Tenerife Magazine’s round up of some of the most interesting news stories of the week in Tenerife.

The Butterfly Effect

Icod de los Vinos doesn’t exactly boast a multitude of attractions to keep tourists in the town for any length of time. The famous Millennium Drago Tree attracts tourists but mainly in a whistle stop tour manner. Then there’s El Mariposario, the Butterfly Garden, dedicated to the conservation and breeding of butterflies and a wondrous place to wander around. You’d think that local politicians would be pleased to have two unique Tenerife tourist attractions next to each other. But no; this is Tenerife where dragging out local political feuds is more important than doing what is best for your town. For sixteen years the council have been trying to close El Mariposario for reasons that are murky at best. What is clear to most people is that the continued presence of El Mariposario in Icod is good for the town. Clear to most people but not Icod’s politicians it seems who, in the past, have stooped to posting a police presence outside El Mariposario in what seemed an incredible bid to deter visitors. The time is long overdue for the petty bickering to stop and for the council to work with the Butterfly Gardens, not against it. The local elections are coming up in May. Lets hope the people of Icod use the opportunity to get rid of the problem that is really harming their town.

A Hot Spring for Tenerife

Great news for anyone planning a holiday on Tenerife in the next few months. Weather forecasters are predicting that April, May and June are going to be hotter than average this year. After the unusually cold spell a couple of weeks ago it’s easy to forget that the first half of the winter was unseasonably warm. And even with the occasional cool spell (that’s cool for here not Northern Europe) between January and March, temperatures were slightly above average overall even though some places in the Canary Islands did experience more rain than normal – Fuerteventura, Lanzarote and the south of Tenerife, hence the novelty of a green landscape this year.

The New Tenerife Parador
The work to renovate Tenerife’s Parador at the base of Mount Teide is finally coming to an end. The renovation has included modernising the air conditioning and electrical systems, sprucing up public areas and rooms and improving sports facilities. All should be completed within the next few weeks even though the Parador’s website is still showing 1st March as the completion date (what’s a few weeks between friends?). Despite the work, which seems to have been going on forever, visitor numbers to the Parador increased in 2010 with American, French, Italian and Japanese visitors showing the highest increases. What, no British increase despite the millions of us that flock to Tenerife each year?

The End of the Circus
At various times of the year it’s still possible to find what residents from other countries may view as old-fashioned circuses (.i.e. ones that still have wild animals as part of their acts) set up in car parks and recreational grounds around Tenerife. But not for much longer in the municipality of Granadilla de Abona in the south of Tenerife. The deputy mayor Antonio Cabrera has put forward a proposal to ban all circuses that include performing wild animals because of the potential for cruelty towards the animals in terms of training methods and housing conditions. Personally I’d also include in the ban circuses that still had clown acts …because of the potential for cruelty to the audience.

Garachico’s New Port
It looks like the opening of Garachico’s new port will be delayed for some months (no surprise with that piece of news). The port itself should be ready by the first quarter of 2012 but then there’s the little matter of port buildings etc. So it should be around the end of 2012 before the port is fully operational. Garachico’s mayor also announced there were plans for a spa, pool and sports complex as well as a new luxury hotel nearby. What is it with Tenerife and the desire for luxury hotels? Garachico already has a couple of the best boutique hotels on the island; let’s hope the politicians don’t achieve what the lava in 1706 failed to do…spoil one of Tenerife’s most picturesque towns.

And finally the TIT (This Is Tenerife) of the week award goes to…the Santa Cruz Tourist Bus

The new open-topped tourist bus service launched last week was supposed to take visitors to Santa Cruz on a tour of the best of the city’s attractions. However, the service got off to a start that, even by Tenerife standards, should go down in history as the stuff of pure slaptstick genius.
We’re not going to tell you the details, instead we’ll leave you the pleasure of reading Colin Kirby’s hilarious account of one of the maiden voyages of the Santa Cruz tourist bus that started out, as Colin says, in Cliff Richards Summer Holiday fashion and ended up like a Tenerife remake of Speed. Read it and weep..with laughter.

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