Sunday, 3 April 2011

View from Roque De Jama

Towering 2,500ft over the southern hill-town of Valle San Lorenzo, the peak of Roque De Jama dominates the local scenery. This prominent landmark is a phonolythic dome - the interior of an old volcano that has been exposed by erosion - and is the largest example of it's type on the island. Valle San Lorenzo is a bustling town, easily accessible by local bus from Los Cristianos or Playa De Las Americas, enabling you to easily get to the start of the walk to the summit of this impressive mountain. Although a fairly short walk, it is quite a steep climb, initially along quiet country lanes until you leave the tarmac and begin the ascent of the peak. The walk is graded as 'difficult' in the book although this does not relate to the 'effort' required for the climb but the problems encountered along the way. These include a very steep, tricky path that is often quite hard to locate as well as sections of exposure near the summit that will not suit those suffering from vertigo. Fortunately, as I climbed to the summit today, the conditions were fine, if a little cloudy at times but I still had excellent views down to the coast and surrounding towns. Overall, the walk takes a little over 2.5 hours giving you plenty of time to enjoy a drink or a meal in one of the many bars and restaurants to be found in Valle San Lorenzo before catching the bus back. One of my favourite eateries in the town is the Meson Era Las Mosaz, which is a little difficult to locate as it is in a backstreet behind the BBVA bank but is well worth searching for. Make sure you have a good appetite though as the portions are enormous and you will see many people leave clutching a bag of uneaten meat. Last time I was there on a Sunday lunchtime, it was packed to the rafters and diners were treated to an impromptu concert given by two customers who entertained us playing singing and playing guitars, creating a wonderful atmosphere. The short video below shows various views from the summit of Roque De Jama.

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