Blog Islas Canarias OFFICIAL CANARY ISLANDS
TOURISM BLOG
www.hellocanaryislands.com
Blog Islas Canarias OFFICIAL CANARY ISLANDS
TOURISM BLOG
www.hellocanaryislands.com

La Restinga and the Marine Nature reserve of Mar de Las Calmas


Highlights
How to Enjoy Carnival on Tenerife
Deserted beach and abandoned salt pans in Lanzarote
La Palma: A Heaven for Stargazing
Experience participating in Transgrancanaria
A Road Trip Around the North of Fuerteventura
A Journey to the end of the World, or to Punta de Orchilla
Diversity on the rocks: Hundreds of unique species
La Gomera, the romantic getaway
Following a Tapas Route on Tenerife
Enjoy a trek to the highest point in Lanzarote
Fiesta de la Cruz on La Palma
Gran Canaria’s Other Rock: Sacred Roque Bentayga
A day in the outback of Fuerteventura
Walking to the Beautiful Valley on La Gomera
"Fototrek” an amazing annual photographic adventure in El Hierro
An incredible Whale & Dolphin watching experience in Tenerife
The secret white sand beaches of Lanzarote
On the sunny side: Los Llanos de Aridane
Exploring South Fuerteventura by Car
The Best Bit of Las Canteras Beach is Underwater
La Gomera, lush and beautiful
Paragliding above the valley of El Hierro. What an experience!
Three ways to enjoy Teide in Tenerife
Tasting Lanzarote: Cosecha 2015
La Palma, a taste of the tropics
Jardín Canario Viera y Clavijo, one of the highlights of Gran Canaria
From a Magic Spring to a Secret Lake, Five Curiosities on La Gomera
Jinama and Charco Azul
Amazing boat excursion to the Archipiélago Chinijo marine reserve
Lanzarote sunrises
La Palma: a Treasure Trove of landscapes in One Island
Viewpoint Mirador de la Peña, the smallest hotel of the world and the giant lizard
A Hike Around Gran Canaria's Volcanic Hotspot
Fuerteventura, Strong Wind
La Gomera: A day visiting dolphins and whales
Lanzarote fishing: Fresh fish for lunch
Exploring the Historic Centre of La Laguna
“Ruta de la Tapa” in Valverde
Driving the Las Mimbreras road
Discover the Beautiful North of Lanzarote by Car
Excursion to the Isla de Lobos
La Gomera – a rural tourism paradise
Festival of La Bajada de la Virgen de los Reyes
A morning in Santa Cruz de La Palma
The water route, Valverde and the Bonanza rock
Exploring the San Juan Volcano
Vegueta: Time Travel In Las Palmas de Gran Canaria’s Old Town
Why You Don’t Want to Miss Out on Trekking Masca in Tenerife
Experience Tinajo: Rural traditions and breathtaking natural beauty
A lovely stroll around Villa de Valverde
A Spring Tour Of Gran Canaria
Through the back roads of El Paso
Relaxation and wellbeing, enjoying Lanzarote´s natural treasures
A trip along the coast of El Golfo, El Hierro
Exploring the Highs and Lows of Puerto de Mogán
Why You Will Absolutely Love Exploring Amazing La Graciosa
The Wild North of La Palma
Tenerife, best locations and the British favourite hotspots
Enjoy the best of Lanzarote at Noches de Jameos
Relish the thrill and views of El Faro La Entallada, in Fuerteventura
Menceyes and our Lady of Candelaria, in Tenerife
The Wine Run Lanzarote: food, wine and scenery
Experience the beauty of the pink caves of Puertito de Los Molinos
A Saturday in the beautiful village of Haría, Lanzarote
A must do in Fuerteventura – Picnic in the dunes of Corralejo
Playa San Juan in Tenerife, a charming place
A walk along the El Golfo ridge, El Hierro
The five best places to eat in Puerto del Rosario, Fuerteventura
A cup of coffee at Casa José Saramago, Lanzarote
Why Forestal Park is One of the Best Experiences in Tenerife
San Sebastián, the high part of Santa Cruz de La Palma
Sunset On The Rocks At Puerto de Mogán in Gran Canaria
A walk from San Andrés to Hoya del Morcillo, El Hierro
Enjoyment for the active traveller – Climb the Volcanic Mount Roja
Teguise: immerse yourself in Lanzarote’s history
How to Enjoy a Stunning Walk in Tenerife from Playa San Juan to Los Gigantes
Tazacorte, in La Palma: more than just a sun trap
Art, Architecture and Frogs in Gran Canaria's Garden City
Carnival time on El Hierro
One of the best family days out in Fuerteventura
Journey to another planet at Timanfaya National Park, Lanzarote
From the sea to the sky, a circular drive in South Tenerife
A journey through La Palma’s plant world
Los Carneros de Tigaday, El Hierro
Relaxing Weekend staying in the picture perfect beaches of El Cotillo – Fuerteventura
Lanzarote’s southwest coastline: where ocean meets lava
How to Enjoy North Tenerife and Wine Tasting in One Amazing Trip
A trip around La Palma’s south coast
The Quiet South Gran Canaria Beach With Two Names
What to explore, How to get there and where to stay in San Sebastian the capital of La Gomera.
Relax by the sea in El Tamaduste
The best olive oil in Fuerteventura – Verde Aurora Bio Farm
Hiking in La Geria: a bird’s eye view of the volcanoes
How to Enjoy a Unique Excursion Around Stunning Santa Cruz
El Tablado, La Palma’s remotest settlement
Swimming And Snorkelling At El Puertillo in North Gran Canaria
Enjoy a morning at the local produce Market in San Sebastián de La Gomera
A tour around El Hierro’s “Mirador’s”
Betancuria, the ancient capital in the mountains of Fuerteventura
How to Enjoy an Easy Adventure from Puerto del Carmen to Puerto Calero
A walk across Llano de Las Cuevas in La Palma
How to Enjoy a Superb Luxury Sailing Trip in Tenerife
From Jungle To Desert at Maspalomas In South Gran Canaria
The sweetness of La Gomera and the Canary Islands – Palm Syrup
Cycling on El Hierro is a great way to see the Island
Isla de Lobos, a natural Paradise
Volcanoes, wine and British history in Lanzarote
The mini-Volcano Route, La Palma
How To Try And Do Tenerife From Top To Bottom In Three Days
Playa Santiago – A glorious mesh of sleepy fishing village and luxury hotel complex
A Day at the Canaribbean In Gran Canaria
Hermigua, the beautiful tropical valley of La Gomera with a Gofio Museum
How to Enjoy Authentic Lanzarote at the Lovely El Charco de San Ginés
La Gomera’s longest beach in the Valley of the great king – Valle Gran Rey
The Charm of Vallehermoso – The Beautiful Valley in La Gomera
How to Discover La Gomera With an Amazing Jeep Safari Adventure
Calle Cano: A Las Palmas Street Where Old And New Blend Together
Three places off the usual tourist track in Tenerife
La Gomera one of the most gorgeous island for hikers, ramblers and casual afternoon walkers
Poema del mar, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
An ascent of Bejenado
Four best places to visit in Fuerteventura
Up The Monte: Exploring Gran Canaria's Wine Country
5 Excellent Experiences to Try When You Visit Tenerife
Exploring the Barranco de las Angustias
4 best places to visit in La Gomera, by a Canary Island resident
A lovely walk from Mirador de Jinama to The bell tower Joapira
Walk the beautiful arid landscapes of Fuerteventura – Betancuria
In Gran Canaria And Sick of Sand? Head To The Parque Sur For A Siesta
Keep cool with a craft beer tour in Lanzarote
A walk from Arenas Blancas to Verodal (Local walk reference SL-EH2)
Tijarafe: touring La Palma's sunny northwest
Eco-friendly relaxation in the north of Lanzarote
Life’s A Beach At San Sebastian de La Gomera
5 Brilliant Things You Should See and Do in Santa Cruz
La Restinga and the Marine Nature reserve of Mar de Las Calmas
Related
articles
An incredible Whale & Dolphin watching experience in Tenerife
The secret white sand beaches of Lanzarote
The Best Bit of Las Canteras Beach is Underwater
Amazing boat excursion to the Archipiélago Chinijo marine reserve
La Gomera: A day visiting dolphins and whales
Lanzarote fishing: Fresh fish for lunch
Excursion to the Isla de Lobos
Exploring the Highs and Lows of Puerto de Mogán
Why You Will Absolutely Love Exploring Amazing La Graciosa
Tenerife, best locations and the British favourite hotspots
Experience the beauty of the pink caves of Puertito de Los Molinos
A must do in Fuerteventura – Picnic in the dunes of Corralejo
Playa San Juan in Tenerife, a charming place
Sunset On The Rocks At Puerto de Mogán in Gran Canaria
How to Enjoy a Stunning Walk in Tenerife from Playa San Juan to Los Gigantes
Relaxing Weekend staying in the picture perfect beaches of El Cotillo – Fuerteventura
A trip around La Palma’s south coast
The Quiet South Gran Canaria Beach With Two Names
Relax by the sea in El Tamaduste
Swimming And Snorkelling At El Puertillo in North Gran Canaria
How to Enjoy an Easy Adventure from Puerto del Carmen to Puerto Calero
How to Enjoy a Superb Luxury Sailing Trip in Tenerife
Isla de Lobos, a natural Paradise
Playa Santiago – A glorious mesh of sleepy fishing village and luxury hotel complex
A Day at the Canaribbean In Gran Canaria
La Gomera’s longest beach in the Valley of the great king – Valle Gran Rey
Calle Cano: A Las Palmas Street Where Old And New Blend Together
Eco-friendly relaxation in the north of Lanzarote
Life’s A Beach At San Sebastian de La Gomera
www.hellocanaryislands.com
Previous article
15 Jul 2019

As we head south on the island we pass across the plateau in an area called Nisdafe with its lush green vegetation and a wonderful show of wild flowers. Next we drop down through the forest of Canarian Pine trees into the village of El Pinar.
After leaving El Pinar you weave your way down towards the coast. As you travel the landscape is forever changing and gradually becomes more barren. And you find yourself driving through multi coloured volcanic lava fields.

As you near La Restinga and watch the sea, you can normally see the line which is the start of the marine nature reserve of Mar de Las Calmas. One side the sea can be quite rough and then to the right of the line the sea looks calm.

The area became a nature reserve in 1996, and since then the locals and the Canary Island Government have done whatever it can to preserve the area in a pristine condition.

La Restinga is the most south westerly town in the whole of the Canary Island Archipelago.

It is the nearest El Hierro can boast of as a holiday resort. A lot quieter than the majority of the other islands, but it has a blue flag beach which it is very proud of. It has all the amenities you could wish for.

View down onto the harbour from the front, La Restinga, El Hierro, Canary Islands

One thing which draws the people to La Restinga is the diving.  It is world famous for its spectacular underwater scenery and wildlife. They regularly hold an underwater photographic competition called Open Fotosub El Hierro. Sometimes it is an online competition and other times they have a weekend event.

This time I will mention little about the diving as it is something I have yet to experience. They are trying to tempt me to take part in what they call a baptism, which takes place on the beach were novices can experience what it is like to be submerged under the water with all the equipment in a fully controlled environment, with experienced scuba divers an instructors.

The harbour now has numerous pontoons for the local fishermen’s boats, the diving school boats and mooring for visiting yachts. There is always something going on for the people watchers. On many occasions you can see local fishermen unloading their catch of Tuna fish or Peto, a white tuna fish only ever sold on this island.

In October 2011an event occurred which has helped to improve the diving in Mar de Las Calmas! 

Turquoise sea during the underwater volcanic activity of 2011, La Restinga, El Hierro, Canary Islands

El Hierro for a very short while had its own underwater volcano just off the coast of La Restinga. The big clue being that the sea had a beautiful turquoise stain running hundreds of miles into the ocean.  

NASA was able to photograph the phenomenon and this photograph later received the most votes and became NASA’s photo of the year in the Tournament earth contest.  You can see the NASA image on the below link:
https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/images/77171/el-hierro-submarine-volcano-eruption

All this helped to put El Hierro and in particular La Restinga on the radar of keen scuba divers looking for new places to explore.

It was an exciting time to be here on the island. 

There is now a dedicated visitor centre you can visit, the Museo de La Restingolita in La Restinga.

On a very recent survey of the area new plants and corals were found to be growing, along with other new species making the area even richer for diving.

Did it have an adverse effect on the area? At first yes, but now everyone agrees that the area has recovered and now has far more species visiting. New plants and corals are growing, making the area and even bigger draw for the diving fraternity.

Entry into the marine reserve is restricted as one would hope. You can only enter with permission. Diving is strictly controlled and all who enter respect the environment.

Looking back at La Restinga from the mouth of the harbour, El Hierro, Canary Islands

I was lucky enough to be invited out for an evening excursion into the area. As we left La Restinga, there was a little swell until after a short distance we entered the marine reserve. From the sea you can quite clearly see the white pillars marking the area.

Our English speaking guides were full of information about the area and the many restrictions placed upon it. Shore fishing is banned, unless you obtain a special licence, but these are very difficult to obtain. Sea fishing is alsobanned.

The shoreline was for ever changing and the colours were superb.

View of the shoreline and up to the highest point of the island Malpaso which was shrouded in it’s usually cap of cloud, La Restinga, El Hierro, Canary Islands

We followed the shore line along to the Cuevo de diablo or devils cave which can be accessed by the divers and from land. The path has suffered a landslide, but the adventurous still visit.

Next we pass the swimming area of Tacorón. The carpark was full and there was smoke rising from one of the many BBQ stands there. The area is made up of paved coves with steps down into the sea.  It is a great place for swimming, and snorkelling all year round. 
Swimming further of the shore is restricted and only officially allowed once a year in September for the swimming event of Travesía Mar de Las Calmas. The event sees the swimmers covering three distances: 18K, 6.5K and 2.5 kilometres.

All the time our guides are on the lookout for a pod of dolphins which can be regularly seen in the area, but we were unlucky and saw nothing. They did spot though what we first thought was an empty bottle.

Aerosol can with barnacles and crabs, La Restinga, El Hierro, Canary Islands

It turned out to be a discarded aerosol can that had already been colonized by a number of sea creatures.

There are numerous caves of various sizes all along the coast, some have large archways to tempt you in and I’m told that if the divers venture in they can see the sky through an opening in the roof.

Cave opening and sea sculpted rock formations, La Restinga, El Hierro, Canary Islands

They are always accompanied by numerous species of fish of varying colours and sizes.  In the past there was a Mero which was so friendly the locals named it Pancho. (You can now find a newly constructed statue in his memory).

Our trip revealed very few fish.  Maybe they sensed the change in the weather conditions has the wind changed direction and it was decided it would be better to return to port, before the passage back into port became too rough.

The beautiful colours in the rocks caught in the later afternoon sunshine, La Restinga, El Hierro, Canary Islands

As we ventured back to port the sunlight was making the vivid colours on the cliffs stand out giving a great show.
Another stop to pick up drift wood.  One had a huge nail sticking out of it. 

As we got nearer to La Restinga you could quite clearly see were the sea had a lot more swell on it showing you Mar de Las Calmas meets the mighty Atlantic ocean.

The landscape changes from high cliffs to numerous volcanic cones of various heights and sizes which are part of the allegedly 1000 dormant volcanic cones covering the whole Island.

Volcanic cones dotted along the coastline, La Restinga, El Hierro, Canary Islands

As you meet the rougher sea we all had free showers with the waves crashing over the prow of the boat.

My trip was with Centro de Buceo El Bajón.  They offer the full holiday package from accommodation to diving, boat trips and full PADI courses.

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Highlights
How to Enjoy Carnival on Tenerife
Deserted beach and abandoned salt pans in Lanzarote
La Palma: A Heaven for Stargazing
Experience participating in Transgrancanaria
A Road Trip Around the North of Fuerteventura
A Journey to the end of the World, or to Punta de Orchilla
Diversity on the rocks: Hundreds of unique species
La Gomera, the romantic getaway
Following a Tapas Route on Tenerife
Enjoy a trek to the highest point in Lanzarote
Fiesta de la Cruz on La Palma
Gran Canaria’s Other Rock: Sacred Roque Bentayga
A day in the outback of Fuerteventura
Walking to the Beautiful Valley on La Gomera
"Fototrek” an amazing annual photographic adventure in El Hierro
An incredible Whale & Dolphin watching experience in Tenerife
The secret white sand beaches of Lanzarote
On the sunny side: Los Llanos de Aridane
Exploring South Fuerteventura by Car
The Best Bit of Las Canteras Beach is Underwater
La Gomera, lush and beautiful
Paragliding above the valley of El Hierro. What an experience!
Three ways to enjoy Teide in Tenerife
Tasting Lanzarote: Cosecha 2015
La Palma, a taste of the tropics
Jardín Canario Viera y Clavijo, one of the highlights of Gran Canaria
From a Magic Spring to a Secret Lake, Five Curiosities on La Gomera
Jinama and Charco Azul
Amazing boat excursion to the Archipiélago Chinijo marine reserve
Lanzarote sunrises
La Palma: a Treasure Trove of landscapes in One Island
Viewpoint Mirador de la Peña, the smallest hotel of the world and the giant lizard
A Hike Around Gran Canaria's Volcanic Hotspot
Fuerteventura, Strong Wind
La Gomera: A day visiting dolphins and whales
Lanzarote fishing: Fresh fish for lunch
Exploring the Historic Centre of La Laguna
“Ruta de la Tapa” in Valverde
Driving the Las Mimbreras road
Discover the Beautiful North of Lanzarote by Car
Excursion to the Isla de Lobos
La Gomera – a rural tourism paradise
Festival of La Bajada de la Virgen de los Reyes
A morning in Santa Cruz de La Palma
The water route, Valverde and the Bonanza rock
Exploring the San Juan Volcano
Vegueta: Time Travel In Las Palmas de Gran Canaria’s Old Town
Why You Don’t Want to Miss Out on Trekking Masca in Tenerife
Experience Tinajo: Rural traditions and breathtaking natural beauty
A lovely stroll around Villa de Valverde
A Spring Tour Of Gran Canaria
Through the back roads of El Paso
Relaxation and wellbeing, enjoying Lanzarote´s natural treasures
A trip along the coast of El Golfo, El Hierro
Exploring the Highs and Lows of Puerto de Mogán
Why You Will Absolutely Love Exploring Amazing La Graciosa
The Wild North of La Palma
Tenerife, best locations and the British favourite hotspots
Enjoy the best of Lanzarote at Noches de Jameos
Relish the thrill and views of El Faro La Entallada, in Fuerteventura
Menceyes and our Lady of Candelaria, in Tenerife
The Wine Run Lanzarote: food, wine and scenery
Experience the beauty of the pink caves of Puertito de Los Molinos
A Saturday in the beautiful village of Haría, Lanzarote
A must do in Fuerteventura – Picnic in the dunes of Corralejo
Playa San Juan in Tenerife, a charming place
A walk along the El Golfo ridge, El Hierro
The five best places to eat in Puerto del Rosario, Fuerteventura
A cup of coffee at Casa José Saramago, Lanzarote
Why Forestal Park is One of the Best Experiences in Tenerife
San Sebastián, the high part of Santa Cruz de La Palma
Sunset On The Rocks At Puerto de Mogán in Gran Canaria
A walk from San Andrés to Hoya del Morcillo, El Hierro
Enjoyment for the active traveller – Climb the Volcanic Mount Roja
Teguise: immerse yourself in Lanzarote’s history
How to Enjoy a Stunning Walk in Tenerife from Playa San Juan to Los Gigantes
Tazacorte, in La Palma: more than just a sun trap
Art, Architecture and Frogs in Gran Canaria's Garden City
Carnival time on El Hierro
One of the best family days out in Fuerteventura
Journey to another planet at Timanfaya National Park, Lanzarote
From the sea to the sky, a circular drive in South Tenerife
A journey through La Palma’s plant world
Los Carneros de Tigaday, El Hierro
Relaxing Weekend staying in the picture perfect beaches of El Cotillo – Fuerteventura
Lanzarote’s southwest coastline: where ocean meets lava
How to Enjoy North Tenerife and Wine Tasting in One Amazing Trip
A trip around La Palma’s south coast
The Quiet South Gran Canaria Beach With Two Names
What to explore, How to get there and where to stay in San Sebastian the capital of La Gomera.
Relax by the sea in El Tamaduste
The best olive oil in Fuerteventura – Verde Aurora Bio Farm
Hiking in La Geria: a bird’s eye view of the volcanoes
How to Enjoy a Unique Excursion Around Stunning Santa Cruz
El Tablado, La Palma’s remotest settlement
Swimming And Snorkelling At El Puertillo in North Gran Canaria
Enjoy a morning at the local produce Market in San Sebastián de La Gomera
A tour around El Hierro’s “Mirador’s”
Betancuria, the ancient capital in the mountains of Fuerteventura
How to Enjoy an Easy Adventure from Puerto del Carmen to Puerto Calero
A walk across Llano de Las Cuevas in La Palma
How to Enjoy a Superb Luxury Sailing Trip in Tenerife
From Jungle To Desert at Maspalomas In South Gran Canaria
The sweetness of La Gomera and the Canary Islands – Palm Syrup
Cycling on El Hierro is a great way to see the Island
Isla de Lobos, a natural Paradise
Volcanoes, wine and British history in Lanzarote
The mini-Volcano Route, La Palma
How To Try And Do Tenerife From Top To Bottom In Three Days
Playa Santiago – A glorious mesh of sleepy fishing village and luxury hotel complex
A Day at the Canaribbean In Gran Canaria
Hermigua, the beautiful tropical valley of La Gomera with a Gofio Museum
How to Enjoy Authentic Lanzarote at the Lovely El Charco de San Ginés
La Gomera’s longest beach in the Valley of the great king – Valle Gran Rey
The Charm of Vallehermoso – The Beautiful Valley in La Gomera
How to Discover La Gomera With an Amazing Jeep Safari Adventure
Calle Cano: A Las Palmas Street Where Old And New Blend Together
Three places off the usual tourist track in Tenerife
La Gomera one of the most gorgeous island for hikers, ramblers and casual afternoon walkers
Poema del mar, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
An ascent of Bejenado
Four best places to visit in Fuerteventura
Up The Monte: Exploring Gran Canaria's Wine Country
5 Excellent Experiences to Try When You Visit Tenerife
Exploring the Barranco de las Angustias
4 best places to visit in La Gomera, by a Canary Island resident
A lovely walk from Mirador de Jinama to The bell tower Joapira
Walk the beautiful arid landscapes of Fuerteventura – Betancuria
In Gran Canaria And Sick of Sand? Head To The Parque Sur For A Siesta
Keep cool with a craft beer tour in Lanzarote
A walk from Arenas Blancas to Verodal (Local walk reference SL-EH2)
Tijarafe: touring La Palma's sunny northwest
Eco-friendly relaxation in the north of Lanzarote
Life’s A Beach At San Sebastian de La Gomera
5 Brilliant Things You Should See and Do in Santa Cruz
La Restinga and the Marine Nature reserve of Mar de Las Calmas
Related
articles
An incredible Whale & Dolphin watching experience in Tenerife
The secret white sand beaches of Lanzarote
The Best Bit of Las Canteras Beach is Underwater
Amazing boat excursion to the Archipiélago Chinijo marine reserve
La Gomera: A day visiting dolphins and whales
Lanzarote fishing: Fresh fish for lunch
Excursion to the Isla de Lobos
Exploring the Highs and Lows of Puerto de Mogán
Why You Will Absolutely Love Exploring Amazing La Graciosa
Tenerife, best locations and the British favourite hotspots
Experience the beauty of the pink caves of Puertito de Los Molinos
A must do in Fuerteventura – Picnic in the dunes of Corralejo
Playa San Juan in Tenerife, a charming place
Sunset On The Rocks At Puerto de Mogán in Gran Canaria
How to Enjoy a Stunning Walk in Tenerife from Playa San Juan to Los Gigantes
Relaxing Weekend staying in the picture perfect beaches of El Cotillo – Fuerteventura
A trip around La Palma’s south coast
The Quiet South Gran Canaria Beach With Two Names
Relax by the sea in El Tamaduste
Swimming And Snorkelling At El Puertillo in North Gran Canaria
How to Enjoy an Easy Adventure from Puerto del Carmen to Puerto Calero
How to Enjoy a Superb Luxury Sailing Trip in Tenerife
Isla de Lobos, a natural Paradise
Playa Santiago – A glorious mesh of sleepy fishing village and luxury hotel complex
A Day at the Canaribbean In Gran Canaria
La Gomera’s longest beach in the Valley of the great king – Valle Gran Rey
Calle Cano: A Las Palmas Street Where Old And New Blend Together
Eco-friendly relaxation in the north of Lanzarote
Life’s A Beach At San Sebastian de La Gomera
www.hellocanaryislands.com