The Cloud Waterfall

Because the island sits in the trade winds, damp air hits the northeast of the island and has to rise, where it turns into clouds. Because La Palma has a north-south spine called the Cumbre Nueva, the cloud quite often reaches up to the ridge and then tumbles over as the cloud waterfall. This is extremely pretty, and best viewed from around the western side of the tunnel. You can…

March 30, 2010

This Blog has Migrated

Blogger are withdrawing support for blogs at URLs other than, so I’ve migrated over to wordpress. Elegance will be restored as soon as possible.  Thank you for your patience.

March 29, 2010

The Tazacorte Martyrs

Father Acevedo gives the relics to Don Melchor. In 1570, a party of Jesuit missionaries were on their way from Portugal to Brazil. They broke their journey in Puerto de Tazacorte. It was an unplanned stop: they’d been heading for Santa Cruz de la Palma, but the winds were against them. On arrival in Tazacorte, Fr. Acevedo was amazed to find that the owner of the estate was an old…

March 26, 2010

Palmeran Sow Thistles (Sonchus palmensis)

Sow thistles look rather like a dandelion gone balistic. That is, the individual flowers look much like dandelions, but they’re growing on a shrub anything up to 2 m (6 ft) tall. And now they’re flowing all over the island, especially on the east, up to about 1,000 ft. Like so many other plants here, La Palma has a different species from everywhere else – Sonchus palmensis. The local names…

March 21, 2010

A morning’s escape.

March 18, 2010

Bananas being irrigated Instead of being a good girl and getting on with the translation, I snuck out this morning. I intended to go to Playa Nogales, but I wound up in San Andres y Sauces, mostly just mooching around with my camera. Goodness, it was fun! My friend Helen had told me that from the big bridge at Los Sauces, you could see banana plantations that had been flattened…


The Banana Museum, Tazacorte

When I first heard there was a banana museum in Tazacorte, I laughed. But since about 40% of La Palma’s population works works in the banana industry (growing, packing shipping etc.) it makes sense. Besides, bananas are the 4th most important crop in the world, (after rice, wheat and maize), and this is the only museum about European bananas in the world. The museum contains lots of information panels in…

March 16, 2010