In real life, I am an ancient historian, and was a university lecturer in Classics & Ancient History specializing in law and politics before moving to Tenerife. I’ve been here now since 2004 when I left Higher Education, which for me had become too much of a graduate processing factory to be meaningful. Tenerife is wonderful, a sub-tropical eternal Spring amazingly within Europe, and with a language and culture that is simultaneously different and familiar. I have rheumatoid arthritis, and I find that the climate here, with its generally steady humidity and gentle temperatures, is just about perfect.
I live with my husband in a tiny 200-year-old Canarian cottage on the top edge of a mountain village a kilometer high overlooking the west coast. Our garden is full of flowers and trees, and lizards who are now so used to us that they have to be shuffled out of the way as they teem to us for titbits, whether cheese, fruit, or particularly eggs! One thing I particularly love about living at altitude is that we have seasons, and in Spring the air is filled with the heady scent of the blossom on the fruit and almond trees, and after the blazing heat of summer, to be surrounded by autumnal colour and leaf shedding while the mist rolls up the barranco is a glorious relief. Here’s a typical January photo, with our own almond treees in blossom. Spring has already sprung! The “blessed isles”. Yes, indeed!
We have been here for ten years now, and I have spent my time indulging a longstanding interest in houses and homes, investigating everything from interior design to physical construction, the rhetoric of sales techniques, and particularly, the legal aspects of the property market, as well, indeed, as most aspects of the expatriate experience in Tenerife. If I see myself as anything, it is as an advocate for anyone thinking of moving here, or actually living here and struggling with bureaucracy and legalities.
Ideally in such a place, people would be stress free and fulfilling their dream, but all too often it turns into a nightmare. I hope that this site will be helpful to anyone looking for accurate up-to-date information about what is happening in Tenerife, as well as a straightforward guide to the legalities and bureaucracy involved in being a resident or property owner here.
Below on this page are the latest of regularly-updated news and events posts; for earlier items, just look to the right and click on the main news link or on a particular date in the calendar (just hover over a date and it will show you the posts made on that day). The right hand column also has buttons to “follow me” on Facebook, Twitter or by RSS feed; a search box to help locate news items or information of interest; links to recent comments made by readers (please do express opinions or ask questions – just click on individual headlines to find the comments box); and the latest news from the BBC and in English from El Pais.
COPYRIGHT: I have written every single word of text on this website myself, except where expressly stated otherwise. The entire content belongs to me and I have the copyright. Readers are welcome to take text without permission as long as they expressly name me as author, and provide a link to this site. If anyone wants to use anything without crediting me in this way, please ask first.
Latest in Tenerife
Nicolás Dorta has reported in today’s Diario de Avisos that the longstanding problem with sunbeds on Los Cristianos beach may be about to be resolved. The Ayuntamiento will seek confirmation in council on Monday, it seems, for the award of the contract to the successful tender from the nine submitted. The winning company is UTE (Unión Temporal de Empresas) formed by Juan León Correa and Celedonia León Correa. The contract will bring €250,000 per annum into the council coffers, and will see some 300 sunbeds and 150 umbrellas in place over four years. From the expected approval on Monday, UTE will have ten days to provide the aval (financial guarantee) required, and the service should start within a month.
Update 7 March: The windsurfer missing since around 5.30pm yesterday afternoon is now said to be a 64-year-old British man. There is still no news about his discovery.
Original post 6 March: A search is underway this evening for a windsurfer who has disappeared off the coast of El Medano. Involved in the operation are a search and rescue helicopter, Protección Civil, Guardia Civil and the lifeboat Salvamar Alpheratz. The above photo has been released by the emergency services.
Each year, NASA has a competition for the best photo of the earth from space, and in 2013, the picture below of the La Restinga eruption in El Hierro won. Indeed, when it got to the final pictures, competing against the breaking of Pine Island glacier in Antarctica, it got 91% of the vote! Now, in 2014, the Canaries are again vying for the photo of the year, with the above picture of the islands as a whole competing with 31 other photos, all of which can be seen HERE.
Votes can be cast between now and 4 April, and the first round will see the final 32 reduced to 16. and then to 8 to 4 to 2 … can the Canaries do it again? Below is last year’s winner. Above, hopefully, will be this year’s!
The 14,290 bars, cafes and restaurants in the Canaries will have to inform their clients about the allergenic content of foods being served. The measure is the result of EU directive 1169/2011, and regional establishments have until the end of 2014 to come into line. The announcement was made by the Santa Cruz Chamber of Commerce, which confirmed that the health department, Sanidad, through the Agencia Española de Consumo, Seguridad Alimentaria y Nutrición, is already implementing the requirements.
Staff working in catering outlets must be informed and trained on the presence of each and every one of the ingredients considered allergens. currently 14 substances in all. The announcement stressed that cases of food allergies have increased significantly in the past 20 years and, according to the EU, 70% of allergic reactions occur outside the home. The Chamber of Commerce said that it has organized a programme of courses to raise awareness of allergy and food intolerance problems.
Estalishments that do not meet EU food security regulations will now face fines of between €5,000 and €600,000.
Arona has announced a “showcase route” for its carnival. The carnival’s own theme is Africa, and the showcase route is similarly focused: “Vive África, Vive Arona, Vive el Comercio en Carnaval”. The campaign is an attempt to drum up business for the municipality, and is being run by the department of economic promotion and employment in collaboration with the Fiesta Committee. The above poster shows the participating establishments, where special offers and discounts will be available during Arona’s carnival – please click to see it full size.
A new weather front will be arriving over Saturday from the southwest. At the moment, meteorologists say, it’s difficult to know if it will just bring general instability with some light rain, or whether it will develop into something nastier. They are monitoring the new borrasca and will no doubt advise in due course. Some rain on Sunday and Monday, however, does seem likely.
Update 5 March: Just a reminder about Joe’s signing, which is this Saturday, 8 March, in Redhound Bookshop on Calle Juan XXIII (the top pedestrian street off Los Cristianos church square, harbour end.
Original post 20 February: Your chance to meet a bestselling author!
Tenerife-based Joe Cawley will be signing copies of his books, More Ketchup than Salsa and The Final Dollop, at Redhound Bookshop in Los Cristianos from 5pm onwards on Saturday, 8 March.
Joe’s first book became a UK bestseller when it was released on Kindle in 2011, beating Karl Pilkington’s Idiot Abroad tales and even Bill Bryson’s numerous tomes to the number one spot in the Travel section on Amazon. The book has since been downloaded over 60,000 times.
“The Final Dollop is a darker book than More Ketchup,” says Joe, “but still with plenty of laughs, characters and scenarios that anybody who’s lived in, or knows Tenerife will easily recognise.”
Both books follow Joe and Joy, along with Joe’s brother and his wife, as they borrow a fortune to swap a life of fish filleting on a cold Lancashire market to buy a bar/restaurant in La Caleta. Expecting a life full of sun, sand and sangria, they very soon find out that although the skies might be more blue, the grass is anything but greener on the other side thanks to the language barrier, bureaucratic bungling and complete inability to master the art of pandering to a bizarre array of holidaymakers and expats.
If you’ve ever pondered what life would be like if you lived in Tenerife, just fancy a good beach read, or you already live here and want to read a humorous account of island life (you might even recognise yourself in the book!), now’s the chance to pick up a signed paperback, chat and have a drink with the author.
Make a date in your diary now – Saturday 8 March at Redhound Bookshop on Calle Juan XXIII (the top pedestrian street off Los Cristianos church square, harbour end.
EMMA, the Escuela Municipal de Música y Danza de Adeje (Adeje School of Music and Dance), is holding a series of concerts in the municipality this month under the title Adeje Live Music. Councillor Adolfo Alonso Ferrera said that the initiative “is designed to liven up the borough, offer the local public a series a concerts and at the same time give them the opportunity to get to know the quality of the work of the students and professors of the school and of the Municipal Band”.
The first concert will be held at the Adeje Convent de San Fransisco (next to the town hall at the top of Calle Grande) this Friday, 7 March at 8.30pm, and will comprise the youth metal group invoking “The Wonder Years”. On the play list are songs from Nowak, Blair, Sweeney, Mike Atory, Tito Puente, Paul Murtha and Mike Lewis. Pedro Vicente Jorge Lemes wields the baton. Tickets cost €5.
The following concert is on Saturday, 22 March in the Plaza de Los Olivos. This concert starts at 8pm and will be given by the Adeje Municipal Band. Entrance is free.
The final musical date is also in the Convent at 8pm on Saturday 29 March. This brings together vocal and piano students and teachers who will perform “The Memory Corner, a selection of melodies by distinguished artistes such as Evangelina Sobredo Galanes, Consuelito Velázquez, Juan Carlos Calderón, Álvaro Carrillo, Camilo Blanes Cortés, Lucio Battisiti, Armando Manzanero, Pablo López, Juan de Dión Filiberto and Gabino Coria Peñalosa, César Portillo de la Luz, Rudy Pérez and José Feliciano. Tickets again cost €5.
Update 4 March: Just a month or so away from opening now, but people still treat it as though it were open already. In Tenerife, when the authorities say something is closed, they mean “officially” closed. In the UK, it appears, we’re used to things being made inaccessible when they’re closed, roped off, made impossible for us to hurt ourselves. It’s a cultural difference that might cost someone dearly because an emergency rescue is currently underway this afternoon to help walkers who have got into difficulties in the barranco. Charges are now made for such rescues if those needing rescue have been reckless, or ignored official warnings and signs. In this instance, at least three official rescue teams were involved.
Original post 2 January: The barranco del Infierno has been closed, officially anyway, to walkers since 2009 when a walker died in a rockfall. Since then, questions and rumours about when, or even whether, it would reopen have been plentiful. Now, however, Adeje Ayuntamiento has finally approved the administrative contract for the service of information and public use of the hiking trail; it was published yesterday in the Boletín Oficial de Canarias. Concejal de Obras y Servicios, Gonzalo Delgado, said that barring unforeseen problems the barranco should be reopened in three months. For conservation and security reasons, a limit of 300 walkers per day will be imposed.
To add to the “farmers’ market” in Playa San Juan, Guía de Isora has announced the opening of a new agricultural market in Guía de Isora town itself. The new market will start this coming Friday in Plaza de Garachico, which is on the main road through the town, on the left in front of the sports and cultural centres. The existing Playa San Juan market is held in Church Square on Wednesdays. Both markets will be open between 8am and 1pm, every week. The council says that the markets offer agricultural produce as well as crafts and artisan works, cakes and sweets, and other products from the municipality.