The seaside town of Garachico, on Tenerife’s northwest tip of the island, is my favourite place to chill out when we visit Tenerife. The tranquil atmosphere of this small harbour town is a friendly change from the busy streets of the sun soaked Playa de las Americas on the south side of this tropical island.
As we wandered the ancient streets in the warm afternoon sun, all the way down to the lava pools by the harbour, we felt transported back in time. The once premiere port town, was devastated by a sudden volcanic eruption back in 1706. In an instant, the wealthy town was completely covered in ash.
Years later, this enterprising isolated city turned their worst nightmare into a unique place to relax in the island sun. All year long, locals lay by the unique rock formations and watch the fish swim by in the crystal clear harbour waters.
As I turned here and there, between the rocky pools, I noticed that some formations have been worn down by the wind and rain into inviting stool sized chairs. Tucked into a private corner, I noticed a man lost in the pages of a book. The dark stoned harbour escape, hilly in places, allowed plenty of personal space and people stopped to gaze out at the ocean to watch small boats drift by.
The fresh sea air was blessedly silent as I stood in the sun and watched the seagulls circling above, dash down to snap up food tossed into the harbour. It was the perfect place to refuel my energy after several full day excursions on the other side of the island
On the half empty streets, visitors mingled easily with friendly locals, smiles light up their faces. Pace was slow, everyone was on island time. This authentic northern gem, an hours drive from the Playa de las Americas, is often overlooked by coach tours headed for the more famous Puerto de la Cruz.
If you’re looking for a peaceful escape, head straight to Garachico for an authentic Canary Island meal.