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Tenerife
5 days in Playa de Las Americas.

 

Fast facts
Population: 1m (UK = 63m)
Area:
2,000sq km (UK = 245,000)
Famous for:
Winter sun and the terrible 1977 plane crash.
Cost of a bottle of Fanta in a restaurant: £2
Weather in Jan:
Warm 24'C day, 18'C night
Local food: Tapas (or all options for tourists!)
Flight cost: £100

View of (almost) the whole island, dominated by the volcano El Teide.

Day 1: Los Gigantes

Lazy day exploring the old persons Mecca which is Playa de Las Americas in January. And then a trip up to the quaint harbour and giant cliffs of Los Gigantos.

 

Day 2: Loro Parque

Basically a big zoo. Nice to see all the animals up close, but as with all zoos, there is a constant worry about the welfare of the animals, and how they came to be in a zoo rather than in the wild where they should be. Hopefully the conservation message that the zoo tries to give will asuage some of the downsides of the captive lives.

 

The orca (killer whale) show is most impressive, but having heard a review of the film Blackfish which details the lives of such captive orcas, it sounds
like the shows are not the whole story, and they have pretty grim lives. Need to watch the film... although it will no doubt be sad and traumatic.


Day 3: Whale & dolphin watching

This is more like it - animals in the wild! In the deep channel between Tenerife and La Gomera are resident pods of pilot whales, and dolphins which you can take a boat to go and see.

 
Mother and baby

Day 4:
El Teide

A day spent on the volcano which created Tenerife.

Arriving at the top of the cable car (3700m) we had clear views for only 5 minutes before the clouds rolled in and ruined it for everyone else for the rest of the day.

After a rained off trip to Masca we came back later in the evening to try and get a night time star picture but the moon was full and gave the sky too much brightness.

 

ISO 6400, F4.5, 30sec, tripod = dashboard!.