Arafo Makes Leisure A Pleasure

Figs, bee keeping, and hunting dispelled my first impression of Arafo as a quiet backwater of the Guimar valley. They were all championed at the crescent shaped Centre of Leisure, Artesans, and Agriculture which pulled my attention from nature´s own panarama of mountains and clear blue Tenerife skies.


What a lucky change of plan after rain and wind had rerouted me from La Laguna and beyond. Back at Santa Cruz I had already noticed that it was the launch day of a new improved Titsa bus network linking Candelaria, Guimar, and Arafo. My destination changed in a minute – im so fickle. Micro climates can mean a short shift in position and suddenly its a whole new outlook.

The tight uphill back streets that greeted my arrival at Arafo, led my curiosity by the nose. The Ayuntamiento (council) building was a two tone stunner as it commanded the intersection of two roads. It still hardly prepared me for the historic centre of the town. The church of San Juan Degollado was the centre piece backing onto a partly shaded plaza.

My weakness for a striking sculpture was satisfied by a lady wrapped solely in musical notes (not even a whistle and flute) as she held her baton aloft.  Pueblo de la Musica is the proud boast of Arafo and the setting of the sculpture made me think of the Sound Of Music.The modern Auditorium just down the road looked suitably grand, it was closed on my visit but a later look on the impressive website of the municipality showed that the 500 seat building was a fitting stage.

There were a few teething problems for the revised bus service but the councils of the main towns covered are discussing a few possible tweaks to the running order. I headed back south via Guimar old town on the north side of the TF1 motorway and spotted a few more stops I would have to pick up on another day. The barrancos that swept down past Arafo also set me thinking anout a few more walking routes that this service will benefit from.