The Anaga mountain range is big. We knew that, but didn’t realize quite how big, until we drove out to the very last village on the road, Chamorga. Even though our house is directly at the front door of Anaga, it took us well over an hour to complete the drive — about the same time it takes to drive to the other end of Tenerife!
A Village Unchanged by Time
Chamorga has a year-round population of less than 50, but I’m surprised even that many people would choose to live here, so separated from the rest of humanity. From this far-flung town, shopping trips to the supermarket are a full-day project. What if you forget the flour? Going to the cinema is probably something Chamorga’s kids (all seven of them) fantasize about, as some long-term goal.
But it’s impossible to discount the lure of living in a place like this. Chamorga is gorgeous, and looks much like it must have 50, 100, or 300 years ago (but now with telephone cables). Utterly charming, with its ancient stepped footpaths, traditional houses built into the hills, humble church, and a diminutive plaza which is the center of town life. I wouldn’t be able to do without the conveniences of city life for very long, but suppose there are people who’d be quite happy in such a place.
Dizzying Views in the Hills of Chamorga
Our chosen trail would take us up into the hills behind Chamorga, to the Cruz del Dragillo and Roque Icoso, and on to the so-called Casas de Tafada. If you’ve read many of our posts from Anaga, you’ll know the score by now, and I won’t blather on about the park’s extreme natural beauty, and the breathtaking trails which snake through it… suffice to say that the hike from Chamorga didn’t deviate from this trend. Just stunning, with some dizzying views over the hills and to the ocean.
A Detour to the Lighthouse
At the Casas de Tafada, a singular “house” which I imagine to have been a sort of outpost, we decided to take a detour to the lighthouse of the Punta de Anaga. This lighthouse was built in 1864, and not only is it still active, but it retains its original lens… unfortunately, we weren’t able to get very close, as it’s been fenced off, but it was a neat hike down the hill toward the island’s northeastern-most point. (The hike back up the hill was less “neat”.)
Once we had completed the hike, we had lunch, ordering the only thing on the menu in the town’s only restaurant, Casa Álvaro. In a place like Chamorga, you take what you’re given. Happily, the meaty stew was delicious, and exactly what our tired bodies needed, providing us with just enough energy to complete the drive back home. I don’t know if we’ll ever see Chamorga again, but it was definitely worth the journey.