Fun meter: Way Fun
Location: Barranco Del Cura, Gran Canaria
Type: Desert canyon
Time: 2-3 hours
Level of difficulty: easy
Good for what ages: 3+
Hint: Paint a rock, and bring it with you.
Hiking and art go well together. Who knew? This is the perfect kid hike if you are on the south of Gran Canaria and have half a day. Someone made a scavenger hunt for kids that included painted rocks. The canyon and hike area are really pretty and the total distance is just under 5km. My parents really enjoyed the statues and artwork. Sojourn liked climbing all over and making rock piles, and then knocking them over. This is totally worth the trip.
How to Get There
This hike goes up a private road from Playa Del Cura in the south of Gran Canaria. Take GC 1 until the GC 500 exit at Puerto Rico. At the big roundabout in town next to the spar, take the option to head inland onto Calle Paradela. You can drive further than we did, but we chose to park under the big Eucalyptus trees to keep the car cooler. It gets hot! To map your phone, google has a vacation rental called “Los Jardines del Cura” which is just passed our parking spot. Once parked, keep walking along the road, which shift from paved to dirt. The big gated entry to the property is the beginning of the hike and the scavenger hunt.
A couple dad tips. Google has the location of the cave on maps labeled as “small cave monument”. So you can see how close you are if the kids start flagging. There is no shade and it was warm, so bring water, snacks, hats. It’s pretty much a gentle uphill the whole way there, and a speedy return.
The Scavenger Hunt
At the gated entrance, was a rock painted with Snow White. On the back was a message: find the 7 rocks painted like the 7 dwarfs: Doc, Bashful, Dopey, Happy, Sleepy, Sneezy and Grumpy. Sadly we only found 5 of them, but it made the hike a whole lot more fun. A few of them were hidden in some pretty sneaky places, so keep your eyes peeled. There are long stretches of the trail without any, so take it easy. Hint: they are all hidden at kid height.
She had all kinds of painted rocks. A rock troll picking its nose. GROSS, but Sojourn wouldn’t stop giggling. Alice and wonderland stones. Santa Stones. It was way fun.
I really wish we had painted our own rocks to hide along the path. Parents! Listen up. Make an art project with your kids before you go and have them paint a rock, put their name and the date on the bottom. Then they can find a fun cave to leave it on the hike for others to discover. Cool huh!
Playing and Pausing
While the old people acted like kids. It was hot and we took a break in the shade. Sojourn actually sat still for a minute. Dad has the photo to prove it.
Playful Art Walk
There were some pretty sweet art pieces at the beginning of the trail. Dad loved the ass kick of freedom. Sojourn thought the giant snake was the greatest thing ever. Up the trail a little there was this one piece of art with a sign that said, “BEER GARDEN” with bottles growing out of the ground.
Mine! Mine! Mine!
No you can’t ride it Sojourn!
The Hike Up the Barranco
The hike had three parts, the art walk, the big dirt road up the canyon and the cave trail. It took us about 2 hours to walk it and an hour of stop to explore and have lunch. It’s a single path and pretty much impossible to get lost. It has shell markers the whole way. There is not much shade, so bring hats and water.
The art walk and the caves are super fun. I got bored during the middle part, which was about 30 minutes, so bring music or have a few “I spy…” and word games ready. We like to pick a topic like animals, and going up the alphabet, each person has to name one in Spanish, English or French that starts with the right letter. A for Albatros, B for Ballena, C for Chien… The hike is a bit uphill but it is definitely not bad, and the path is easy except once when you cross the canyon. If you take your time, anyone can do this..
high and low for the dwarfs.
The Cave of Silence
You know that the hike ends when you get to the cave!!! It is a small cave that says “cave of silence” in Spanish and there are a bunch of painted rocks in the cave. It is the perfect place to have a picnic. You know what isn’t silent? My brother Sojourn. I’m glad no one else was there. We had the whole hike to ourselves.
Did you bring a stone?