Getting Sunburnt in Tenerife

I'm working on a blog post about traveling with a drone, but for now here's a post I wrote elsewhere about the time that I went to Tenerife for a wedding. It's more of a photo essay than list of recommendations. 

Kevin and Gemma were getting married, so 50 of us upped our collective sticks and moved to Tenerife for a week. Some stayed longer than others, and Shay and I spent five days slowly getting angry at the weather. We were angry because it was better than anything we'd experience at home, but also because it was hurting us. As Irish males we are both very susceptible to UV rays (it's genetic), and so almost immediately got sunburnt.

We arrived on Wednesday, and the marriage wasn't until Saturday, so we had some time to kill. From my extensive geographical study in school and also a bit of Googling I learned that Tenerife, one of the Canary Islands, is volcanic and has a still-active volcano (albeit one that hasn't erupted in over 100 years). To reach the summit of Mount Teide, you must apply for a permit from the government, often weeks in advance. As we hadn't really prepared beyond booking our flights and an Airbnb, we had not done this. We decided that a cable car journey near the summit would have to suffice. This was immediately put on the list of 'things to do' (a list which remained one item long) and on Thursday, Shay and I bundled into our little blue rental Polo and started on the hour-long journey to get to the volcano, near the centre of the island.

Of course, we didn't plan on 90km winds shutting down all hiking and cable cars on the island, so when we arrived we hung around at a café with the worst coffee I've ever drunk, and once it became apparent that the cable car would not be running, gave up on getting up the mountain at all and started aimlessly hiking into the national park.


 Mount Teide, which we did not get to climb.
Me looking out over Teide National Park, taking some photos
Is there life on Mars?
Shay looking thoughtful

After we failed to do the thing that we were most excited about (other than the wedding, of course), we decided to take a drive to the small village of Masca, which a small amount of research told us would be a stunning yet terrifying drive. It did not disappoint.

The one and a half car wide road was built into the side of a cliff face, and tour busses sped up and down, forcing us to either hug the cliff face or teeter precariously on the edge. Shay had to take several breaks, pulling off the road at well placed rest stops so that he could de-stress before taking on the next section. Once we got to Masca itself, it all became worth it. Masca is a tiny little town, centred around a stage. There are fantastic views in all directions, most of which threaten to kill you.

 A giant rock spike jutting out at the edge of the tiny village of Masca
I found one thing amazing as we wandered around the south coast of Tenerife - how built perfectly for the British and German tourist the place is. All of the high end hotels on the south coast look like something out of a 70s travel agency pamphlet. All of the radios were playing British pop music. All of the annoying guys who try to talk you into their shitty nightclubs had English and German accents. It got pretty tiring after a day or so.
This shopping centre has a swimming pool
I'm almost positive I saw this in a travel agent window in the mid-90s
The day after the wedding (I don't have publishable photos of the wedding party) we all got together in a little bar with a slew of live singers to eat an Irish BBQ (Sausages and Sunburns) and commiserate about our hangovers.
Enda has seen some things. Things he can never forget.
The newly-married Kevin holds court, somehow drinking a beer (suspected non-alcoholic)
By the time we were all happy to be flying home, we must have contributed a small fortune to the local community by buying gallons of beer, cocktails, shots and all types of food tweaked specially for the British palate.
Every time you ask for a bill, this happens.

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