Arrecife still. Castella Santa Barbara Pirate Museum, Haria, Mirador del Rio and LIDL

Sun 25 Oct 2015 11:58
An excellent vantage point is why the Castello was built on this particular volcanic summit. Since the 16th Century contact with Africa and Europe has brought a mix of friendly and very unfriendly activities. Camels were brought from Africa to fulfill the same roles as shire horses in the UK. Much of the island was farmed on soil, before the volcanic eruptions of 1730-36 and 1864 buried everything. Camels pulled the ploughs and transported goods. The small number that remain are a reminder of camel trains now replaced by car trains.
In 1618 Tabac Arraez and Soliman landed in Arrecife with 4000 men aboard 36 ships, a terrifying sight. They plundered Teguise, a small town just inland and stole anything of value and 900 people. The wealthy were ransomed and the rest sold as slaves. So the fort was built to give early warning and time to prepare and defend coastal towns.
Its a great place for all ages to visit. Everything is in English as well as Spanish and there are models and videos plus references to every pirate source you can think of including toys, books, cartoons, Johnny Depp, Gregory Peck, Errol Flynn (before my time you understand) comic books. But to the Canary Islanders they were not amusing.
Haria has a little artisan market area, as well as one of Cesar’s homes. The council are very supportive of their town and we ate in their main building within the market area which was thriving with locals and visitors.
At the top of the island, from the 480metre high Mirador del Rio lookout area, also designed by Cesar, we looked down upon the island of Graciosa, and our little anchorage. Black ravens soared on thermals of wind rising up the slopes of volcanic erosion, reminding me of the ravens at the Tower of London.
On route to the marina we ducked into LIDL to stock up while we had the car. I like the way they source everything they can locally no matter which country they are in.