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Resort Guides

viewOn Saturday June 23rd we drove down South to Cofete to show some friends the astonishing views and the beautiful empty beach there... Only to discover we had arrived at a mini Glastonbury, albeit without the mud! A large number of people had congregated at Cofete to party the weekend away.They were there either to celebrate the the festival of San Juan, the weekend the children all break up from School for the holidays,or for those so inclined, the summer solstice and the longest day of the year.

Cofete village itself was full to bursting with camper vans and tents and I noticed there was a nod to civilisation in the form of one lone chemical toilet, to serve probably five hundred people, that must have been a welcome relief for the truly desperate! For those who have never been there, there is one bar in Cofete, or as it styles itself a "bar/restaurante". I idly wondered if there might need to be a miracle of the loaves and fishes genre if it was going to feed all those people. I did notice that there was a suspicious lack of goats in the paddock next to the outdoor seating area.

The car park on the beach, usually deserted except for a few brave souls who have negotiated what is probably the most scary piece of road (track) on the island, was full to bursting with tents: camper vans; four wheel drives; P.A. systems; generators; not to mention parents, teenagers, kids, quads and dogs.

There was even one misguided youth trying to get a signal on his mobile phone in the graveyard.


And there I found the evidence that the revellers had come prepared, barbecues everywhere, of every shape and size, including one roasting an entire rack of ribs (goat ribs?) people were very friendly, (there were many many cases of beer all around) lights, attached to a generator had even been strung up to the graveyard wall (the favourite and obviously most prestigious camping place)

The P.A, system was already belting out dance music to the delight of some very skimpily clad maidens who were trying to attract the attention of, and being totally ignored by, the lads who were all playing footie on the beach. Suddenly the sea washed away the goal posts. The tides are very very treacherous there and swimming is extremely dangerous. Imagine if Spain had had to retrieve their goal posts from the sea in the middle of the match against France? The lads, bored with pretending they were playing for Espana, dived into the sea, probably to show the girls they weren't afraid, but soon came out again and raced past them to create some more goal posts (empty beer cans).

There were some charming small children racing round the beach on small quad bikes, occasionally rescuing each other from the very soft sand, delighted to be free of school for a couple of months. All in all it was a very happy, family atmosphere and we were almost sad to leave them. But we had to renegotiate that road, passing a film crew on the way taking photos of some very uncomfortable and out of place girls in full Canarian traditional dress. Did I mention it was over 30 degrees centigrade that day? And still they came, more and more cars, vans, quad bikes and all trying to pass us on the stretch of road that is absolutely only wide enough for one car, especially the stretch where there is a huge drop on one side of it and solid rock on the other!

We breathed a sigh of relief when we finally came in sight of the lighthouse in the distance as we turned to the left where the road is much better , having been widened quite considerably since we first visited Cofete about 10 years ago. Then we were back in the resort of Jandia and stopped for a fabulous Mojito in our favourite bar Olympia before continuing our way back to Lajares to celebrate San Juan ourselves with a barbecue and bonfire at the Return bar (and a great celebration as Spain won 2 nil!!) As I sat in comfort watching the big screen, while someone else cooked my dinner, knowing that I would sleep in a comfortable bed that night and that my convenience would be hygienically convenient, I did spare a thought for those sleeping under the stars and sharing one chemical toilet after a no doubt amazing family party and felt just a twinge of envy.. maybe next year??

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