Isla Baja – A special place in Tenerife

In the north of Tenerife is a region known as “Isla Baja” a quiet place away from the usual tourist haunts that is made up of four municipalities Buenavista del Norte, Garachico, Los Silos and El Tanque.  It is a haven of tranquillity in the heart of the countryside where visitors can enjoy nature’s magnificent scenery in its purest form. A place where sleepy villages full of traditions, crafts and authentic cuisine are all closely linked to the land and the sea.

Buenavista del Norte

Is a quiet village that has grown in recent years to a popular town due to the development of rural tourism. Previously it was best known for what is claimed to be the best designed golf course in the Canary Islands, Buenavista Golf.

Los Silos

In the heart of the Teno Massif, offers a wealth of flora and fauna as well as interesting architecture. Its origins date back to the Guanches and the old town is one of the most beautiful on the island with its lush gardens and cobbled main street. In the centre is the Plaza de La Luz with the church whose construction began in the 16th century and the former Convent of St. Sebastian. Many festivals take place around the Plaza including modern festivals that take place annually like Festival Boreal or the International Storytelling Festival that appeal to the younger generation.

Garachico

The town was the most important port in Tenerife, until the eruption of the volcano in 1706, which buried practically everything. The town’s economic and cultural roots can still be seen in the religious and civic buildings in the old town. The castle of San Miguel, the church of Santa Ana, the former Convent of San Francisco, and El Caleton where the lava flow created natural swimming pools are just some of the attractions tourists should visit.

El Tanque

El Tanque is an area of steep slopes and deep ravines. It is home to the Corona Forestal Nature Park, the Teno Rural Park and the Chinyero Special Nature Reserve. Although away from the sea and with no coast of its own, it offers visitors some of the best views of the island’s northern coastline.

From the protected area of Teno Rural Park, perfect for nature-lovers, you can see many breath-taking panoramic views that show off the beauty of this area. Predominantly the picturesque village of Masca can be reached by a long and windy road. Many hardy hikers visit and enjoy the walk down to the beach below. The coast is filled with small coves and clear seawater pools that invite you to take a swim. The most visited spot of Punta del Teno is where the intense north sea and the calm southern sea of Tenerife meet, it can be very windy, so you need to be extra careful when visiting.

If you have just a few days then this magical area on Tenerife’s north-west tip is ideal to escape the routine, unwind and enjoy.

NB: Images of Teno courtesy of Turismo de Tenerife  
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The Dangers of Too Much Sun

When Christine said those people currently going around in brown leather jackets are in real danger, I didn’t immediately grasp what she was talking about. You should write a blog and warn them she said. Then the penny dropped.

Getting out and enjoying the sun is lovely, especial if you are from places where it is limited, like the UK. However, remember, too much of a good thing can turn bad, especially if we are talking too much exposure to sunlight.

We had our first heatwave on the island in March and it is from now onwards that we will experience summer and the hottest weeks of the year. Nevertheless, you see them, skin uncovered turning lobster red and many love it. Over-tanning is a serious problem that affects men and women almost to the point of addiction. So, hopefully, this message is a timely reminder to look after your skin.

There are three issues with over exposure. Sunburn is the most obvious, that painful redness, peeling, and blistering you see as a result of too much ultraviolet light at one time.

The second problem is deterioration. Basically, too much sun lowers your skin’s elasticity and promotes premature aging, resulting in … people wearing ‘tough leathery’ jackets.

All those wrinkles just to have brown skin.

The most serious, issue is skin cancer. The more time you spend in the sun, whether consistent or intermittent, may lead to a form of skin cancer. The Cancer Council advises that sun protection measures should be taken once the UV level is above 3 (moderate) and in summer, just a few minutes a day is enough to give you any vitamin D boost you might need.

How to be ‘Sun Safe’

We all know the Slip, Slop, Slap message of the 1980s but over the years, it has evolved to a more comprehensive slogan:

Slip on a shirt
Slop on high protection sunscreen – Remember sunscreen is your friend and should be reapplied regularly throughout the day.
Slap on a hat – wide brimmed if you can
Seek shade away from the sun
Slide on a pair of sunglasses to protect your eyes

A day in the sun can be a healthy and enjoyable experience provided you take proper precautions.

For  news updates  check Queenies Daily Snippets everyone’s favourite Tenerife Blog  

 

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It is what it is

I had a message saying we arrive late Friday/early Saturday how about Sunday lunch. I guessed that meant I should try to think of somewhere, so told Carol to look at the reviews on Facebook where someone had recently asked that question and from the 14 replies, 12 had recommended Surfers Bar. I couldn´t even think where it was but Carol knew, she said ‘I’ve never eaten there but it is in a great location down near Reg’s place’, so I phoned to reserve a table.

In the days between, I read the reviews on TripAdvisor and they were mostly ‘exceptional’, so at lunchtime on Sunday, we headed to Las Americas and were looking forward to someone else cooking the roast.

My immediate reaction on seeing the place was it’s a sports bar serving food, not a restaurant. There wasn´t a single table free every one occupied by a Brit on holiday. Nothing local or Canarian about this place. I approached the waitress and said we had reserved and she replied, there’s someone at your table as you are early – not a problem friends turned up at that point and we went next door for a drink and wait for 2.30 to come around. However, before I left I asked the person who was occupying our table is it good – she turned her nose up and said I’ve had the all-day breakfast and it was greasy, don´t know about the roast.

Once back and seated, (the views from Surfers are lovely), we were given a huge menu and all ordered either roast lamb, roast pork and I said could I have the beef as rare as possible.

When our plates arrived they were loaded with a pile of mashed potato (is it just me that doesn’t serve mash with a roast?) two roast potatoes, a huge Yorkshire pudding, mashed carrot and swede and very anaemic looking broccoli. The lamb was shredded rather than sliced, reminiscent of toddler food, the mint sauce was minus mint, the gravy was thick which I like but a greyish colour and my beef was three slices on top of one another and had been cooked so long it was dry. No wonder the waitress gave a funny smile when I asked for rare. I was disappointed, but having given my broccoli, a roastie and a slice of beef to Ben, I almost finished what was on my plate. The mediocre main was made up for by the Toblerone cheesecake, which was very good.

Overall – despite the crowds and the long wait for food, the bar is clean, not expensive (€55 for 2 courses x 4 people including drinks) the staff were a bit Shaz and Kev but always pleasant.

Would I go again, the others all thought it was fine although Jim said he wouldn´t go for the roast, I would take some tempting as IMO there are much better places in Las Americas.

Check Queenie’s Daily Snippets for Tenerife news & for daily weather updates Everyone’s Favourite Blog
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Culture, Traditions, Pilgrimages in May

Every month of the year there is some fiesta, pilgrimage or party taking place in Tenerife and the people invite you to join them in celebrating all of their festivities and traditions.

Mueca Festival

The International Festival of Art on the Street of Puerto de la Cruz, better known as Mueca, each May invites locals and visitors to participate in its extraordinary and original shows. Theatre, circus, dance, music, and other arts take to the streets and transform the town for four magical days. More information: www.festivalmueca.com

Day of the Cross

On 3rd May across different parts of Santa Cruz, residents decorate dozens of crosses with flowers and fruits that are then placed for everyone to enjoy in La Rambla. On this day, Santa Cruz also celebrates the anniversary of the founding of the city. In Los Realejos, the Day of the Cross is celebrated with a spectacular display of fireworks, one of the most outstanding in Europe. Two streets in town compete against each other for more than three hours, to offer the best fireworks display.

Beñesmen, the Guanche Pilgrimage

During the month of May, this traditional event Ceremony practised by the Guanches to give thanks to the gods for the harvest is held in the La Vera “tagoror” (the place where the Island’s aboriginal people would meet) in the municipality of San Juan de la Rambla. The Guanche pilgrimage of “El Beñesmen” is one of the most spectacular renditions of aboriginal culture that takes place on the island.

San Isidro Labrador Pilgrimage

Ever since the 17th century, between May and June each year Los Realejos has hosted a pilgrimage in honour of San Isidro Labrador. The event was born of the need to make his miracles and legends known to the world after he was canonised in 1622 by Pope Gregory XV. Because of its popularity, the celebration has been declared a Festival of National Tourist Interest.

Festival of Zarzuela

It is a classic in the festive calendar of the island. The Zarzuela Festival is usually held between the months of May and June every year, in Santa Cruz and surprises with the best of Spanish lyrical genre. More information: www.teatroguimera.es

The Día de Canarias

Santa Cruz celebrates its founding in 1402 with a month-long programme of mainly free events with the highlights taking place on 30th May

Screenshot

Source and Images courtesy of WebTenerife
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Things to do in Tenerife in May 2017

What to Expect

May and the weather is predictably hot and sunny in the south with average temperatures for last year being 23°C – 27°C during the day and at night averaged 21°C. While the north has more cloud and a chance of rain, it is still warm with daytime shade temperatures ranging as they did last year between 18°C -21°C and dropping slightly to 16°C on a night.

Highlights

The 3rd May is one of the liveliest days in Santa Cruz. Following an old tradition from the times when the city was founded, around five centuries ago, the capital is carefully adorned with flowers neatly tied together by residents to create colourful crosses. Locals from different districts compete to be awarded the most beautiful cross. The night before, people dressed in traditional clothing gather in the historical street, Calle de la Noria, to enjoy a feast prepared from local produce. The festival continues with folk music and dances.

Also on 3rd May visitors and residents to Los Realejos can expect the night to go with a bang, as the town hosts their annual fireworks display. The display, which has been granted National Tourist Interest status, starts at 9pm.

30th May National Holiday as it is Canarian Day – with parties, wine festivals, and concerts.

The First Cruise-Regatta between Puerto Colón in Costa Adeje and Marina del Sur, Las Galletas will take place in waters off the south coast of Tenerife. (When: 12:30 p.m. on May 1 in Puerto Colón, with the estimated time of arrival being 16:30 p.m.)

The Little Mermaid A children’s musical with a great staging magnificent voices and well known songs. (When 6th May, Where: Auditorio Infanta Leonor in Los Cristianos. Tickets available online HERE)

Swan Lake – one of the most beautiful ballets, performed by the RFB Ballet de Moscú (When 9th May, Where: Auditorio Infanta Leonor in Los Cristianos. Tickets available online HERE).

Sleeping Beauty – also performed by the RFB Ballet de Moscú (When 10th May, Where: Auditorio Infanta Leonor in Los Cristianos. Tickets available online HERE).

El Festival Internacional de Arte en la Calle Mueca – a free open air art festival in the streets, harbour, and squares full of performances and interactive shows (When 11 and 14 May Where: Puerto de la Cruz)

XXVII Adeje Rally – This event has been staged 27 times, and it forms part of the national Spanish rally championships. (When: 11-13 May, Where: various in municipality)

Children of the 80s – It’s  impossible not to have a great night (When: 13th May Where: Hard Rock Hotel Playa Paraiso)

Romeria de la Virgen de Fatima – The image of the virgin of Fatima is paraded around Arona and carried to Mirador de la Centinela, accompanied by floats and folk groups. There is a feast, after which music and dancing begin in the town square. (When: 13th May Where: Arona).

Jorge Blass – one of the best illusionists in the world, brings his latest show to Tenerife. Close magic, levitations, teleportation, illusions with new technologies and much more, will transport the public to a magical world created by this great artist. David Copperfield acquired in 2015 the exclusive rights of an illusion created by Jorge Blass. (When: 13th and 14th May Where: the Auditorium of Tenerife, Santa Cruz).

Arona Fashion Week – an event that will showcase the area’s booming industry. The event is structured in three distinct parts (When: 13-21 May Where Playa de las Américas)

Foam festival – fun for all the family whether on 2 legs or 4! (When 14th May Where: Refugio Animales Acción del Sol)

Rototom SunSplash is one of the most important reggae music festivals of Europe and attracts thousands of Jamaican music fans (When 19th May, Where: Cubik Club Santa Cruz)

Stephanie Carr a world renowned psychic and clairvoyant medium, has the gift to amazed her audiences. (When 20th May Where: Show Time Las Americas)

II Descent Extreme Mountain Bike Challenge This event, is expected to involve more than 100 riders, in different categories such as S-23, Master40, Master30, Junior, Elite Féminas and Cadetes. (When: May 21st 10.00am Where: Los Gigantes)

Salon Gastronómico de Canarias (Food Fair) – Even though the fair is designed for professionals, it is also open to the public, and there will be 150+ stands, with cookery demonstrations, equipment displays, interactive sessions, cocktail making workshops, ham cutting classes, wine tasting, etc. Some 10,000 people are expected to attend, with admission at €5. (When 23 – 25 May Where Recinto Ferial in Santa Cruz)

3rd Tenerife Walking – offers routes among Tenerife’s most spectacular natural surroundings as well as appealing complementary activities (When 23 – 27 May Programme of walks, accommodation, routes, and excursions from the website)

Gloria Gaynor – As part of the ‘Legends Live‘ tour that brought us Earth Wind and Fire, UB40, Jethro Tull etc will be in Tenerife (When 29th May Where the Magma Arte y Congresio in Las Americas. )

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 recognized with a carné de artesano. The full list of dates is HERE.

Tenerife Symphony Orchestra – Enjoy the OST often accompanied by guest sopranos and other talented soloists. They perform the works of well known composers to make each peformance a memorable evening can be enjoyed by aficionados and amateurs alike. (When every Friday until Jun 23rd 2017, Where Auditorio Adán Martín, Santa Cruz)

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

For more news on Tenerife read Queenie’s Daily Snippets everyone’s favourite Tenerife Blog  
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