Archaeologist Marcos Moreno has been searching for the lost temple of the Guanche people who had lived in Gran Canaria before Spain conquered the Canary Islands. The native inhabitants of Gran Canaria are known to have had two sacred sites with temples at Tirma at Risco Caido in the centre of the island studied and confirmed by UNESCO, and another called Humiago, but this site had remained elusive. Marcos now believes that he has discovered the sacred temple of Humaiago at La Fortaleza in the municipality of Santa Lucia, based on historical chronicles and DNA testing of bones found at this new site that match the time of the Guanche people living in Gran Canaria.
The first settlers of Gran Canaria are believe to have come from North Africa and called Berbers, who developed their culture for around 1500 years that formed the basis for their culture, rituals and settlements. The Parajes de Tirma sacred site was where Fernando de Guanarteme, the last king of the Guanche people in Gran Canaria, lived and forms many symbolic structures that tracked the rising and setting of the sun during the winter and summer solstice to mark the passage of time, and similar to reasons of Stonehenge in the UK.
It is hoped that this newly discovered lost temple of Humiago will reveal more evidence of the patterns of life followed by the Guanche people long before the Spanish came to the islands to develop their empire. This new investigation is likely to also focus on the use of caves for sanctuary and symbolism, such as undiscovered cave art and inscriptions. The Chronicles of the Conquest produced by the Spanish identify the cave calendar used by the Guanche people based on markers of the rising and setting sun.