The enchanting village of Masca in Tenerife
Where is Masca?
Tenerife, the largest and most populous island of the Canary Islands, is famous for many different reasons: for its well-equipped beaches of golden sand, for its black sand beaches, for its subtropical climate, for Mount Teide, the highest volcano in Spain, for its beautiful views and for its nightlife.
There are also hidden spots rich in charm and history, like the small village of Masca, located 600 metres high, at the foot of Teno Mountains.
How to reach Masca
This charming village is located among the peaks of Macizo de Teno, can be easily reached by car or by bus, Santiago del Teide is the point of departure if you want to follow a panoramic road. If you reach it via sea, sailing from Los Gigantes, you will have to walk for 5 km to reach the village.
Culture and history
With its hundred inhabitants, Masca is one of the smallest villages in Spain and one of the oldest settlements in the world. It has a very curious history: inaccessible until 1970, when a street was built to connect Santiago del Teide to Buenavista del Norte. Thanks to its hidden treasures and its wonderful ledges overlooking the mountains of Macizo, the village has immediately become an unmissable spot.
It is said that the bay of Masca was used as a hiding place by the pirates who have never directly attacked the village and as a shelter by the original inhabitants of the island.
The surrounding landscape is breath taking and on a clear day the view is enchanting.
The inhabitants of Masca are very traditional and they keep alive ancient pagan beliefs: witchcraft, superstition, propitiatory rites are still very common. If you choose to stay in Masca for a few hours or for a few days, you will be fascinated by its magic and peaceful atmosphere.
Many of its traditional houses are now restaurants or accommodation facilities and have preserved their original air.
The gorge of Masca covers some of the most difficult routes of Tenerife: it requires endurance, good physical training and concentration. If you are experienced hikers you should take into consideration this itinerary. The point of departure is Masca, from where you will enter the gorge in which, according to the legend, the pirates used to hide. Exploring the gorge, flanked by 600 m high reefs, you will arrive to its narrowest point, which is only 200 metres wide. You will be surrounded by majestic rocks, beautiful colours and a mysterious atmosphere. At the end of the slope you will be able to hear the waves striking the rocks, before reaching the beach surrounded by reefs overhanging Los Gigantes.
How to cross Masca Gorge
This is one of the most challenging excursions you could go on in Tenerife. It takes an experienced hiker 3 hours to complete, so prepare your equipment accurately, find a professional guide, bring some food with you and take your time.
Masca and the coast of Los Gigantes
Masca is strictly linked to the coastline of Los Gigantes, characterised by high reefs overlooking the sea, called The Giants. You will arrive here whether you go on an excursion from Masca to Barranco, or you reach Masca by water. These two enchanting places can be visited on the same day.
Barranco del Infierno and Masca
If you enjoyed the excursion in Barranco de Masca you cannot miss Barranco del Infierno, on Costa Adeje, where you will see the highest waterfall in Tenerife. If you are interested in living this experience, book in advance as the number of visitors per day is limited.
How to rent a car
To be independent and travel the island far and wide, you should rent a car. There are a lot of car rental agencies on the island, ranging from local to international companies.
The costs are affordable and sometimes you do not even need to possess a credit car to rent a car.
Are you ready to discover the ancient heart of Tenerife?