El Tanque - a very rural Tenerife village
El Tanque is village in a very green part of Tenerife
El Tanque is a village in the green countryside of the northwest of Tenerife. If you are looking for a truly rural flavour of the island you will find it here.El Tanque is also a municipality, and the area it is situated in is in the mountains above the cliffs of La Culata. It looks down over Garachico and the coast below.
El Tanque photos
Traditional Farming in El Tanque
Farming is very important to the people of El Tanque, and grapes, figs, potatoes and walnuts are some of the crops you can expect to find being grown in the area.
El Tanque often gets blanketed in clouds of the type that are attracted to the mountain parts of Tenerife, and whilst these clouds spoil the weather and keep temperatures a lot lower than elsewhere, they also have the benefit, however, of bringing much-needed moisture to the vegetation growing there.
Above El Tanque there are pine forests of Canary Pine trees, and in keeping with its fertile and moisture-laden environment, ferns are very commonly seen growing in walls and on the rocky volcanic terrain.
El Tanque lies between the southern town of Santiago del Teide and Icod de los Vinos in the north. Los Silos, Buenavista del Norte and Garachico are all within easy reach of El Tanque.
El Tanque forms the upper part of the district of Daute, which was one of the nine “menceyatos” or kingdoms of the Guanches, who were the original people of Tenerife and the Canary Islands before the invasion by the Spanish long ago.
El Tanque, as a district, is made up of the villages of El Tanque Alto, El Tanque Bajo, Ruigómez, Erjos and San José de Los Llanos, as well as El Tanque itself.
Erjos is well-known for its freshwater ponds that are a popular location for naturalists and ramblers.
As you travel by road through Ruígómez you can’t miss seeing a camel park which is a popular local attraction for tourists visiting the area. Visitors can dress up like Bedouin Arabs and take a ride on the back of one of the animals, and can enjoy a meal and drink at the restaurant and bar.
San José de Los Llanos is a lot further inland and is surrounded by mountains, farmland and pine forest. This is where the popular El Risco or Eco Bar can be found, which is a favourite venue for local musicians, and puts on lots of live music events.
El Tanque itself has a church and traditional accompanying square, a bank, a town hall, a gymnasium, several shops, a garage and a number of restaurants and bars. Buses from Playa de las Americas, Puerto de la Cruz and Icod de los Vinos go through El Tanque many times each day so it is easy enough to get to.
Although mainly a very quiet rural location the village of El Tanque bursts into colourful celebrations at festival times, of which, on Tenerife, there are plenty.
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© 2010 Steve Andrews
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