June has been a good month for Tenerife tourism, the government has reported a much needed upturn in visitors to the south, and a lot of that is down to the Aguaviva festival of the seas. Heavily publicised in advance, its mix of music, exhibitions, dance and education captured the imagination, with the prospect of a lively schedule for the first three weeks of June. Environmental website www.canarygreen.net was on hand at the main events and has details of all these and other green issues affecting the Canary Islands.
Inevitably the big names of Jamiroquai and Marc Anthony led the way, but for the casual tourist, the day to day events gave them a sense of involvement. The exhibition tent on Las Vistas beach was a beacon for many visitors and the environmental groups inside had a steady stream of open minds, keen to find out more about the coasts and sea life of Tenerife. The free salsa classes in the small plaza by the old Los Cristianos beach, had many a unexercised body twitching before they let the music take them over, and the diving trials off Las Vistas beach will have awakened a new batch of potential underwater explorers.
The festival closed with another public display of the environmental issues on the agenda as families crowded down to the shoreline to see 4 injured turtles released back into the sea after being cared for by Fundacion Neotropico (www.neotropico.org). A hot afternoon, the sea lapping at peoples feet and a close up encounter with some appealing sea creatures, what a great image for holiday makers to take home with them. As an advert for the diversity of Tenerife, Aguaviva was a real winner and it is becoming an important annual fixture on the tourism calendar.