May. 5th, 2013 10:45 am
henry_the_cow: (Default)
[personal profile] henry_the_cow
We went to Tenerife for Easter and I haven't had time to write about it until now. So, some memories below the cut.

We stayed in Puerto de la Cruz, a town on the north coast of the island.  The north coast is supposed to be slightly cooler than the south and Puerto de la Cruz has various places to wander around and explore, which is the sort of holiday that suits us better than a week on the beach.  Much of the coast there is rocky, with large waves crashing against the rocks.  There are beaches of black sand at either end of the town; the one nearest our hotel was much favoured by surfers.
We arrived on Good Friday and that evening we saw the Easter procession.  A long parade of floats moved slowly through the narrow streets of the old town.  Each was a statue, usually of Jesus or Mary, several showing the crucification.  The partipants wore cloaks and caporites (tall pointed hoods) in colours of their brotherhoods.  Some had music, mostly drums and trumpets but with one piper as well.
Apart from that, we mostly did touristy things.  We visited Loro Parque (Parrot Park), a wildlife park which is advertised all over Tenerife and is pretty good.  The parrots of its name are mostly in separate aviaries, which is a bit disappointing, but there is one area that you walk though while the parrots fly around in the trees.  The park also has shows of trained sea lions, dolphins and orcas - in separate pools, as I assume otherwise the orcas would eat the sea lions ;-).  This was a good day out (although I've since read that orcas tend not to be too happy in captivity).
The centre of Tenerife is a mountain, El Teide, which is surprisingly the highest mountain in Spain.  We took one of the many coach trips up the mountain, which was also well worth it.  We didn't take the cable car to the summit but even so there was plenty to see. The landscape keeps changing, with the highest points being likened to a moonscape.
Puerto de la Cruz has a large lido as well as the two beaches.  This was an excellent way to get more swimming in (as well as the hotel pool).  M and Mrs HTC took the first dip and M reported back that the water was lovely and warm.  He was lying - it was fine for swimming but you wouldn't want to hang around in the water.
I guess the other highlight of the holiday was the food.  There seem to be lots of good restaurants in the town.  We had several excellent meals, whether simple things like pizza, or paella, or fish and meat dishes.  Coloured potatoes were a particular speciality - they are boiled in very salty water so that the salt covers the skins (rather like salted crisps but whole potatoes) and served with red and green sauces, the red being mild chilli and the green being coriander.
So we had a relaxing time, not rushing to do anything but with plenty to do when we wanted it.  There were various smaller sights that we visited during our wanderings around the town, including some gardens, churches and museums.  As a destination, it suited us rather well.

In many ways this was an ideal time of year for our holiday.  In particular, the weather was warm but not too hot.  It's a shame that M will be revising for exams this time next year (and the year after, and the year after that...)
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