Thursday, 20 August 2009

Walking on Tenerife – Favourite Refreshment Stops

At Real Tenerife, we love that feeling when you come to the end of a long, immensely satisfying walk when the end is in sight and you know that in a few moments you can slip out of the hiking boots and into some soft sandals – it’s a bit like ‘skinny dipping’ for the feet. However, what’s even better is to plonk yourself down at a welcoming hostelry and order an ice cool beer as a reward.

It’s something we feel is an integral part of a really good walking package – spectacular vistas, diversity of landscape, interesting curios along the way, challenging but not soul destroying terrain, attractive flora and fauna and a cosy little bar to collapse into at the end.

We have a few personal favourites across the island.

In the Anaga Mountains, the Cruz del Carmen restaurant is a sanctuary for walkers and local forestry workers, especially when the bruma descends and chills through to the bone. We’ve found ourselves held prisoner by the ambience here for a couple of hours after we’ve finished a walk in the past - the horizontal rain outside the window didn’t help with motivating us to leave.

There are great other little bars in tiny hamlets as well, places where you feel you’re their first customer in days. In a bar in Chamorga, the owner had to break off from painting her nails to serve us. Another fave is Casa Carlos on the road which runs along the Anaga’s spine. On a clear day, the views of the lush mountains are something quite special.

Up above Santiago is one of the most popular walkers’ bars on Tenerife, Bar Fleytas. It’s perfectly placed as a starting and finishing point for exploring the Erjos Pools and the Valle de Santiago – and they have great home made almendras.

In Teno Alto the little bar is more like a mix of corner shop (not a lot of items) and bar. Grab a beer and sit on a wall in the sunshine as abuelas wander by with clumps of aromatic herbs in their hands – it epitomises the simple pleasures in life.

At Ifonche in Adeje, the Tasca Taguera is a higgledy piggeldy mix of cable drums turned into tables and vine covered terrace where bags of water hang like decorations (apparently to keep the mosquitoes away). It’s the most bohemian feeling walker’s bar we’ve frequented.

My favourite of all is the La Caldera bar and restaurant. For me it’s just the perfect walker’s rest. Log cabin exterior, chunky wooden tables and benches, a roaring log fire inside (essential for winter months when the cloud descends), fresh trout on the menu and any number of little birds like Canary Island Tits, Blue Chaffinches, Capirotes and Robins looking for easy pickings. We never go into the place before setting off on a walk as the walk would probably never happen if we did.

There are more great little places and I’m sure others have their own personal favourites. We’d love to hear about any little gems that any of you walkers out there might know about.

No comments: