Fun meter: Amazing
Location: Gran Canaria
Type: High Mountain Flowers
Time: 1-4 hours
Level of difficulty: medium
Good for what ages: 3+ for the shorter, or 6+ for the longer.
Hint: Go in between february and the end of april, the flowers are only in bloom then.
Ok. So you want to go to the Caldera de los Marteles right now if you are reading this. Go. Next weekend, change your plans and go. Gooooo!!!
This is one the very best hikes we’ve done on Gran Canaria when the flowers are in full bloom. We didn’t get even too far, because I have this thing for photographing flowers. Every two steps was another explosion of color.
We joined friends for a hike in the high mountains, far above the clouds. You can see for kilometers across huge stretches of the island. I wore a t-shirt and shorts, and I was still too hot. It can get really warm in April. But bring layers because the lady who sold me the cactus juice said it was cold yesterday.
How to Get There
Take em up there and don’t get-em lost dad! The drive from Las Palmas took about an hour to scale the mountain. We went on a Sunday. To avoid the traffic from the markets, we took highway 1, exited in Telde and then took the long and windy but quite beautiful highway 130 up the mountains. Just drop “Caldera de Los Marteles Viewpoint” into your map program and it will route you. The path through Telde is full of one way streets, so you’ll need the map to get you from GC10 to GC 100 to GC 130. The first time I mapped it, google did this odd thing and added 20 minute loop around the volcano crater that was unnecessary. Make sure to map to the view point, not the volcano itself. Parking is a bit of a challenge but be patient and it’ll work out.
The hike itself was incredible!!! There were flowers EVERYWHERE, literally everywhere. And the view was so wonderful. I want to go there again just to see it. There is nothing flat about this trail. Up and down the hill, through narrow bushes and scrambling up rocks. It could get a bit slippery so bring good shoes. I definitely need better hiking boots. But we say plenty of people with littles. If you are not in a hurry, its all good.
I asked dad to help me explain the trail because there are options. The trail we choose starts right at the viewpoint of the Caldera de Los Marteles. The big hole from the volcanic explosion made Sojourn excited and he kept yelling Boom. From there it is 6km downhill to Tenteniguada. We were thinking of having friends leave a car there, then drive up with us to park at the top and just walk the whole trail down hill so us kids wouldn’t have to do a huge climb. But with Covid and the number of people it didn’t work. So, instead we all parked at the top, and just walked for 45m, had a picnic and strolled back up.
You read this far, so I’m in charge now… make sure to keep enough energy to do the climb back to the top. Mom had to basically tow Sojourn a few times. We never found a good picnic spot or much shade, so if you do spot one, take advantage. Bring water, sunscreen, snacks. Lots of people had their dogs, so you can bring your cute puppy too.
We didn’t even walk as far as we normally do because we would stop every minute so I could take another photo. Out there it was so peaceful just to walk, listen to music and look out at the view and flowers, it was amazing.
We saw rows and rows of these amazingly beautiful flowers blanketing the mountain side. It looks like nature spilled a paint can, dribbling yellows, purples, pings, blues, reds and greens across the landscape. I’m glad we went today (April 18th) because in about 2- 4 weeks, they will go out of bloom and disappear until next year.
And if you are looking for something extra special, this is one of the only places in the world you can see the blue Tajinaste. They are long, tall and just lovely. Not just that but they were everywhere, literally EVERYWHERE!!!
A Carpet of Color
The Tiny Food Stand
At the lookout over the Caldera de Los Marteles is a couple selling fruit, jams, honey, sandwiches, cheese, nuts and drinks. We got strawberry juice and atun indio (cactus fruit) juice. They were delicious and we even got some extra for home. We also got Sojourn some almonds (which I didn’t like) and some mango jam. The oranges and the honey were good (we got to try samples). I’d still pack a picnic in case they aren’t there, but take advantage if you get lucky.