Tazacorte Church

March 13, 2019

The outside of the church of St Michael the Archangel, Tazacorte I’m not religious, but most of the churches on La Palma are beautiful, and worth at least a quick look. Even if the building itself isn’t special, there’s often a beautiful renaissance statue. I translated a text about Tazacorete chuurch which said that it “was built at the end of the 15th century, making it the oldest religious building…

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Wig Fiesta 2017

February 28, 2019

Carnival in Santa Cruz kicks off with the wig fiesta on Friday night. It’s a brilliant idea, because bought wigs start from about 2.50€, so almost anyone can afford it, and creative people can (and do) make their own. Click for a the full size version of the panorama.

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Santa Cruz town hall murals

Mural by Mariano de Cossio in Santa Cruz town hall, La Palma island
February 23, 2019

Santa Cruz town hall is open to the public, and the main staircase is well worth a look because of the mural showing the traditional labours of the island. It’s by Mariano de Cossio (1890-1960)

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Where on Earth is La Palma anyway?

Map of the Canary Islands, showing La Palma at top left
February 20, 2019

I originally came to La Palma to work at the astronomical observatory here. Almost as soon as I heard I’d got the job, my parents went to a travel agent to find out how much it would cost to visit. The young man at the desk said, “Las Palmas de Gran Canaris? Certainly Sir. I’ll just look it up for you.” “No,” explained my father. “The island of La Palma….

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Water filters

February 15, 2019

Some of the older houses still use these water filters and coolers in summer. You put the water into the bowl at the top, made of a porous stone (I think it’s volcanic tuff). The water filters through, and drips into the bottom bowl, which isn’t porous. Obviously this filters out any impurities, and because some of the water evaporates, the rest cools down. The stand for the wooden bowls…

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The Barranco de las Angustias

This is the Barranco de las Angustias the Ravine of Anguish. The name comes from the conquest of the island, back at the end of the fifteenth century. Most of the tribes on the island took one look at the heavily-armed Spanish, and gave up without a fight. Four tribes fought briefly, but soon surrendered. After all, the original inhabitants, the Benhoaristas, had only stick and stones to fight against…

February 12, 2019
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