The village of Masca used to be a farming village but it became so popular that nearly everybody in Masca is dedicated to tourism. Only 100 people live here and many of the traditional-styled houses have been transformed into restaurants. 

Many day excursions stop at Masca to illustrate what a traditional village looked like in the Canary islands. Despite part of its charm has been lost, Masca is still a beautiful village, the setting and landscapes are fantastic and the road to get there offers a small adventure with dramatic views of the hills and ravines. Besides good restaurants to enjoy your lunch, Masca offers a very pleasant plaza, a small church, some pretty stone houses that cling to the hillside, and a small, yet interesting museum. 

Besides all of the above, Masca is the starting point of the most famous walk in Tenerife: the Barranco de Masca.

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Barranco de Masca. What to expect.

Distance: 5 kilometers and an estimated 3 hours time.

The Barranco de Masca is one of the most famous trails in Tenerife, and there are good reasons for it. The trek descends from 650 meters (the altitude of Masca where the trek starts) to sea level at the beach of Masca. On the way, fantastic ravines, arches, and a geological structure that dates back 9 million years. 

The trek starts in Masca, a very small village with less than 100 inhabitants but that receives every year almost 800,000 visitors!

Masca gorge. Organise your excursion

To enjoy the trek of el Barranco de Masca you will need first to get to Masca. If you decide to drive you will take the road from Santiago del Teide to Masca. The road is in good condition but with lots of bends. There are some fantastic views along the way. If you are not a very confident driver it may be a better idea to get a bus in Santiago del Teide.

At the end of the trek, once you get to the Masca beach located in the middle of the imposing Los Gigantes cliffs, you have basically two options. The first one is not our preferred option: coming back to Masca. The second option is to take a boat or a kayak, enjoy the Los Gigantes cliffs and end the excursion in Puerto de Santiago. From there you will need to grab a taxi to Masca (estimate 30 Euros). An alternative is to park in Puerto de Santiago before you enjoy the trek, and then take a tix to Masca having left your car in Puerto de Santiago.

Due to its beauty and the fact that Masca can be accessed by car, many people may consider this trek is already too touristy. The barranco´s beauty is undeniable and there is the added pleasure to catch a boat at the bottom once you get to the sea. The boat will take you to the port of Puerto de Santiago and on the way, you will enjoy the fantastic views of the cliffs of Los Gigantes, one of the top sights in Tenerife.

Since the logistics of getting back from Puerto de Santiago to Masca get a bit complicated it makes sense to join one of the day excursions that get transportation organized for you.

Combined with a boat trip or a kayak excursion, we find the Barranco de Masca trek one of the best touristic treks in Spain and a good example of how nature, local culture and tourism can co-exist and be enjoyed in a responsible manner. 

Plan of the Barranco de Masca walk

Video of the Barranco de Masca walk

Other natural areas and treks in Tenerife

Path in the forest of Anaga Tenerife

Anaga natural park in Tenerife

The Parque de Anaga is located in the northeast of the island, at 30 minutes drive from Santa Cruz de Tenerife (at 30 minutes drive).

teide national park

Teide national park

Teide national park Teide National Park is one of Spain’s 15 national parks and stands out for several different reasons. It is home to the

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