Friday, February 19, 2016

Exploring Tenerife with Rainbows and Tea.

The Abaco House is a renovated
and period decorated Canarian mansion
The rain surprised the thirsty island of Tenerife today, drenching the small group of British travelers on their way to their three course meal in the Canarian-style mansion. Björn and I had the pleasure to accompany the group as I check out the excursions in the TUI collection, focusing on elements of local culture and sustainability. According to the locals here, it only rains in the south of this particular Canary island about 4 times a year, leaving the rest in consistent, delicious sunshine.

To better appreciate the thirsty ground's celebration (and to have something to do since the rest of the trip up the volcano is impossible), we popped into a cafe. Palmelita's came to our rescue with a beautiful view, hot tea and clean, spacious inner and outer seating areas. Their cake and restaurant selections are just what a nice overlook on the sea calls for on a day like this.

The town is noted by Catholics as a place of veneration of the
Virgin of Candelaria, the patron of the Canary Islands
Just across the plaza, the basilica La Candelaria stands in all the glory of its rich past and serene present. Definitely worth the visit to the province of Santa Cruz and this little city of Candelaria, if you're up for an excursion to the north eastern coast.

Although, one of the best parts of the trip happened just as we embarked with a full shuttle and began our ascent along the western coastline; Los Gigantes stood below us with a perfectly-timed rainbow shimmering along its edges. The city is named after these rock formations which shoot out of the water to a height of over 2,600 ft (almost 800 meters), which is fitting as their Spanish name means "The Giants." The ability to explore the coasts and hear stories of the island's past and present definitely made this trip a great addition to the TUI Collection of unique travel experiences. However, I would've much appreciated getting off the shuttle more often to explore on foot, something that would've been possible without the spontaneous showers we incurred.

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