Weather 26th November 2014 – Los Cristianos/Las Americas

Temperatures this morning are 22°C, there are a few clouds about with what look like more coming down from the mountains behind us. At the moment it looks nice but the forecast for this evening is showers.  

Our  Walk (20)Yesterday the clouds cleared quickly and it was warm until late afternoon when a chilly wind sprang up.  Fortunately by then the washing was dry.

Looking down from top of the village yesterday

Looking down to the resorts

The following images are for Las Vistas Beach in the south of the island and Puerto de la Cruz in the north of the island and are taken from the webcam yesterday at 12.00, 3.00 and 5.00. These times are approximate and are at whatever is the nearest before or after the hour. You can check this  LINK and it will give you 72 hours of what has been/is happening should you wish to see.

Las Vistas Beach – between Los Cristianos and Las Americas

Why not Step Through the Looking Glass and read the  Red Queen Musings
Blog Ping
Hostgator promo codes
Posted in Daily Weather | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

A Winter Wonderland in Tenerife

If you’re looking for a different kind of winter wonderland this year then Tenerife has a huge amount to offer. Whilst snowfalls and sleigh bells might be traditional winter fare, they also mean dark days, damp, slippery roads and unforgiving temperatures, which can all bring a rather unfestive feel to the Christmas period.

The Tenerife alternative is one of numerous hours of warming sunshine each day, temperatures of 20 degrees plus, plenty of alternative festive treats and miles of breathtaking coastlines. If you’re in need of an escape from the relentless grey skies and chilly mornings of northern Europe then Tenerife’s winter wonderland is the perfect choice.

Neil Armstrong once described Tenerife’s wild volcanic lands as “the closest thing to the lunar landscape I’ve ever seen,” and the island has been the setting for numerous sci-fi and futuristic films that have required a dramatic landscape. This makes it an exciting place to explore, from the stunning Teide National Park to the famous Garachico lava pools and the pyramids at Güímar. 

The best way to explore the island is to hire a car, grab a map and get out and see what Armstrong was talking about. Most resorts have car hire outlets, or you can pick up a vehicle when you arrive at the airport, and the island’s network of roads is well laid out and relatively easy to navigate.

The resorts of Tenerife take on a very different character during the winter months, when the focus is much less on doing shots and dancing on tables, and more on tasty local cuisine and wiling away the hours with a book and a Soberano brandy. Well known beaches such as Playa de las Américas and Los Cristianos tend to be pleasantly empty and calm, although the sea is still warm enough for swimming and you might even get some tanning time depending on when you go.

tenerife wonderlandTenerife also has plenty of sightseeing spots that are accessible all year round thanks to the lovely balmy temperatures.

For an unusual, once in a lifetime, experience head to the Loro Parque, where you can see more than 340 species of parrot, as well as a wide range of other exotic animals (no reindeers…), check out the saltwater pools of Lago Martiánez or play a couple of peaceful rounds on one of the island’s many golf courses.

If you want to engage your brain then take a trip to see some of Tenerife’s cultural spots – the Spanish, Canarian and Flemish collections at the Museo de Bellas Artes, the local handicrafts on sale at the Casa del Turista or the pretty 17th century church Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de la Peña de Francia.

Whatever you’re looking for from your Tenerife winter wonderland you’ll find an enormous range of choice on this year round holiday island. From warm seas and volcanic landscapes to fine dining, golf or skiing, there are seasonal treats here to suit all sorts of holidaymakers.

Amy Sawyer is a freelance travel writer from Alamo car hire who have a range of vehicles for hire on Tenerife.

 Source:  Tenerife Forum

Step Through the Looking Glass and read the  Red Queen Musings

 
Posted in News and Views | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Weather 25th November 2014 – Los Cristianos/Las Americas

It is slightly overcast this morning.  The sun has tried on several occasions to break through but at the moment the clouds are winning the battle. Temperatures are currently 23°C, so it is one of those days when the morning walk could be extended because it didn’t get too uncomfortably hot and there is no excuse to put off doing those little jobs around the house due to the heat!

Home (2)

Our walk (5)Yesterday was a warm day, even if at times there was the odd cloud around. At 7.00 pm it was still 22°C and coming home at midnight there was no need for a cardigan as it was still warm.  However looking at the forecast it looks cooler and wetter weather may be here by the end of the week.

The following images are for Las Vistas Beach in the south of the island and Puerto de la Cruz in the north of the island and are taken from the webcam yesterday at 12.00, 3.00 and 5.00. These times are approximate and are at whatever is the nearest before or after the hour. You can check this  LINK and it will give you 72 hours of what has been/is happening should you wish to see.

Las Vistas Beach – between Los Cristianos and Las Americas

Why not Step Through the Looking Glass and read the  Red Queen Musings
Blog Ping
Hostgator promo codes
Posted in Daily Weather | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Mechanical Insects 

The son of a gearhead and grandson to a railroad man, artist Justin Gershenson-Gates has always been surrounded by all things mechanical. A self-proclaimed tinkerer and disassembler, Justin now takes apart old watches and other discarded objects and turns them into recycled mechanical sculptures and jewellery. As he states on his profile page:

“My aim is to show the beauty of the mechanical world, a place generally hidden from the public behind metal and glass. My pieces display the more delicate and ephemeral side of gears, rather than the cold, hard factory feel they normally portray.”

Online Justin is better known as A Mechanical Mind with dedicated followings on deviantART and his work is also made available for purchase through his Etsy store.

Step Through the Looking Glass and read the  Red Queen Musings

Blog Ping
Hostgator promo codes
Posted in News and Views | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Weather 24th November 2014 – Los Cristianos/Las Americas

This morning it is setting up for another glorious November day.  Temperatures are already 26°C and not even the hint of a breeze.

24 Nov

Yesterday we enjoyed the sun in Los Cristianos, not sure what was going on but there were a few people in fancy dress.  The beach was crowded and the sky had only one tiny cloud that broke an otherwise totally blue horizon.  Temperatures were 28°C and friends find it hard to believe it is actually November.  Sadly they return to a cold wet Belgium on Wednesday.

It was a very different story in Puerto.  I saw several videos that were placed over the course of the day, they started at lunchtime with …. Still raining, continued mid afternoon with  …. raining even harder and finally early evening…. it’s STILL teeming down in Puerto de la C.

Picking up yesterdays photos from the webcam overlooking Puerto de la Cruz I spotted this shot of earlier today of a snow covered Teide.  After yesterdays closures due to bad weather, the TF-21 and TF-24 are open today so anyone wanting to visit from the north can once again make the trip.

Capture

The following images are for Las Vistas Beach in the south of the island and Puerto de la Cruz in the north of the island and are taken from the webcam yesterday at 12.00, 3.00 and 5.00. These times are approximate and are at whatever is the nearest before or after the hour. You can check this  LINK and it will give you 72 hours of what has been/is happening should you wish to see.

Las Vistas Beach – between Los Cristianos and Las Americas

Why not Step Through the Looking Glass and read the  Red Queen Musings
Blog Ping
Hostgator promo codes
Posted in Daily Weather | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

A tour of the fortifications of Tenerife (Part IV)

This time, on our clockwise tour of Tenerife, we’re travelling from Puerto de la Cruz towards Santa Cruz, but before we get to the capital there is (and hold your breath) :

El Torre de San Andres

We leap-frog now over Santa Cruz to catch the 910, 945, 946, or 947 guagua to El Castillo de San Andres, or El Torre Roto, the Broken Tower.

San Andres was built to circular plan in 1706 as the most distant of the defences of Santa Cruz, eventually with a battery of six or seven cannon. On three occasions the fort was severely damaged by flooding of the adjacent barranco. The first occasion was in 1740 and the next was in 1769, when the reconstruction led to San Andres being designated a castillo. In 1878 the guns were removed, then during a storm in 1896 the foundations of the tower were undermined causing it to split in half, but this time San Andres was not repaired. In 1924 it was finally declared of no use for military purposes. Surprisingly the tower was not demolished for its building materials and so it remains today as a romantic ruin.

Standing inside El Castillo de San Andres is quite an emotional experience. It is almost painful to look at the contorted, ruined walls that collapsed and broke so long ago, twisted and disappearing into the ground. Sadly, this broken survivor is in a state of neglect. Among the detritus of weeds, bottles, cans and broken glass there is even a heap of builder’s rubble. The entrance gate hinges have seized, leaving the gate in a half open, half shut position, asking the question – is the tower of San Andres officially open to the public or not? A little bit of effort, perhaps voluntary, to tidy up the enclosure regularly would keep this fortification in the revered condition that it deserves.

El Castillo de San Joaquin

El Castillo de San Joaquin in La Cuesta is a fort for the real enthusiast simply because it’s so difficult to find. This makes the first part of the trip an exercise in urban exploration. The fort is located in what is now a modern residential area just off the main road between Santa Cruz and La Laguna, between Calle Irene and Calle Andres Orozco Batista. There are buses to Calle Irene but I don’t know anything about them to offer advice. If you’re in a car the sat-nav might help, otherwise the nearest Tranvia (tram) stop is La Conservatoria, near to the brewery, after which, having already looked at Google Flash Earth, then searched long and hard to find San Joaquin and then mapped out your route through the streets, you set off to walk uphill.

There are photographs of El Castillo de San Joaquin on the internet but even so the fort comes as a surprise – it’s big – every bit as big as the Military Museum at Almeyda. Set in its own extensive grounds on the edge of a barranco, or ravine, in essence the fort is a square block with cylindrical towers at each corner, quite different from anything else on the island. It is a powerful looking building in a dominant position and with the eye of the imagination one can appreciate that it would have been even more imposing a hundred and fifty or so years ago. Without the surrounding houses El Castillo would have stood alone on a shelf of land projecting from the hillside, securing the approach to La Laguna on the hill from Santa Cruz.

Although the building is empty it is in very good condition. The original fort was one of the earliest built on the island, initially constructed as a gun platform in 1587 to a design by the Italian engineer Leonardo Torriani, then, after a sequence of short-lived defences, it was abandoned until it was rebuilt as a castillo in 1780. The subsequent history of San Joaquin is rather diverse. The guns were removed in 1850 and it became a munitions depot. Between 1898 and 1913 it was a home for military carrier pigeons(!), after which time it was an equipment store for the military training school and it was finally declared inadequate for military use in 1924. The fort became a military prison in 1944 before being sold in 1949. El Castillo de San Joaquin is now in private ownership and I believe there was once a plan to turn it into a restaurant or a hotel, but it’s hard to see how it could be realistically be used as a public venue because the approach roads are little more than narrow twisting lanes.

El Bateria de Bufadero

Travelling back from San Andres towards Santa Cruz, this 19th century gun battery, situated behind a row of trees and only a pavement width away from the main TF-11 road, is easily missed while driving or on the guagua because it looks like an old warehouse.

When construction started in 1897, El Bufadero was part of the last phase of development of fortifications for Santa Cruz, but for some reason it was not equipped with artillery until 1914. Like the gun batteries of San Francisco and Almeyda it must have been an imposing and cautionary presence for ships approaching the port.

El Bufadero was basically a raised oblong gun platform with munitions stores beneath, the doors of which have been bricked up to prohibit intruders. I was surprised to learn that no plans survive for El Bufadero, or for any others of this late, relatively modern phase of fortifications, whereas there is no trouble finding plans for the older castillos and gun batteries. The structure has been partly demolished at some time, probably when the new roads were built, but its future is now secure in the care, I believe, of the port authority.

There is not much to see of interest. One side, the plain side, of El Bufadero can be viewed from the main road but the other side, with the curved gun platforms, is in the private port authority area.

With regard to public access and awareness, with the best will in the world I can’t see how this fortification could be made into a visitor attraction. There is no available ground for car parking; there is only the ground the platform stands on and no outside space. On one side there is the busy main road, where even pulling in to the kerb is not advisable, and on the other is the private internal road system of the port. Also, there are no vistas. There is a small public area at one end with keep fit equipment where an information plaque could be placed, but El Bufadero, it has to be said, is not an interesting sight except to the collector of fortifications. Nevertheless it is worth looking after as part of the network of monuments to Tenerife’s military past.

First published by Alastair Roberston  and Tenerife News

Step Through the Looking Glass and read the  Red Queen Musings

 
Posted in News and Views | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Weather 23rd November 2014 – Los Cristianos/Las Americas

There was a strong wind and a bit of rain overnight but this morning it is beautiful again and with temperatures of 25°C someone was eager to get out for a walk before it got too hot. When we did, the rain had made the ground smell nice.

2-DSC05231 Our walk (16) Our walk (7)

Yesterday was nice, except as I said overnight the wind howled although unfortunately it wasn’t the same story for parts of the north of the island where they experienced heavy rain for large chunks of the day.

The forecast for the next few days doesn’t look too bad the chance of a shower on Wednesday but the heavy stuff is not due to arrive until later in the weeks so plenty of time for change.

Adeje / Arona

Puerto de la Cruz

Puerto de la Cruz

The following images are for Las Vistas Beach in the south of the island and Puerto de la Cruz in the north of the island and are taken from the webcam yesterday at 12.00, 3.00 and 5.00. These times are approximate and are at whatever is the nearest before or after the hour. You can check this  LINK and it will give you 72 hours of what has been/is happening should you wish to see.

Las Vistas Beach – between Los Cristianos and Las Americas

Why not Step Through the Looking Glass and read the  Red Queen Musings
Blog Ping
Hostgator promo codes
Posted in Daily Weather | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment