Playing tourists

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After returning from La Gomera I’ve picked up my mom from the southern airport, and we drove our rental car to Puerto de la Cruz. We’ve been staying in a nice Airbnb apartment in the Botanico area. The weather hasn’t been great every day so we’ve made good use of our rental car to follow the sun. Meaning that we’ve been to the southern towns of Los Cristianos and El Medano to enjoy some time on the beach and swim.

On Thursday we went up to the Teide to sleep in the shelter and watch the sunrise. At least that was the plan until ‘Manolo’ showed up. See, Manolo is the Spanish equivalent of Murphy. With the difference that Murphy is the result of bad luck, and Manolo is caused by poor work ethics. Let me explain what happened. From Puerto de la Cruz to the starting point of the Teide is about a 1.15 hour drive. When we we’re some 30 minutes from the Teide we ran into a road block which was set up because of maintenance to the road. The dude standing there, simply waved us to go back to where we came from. When we explained that we had reservations to go up the mountain, and asked for the detour, he told us take the eastern road to the Teide. For your information. There are four roads that lead to the Teide, one from the north, the east, the south and one from the west. To drive back down the mountain, drive east from there, and then back up the mountain would have taken about 2,5 hours. Not your average detour right? We didn’t have 2,5 hours beacuse we had to be on the last ride up, leaving at 16:00, and the dude wasn’t going to let us through so we ended up going home. Very disappointed. Since the shelter is fully booked weeks in advance we can’t reschedule, so no Teide for us 😦

We have done plenty of hiking though. We did a nice round walk from the Barranco Ruiz through San Juan de la Rambla. And on Sunday we did an awesome hike in the Teno Mountains, providing us with spectacular views on Masca and La Gomera.

Today we did another cool thing! We went to La Cueva del Viento. Which means cave of the wind. It’s a huge underground cave system created by several volcanic eruptions. We first got some information about the process and after that we descended into one of the caves. Although we didn’t go in that deep, it still was an interesting experience.

I also have to mention that we went to a couple of Guachinches in the Orotava area. Guachinches are traditional Canary restaurants that first started as wineries that began to offer some food to go with the wine. Over the course of years they grew into proper restaurants. Nowadays they are known for good, traditional, no-nonsense food at low prices. We’ve had huge plates of meat, with a salad, bread and drinks that would have been enough for three people, for under 20 euros. If you ever set foot on Tenerife, Google yourself a Guachinche!

Tomorrow we leave for Los Cristianos, where we will stay until we return to the Netherlands on Saturday.

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