It’s not only tourists but also a few ex-pats who despite living here years have never been to some of the greatest natural attractions the island has to offer. For some this is based on the belief that once you are travelling inland the roads are scary.
I’m certainly not the best driver in the world but if an excursion coach can negotiate the roads with ease, I am sure that my little Fiesta will have no problems. So putting it to the test, I set off from the south taking the TF1 towards Adeje. The motorway has now been extended and I’m soon passing through Guia de Isora. Just after Chio, I turn right and start climbing into the villages of Arguayo and Las Manchas. The road so far is good as I head into Santiago del Teide. Seeing the church, in the pretty, little square with its Guanche statue and flower bedecked Ayuntamiento (town hall), I stop to look around. It’s a small town with several bars and cafes and a bodega should I be tempted to buy some local wine. Not this time though, I have my heart set on reaching Masca and the road ahead is clearly marked.
It is said that Masca is probably the most picturesque part of the island being surrounded by deep ravines and winding roads. That sounds a bit daunting so stopping at one of several look out points along the way I take a peak. It is breathtaking, the road from this distance looks like one hairpin after another, but I just keep remembering the buses! The majority of the traffic on the road is from tourists, they are all expecting the same so nobody is rushing, corners are taken slowly and what I expected to be a hair-raising drive turns into an enjoyable jaunt as the oncoming traffic wave and smile to each other.
Reaching the village, I check the small museum where the curator is happy to chat. Then following the road past several restaurants I stop. After a filling lunch of homemade soup and bread, it is back up the hill to the other side of the village and the plaza. A visit to the souvenir shop and a snoop around the church doesn’t take long – it must be the smallest church on the island. Masca is presumed to have been a pirate hideaway, quite plausible considering its location, and if I was the energetic sort, I could at this point take a three-hour walk through dramatic countryside down to the coast. However, I’m not so I sit on a bench in the square and watch locals making straw hats and wooden toys which they sell from craft stalls.
Finally, it’s time to head back home, rather than take the same route I continue over the other side to Buenavista del Norte. Were the roads bad? The passengers are looking forward to another outing where I drive so I would say No.
Category : days out
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