The Geography Department



Tenerife 13-20 March 2007




Tenerife Landscape - south coast

Tourism  - Los Christianos and the South Coast

Towards Buenavista - the North West coast

Teide Volcano - the National Park 1

Teide Volcano - the National Park 2  Snow

Northern Hills

ITEN Renewable Energy Centre




Tenerife - The West - Towards Buenavista




The first indication that the mountain was largely behind me came with these views of the coast, of bananas grown under cloth across a landscape of cinders, scrub pine and succulents.

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Santiago del Teide nestles in a gently sloping section of upland valley, lies just below the pine forests, but above the town there is an view of Teide up the line of subsidiary cones. On the right is the road to Buenavista de Norte.

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This looks like a new farm, laid out with precision near Santiago del Teide.

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From Santiago del Teide the minor road leads to a col with views to the north - the route ahead. The scale of the landscape gave pause for thought!

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The canyons of the Gigantes pose interesting driving, most especially for the coaches, which do not have the lock to negotiate the hairpins without having to reverse. The best bit was when two coaches met!

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Masca perches on ridiculous slopes that end in the Gigantes cliffs of the west coast. The traffic was going to stop here, so progress was only made by inching past midi-coaches in lay-bys and tourists hyperventilating in relief at having survived the hairpins!

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Opposite a lay-by and cafe between Masca and Las Portelas (might have been Portelas) was conglomerate-looking lava, exposed by the road cutting; a few yards along and resistant dykes stand out.

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A dyke marches across one of the enormous gullies on the west coast.



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I had seen this distinctive cinder cone in the village of El Palmar,  on Google Earth and wondered why segments had been cut out of it. I imagine the contents have been used as soil and soil improver. The growing crop is potatoes - in March!

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View head-on the fine-grained nature of the cinder cone is more evident.

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The approach to Buenavista descends across lava fields, with one particularly deep fissure (centre), and onto a narrow coastal plain - with something approaching soil. The road to Punta de Teno hugs the headland on the left-hand shot, which was my intended destination. along this road are the banana fields/groves? seen below.

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The road to Punta de Teno was closed; two more signs, in French and German, followed.

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The disappointment of the blocked road was softened by the banana groves that surrounded the uneven road. As i passed a truck I saw the bananas stacked in the back, revered to photograph it, but by this time the lorry was driving off ... so reversed again and chased after it. Believing that the driver would stop for a break in the village was proven correct! The blue plastic contains a cocktail of chemicals to deter insect attack.

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Starting to ascent the road from Las Cruces to El Tanque you drive through open groves of bananas, complete with water tanks. the centre shot is still on bananas in Buenavista.

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Las Cruces can bee seen off to the wets as the road winds up through terraces, some abandoned, under a scarp slope and making use of what is probably an ancient, or not so ancient, landslide. The northern flank of Teide has many such slips.

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Views of bananas in their sheltered fields and the pounding Atlantic swell and, looking towards Garachico, a bisse, or irrigation channel, running around the hill.


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Garachico comes into view, a compact and well-established settlement that looks as if it has been built on the lobe of a lava flow!

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