A March 2003 trip
to Tenerife by Slaney
Quote: Visiting Tenerife in March and our own resort after a three year gap - what would it be like?
Mount Teide is worth a trip--it's like another world up there. This is where Planet of the Apes was filmed.
The resort backed onto a busy motorway. Our apartment overlooked the lift area, so between the two, we did not have much sleep. We arrived at 6:30pm and there was no porter on duty; we had to find our own way to our unit, and as the lifts only went up from floor two and we were on the first floor, we had to carry our heavy cases up 63 steps which we were not told of when booking.
The accommodation was clean, which is the best thing I can say.
We had a one-bedroom apartment which consisted of a small bedroom with two single beds, one of the covers having a hole in it, a small fitted wardrobe not big enough for two people, and a small window overlooking the lift area.
The kitchen had an electric hob with a kettle, sink, fridge and cheap units. The kettle took 45 minutes to boil on the hob, but reception had electric ones for hire. The lounge had a hard sofa bed, coffee table, dresser four dining chairs and pay-as-you-view TV. The floors throughout were laminated.
The patio doors had no lock (the maintenance man came on my complaint and put a bolt on - no lock). The balcony overlooked roofs and other apartments and was small and sunless with no privacy - the divider between two apartments was a wooden trellis (as you see in the garden for the climbing plants). It did have a clothes airer.
The pool area was very nice, the pool was large and there was a separate children’s pool. There was an entertainment room with live evening entertainment, bar and games area with pool table.
We spoke to other people who had better apartments which had just been refurbished and were quite happy, but we would not recommend it.
Member Rating 1 out of 5 on April 8, 2004
This is two bedrooms with the master being ensuite with fitted wardrobes, dressing table and doors to the patio. The second bedroom has two single beds with fitted wardrobes and only a small window onto the corridor. There is also a second bathroom.
The lounge is large with a double sofa bed, cable TV and music centre, dining table and chairs and two easy chairs. Patio doors. The kitchen is offshot and small but has an oven and microwave. The patio runs the full width of the apartment and has washing line, two tables, five chairs and two sun lounges.
The apartment is cleaned six days a week and linen and towels changed midweek.
The apartments and resort are kept very clean, although probably a little faded round the edges compared to the new ones. The staff are very friendly and helpful.
There is also a sandwich shop (delicious sandwiches) supermarket (reasonable prices) and bar on site.
Member Rating 3 out of 5 on April 3, 2003
Club Olympus at Garden City
Playa de las Americas
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 3, 2003
We have eaten here on previous visits and thought it very good, but the cold soup put us off and we would not go again.
Member Rating 2 out of 5 on April 3, 2003
Attraction | "Lorro Parc (Parrot Park)"
The park is very well set out with a path which winds around the area so that you see everything. There are snack bars spaced along the trail. A very good day out!
Loro Park (Loro Parque-Parrot Park)
Puerto De La Cruz
Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain
A year on and Simon King doing the rounds as an Elivs impersonator. We saw him at Colon Beach Restaurant in Puerto Colon.
Attraction | "Mount Teide"
We went by hire car, but there are organized trips. The trip is not for the fainthearted, as sometimes there are only little stone bollards at the edge of the road between the car and the steep drop down, but the views are spectacular.
The road winds through small villages perched on the mountain edge, and eventually we passed through clouds to emerge at the country park near the top. Here there is a picnic area, cafe, and walks through the countryside. It was wonderful to look down on to the top of the clouds.
Further up is like a different world - rather like what I imagine being on the moon to be - and this is where Planet of the Apes was filmed. There are various stop-off points for walks for more views of funny-shaped rocks. There is also a restaurant with tables outside on the patio where (if you are lucky) you may see very big lizards (someone told us they were iguanas, but we only saw little ones).
To reach the very top of Teide, you have to go on the cable car, which we haven't done yet, but this is the very tip of the volcano. Everywhere there is evidence of the last volcanic eruption where black lava has flown down the hillside.
Teide National Park/Mount Teide
Tenerife, Canary Islands
The bus station is a ten-minute walk and buses are available to all over the island. Our first venture was to Peurto Santiago--a very quiet, up-market seaside town--from where we walked (about 90 minutes along a coastal path) to Los Gigantes. Los Gigantes has high cliffs surrounding the harbour and the town is up the hill. The next day we visited Santa Cruz for the shops--Terrasitas beach is just outside Santa Cruz and worth a visit.
We then hired a car and went to Peurto de la Cruz in the north. The parrot park is here and worth a visit. We also visited Medano beach, where the wind surfers gather to the surf for the day. The following day we drove up the coast taking in Los Cristianos, Candelaria (a small fishing village), and Costa Silencio, which is purposely built for tourists and consists of hotels, villas, apartments and timeshares, all with swimming pools set on the cliff tops. There also restaurants and bars.
The rest of the time was sunny again and was spent on Santa Eugenia beach (just past Porto Colon harbour) about a 10-minute walk from the resort. Trips to the sea for fishing and whale and dolphin watching are available from Porto Colon.
Pick-up time was 7.30am across the road, but the bus was 30 minutes late and some people were not very pleased. We were taken to Los Cristianos to board the ferry, which was very large, but slow -- the trip took about 1.5 hours. As it was a cloudy morning, the trip was quite rough and as we got further out to sea very windy. We passed a ship with masts, which looked as if it had difficulty keeping upright. Although there are sometimes sightings of whales and dolphins it was cold and the wind finally drove us below deck for coffee and a snack at one of the two bars. Breakfast was also available in the self service cafe. On docking we boarded a bus for our tour. We had French, Spanish, German, Italian, American, and about eight English on our bus and the guide related all the information in our own languages.
The first stop was at a bar in the hills for a demonstration of the Whistle Language. In days gone by before mobile phones etc. communication was difficult in the communities on La Gomera so they developed this whistling, which carried from valley to valley. It sounds like the spoken word whistled -- really fascinating.
After this we were supposed to visit the National Park, but were delayed by mist and road works. At one point we were held up for 20 minutes by road works, then had to reverse to let the bulldozer clear a wider space for the bus. There was a sheer drop at one side and our driver was actually stood up whilst steering to make sure he did not go over the edge. We then detoured off the main road to miss the roadworks, but it was so misty we came face to face with another bus, which had to reverse to a wider space to let us pass.
By this time, we were late for lunch, so went straight to the restaurant owned by Rosa who is renowned for her vegetable soup, which we found very bland. This was followed by tuna steaks in onions, beef in peppers, and Canarian potatoes (cooked in their skins). Baby bananas were dessert with as much red wine and water as you wanted. This was included in the trip, but coffee was available in the bar at extra cost.
We then went back to the national park where the mist had lifted enough for us to view the moss, which is only found on the trees on La Gomera.
It was time for us to make our way back to the ferry for our return journey, stopping on the way for a photo opportunity of the views.
The main town of San Sebastian is not a tourist town and is very small and quiet. It has a small town square with a few shops, but there is a house up one of the streets off the square where Christopher Columbus used to call to visit a lady friend, but we did not see it.
The ferry journey back to Tenerife was just as rough, but calmed a lot as we neared Los Cristianos. We arrived back at Club Olympus at approximately 7pm.
We enjoyed the day, but it was slightly marred by the lack of manners by the other Europeans. They must be the first on the bus, first off the bus, have the best seats, push everyone aside to get what they want and complain if they don't.
Sheffield, United Kingdom