La Palma’s Island Museum

The Island’s Museum is in the old convent of San Francisco. The building itself is lovely. It dates from the early 16th century; work started in 1508, just fifteen years after the Spanish conquest. (Forty years ago, it was the technical school, and my husband studied there. It certainly looks better than the concrete box I studied in.) The church is still a church, and the music school stands beside…

August 11, 2011
Read More >>

The Banana Museum, Tazacorte

When I first heard there was a banana museum in Tazacorte, I laughed. But since about 40% of La Palma’s population works works in the banana industry (growing, packing shipping etc.) it makes sense. Besides, bananas are the 4th most important crop in the world, (after rice, wheat and maize), and this is the only museum about European bananas in the world. The museum contains lots of information panels in…

August 11, 2011
Read More >>

Belmaco Cave, the Royal Palace in Mazo

  Before the Spanish invasion, Belmaco Cave was the home of the kings of Mazo. The first rock carvings were found in the 18th century, which was the start of archaeology in the Canary Islands. Today, it’s open to the public. The entrance where you pay (€1.50 for a resident adult) is also a handicraft shop. A little farther inside, there’s a small, two-story building housing various artefacts, like shell…

April 11, 2011
Read More >>

The Santa Maria

Replica of Columbus’s Santa Maria in Santa Cruz de la Palma Back when I worked for the observatory, we ocassionally gave visiting astronomers a lift up to the mountaintop. I always enjoyed detouring past the replica of Christopher Columbus’s ship, the Santa Maria, partly to see the visitor’s reaction. Astronomer: “What on earth is that!?” Me: It’s a concrete ship in the middle of the road. What’s it look like?”…

April 18, 2010
Read More >>