Isla Baja, the Secret Area of Tenerife

Fri, December 7th, 2012 - By Jack Montgomery

Hands up, how many people know where Isla Baja is on Tenerife?

Known as Tenerife’s secret, Isla Baja isn’t really much of a secret as any visitor with the slightest urge to explore will have visited at some point. Isla Baja is the area where Garachico is located.

Situated on the north west of Tenerife, Isla Baja consists of an area of relatively flat lands (for Tenerife) backed by the ancient Teno Massif. Towns are traditional and, apart from the tourist magnet of Garachico, have stayed off the tourist trail. Cuisine isn’t sophisticated but restaurants make good use of fresh local produce and the Teno cheese packs a savoury punch. Hotels are small, rural and often exude boutique chic – like the San Roque. Beaches come and go with the season but there are always hidden coves and swimming pool sized rock pools waiting for the most adventurous of tourists.

Here’s our brief guide to Isla Baja for anyone wanting to discover a Tenerife that has remained delightfully traditional.

Garachico

 

Isla Baja, Rock Pools, Garachico, Tenerife

Just about everyone knows Garachico; it’s the unluckiest place on Tenerife having been victim of plagues of locusts, floods, storms, disease and the volcanic eruption which robbed it of its port in 1706 by filling its seafront with molten lava. All of which makes it a fascinating place to visit, especially as the cooled down lava has created a natural water park of rock pools. The town itself is pleasingly picturesque with parks, plazas and quirky corners to explore. Wander inland and upwards from the seafront to escape the crowds and for some different views of one of the Canary Islands’ prettiest towns.

Buenavista del Norte

 

Isla Baja, El Aderno, Buenavista del Norte, Tenerife

Despite boasting a Seve Ballesteros golf course with the sort of views to distract all but the most disciplined golfer, Buenavista del Norte is often overlooked by visitors. Its rocky coastline features pools to rival Garachico’s as well as a fabulous castaway restaurant. Buenavista’s picture postcard centre is reached via a road where there’s a cake and chocolate factory whose sinful creations are so good that King Juan Carlos and maestro Spanish chef Ferran Adría have found them irresistible – try the mojito cake and you’ll want to regularly worship at their culinary church.

El Tanque

 

Isla Baja, El Tanque, Tenerife

The outsider in the Isla Baja bunch in many ways, El Tanque is located in the hills and as a very typical Tenerife hill town has less to attract visitors than its coastal neighbours. That’s not to say it isn’t worth a mooch around; you can pick up a cool tube for storing your ferret and there’s a wonderful little agricultural fair, Día de la Trilla, at the end of July.

Los Silos

 

Isla Baja, Los Silos, Tenerife

Los Silos is in some ways my favourite Isla Baja town. There’s not a great choice of restaurants but the town possesses a certain charm and its cobbled streets and fairy tale church are seriously camera friendly. You’ve got to love a place that has a huge skeleton of a whale on its coast. Los Silos also has a funky bohemian side with a neo-hippy eco Festival Boreal in September and the truly enchanting Festival of Storytelling in December.

Isla Baja takes a bit of getting to from any resort area, which is probably why it’s still a secret, but it’s more than worth the effort.

Posted : Friday, December 7th, 2012 at 10:01 am
Category : about tenerife
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