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Walking in Tenerife - Finca de Guergues, Masca

A short linear walk with terrific views above the Barranco de Masca.





Altitude Gained:



~2.5 hours

The small village of Masca in the North East of Tenerife, and the gorge below it - the Barranco de Masca - are amongst Tenerife's most impressive scenery, and an understandably popular stopping point for coach loads of visitors.

High above the Barranco de Masca, the  ridge to the Finca de Guergues remains relatively quiet, and the views are excellent.

Gritstone outcrops at Higger Tor near Hathersage, Derbyshire

Above: Looking down on the village of Masca, Tenerife.
© Mat & Niki Adlam-Stiles, 2011

Walk in brief:

An easy to moderate out-and-back walk along the ridge high above the Barranco de Masca.  The undulating route follows a clear path throughout, but is a little exposed in places.

The walk starts from the viewpoint on the road heading from Santiago del Teide Westwards to the village of Masca.  Head out from Santiago del Teide on the winding Masca road, and over the col.  As you descend the other side, magnificent views start to open up.  A short way down there is a pull-in on the right with space for ~6 cars and a view point overlooking Masca village (just before the hamlet of Casas del Araza).  Park here, and take the time to enjoy the viewpoint before starting the walk.

The hike to Finca de Guergues:

From the viewpoint / parking, head down the road a short distance to the first switchback - a right hand bend just above the hamlet of Casas del Araza.  From here two paths head West.  The left-hand path heads past the hamlet, and down the Barranco del Natura to the coast.  Our path is the right hand one that heads out onto the ridge.

The path is a little unclear at first - a multitude of cairns indicate a multitude of ways down-dip through the scrub, but eventually all converge on a clearer path as you emerge into more open ground.  The path undulates throughout the entire walk, but never climbs or drops more than a few 10s of meters in any one section.

Before long you are rewarded with excellent views all around.  To the right (North) you'll see the small village of Masca far below, and the winding road leading to it.  Ahead and left is the Tenerife coast and behind, Mount Teide starts to come into view.

The path, now clear and well maintained, but never over-sanitised, heads West as the ridge tightens and becomes more defined.  There are various opportunities to stay on the very ridge, but in general the path avoids the very tops, lessening any exposure.

Abandoned millstones at Lawrence Field, near Hathersage, Dark Peak

Above: Returning along the ridge from Finca de Guergues, Masca, Tenerife
© Mat & Niki Adlam-Stiles, 2011

At the first rocky outcrop, a careful glance over the right hand edge (North towards Masca) will reveal a small "cave" carved in the rock.

After about 45 minutes you'll pass through an old makeshift gate - the rocky path continues to hug the side of the ridge, climbing towards the plateau at the Finca de Guergues.  The geology here is excellent, with some fine examples of volcanic (basalt) dykes exposed.

A short section of path built up on the edge of the ridge zig-zags to bring you over the top and onto the plateau.  Ahead you will some small derelict buildings, the remains of the Finca and just beyond them, an old threshing circle.


Looking across the windswept Dark Peak moor towards Stanage Edge

Above:  The threshing circle at the Finca de Guergues, Tenerife.
© Mat & Niki Adlam-Stiles, 2011

Take a while to explore the area and take in the excellent views that are all around you, before returning by the same route.


View Walking in Tenerife in a larger map