Saturday, January 14, 2012

La Palma, day three

Here's a papaya tree in the garden across the street from

the place we were staying. 


On our third day of vacation, we decided to be active after a couple of days of relaxing and not exerting ourselves too much.  Since we are fans of the humid, green laurel forests on the Canary Islands, we decided to visit the region of La Palma with a laurel forest.  The area near Los Tilos also happens to be a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, but we only found that out from our guidebook on the road to our hike.  The landscape on the way to Los Tilos was truly breathtaking:

 This guy was hanging out with some other sheep eating cacti on the steep side of the canyon below the street pictured above.

Above are a couple of views into the canyon in the laurel forest.  Unfortunately, we weren't so impressed by this forest.  We visited the neighboring island of La Gomera a few years ago, and preferred the spooky, foggy laurel forest there in Garajonay with its smaller, twisted, mossier trees.  In the end, maybe it was just the same, and we are just jaded now because we've seen this type of forest a few times on La Gomera, Tenerife and now La Palma.  All in all, we weren't so enthused by the hike, the trail and the scenery were much like that which we can see in the Saxon Switzerland just a 30-minute drive from home.  Oh well, it was still great to be able to go outside and walk around without any snow gear!

Here's what the valley looked like as we were leaving, even though we didn't like the hike so much, the valley itself was really beautiful!

The same day we drove through a couple of these cool, creepy, unlit one-lane tunnels.  That's not something you get to do all the time!  German tunnels do not look like this!

 After leaving Los Tilos, we drove all the way around the north of the island to get an idea of what the whole island looks like.  This is one of the views of the coastline that we had.  The drive itself was long, it took much longer than we expected:  the streets were narrow and winding and we went through lots of pine forests and little villages--just the right thing if you are looking for a break from civilization!

We also spotted these guys grazing by the street.  Always a funny sight!

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