Does a virgin, cavemen and Ricky Martin sound like an interesting mix? Leaving El Medano and continuing along the east coast, there is Candelaria with it’s fascinating history.

The first to attract us when arriving there, was the town plaza and the Basilica de Nuestra Senora de la Candelaria, which in it’s current shape is from 1959 – just like me…


The original building were built in 1668, but were destroyed in a fire.

It’s also here one of Tenerife’s most famous music festivals is hosted, Festival de la Cancion de Candelaria with lots of artist performances.

Unfortunately not when we were there – I wouldn’t have mind meeting Ricky Martin, who has been there earlier!

The plaza is nicely framed by the town, the basilica, but also by 9 proud Guanche (Tenerife’s original inhabitants) warriors bronze statues in a row along the shoreline of the Atlantic Ocean.


The Virgin of Candelaria

When the Guanches ruled in the 14th century, an image of the Virgin was found in a nearby beach. The king of the area of Guimar gave order to keep her in Achbinico’s cave, which became the sanctuary of the Virgin.

It’s considered as the first Christian temple of the Canary Islands and it was here the Guanches where baptized.

The cave is situated behind Candelaria’s Basilica and is until this day visited by pilgrims by foot from all parts of the island, making requests to the Virgin of Candelaria, even called La Morenita.

The virgin is widely revered in South America and there is even an image of her in San Antonio, Texas, where Canary Islanders arrived once upon a time.

She is carried in processions (as in the video below), in February at the day of The Candelaria and in August at the day of the Patron of Canaries.

Sometimes some of the followers dress up like cavemen, which does not show in this video.

Thousands visits Candelaria, not only in devotion of the virgin or because of the festival, but because it provides a view of the genuine Canary culture.

We did take a stroll further up in some of the streets – away from the tourists down at the plaza – and there was the real atmosphere of Candelaria.


Hilly narrow streets with charming houses, wooden windows, flowers and other every day life stuff that we love to see.

We only saw a very small part of Candelaria and I’m sure there are much more to explore.

Lifecruiser Candelaria

9 Comments on “The Virgin of Calendaria”

    Puss in Boots said:

    What an interesting and pretty place. Looks like I’ll have to put that on my itinerary, too.

    Ling said:

    Looks like a good palce to visit, captain. Especially the charming house in the last picture. If that’s a hotel, I’ll book a rooma nd catch a flight today. :)

    Gattina said:

    Ah ! my friends the Guanches ! How many times have I been there on this place ! Didn’t you take a picture of the black virgin, I have all that on video.

    RennyBA said:

    Brilliant post, well written and great documented with very nice pics and video – thanks for sharing.

    That’s what I love about Blogsphere (and you to for that matter ;-) ): There is so much to learn and so much to explore out there in the world, but seeing it through your eyes and read about it shared in a personal way, is very educative and interesting.

    Happy weekend (we are going to Sweden) and a nice VD!

    Maribeth said:

    I’m off to Berlin. Wish me luck! I’ll be posting daily, but not sure if I will be able to comment much.

    claudie said:

    What a nice atmosphere! This is an event i would want to see one day! Thinking this procession takes place each year since no time!!!! :lol: Love the luminosity of the sky with the white basilic and house! :razz:

    Mark H said:

    Something primitively appealing to a caveman festival??!?


    :wink: It is a must visit I hope for travellers.


    A perfect destination for your windsurfing vacation. The place looks awesome.

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