No Need to go to Egypt, Tenerife Has Pyramids Too

Sat, November 6th, 2010 - By Steve

Most people don’t associate Tenerife with pyramids, but in the town of Güímar there are six of these mysterious monuments to the past. I was really surprised when I found out about them on my first visit to the island.

Admittedly the Tenerife pyramids are very small in comparison with the famous Giza Pyramids, and you won’t find the Canary Island’s answer to the Sphinx here, but if it’s pyramids you fancy seeing then the Ethnographic Park in Güímar is where you´ll find them.
Güímar is in the south of the island on the eastern side and easy enough to find. I got there by bus on the 121 route from Santa Cruz, and unless you have a car, that is probably one of the best ways of getting to the town.

The late Thor Heyerdahl , who was famous for his Kon-Tiki raft on which he had crossed the Pacific Ocean, gave his stamp of approval to the Güímar pyramids. The story goes that the explorer first heard about them from a newspaper report. He came to Tenerife to investigate, and when he saw the constructions he had no doubts that these were examples of stepped pyramids like he had encountered on his travels. In fact, Heyerdahl was so impressed that he set up home on Tenerife. He then befriended the shipping magnate Fred Olsen and the two men set up the Ethnographic Park after buying the land in Güímar.

It is believed that the Guanches, who were the original inhabitants of Tenerife before the Spanish Conquest, built the pyramids, although not everyone would agree. Archaeologists from La Laguna University don’t think the pyramids are authentic. They say the constructions are merely piles of stones put there by farmers who were trying to clear their land.

Having been to see the Pyramids of Güímar for myself though, I can’t agree with the academic school of thought. What farmer would go to the great lengths needed to build pyramids with definite stepped sides and flattened stone surfaces like the Güímar ones have? The constructions in Güímar look like pyramids not piles of stones!

Another theory is that they were made by Freemasons, but go and have a look for yourself is my recommendation. There’s plenty to see and enjoy at the Ethnographic Park in Güímar. You can watch a film narrated by Heyerdahl about his travels, view an exhibition of the Kon-tiki, look at a display of pyramids around the world, buy mementos of the visit at the gift-shop, or enjoy a meal and a drink in the café.

Whilst walking along the paths around the pyramids I kept looking at the Volcán de Güímar volcanic cone, that you can see on the coastal area below the town, and wondered if that was the inspiration for the pyramids. There are so many unanswered questions about the Pyramids of Güímar but I love a good mystery. Don’t you?

Posted : Saturday, November 6th, 2010 at 9:41 am
Category : days out
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4 Responses to “No Need to go to Egypt, Tenerife Has Pyramids Too”

  1. Kalani Hanohano says:

    Agreed. No farmer did this. As for the masonic theory, its of interest because the previous owner, Antonio Diaz-Flores, was a mason. But there was something that was found at the site that is of some interest. So interesting in fact that I believe this site to be authentic. The pyramidal structure was built over what appears to be a Guanche cave. South American pyramids are often built over . . . caves. BTW, Antonio Diaz-Flores was my wife´s grandfather. There is much more too this location than meets the eye methinks.

  2. Hello again, Kalani! Thank you for commenting! Yes, I remember you were telling me and Filip Coppens about Antonio Diaz-Flores.

  3. […] most famous, and certainly most controversial legacy, is the pyramids. The Guanche were sun worshippers and many believe they built stepped pyramids which you can visit […]

  4. […] up with shipping magnate Fred Olsen, Heyerdahl set about clearing the area, restoring the pyramids of Guimar and constructing an ethnographic park in which he showcased his theories. Heyerdahl even brought […]

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