Results 1-3of 3 Reviews
by Joy S
Manchester, England, United Kingdom
January 21, 2013
From journal From Masca to Icod de los Vinos
Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands
May 27, 2011
From journal Going on holiday to Tenerife
November 23, 2004
It’s only in the last three decades that Masca has been accessible by road, and interesting enough, this has not encouraged people to live here. Indeed the village community has been seriously reduced, with over 80% having left since the road was created. Now it’s left to those who see the financial opportunities of tourism and cafés, restaurants, and small souvenir shops, which are in abundance.
But despite its change of occupancy, Masca is not really commercialised and is well worth a visit. We are not big walkers, but there was a short circular walk (probably more than 3 miles) starting from the car park (it was extremely difficult to park here). The first part of the walk took us down a series of steep steps through part of the old town and past a number of old stone houses with small, but beautifully tended courtyard gardens. There were the brightly coloured bougainvilleas draped over the rough stone wall and poinsettias standing over 8 feet tall. We watched hoards of vibrantly coloured butterflies and listened to the warbling of countless birds. You know, it was surprisingly quiet here despite the large numbers of cars at the top of the hill.
At the bottom of this hill, you can pause at the souvenir shops and have a snack at restaurant/snack bar. The view from their patio is superb. Now you have a choice of direction–take the right fork and you’re in for a 3-hour walk down to the beach through the gorge (but remember it’s an uphill walk back!). We took the left fork, which would take us back up to the car park. On this route, you’ll be surrounded by Cacti and Aloe Vera plants; see loads of orange trees (the locals use these for fresh orange drinks in the cafes); and appreciate the lushness of the gorges. You’ll feel diminutive against the craggy outcrops and appreciate the different hues on the cliffs as the sun casts shadows across the rock faces. If you study them long enough, you will see grotesque faces in the ridged rock.
As we passed through the narrow streets, we had chance to admire more flower gardens and glimpse the difficult route down the gorge. Hikers down there appear as ants! There are still signs that some villagers try to be self-sufficient, as they cultivate their sparse vegetable gardens and tend the goats and poultry. We appreciated how difficult it must have been for these villagers to manage before the road, but wonder how they truly regard the intrusiveness of tourists peering into their living space.
From journal Two weeks in the sun