Sunday, 12 February 2017

Tenerife (the quiet life)

I'm at that point in the year where it feels like I have been doing push ups everyday and now, well my arms are trembling and my knees are weak and each attempt is causing more sweat to drip from my brow and I just can't go on. It's been dark, dreary and cold out there again and my energy levels are at about 2 out of a possible 10. I've been out of action since last Sunday's hike in the freezing cold Mournes, which was not nice at all; it was the last straw and I have been through a delightful breakdown this past week. But let's not get into that, eh?

Goodness me I was falling asleep there, staring at the hypnotic blinking text cursor. I need a good slap about the face with a wet lettuce. [ it turned out, a bloody long nap.]

I know what will cheer us all skies, picturesque scenes and the wonder of a volcano or two. Yes, I'm talking Tenerife photo time!

1. On our way above a blanket of cloud. 2. A roadside stop to view the rugged landscape and La Gomera in the distance 3. The stunning landscape, crazy road and Masca (a tourist trap!)

It only takes 4 hrs and around 20 mins to escape the weather and drudgery of Northern Ireland and reach the shores of Tenerife, and it is all the more wonderful when you get the window seat, as I always do! Everything was fine and dandy with our flight, our hire car and Andrew's driving from South to North East (Isla Baja); the weather played it's part beautifully and the locals were simply a delight as we stumbled through our Spanish. But the scenery! wow.

El Palmar
1. Sculpture of the Devil who runs through El Palmar during the Harvest, on fire! 2. Just a few of the hiking paths, all fabulously signposted along their length. 3. Andrew at our house with one of the cats :)

It was the first time we used AirBnB and we stayed in the most idyllic little place - here's the link - Esperzana's Place. It was in the little village of El Palmar and sweetly tucked away down a lane you had to go on foot and which was so extremely quiet and dark at night, I've never seen so many stars - Heaven. We were surrounded by vineyards on one side and (after a little walk further) stunning views of small terraced farm plots and banana plantations down to the sea, on the other, but mostly we were nestled deep amongst the locals in an very old small farmhouse, complete with it's own cats.

Inside our beautiful house, the kitchen and the little patio area outside

We were met my the owner Andres and he told us all about the area, the hiking to be considered, the places to visit, the history of the house (well two houses knocked together) and he tipped us off with a great restaurant recommendation. Travel makes us hungry. We did have a beautiful big box of local organic fruit and vegetables and some bottles of banana wine (!?) but who wants to cook on the first night!

Very popular dish of wood fired chicken and chips

We went after a darn good look about to the restaurant and had chicken and chips cooked over pine wood and needles - wow, it was gorgeous. Not terribly fancy but the flavours were so good and the smell! This place was dead when we went though it was filling up as we left but on Sunday - it was bunged all day and night, with people from all over the island. What a little gem.

1. Gift shop and beautiful old buildings and cobbled streets. 2. Always, there are groups of men talking all over one another in every village. 3. Courtyard into someone's home - heavenly. 4. Insane para-gliders can be seen all over, the cliffs are so high!

Behind this beautiful church there is a square which is fabulous for people watching and you can also get a snack and a beer. We sat for a good time and saw all of life pass by from a newborn baby to a large funeral, tourists and locals, friendly policemen and the most beautiful hotel. I'm not a beach person, this is where I love to sit in the sun and see the comings and goings of a place.

1. Iglesia de Santa Ana and my hubby 2. In La Plaza Libertad with his and her's beers

The seafront of Garrachico is pretty special with natural pools and channels formed by the lava flow of a volcano eruption in 1706 which destroyed half the town. In the summer they are swam in but in January - not so much. Beside them stands an old Fort - Castillio de San Miguel, pretty cool to look at but it had just closed when we got there.
1. One of the many pools with steps down into it! Not today thank you. 2. The Castillio de San Miguel

Punta de Teno
At the most westerly point of Tenerife there is a beautiful working lighthouse (only a year older than me) and the steep and dangerous looking Los Gigantes cliffs and gorges. The road collapsed last year out to this point so traffic is restricted at the weekends, luckily however that meant we were there at dusk and the light was beautiful.
1. Los Gigantes from a sweet little harbour. 2 The lava outcrop of La Punta de Teno. 3 The lighthouse (solar powered) 4. Rainbow just before a storm
Carrie x

Join me next time for.... VOLCANOES


  1. Fab post Carrie - so lovely to think how holidays somewhere a little warmer can lift your mood. Wonderful scenery and photos so all in all well done, worth the wait. That chicken just looked yummy! Love Mary

    1. I most heartily recommend a blast of winter sun, it really does help! Thanks for the lovely comment xx

  2. I certainly has been damp and miserable- your sunny photos are just what is called for.

  3. I'm not surprised that you felt as you did last week as it was a truly miserable week weather-wise.
    Nice to hear and see that you enjoyed yourselves on holiday in Tenerife. Flighty xx

    1. Oh Flighty I wasn't built for this stinky weather, I think I may need to spend the winter's away from now on :) xx

  4. Carrie, you've made Tenerife a destination on my list -- and I'm not all that fond of traveling (and am a terrible hiker). These photos are so lovely and relaxing. Maybe it helps that you put "the quiet life" in the title :-) You're describing the perfect vacation: a cozy home base, delicious food, astounding views, relaxation.


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