An Unspoilt Beach and a Mountain to Climb

Mon, February 21st, 2011 - By Linda

Anyone who has flown into Tenerife from the UK has seen Montaña Roja. It’s the volcanic mound which juts into the Atlantic right opposite the southern airport. The mountain is named for the colour of the rock which exposure and time have muted to deep burgundy. When the sun sets, catching the mountain in its final glow, the red glows.

It guards El Médano Beach on one side, and La Tejita, my favorite beach, on the other.  In summer and autumn it shelters passing yachts which moor up for a night or two. For me it’s a symbol of coming home and inevitably brings a lump to my throat as my plane taxis in.

Climbing the 171m mountain takes only between a half hour to an hour, depending on your fitness. It isn’t too hard, though there are loose stones in places (suitable shoes recommended) and the view from atop is definitely worth any effort, sweeping the coast in both directions and the mountains in the distance behind. The surrounding area is nature reserve, although it may be difficult for the average person to understand why.  It isn’t spectacular like El Teide, nor lush like the mountains of the north, but it is claimed to be home to no less than one hundred species of birdlife so obviously of great interest to birdwatchers, especially in winter as many species are migratory.

Birdwatchers of the other variety will love La Tejita beach. It stretches along the coast, spoiled only by an ugly development at the opposite end to Montaña Roja, but that’s far enough away to be able to ignore and the beach is a great favourite with locals, including nudists, which can be an attraction or put you off depending on your views! They aren’t the majority, and on summer weekends it’s very much a family destination too.

There is usually a breeze. This coast is known for that, hence the windsurfers around the corner, but on La Tejita waves break close to shore crashing, often dramatically, onto the beach so aren’t really of interest to serious surfers but great for messing on boogie boards or body surfing as I discovered when my kids were young. Last year the beach was awarded the European Blue Flag, like El Médano Beach it is patrolled by lifeguards in the summer months though not in winter.

Even the coastal road along here has its charm. You arrive by way of El Médano or Los Abrigos, driving casually and admiring the views of the blue Atlantic. You’ll know you’ve arrived on a summer weekend when you see the cars parked along the roadway.  Despite that, there are actually three car parks to service the beach.

I swear I tan better on La Tejita than on any other beach on the island, but my favourite time is at sunrise with hardly anyone else around. I love that it isn’t “touristy”.  For some, the lack of facilities (compared, say, to the sophisticated sands of Costa Adeje or the popular ones of Los Cristianos) might disappoint, but those of us who live here aren’t looking forward to a day when it becomes more developed. Right now it has a slightly wild and rugged atmosphere which really makes you feel as if you’ve “got away from it all.”

Posted : Monday, February 21st, 2011 at 10:03 am
Category : beaches
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8 Responses to “An Unspoilt Beach and a Mountain to Climb”

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Jack Montgomery and Sergio Salata, Andrea Montgomery. Andrea Montgomery said: An unspoilt beach and a mountain to climb : via @madreislena in Tenerife Holidays blog @sunshine_co_uk […]

  2. […] my plane glided smoothly onto the tarmac of Tenerife South airport I glanced out of the window at Montaña Roja, the volcanic cone which guards the beach of La Tejita.   As always, I got that little “I’m […]

  3. […] so busy as Playa de las Americas, but popular with those tourists in the know, are both La Tejita and El Médano’s sweeping beach, but wander east, just a little, and you will come to El Cabezo. […]

  4. […] a flag for just a part of the year. Some, like Granadilla de Abona, whose beaches at El Médano and La Tejita both had flags in 2011, choose to have lifeguards, for instance, only in the busiest months, […]

  5. […] Tenerife South Airport is located close to its coast, and you almost certainly spied the iconic Montaña Roja (Red Mountain) from your plane’s window as you […]

  6. […] by the Tenerife sun on your arrival at Reina Sofia airport, you can´t help but be impressed by Montaña Roja the red mountain that stands guard just beyond the runway. Answer its call and let a Titsa green public bus unlock […]

  7. […] of attractions and distractions to keep the family happy, from great beach side walks along to Montaña Roja and beyond to Playa La Tejita and excellent places to eat like El Timón for lunch, Flashpoint for a lazy brunch, Wairua for some […]

  8. […] balance, I caved and let my son paddle whilst I sat on front of the board, and admired the dramatic Montaña Roja and its […]

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