Amigos viajeros: @evycabraltavares
Tiempo de lectura: 5 minutos

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On this occasion, in our section of travelling friends, @evycabraltavares presents a very special text. Evy tells us about her arrival on the island of Tenerife several years ago and what made her fall in love with it, even to the point of staying and living there!

Some very personal reflections that show us how the island is seen through foreign eyes! It has moved us!


Tenerife: My second home.

Hello everyone. I’m going to tell you a bit of my story on this magnificent island, whose name is Tenerife.

It all started when I finished high school and took exams for scholarships in the Canary Islands, as my country, Cape Verde has an agreement to study in the archipelago.

I took the exams, which were 6 by the way and different subjects (language, mathematics, history, philosophy etc …) and after a week we were given the grade. Fortunately, I was one of those chosen for the training scholarship in the Canary Islands. I was very excited because I had the opportunity to travel for the first time, to leave my country to get to know a new place and pursue a career.

After knowing the grades, I had to choose the island where I wanted to study (Las Palmas de Gran Canaria or Santa Cruz de Tenerife) and without having the slightest idea and guided by a cousin of mine, I chose Tenerife.

I began to investigate where the Canary Islands were (they are very close to my country, only 2 and a half hours by plane). The truth is that I didn’t know that both countries are so close and that we have so much in “common”, as for example: we share the same sea, we are islands, we are very close to the African continent…

Later, I tried to learn Spanish so that I could defend myself and make myself understood when they addressed me. At least speak the basics!

Amigos viajeros: @evycabraltavares

My arrival in Tenerife.

The days passed very quickly and without realizing it I arrived on January 16, 2011. Between cries and hugs, I said goodbye to my parents, siblings, friends, relatives, my home and my country and I traveled to the Canary Islands without knowing the language, the culture, the way of life, etc … I embarked on this experience and launched myself for all, because that was what interested me, to have a better future for myself and my family.

I arrived in the middle of winter. I had a very difficult time with the temperature. It barely reached 10°C. My body couldn’t stand it because the minimum temperature in my country is 19°C. After the low temperatures, what surprised me was to see elderly women at the airport, so well dressed, with make-up and heels. It was something unusual, strange, never seen before in my land.

As I walked through the terminal I saw that society was very open. I spent the whole afternoon analysing and comparing things between my country and Tenerife. It was all very new because in my country you don’t see anything like that. I knew I had to open my mind a little more, because I was raised with many taboos.

I wrote down every detail to tell my people. I told them that there is an abysmal difference, being so close, between our island and Tenerife and also how beautiful everything is here.

Amigos viajeros: @evycabraltavares

My beginnings on the island.

I started classes at the University. It was very difficult the first few weeks. I had to catch up because we were already halfway through the year, but I attended tutorials, took exams and after 6 months I already knew the language, so everything started to go much better.

The years went by. I got used to the way of life, the culture… the only “but” is that I’ve been here about 8 years and I’m still not used to the climate. There are many microclimates in very short distances! (from one village to another the temperature can change drastically).

I began to move, to meet people, I made many friends and now I even speak words and phrases of the island. I know very nice places that many people on the island surely do not know yet. I am hiking in the north of Tenerife (at the moment). Trails like the one that starts from the church of Los Silos: Black Caves and Monte del Agua. I walked along another one in Tejina, in La Laguna, etc…

Amigos viajeros: @evycabraltavares

I also know and love the food of the famous guachinches and tascas of the north of the island. Here you can enjoy a good meal, always accompanied by an excellent wine from our own very rich harvest. Hmmm! In the village of Santa Úrsula there are many places where you can eat great food.

The people on the island are very kind, always ready to help.

There are places for all tastes. For the bravest I recommend the fun water park in the south of the island: “Siam Park” and for those who love animals, in the north there is a spectacular zoo called “Loro Parque“. The climate always accompanies the beachgoers: there are infinite beaches to discover. I recommend the “Calle Castillo” in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, the Puerto de la Cruz area in the north, and the “Siam Mall” shopping centre in the south of the island. I can’t forget our magnificent Teide. An obligatory stop, this volcano is known worldwide.

Amigos viajeros: @evycabraltavares

In Tenerife there is no time for boredom because there are things to do for all preferences and ages. Where can we find all these wonders in one place? Now do you understand my unconditional love for this island?

Anyone falls in love! And I say it in every sense of the word, because a Tenerife has stolen my heart. 😁.

Today I have a job and I live here. I am still getting to know places on the island because it is huge and there is always something new to discover that excites me.

Every time I can I go to my other little paradise, to see my family, recharge my batteries and come back.

This island has something that catches you. That’s why I say today: I feel both Cape Verdean and Tenerife-born.

I hope you like my text. Thank you for everything.


INSTAGRAM: @evycabraltavares

Traveling Friends: @evycabraltavares