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Away From The Tourists in Tenerife
Mention the Canary Islands to any European and all they'll think is fancy resorts and turquoise water. And while yes, these are two very common sights on the islands, there is, luckily, a more authentic, welcoming side. For me, I felt I only discovered the true Tenerife experience in Los Gigantes, a tiny marina town tucked away next to the cliffs of the western side of the island. The marina itself sees a constant flow of tourists thanks to the frequent whale sighting cruises and scuba diving expeditions, but if you wander out of that area you will find a secluded, charming town square that feels more like remote South America than Touristown. The square doesn't have anything remarkable as such - a small church, a few terraces for al fresco dining, colorful balconies. That's about it. What is remarkable about it doesn't have anything to do with what it looks like, but rather what it feels like. The locals (including a few attention-seeking kitties) are welcoming, curious to strike up a conversation with visitors and also, very generous. My tip: be nice, say Hola! like you mean it and who knows, you might get a free beer and a chat with a Tenerifean. True story!
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