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Twitter in Tenerife

canary-3661579_640
canary

They were so loud. Those to my left were a higher octave than those on the far right. They didn’t stop twittering, cheeping and chirping. Were they Blue Chaffinches, Tenerife Goldcrests or Canary Island Chiffchaffs?  I lay there wondering. Was it casual conversation a dispute or general birdsong but then my thoughts were gradually caressed back thanks to the practitioner leading our mindfulness session.

Garachico
Garachico

Tenerife has joined the wave on wellness which embraces many aspects of island life. Raquel Training is a company providing activities such as yoga & meditation and Pilates directly to villa doors or arranged courtesy of certain hotels such as Abama Resort in the south of the island to enhance sun drenched days of relaxation.

Masca
Masca

A revised view on sustainability has influenced a renewed perspective on holidays and lifestyle. Tourism is embracing age-old traditions with new initiatives and delivering them via a variety of trips and tours as the increasing numbers of visitors return to favourite haunts. Tastings and guided visits are offered by a number of plantations, vineyards and fincas, demonstrating ecological farming such as La Finca La Calabacera, a certified organic farm, which has 150,000 m2 of different types of organic crops. Bananas clinging to slopes in every direction around the island are the main crop in Tenerife with numerous eco plantation tours on offer. As for wines, Bodegas Ferrera is an example of a family viticulture tradition which dates back to the middle of the last century. Here, there is the opportunity to sip and savour high altitude wines as well as sample Montesdeoca Cheese.

Mount-Tiede
Mount-Tiede

Scenic views accompany travels up, down and around the island. One route recommended is to the rural park of Teno, in the north east.  Known as “Isla Baja”, this region is sprinkled with villages and hamlets with deep-rooted traditions, clinging to the mountain side affording the best views imaginable. Check out the Shepherd’s Leap a skill often demonstrated by one of the local experts from generations past and still used today. The historic town of Garachico has endured plagues of locusts, outbreaks of disease, fire and flooding and lava flows but today is an attractive place to visit, dotted with churches and convents with cobbled streets weaving through. A tourist haven and must-see is Masca, a pretty village bragging views onto deep ravines with hikes down the sweeping hillside to the gorge.

Shepherds-Leap
Shepherds-Leap

From the peace and tranquillity of the mountain villages ascend to the ultimate stillness and silence of Mount Teide peeping high above the clouds. This imposing peak is the third-highest volcano in the world. Its summit is the highest point in Spain as well as being the highest point above sea level in the islands of the Atlantic. Teide was a sacred mountain for the aboriginal Guanches, so it was considered a mythological mountain. And with such credentials, it’s popular for witnessing nature’s daily sun down drama casting shadows on its moonlike landscape followed by the dark skies backdrop for stargazing and celestial shows. Accompanied by starlight guides and telescopes, this experience is illuminating while at the same time good for you, breathing in the pure, fresh air.  Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007 under the Natural Asset category, Mount Teide exhibits the broadest sample of supra-Mediterranean vegetation.

Tenerife-Coastline
Tenerife-Coastline

Wellness flows back at base. The Hotel Botánico, located in the north of the island in Puerto de la Cruz has its own offer of health and wellbeing.  The hotel’s Oriental Spa Garden is a peaceful space set amid tranquil gardens with a pool and palm trees for shade. Steps lead to a circuit of water therapies, from a variety of saunas, steam rooms, ice temple, an indoor pool and water beds for relaxation. A total immersion in wellness.  Its signature treatment, Canarian Ritual uses local materials of Aloe Vera for the peeling, body wrap as well as volcanic stones for the massage. Here they also offer personalised 3-day programmes designed for detox, slimming and stress, among others.

Three-Tweeting-Birds
Three-Tweeting-Birds

Wherever I was, the sun lounger, or the little hamlets on the hillside, I could still hear the cheeping and chirping above and still wonder what the tweeting is all about in sunny Tenerife.