Thinking about visiting the pretty village of Santiago del Teide during your Costa Adeje holiday? You have a choice of routes, including the recently-opened section of island ring road, or the coast road, snaking past Playa San Juan, Alcalá and affording a glimpse of the spectacular cliffs at Los Gigantes.
My favourite is the TF82, meandering the hillsides of the west coast, affording gorgeous views over the Atlantic Ocean. On a clear day you can spot neighbouring islands La Gomera, La Palma and El Hierro, giving you a real sense of Tenerife’s position on the planet.
We’ve already written on this blog about the town of Adeje which, currently, lies at the end of the TF1 before you slide onto the TF82. Follow the signs for Guia de Isora, and you will soon be ogling the seascape below.
Some places appeal for reasons we can’t define. I feel that way about Tijoco Bajo. It isn’t as pretty as some northern villages, but oozes character and a sense of fun, with street art, yarn-wrapped trees and lots of seats on its seemingly-vertical streets to pause if the steepness gets to you. The village is home to El Museo Granero (The Barn Museum), a nicely appointed building part of which dates back to the late 17th century, hosting an exhibition of rural architecture.
Travelling north you pass through Guia de Isora and close to Chirche, both of which we have detailed in other posts.
Keep your eyes open just after passing Guia, and you will spot a sign for Chiguergue, a steep-ish climb to the right, but only a few minutes upwards. There is a small stopping place affording a panoramic view of Costa Adeje. The odd name comes from the aboriginal Guanche, and like many of these inland villages, during daylight hours a stillness hangs over all, so you can stroll around the narrow streets, at least one of which is only just wide enough for a car to pass through, and nod in greeting to the good old guys gathered to play dominoes outside the bar. It’s picturesque and well worth a stop for the photo ops.
Back in the car, and on to Chio sprawling along the hillside. Chio may become quieter with ring-road completion, but now, a main road running through its centre, it has less charm than other villages, but does boast ample parking places to stop to photograph that spectacular scene below. Next up is Arguayo. Andy wrote a fascinating piece about the pottery museum there a while back.
As you pass through the rugged volcanic badlands on the last part of this trip, and note the hamlet of Las Manchas on your left, glance over to the right, where you will clearly see what look like black snow pistes – the manchas (stains or blemishes) left by the last eruption on the island from the volcano Chinyero. When you arrive in Santiago del Teide visit the new museum to discover the story of this eruption.
Best time? Go late January/early February when this landscape will be graced by a gorgeous display of almond blossom.
My own instinct is to take the new road to Santiago del Teide and visit the museum first, and then take this old route back, stopping at any of these interesting places, giving you insight into a Tenerife far from the touristic coast.
Category : days out
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