History of La Matanza de Acentejo
La Matanza de Acentejo (“The Massacre” of Acentejo) is a town in the north-east of the island of Tenerife. This area has an exceptional wealth of history and natural beauty. It is also of great historical importance, since its name comes from the famous battle of 1494 when the Guanches defeated the Spanish army. With their superb knowledge of the land, the Guanches managed to ambush the Spanish conquistadors. Following the orders of Bencomo, the mencey (king) of Taoro, they divided their men into two blocks. While Bencomo led the vanguard of the battle, his brother Tianguro attacked the Spanish army from one side. The conquistadors got into great difficulty handling their cavalry in unknown terrain and were defeated. After the battle, the colonisers, led by captain Alonso Fernández de Lugo, were forced to withdraw.
A year later, in December 1495, the Guanches faced the Spanish army yet again. The conquistadors won this second battle and named the adjoining town La Victoria de Acentejo (“The Victory” of Acentejo). After the Spanish conquest, La Matanza de Acentejo was one of the most populated places on the island.
The Tenerife town of La Matanza de Acentejo has many places of historical and tourist interest. Among them are its places of natural beauty. Below are some of the places that you cannot miss out on.
Historical and architectural heritage:
In the town centre, you can visit several buildings in Real Street and its surrounding area that depict the town’s traditional architecture. Among the religious sites, it is worth mentioning the San Antonio Abad hermitage and the El Salvador parish church in honour of the first battle with the Guanches. You can also visit other places of interest, such as the Nuestra Señora de la Luz, San Blas or San Diego hermitages.
It is history that defines La Matanza de Acentejo, but its vegetation is also spectacular and deserves special mention. And not just for its beauty, but because these are nature reserves. These include the Las Lagunetas and Costa de Acentejo Protected Landscapes, which are inhabited by different kinds of seabirds. Las Lagunetas is also protected on the European level and is classified as a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and Special Protection Area for Birds (ZEPA). This enclave is also of great botanical interest since a highly valued plant known as Lotus Vine (Lotus maculatus) grows there.
The coastal area and the cliffs are covered by scrubland with Frankenia capitata, Canary buckthorn, sea lettuce, Tabaibal cactus and St. John’s Wort. Scrubland with Canary Island wormwood and Rumex lunaria cover the hills, while Fayal-Brezal and pine trees can be seen at higher altitude. Also, from Los Nateros you can enjoy the wonderful views of the farming plots, the Mountains of San Antonio and a chestnut wood.
The northern coasts of Tenerife
Tenerife’s warm climate means you can enjoy the sea all year round. La Matanza de Acentejo has a black sandy beach in the town, known as El Caletón. The beach is 60 metres long and 20 metres wide and is usually very crowded at high season. It also has a place for anchoring boats. If you want to continue discovering the coast, you can find other spectacular beaches in the northern part of Tenerife island, without needing to travel too far.
The cuisine of La Matanza de Acentejo
The town’s traditional cuisine mainly features potatoes, soup, escaldón de gofio, stew and, of course, fresh fish from the coasts. Chestnuts are also traditional to the town. A few years ago, the harvesters, supported by the town council, implemented an initiative to promote the harvesting of chestnuts and to recognise their cultural value throughout the island.
Those with a sweet tooth will enjoy a chestnut and chocolate brownie. All of the sweets are prepared with great care at the School for Ecological Agriculture and Transformation of Agricultural Products.
Wines are also among the town’s culinary delights. After the conquest, a large part of the population and surrounding area was devoted to cultivating vineyards. Even the most demanding palates can sample wines of great prestige on both the island and the national level. Lastly, you cannot miss the fantastic chestnut liquor that is typical in this area.
Come and visit La Matanza de Acentejo
With its history, beauty, culinary prestige and culture, La Matanza de Acentejo has become one of the most popular destinations on the island of Tenerife. We encourage you to visit the town on your next holiday. You can discover its history, go hillwalking, spend time in the sea and walk through its picturesque streets.
How to get to La Matanza de Acentejo in Spain
You can reach the town either by car or public transport. By car, you need to take the North TF-5 motorway or the TF-217 highway. Alternatively, you can opt for transport by bus. The company Transportes Interurbanos de Tenerife (TITSA) has several routes and timetables for getting to your destination.
Accommodation at La Matanza de Acentejo in Tenerife
If you want to enjoy all the wonders that La Matanza de Acentejo can offer, the only thing that remains is to book your accommodation. There are various options for accommodation available in the town. Here is a list of apartments in northern Tenerife and El Médano.
Apartments in La Matanza de Acentejo - the best option for your holiday
At San Diego apartamentos we have 10 fantastic, fully-equipped options in an ecological avocado estate. The complex has a swimming pool and quiet gardens for walking in. From our apartments, you can also enjoy incredible views of the sea and Mount Teide, as well as the native flora and fauna. Don’t wait any longer. Book one of our apartments to enjoy an unforgettable holiday on the island of Tenerife.