Casting The Net Wide In Santa Cruz

Multi coloured fish statues stretched out ahead of me along the La Rambla pedestrian area of Santa Cruz. These eight chicharritos had been specially comissioned as an art contest with a special website to vote for your favourites. The chicharro is a symbol of Santa Cruz and lends its name to the local people and the song we proudly belt out at CD Tenerife games “Chicharrero de Corazon”.
Even on a non football trip to Tenerife´s capital city my rxploring was being influenced by my beloved football team. First stop was the DISA petrol station behind the bus station, it´s now officially linked to the club and I paid due homage to the giant posters of Suso, Aitor Sanz, and Vitolo. A special club scheme offers discounts and team bracelets, maybe if we clinch promotion this season we can dance through the car wash rather than in the Plaza de España lake.

Back down through the bus station and a tram awaited me for my short journey to La Paz. It´s the 10th anniversary of the modern tram line, I wasn´t convinced it was needed but as soon as I stepped on board a decade ago I was a convert. Fast, sleek, and cheap, just 1.35 euros for the full ride to La Laguna, it´s a comfortable way to explore.There have been 132 million clients in the 10 years, that includes the shorter second line from Tincer to La Cuesta that may eventually extend to the north airport.

My walk to the new sculptures took me past a few older models from a street exhibition of the mid 1970´s, and how proud I was to see Henry Moore´s Guerro de Gestar reclining and free of recent graffiti.The new fishy friends were quite an assault on the eyes and brought plenty of smiles to my face, passers by were giving them a double take and even a security guard patrolling the area had a smirk playing on her face. Some of the works had historical images of Santa Cruz on their bodies, and others had extended their arty touch to the stands that held them aloft. The shoal is only on display until 15 June and well worth seeking out. There´s a quicker way to reach them than my long route, coming up through the shopping heart of Santa Cruz and through Parque Garcia Sanabria. The park is always a delight, on this visit it was holding a weeks book fair with tented stalls lurking in the shaded walkways that radiate out from the ornate fountain.

The port always lures me down to the sea, it´s such a hive of activity. There were no mammoth cruise liners calling in this time on their voyages but the Ocean Endeavour was moored in the old part of the port for a months repairs. This is a new lucrative income for the capital, many oil rigs lurked just outside the harbour wall and the Reliant Floatel nearer in looked to be nearing the end of its lengthy refit before going out to provide accomodation in the oil filled seas. Ocean Endeavour is the first cruise ship to get a scrub up in Santa Cruz and already Thomson have one of their cruise ships booked in for a make over in November. There was even some giant wind turbines from Germany, still in kit form and awaiting instalation at the new Poris de Abona park.
There´s a long busy summer ahead for Santa Cruz, July alone heralds two outdoor mega concerts. On 8th July thoise mighty rockers Aerosmith finish their last ever tour with a concert in the Heliodoro Stadium, and on 22 Juky, Luis Fonsi will take over the portside for an evening of latino dance music. I had a more imediate appointment at the Gastro Canarias in the Recinto Ferial, just scroll down a couple of posts and prepare to feel hungry.