La Palma Volcanoes
|The Canary Islands are well-known for their volcanic landscapes and La Palma is no exception. With the highest point rising approximately 7 km above the ocean floor, La Palma is allegedly the steepest island in the world and the northern part is the oldest with the south being newly formed in volcanic terms.
Volcán San Antonio and Volcán Teneguía
Volcán San Antonio and Volcán Teneguía are both situated in the Fuencaliente area which is in the south of the island. The trail leads from the visitor center just outside the town and continues all the way down to the lighthouse offering a vast array of scenery and flora along the way.
The trails offer various grades for both the adventurous and those who just want to 'stand' on a volcano without having to climb one! Not all volcanoes look the same though so if you visit Volcán San Antonio, try to make it down to Volcán Teneguia as well to see the differences between the two.
We've included details of our walk to both Volcán San Antonio and Volcán Teneguía within our Walking section. You can see and stand on Volcán San Antonio by just parking at the visitor centre and walking a very short distance to reach the start of the path. Volcán Teneguía is far more impressive though and well worth the hike!
The most recent volcanic eruption was that of Volcán Teneguia in 1971 but this posed no threat to the community.
Caldera de Taburiente
North of the island lies the largest known crater and National Park of the Caldera de Taburiente. The Caldera crater as seen today was formed when the volcano collapsed during a landslide some 500,000 years ago. Roque de los Muchachos (2,423m), is the highest point where an Astrophysical Observatory can be found.
Walking within the caldera is considered to be one of the best possible walks on the island however heavy or persistent rainfall can loosen the rocks and this is carefully monitored by the park authorities. Ensure you have some knowledge of the area or use a professional walking guide if you are visiting and also check that the park is open before setting off.
Unfortunately the park was closed due to rain during our visit in February 2008 and our organised walk was cancelled twice so we never made it there. Bear this in mind and book the walk at the start of your holiday if you can. It was something that we really wanted to do but couldn't on this occasion.
We've included a gallery of photos from the volcanoes that we saw during our visit which we hope will show you what to expect.
We were amazed at the stunning variations of rock colours especially on and around Volcán Teneguía and we hope our photos capture the colours that we saw.