If there’s one walk on Tenerife that the majority of visitors will have undertaken, at least in part, it’s the one known as ‘the geranium walk’.
A stroll along the promenade linking the main southern resorts might sound like a pleasantly easy walk, but don’t be fooled. The route which runs from the once tiny village of La Caleta through Costa Adeje and Playa de las Américas to the very end of Los Cristianos runs for nearly 10 kilometres.
The other thing about the geranium walk is that there aren’t really that many geraniums on it, but there are a lot of Tenerife’s beaches, so from this point on we think ‘12 Beaches Boulevard’ is a more appropriate name.
We’ve walked long sections of it a few times, mainly when researching the resorts. Last weekend when staying at the Hotel Isabel in Costa Adeje we walked nearly all of it for the first time from Playa del Duque to the harbour at Los Cristianos.
Being experienced walkers, it shouldn’t have posed a problem for us, except for one thing…footwear.
When we head into the hills, we’re fully prepared, but spending a weekend researching hotels, restaurants, beaches and nightlife in Costa Adeje we didn’t pack the walking sandals. It was a deliberate choice. There was limited space in the case and chunky sandals would have taken up too much of it…big mistake. The second rookie’s error I made was that I took new flip flops that hadn’t been broken in yet.
My feet were already tender when we set off from Playa del Duque under 30C+. Playa Fañabe/Playa Torviscas came and went but by Play Pinta at Puerto Colón the searing heat and lack of shade forced us into a café for refreshments. One thing you’ve got to say about ‘12 beaches boulevard’ is that the chance to hydrate is always only a couple of steps away.
After that came Playa Bobo quickly followed by Playa Troya 1 and 2 and then my personal favourite part of the walk at Playa Honda, an area where surfers rule the waves that is at complete odds with the rest of the developed coastline.
By the time we reached Andy’s favourite Tenerife beach, Playa El Camisón in front of the bubblegum pink Sir Anthony Hotel, the pain in my feet (more specifically the part between my big toe and the next toe) had reached a peak. The flip flop’s hard plastic rubbed relentlessly against the soft tissue like a squaddie bulling his boots.
With two beaches to go to our objective, the Bolero Festival in Los Cristianos, the irony that I was suffering more than I ever did on a ‘proper’ walk wasn’t lost on me. Playa las Vistas seemed to stretch forever before we reached the tunnel separating it from Playa Los Cristianos. A shop at the tunnel advertised fish foot massages – a new fad that’s sprung up recently – and I was tempted to see if the fish could work their magic…but not tempted enough. I hobbled on, reaching the golden sands beside Los Cristianos harbour half an hour later than intended.
Luckily this is Tenerife and half an hour late should have been just about right for the start of Clave de Son’s performance of Cuban music. Unfortunately, Clave de Son who were supposed to start at 3.30pm didn’t actually begin until 5pm, by which time other engagements meant we had to leave.
The discussion about whether to walk back or catch the bus was not a long one.
For anyone counting, the two beaches that we didn’t pass were the two which bookend the walk, Playa de la Enramada at La Caleta and Playa Callao in Los Cristianos.