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Always progressing and always striving to better itself, that’s Callao Salvaje on the western edge of Costa Adeje. This popular resort has grown steadily over the last 30 years and is now ready for its crowning glory, a 2.3 million euro upgrade of the beach at Playa de Ajabo.
The large sheltered bay currently has a mix of dark volcanic sand and shingle but has long been promised a coating of softer, lighter sand, changing facilities and showers. The Adeje council has drawn up plans, put them on public display and is now ready to start work on the area. As well as the beach, a new coastal walkway will link Callao Salvaje to the nearby resort of Playa Paraiso to the east, this area of coast is very rugged and attracts a rich variety of wildlife.
The access road down to Callao Salvaje has been resurfaced in recent years and a new roundabout at the top, makes it easier and safer to approach. Half way down the road, a new church and sports centre are taking shape, the high vaulted, slanting roof of the church is striking, especially as stained glass windows have been installed. Many ex pats have settled in Callao Salvaje, some of the villas that line the main road in are large and lavish, further down they give way to some big modern hotels and a thriving commercial area with a good choice of bars and restaurants. A newly terraced and planted viewing area looks out onto the Atlantic and the island of La Gomera.
The new beach is a fitting reward for a community that has worked closely together to keep up the steady improvement in the look and content of Callao Salvaje.
People settle in Tenerife for many reasons, and Costa Adeje lures many different nationalities for many reasons. It takes an adventurous spirit to relocate to another country but some are more adventurous than others, Peter Raab from Germany is a prime example. The long term resident of Tenerife owns Total Marine in Puerto Colon,Â boat brokers and marine experts, when it comes to practical experience he has the ultimate qualification, he has recently returned from a 3,000 mile two man rowing trip to Antigua.
Ocean rowing has a long proud tradition in the Canary Islands and Peter first got the itch when the 2001 Atlantic Rowing Challenge set off from Playa San Juan on the west coast. The idea simmered until Peter decided in late 2006, it was time to have a go himself, so he set about raising funds and finding a partner and a boat. Martha Dos was a sturdy 7.1 metre long and 1.9 metre wide row boat, that had made the crossing in 61 days in the 2001 race, and Peter managed to rent the boat from the Martha Dos hospice charity in the north of Tenerife, this was the first contribution to charity.
The original rowing partner had to pull out at a late stageÂ but after chasing up his contacts, Peter found Tim Wilks, a semi pro rugby player and adventurer from Darlington, who was keen and willing to push himself to the limit to catch up fast on the gruelling training. As the December 8 2007 departure date raced towards them, the boat became a familiar site in Puerto Colon harbourÂ as it went out on late evening training runs.
As if the sheer mental and physical challenge wasn’t enough, Peter and Tim pledged to raise funds for the Orobal charity, an organisation that supports the Â mentally and physically handicapped from its Los Cristianos base. Local business’s and groups like Freebird Sailing and Santiago del Teide Lions Club rallied round with sponsorship, and on the morning of December 8, a large crowd packed the Puerto Colon marina to see them off.
Powerful waves, strong currents, hot sun, cramped conditions and basic food and drink were all hardships they had to bear but after 59 days, 3 hours and 30 minutes, they sailed into Antigua to a heroes welcome. Now 4 months on, Tim is back in England, Peter is back in Costa Adeje but the boat is still stuck in Antigua, much to their annoyance. “We have paid to have it shipped back” said Peter, “but are still waiting for the Ocean Rowing Society to make it happen. It’s rented till August, so if we don’t get it back soon, we will end up paying out more money.”
The boat will bring a financial bounty back with it, all the special equipment bought for the crossing will be sold and that money will go into the pot for the Orobal charity.Â Â The total is currently nearly 9,000 euros but that will also be swelled by the DVD of the crossing that they have just brought out. All the trials and tribulations of life at sea are on there and the 14.99 euros price includes a 9 euro donation to Orobal, just pop into Total Marine on the first floor at Puerto Colon or make contact via the website.
As to the future, Peter isn’t about to take up the oars again but he does say, with a far away glint in his eye, Â that he is looking for another challenge.
What a sporting spectacle, two worthy opponents, unseperable in open play, forced into a sudden death showdown on Sunday evening, with a big prize awaiting them. No, not Spains Euro 2008 triumph, this was drama Costa Adeje style, in the 2008 Tenerife Ladies Open at Golf Costa Adeje, played out to a Europe wide television audience.
Rebecca Hudson from Doncaster eventually lifted the trophy after seeing off Anne-Lise Caudal of France with a winning putt at the 17th hole. The four day competition had come to the boil after both players took 278 shots to finish on 10 below parr. It was a tight contest all the way, and third place was shared between Europe number one Gwladys Nocera of France and, one for the future, amateur sensation, Carlota Ciganda of Spain, both had taken 281 shots.
The real star of the contest was Costa Adeje itself, not just the beautiful course with its trees, shrubs, stone walls and sloping greens that look out to La Gomera, but also the surrounding coasts and mountains, all will have been captured by the cameras to present a living brochure to potential property investors, holiday makers and golfers. Golf Costa Adeje is one of the top courses in Tenerife, and the best way to really appreciate it is to get out there and play, full details of charges and course statistics are on the website. It is just one of the fantastic range of attractions in Costa Adeje, let’s hope we see you soon.
A field of 120 of the best lady golfers in the world and last years winner, Nikki Garrett, coming back to defend her title, the 2008 Tenerife Ladies Open was always going to be tough, but now Europe’s number one player, Gwladys Nocera (below) from France, has added her name to the contestants to crank the competition up another notch.
Golf Costa Adeje is all ready for the pre tournament training day on Tuesday 17th June, followed by the Wednesday Pro Am tournament, before the competitive action starts on Thursday 19 June, finishing on Sunday 22 June. Gwladys is in hot form this season, having won the Dutch and Scottish Opens, one of the best of her 6 years as a professional.
The ravines, stone walls and natural features will once again prove a true test for the players but a wonderful backdrop for those watching at the course and on television. Tenerife will be seen at it’s best and the lure of propert investment here will again be felt strongly to UK golf fans. There’s no harm in looking and maybe dreaming, and if you visit the website of Second Home Tenerife the prices may well convince you that it’s time to turn the dream into a reality.
Passing through the bustling shopping area of San Eugenio, you could easily overlook Puerto Colon, but a short walk down the slip road will bring its reward in a whole range of water based fun. The beach is a real family favourite, small and intimate and with fine grain sand that brushes off easily. The sea shelves gently out into the partly enclosed bay and is always calm. A popular summer addition is the series of inflatables moored just off the beach, for a small charge, children can clamber over them, slide off them and generally have a good time whilst supervised by life guards.
At the back of the beach, a selection of bars and restaurants are just a step away, and with no traffic to worry about, the little ones will be in their element. To the left of the beach, the walkway leads round to the marina. Here you can find every sporting and leisure pursuit you could wish for, from dolphin and whale watching trips to jet ski hire or diving schools. There’s a buzzing social scene here day and night with a wide choice of restaurants and plenty of live music later in the evening. Puerto Colon is one of those hidden gems that is popular with locals or those who have bought a second home here, and a great discovery for holiday makers.
The old town of Adeje is always a delight to visit, a little inland and uphill, it has bags of charm and is a great place to relax over a coffee. The main road meanders uphill from the small plaza to the Ayuntamiento (council) building and church, and is lined with shady palm trees that add to the serene feel. Once a year, on Good Friday, the main street is lined with thousands of people who flock to see the Passion, a very graphic and moving depiction of the cruxifiction, played out with a cast of hundreds in full costume.
Tourism has not been allowed to intrude and change the face of Adeje, at the top of the two main roads you can walk through to the remains of the old fortress, the Casa Fuerte still has the old canon on guard outside. Just above here is the entrance to the Barranco de Invierno, and almost everywhere you go in Adeje, the table top peak of Roque del Conde dominates the view.
Tradition is very important here, and fiestas are celebrated with colour and flair . There is room for more modern entertainment though, and the sports stadium is always busy with football, rugby and big open air concerts by leading Latino artists. Adeje is a great place to visit, the wider Costa Adeje area is bright, modern and vibrant, but it’s good to see that the old heart still beats strongly and influences the flavour of local life.
Presents to take back for friends and family, are something of an obligation when going on holiday, but while you are at it, you may as well treat yourself, and in Costa Adeje, you are spoilt for choice, if you want a special shopping experience.
There are two major, modern shopping centres in Costa Adeje, Plaza del Duque in the up market area of Bahia del Duque, and Centro Commercial Gran Sur, in FaÃ±abe, just on the north side of the motorway. Both have a large range of shops on several floors and ample parking and both love to put on a fashion show to give the shoppers a chance to see how all the latest styles will look once on.
Let’s have a look at fashion events held recently at both venues. Plaza del Duque (pic above) made full use of their three level centre, with the show taking place around the core with its view to the hills in the afternoon, and as evening drew in, the open top added the night sky as a backdrop. Family wear was very much in voque, and the change from day to night allowed a smooth transition from beach and casual wear to evening chic.
Gran Sur focussed on youth, and with the incentive “Do You Want To Be A Model” their competition pitched 240 would be catwalk boys and girls against each other in stylish competition. Eventually they were narrowed down to just 20, and in a nail biting finish, they selected a male and female winner, with each winning a professional portfolio to start them off on the road to international fame – hopefully.
In both cases, the shopping public were the winners as they relaxed among smart bars and restaurants and let the shows unfold around them. Shopping in Tenerife is a whole different experience and Costa Adeje has it down to a fine art.
Now that work has started on the beachfront upgrade in La Caleta, more details have been released of the large green park and leisure area that will be a key part of the project. The Las Nieves park, just behind La Enramada beach, will cover 27,000 square metres and feature special areas for different types of flowers, plants and even vegetables, as well as lots of open space for walkers to enjoy.
At a cost of 1,900,000 euros, special efforts will be made to bring together some of the best examples of the Canary Islands flora, to create a natural area to compliment the steady development of this popular area of the island. Palm trees and other varieties will ensure shady protected areas and more exotic species like sugar cane will also be grown, and new strains of vegetables. The plans have been drawn up and some of the ground work is already underway, the planned completion date is Spring 2009, it should be well worth the wait.