephone number 112.

Flag warnings: 80% of accidents at sea are caused by not respecting the colour of the flag, and of these 80% end in death.

  • Green flag – although bathing is allowed you must be careful and respect the instructions of the lifeguards.
  • A yellow flag indicates bathe with caution but common sense must be applied in all circumstances.
  • A red flag on a beach signals danger and is like “a red light” and means under no circumstances should you go swimming.

Swimmers tempted to enjoy the delights of the more remote beaches should take extra care. Since these are the ones with no lifeguard and sometimes, no flags they generate the highest mortality rate. The authorities advise people to favour areas that have lifeguards, but if you decide to use a deserted beach ask the surfers or residents for the dangerous spots.

The profile of the drowned in the archipelago is usually a man, between 55 and 75 years old, hence the need to be aware of your physical limitations.

  • Introduce yourself progressively into the water not only to check the depth but to acclimatise the body to the water temperature.
  • Be well hydrated, avoid heavy meals, and do not swim in the central hours of the day when temperatures are at their highest.

A heart attack in the water can cause drowning in just one minute.

Bathers with reduced mobility must take into account the different services offered to facilitate entry and exit from the sea, Playa Las Vistas being the perfect example for people with reduced mobility.

  • Avoid the currents and always swim parallel to the shore,
  • Avoid swimming at night and
  • NEVER get into the water if you have consumed alcohol or drugs.
  • Unless you know the area well it is advised not to dive in head first.

For the youngest and “most vulnerable” if a buoyancy aid is used, it must be taken into account that these can generate a false sense of security as they can leave a child face down in the water. One of the “most effective” vests on the market is from Stohlquist, as its unique design turns a child face up.

In relation to water sports, pay attention to the safety zone and stay well away from bathers.

Finally ‘selfies’ on the coast may involve an accident. This type of photo in the Canary Islands has cost the lives of five people in the last four years. Therefore, it is recommended to keep a safe distance from the edge of cliffs or the sea to ensure not being dragged by a wave.

I hope you take note and enjoy a happy and safe holiday. 

Check Queenie’s Daily Snippets for Tenerife news & for daily weather updates 
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Day of Traditions Chirche

One of the most endearing cultural activities that takes place each year is The Day of the Traditions in Chirche. This year it is the weekend of July 6th to 8th.

Chirche has less than 200 inhabitants, but each July they pay tribute to the memory of those who inhabited this picturesque area in the South of Tenerife, during the postwar period of the last century and they have been doing this for the past 18 years.

The residents turn into actors dressed in the clothes of their parents and grandparents to recreate the harsh living condition and everyday scenes of the times. At this unique outdoor theatre visitors can enjoy seeing domestic chores, the bread being kneaded, the laundry being done, the seamstress sewing and stitching, the teacher by the door of the old school and children’s games as well as local figures such as parish priests, civil guards and postmen. Not to be missed is the representation of a wedding.

Each corner of the village reflects life before the current frenetic pace and each year new activities are displayed.

For a few days only the smell of wheat, gofio and coffee fill the air as this living isorano museum, complemented with craft workshops, exhibitions and a market of typical products celebrates the customs and traditions of our ancestors.

As parking in the village is impossible, the free transport from Guía de Isora will be reinforced this year due to the high demand.

Check Queenie’s Daily Snippets for Tenerife news & for daily weather updates 
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Things to do in Tenerife in July 2018

What to Expect

Temperatures soar this month as summer hits the island. There are regular heatwaves, mainly in the south, when shade temperatures reach the mid-30s, and the chance of the odd calima makes temperatures rise even further. However, based on previous years the normal pattern is for shade temperatures during the day range from 33-22°C in the south and 28-17°C in the north.

Highlights

San Benito Pilgrimage One of the biggest romerias on Tenerife, takes place in La Laguna on the second Sunday of July. (8th July 2018) There are various events throughout the month in Tenerife’s former capital and the festival has been declared of National Tourist Interest.

Traditions Day in Chirche – On Sunday, July 8th the local residents re-enact the chores, customs, farmwork and children’s games that shaped the daily life of Tenerife’s people in the mid 20th century.

The XXVII Canarias International Jazz Festival & Heineken presents in concert the Atlantic Jazz Ensemble, Christian Sands Trio and Keyon Harrold. Friday 6th July Tenerife Auditorium

The Final of the Master’s Games will be on July 8 at Playa de El Médano.

Fiesta Virgen Del Carmen – The celebrations in honour of the Virgen del Carmen take place in July and are the most important festivals in Puerto de la Cruz. Thousands of people gather on the fishing dock to watch the arrival of the Virgin as she is carried by fishermen onto one of the boats before setting sail on a maritime procession. Takes place the Tuesday before the 16th, this year it will be on 10th July

The Tenerife Symphony Orchestra will play as the sun sets during the open-air musical treat, under the baton of Jader Bignamini, and soprano Davinia Rodríguez (Golf Costa Adeje on July 13th) Tickets €15 from Tomaticket.es

Greenworld Festival (Kamoflage Edition) – at the 11th Hold Amarilla Golf, on 14th July from 3.00pm some of the best electronic music around.

Children of the 80s, presents the Vengaboys on 14th July at the Hard Rock Hotel, Playa Paraiso.

Canarias InfinityXtreme  suitable only for the strongest. It consists of two routes, 5 and 10 kilometers and more than fifteen obstacles to be completed in a maximum time of one and two hours respectively. (When 14 July Where  Starts The esplanade Puerto de la Cruz)

The XXVII International Canaries Jazz & Más Heineken Festival arrives in Puerto de la Cruz from July 19 to 21. All concerts will take place at 9:00 p.m. in the Plaza de Europa.
Thursday, July 19 -Eva Cortés, Gilad Hekselman Trio, Michael Olivera Group presents Oasis
Friday 20 -Nalaya Brown, Iñaki Arakistain Band, Ida Nielsen & Band
Saturday 21 – Simbeque Project, Julian Lage Trio, Naughty Professor

Canarias Urban Fest – Daddy Yankee, ‘The Big Boss’, continues to honour those who consider him “The King of Reggaetón” (When July 20th from 5:00 pm – 11:00 pm Where: PARKING PALMÉTUM, SANTA CRUZ)

The singer Pablo Alborán presents his new tour ‘Prometo’ in Santa Cruz on July 21st at the Maritime Park Palmetum


The Moscow Ballet returns with Don Quixote, one of the most emblematic works based on the great novel by Cervantes and full of virtuosity and energy. (When: 22nd July Where: Infanta Leonor Auditorium in Los Cristianos)

25 July in 1797 was a key date in the history of Santa Cruz. The day when a major battle took place against the troops of the British Admiral Horatio Nelson, who tried to conquer Tenerife. Nowadays, this major feat is commemorated with a re-enactment of the naval battle performed by locals and actors.

Gastromerkado in La Orotava – Under the umbrella of Saborea La Orotava this unique event, offers the best of Beer, concerts with Canarian Musical Groups, leisure activities and surprises Throughout two days of fun guaranteed for all ages. (La Orotava 27th and 28th July)

Canarias Baila Festival – Bad Bunny + Karol G + artists appear at in the scene of large-scale Latin festivals in the archipelago. The artist from Puerto Rico has become a mass phenomenon with a new way of interpreting urban rhythms and with an online presence that has millions of followers. (When: 27th July Where: Amarilla Golf)

Tributo’Rock’Fest offer a night of pure rock starring the UK Guns N Roses. One of the most authentic in the world with a lead singer who looks and sounds just like Axl Rose, and a band that are incredible. (27th July Castillo San Miguel)

Arona Summer Festival 8th Edition – a major summer event that nobody wants to miss (When 28th July, Where Amarilla Golf) all info HERE

Craft Fairs – Artesanía de Tenerife has announced the date of craft fairs for 2017 in Tenerife. The fairs, both small and large, sell unusual products from really creative and talented individuals, all of whom are officially recognised with a carné de artesano. The full list of dates is HERE

Whilst these are some of the most interesting events, there is an overwhelming amount of activities on Tenerife each month. Click on the links below to see what is happening elsewhere.

Tenerife – Attractions

Tenerife offers a wealth of attractions follow the LINK to get just a few ideas.

Tenerife – Tours

Guided tours both free and private as well as numerous excursions are available throughout the year.  For a few ideas follow the link to Tenerife Tours and Days Out

Tenerife – Sporting Activities

Year round temperatures averaging 22 degrees combined with a low level of rainfall provide an ideal climate for outdoor ventures. Whether on land, at sea or in the skies, Tenerife provides outdoor adventure for all types of travellers. Check them out HERE

Tenerife – Markets

Everyone loves a market and the island is home to a wealth of covered, outdoor and street markets. Many specialise in a particular type of goods while others selling the same product move from site to site. Most open early in the morning and close early afternoon. Follow this link for a list of Tenerife Markets

Tenerife – Museums

The museums of Tenerife are accessible to all sections of the community regardless of limited mobility or communication. Follow the link to find a comprehensive list of Tenerife – Museums

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A Tenerife favourite – Barraquito

For more years than I care to remember I have been telling visitors to the island that if they are going to try just one Canarian speciality it has to be a Barraquito. I am pleased to say that everyone I have recommended it to, loves it and I thought I would let you know how you can make it at home. OH often does this for me as we always use a coffee machine, that has a steamer. Not expensive and you can get them in Worton. This is mine.

Ingredients

Condensed Milk
Licor 43 or Tia María if you can’t find it.
Black Coffee
Milk (full fat is best)
Ground Cinnamon
A tiny slice of lemon peel

First of all you need to have all your ingredients ready including the hot coffee and in a separate glass foam the hot milk,

In a small glass pour the condensed milk on the bottom first. (About 1 tablespoon).
Now add the alcohol pouring slowly using the back of a spoon.
Next pour over the coffee making sure not to mix the levels
In the same way pour the hot foamy milk.
Sprinkle with cinnamon and add the lemon zest.

This is basic barraquito which I would normally have after an evening meal. If it is too early in the day for alcohol then try a leche y leche, just omit the Licor 43.


If you don’t have a coffee machine to make a barraquito at home you can get them in every restaurant on the island, although in the north they are sometimes called a zaperoco.

Images from internet.

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