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El Charco de San Ginés
Arrecife´s seafaring nature is well represented by the pretty postcard image of the Charco de San Ginés. A natural riverfront with a fishing air about it that enters the city, and where the dynamic old quarter of the islands capital revolves around it. It is situated by the neighbouring church of San Ginés, the historic bridge known as ‘Puente de las Bolas’, the San Gabriel Castle and the crowed street ‘Calle Real’, el Charco is an must to visit when you are in Arrecife.
The image of the lagoon with its many traditional fishing boats is its main attraction. It is a unique landscape which has the additional element of the pretty architecture of the place: the small white houses with their blue or green wooden windows, doors and pergolas.
Sport and Beers
The circular avenue that surrounds El Charco adds a permanent element of life to the area. As it is a pedestrian promenade it has become one of the main areas of relaxation and recreation of the city, whether it be a healthy stroll, a bit of jogging, skating or bike riding.
Sport also goes hand in hand with the gastronomic experiences and the open air terraces. The area of el Charco has really grown and improved with regard to the variety of tapas, restaurants and drinks on offer. The row of terraces which are western facing, offer shelter from the wind and has become a lively night spot. In the central area the places that stand out are Naia, La Miñoca and La Raspa and some others on the northern
terraces. In el Charco we can also find one of the islands restaurants known as La Puntilla.
Fishing activity in el Charco de San Ginés grew during the XVI and XVII centuries. Its access to the sea from a small port gave it an increasing importance from an economic point of view. A transformation which resulted in the capital of the island changing from Teguise to Arrecife in 1798. The seafaring tradition is still maintained in the lagoon and you can often overhear conversations about boats, or the mornings fishing.
El Charco remembers the customs that are associated with the sea, the ‘jolatera’ regattas (small boats constructed with the tin plate of a fuel drum), which take place during the annual fiesta of San Ginés (25th August every year). The best time to enjoy El Charco in all its glory is when the sun goes down.
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