Nine villagers recently traveled the 43 kilometers of the old Camino Real de Chasna, that unites the helmets of the Villa de La Orotava and Vilaflor de Chasna. With the recent twinning between both municipalities as an incentive, the active tourism company Patea Tus Montes, organized this two-day route as a “symbol of union between both municipalities”, and a reminder of a path that was fundamental for the economic and social relations between the North and the South.
According to José María Pérez Baso, founder and manager of Patea Tus Montes, “it is a historical route that ran from band to band across the island of Tenerife, connecting the northern regions with those of the South and vice versa. Inherited from the old Guanche roads, it became one of the royal roads after the conquest of the island and was used until the middle of the 20th century. Currently, in an attempt not to be forgotten, it is part of other routes that run through it, such as the Siete Cañadas, the Anaga-Chasna nature trail (GR-131) or the Los Escurriales trail (PR-TF 72 ) ».
This path starts from the La Orotava Valley ascending to El Portillo, crossing Las Cañadas to Degollada de Guajara to begin the descent towards Vilaflor and Granadilla. It was a long route, which took one or two days, and which allowed the exchange of agricultural products between the regions, and the seasonal change of the grazing areas.
Currently, the Cabildo de Tenerife is promoting the candidacy of the Camino Real de Chasna to form part of the Network of European Cultural Routes, a distinction granted by the Council of Europe to routes, routes and routes that stand out for a series of historical values , cultural, social and patrimonial. The Insular Corporation promotes this candidacy together with the Government of the Canary Islands, the municipalities of Vilaflor de Chasna, La Orotava, Los Realejos, Granadilla de Abona and other entities and institutions such as the University of La Laguna and the Teide National Park.
Pérez Baso was one of the nine participants in this personal and sporting challenge along with Nauzet, Beatriz, Ana, Laura, Diego, Juan, Sara and Enma. The duration was two days, although well-trained people could also do it in a single day, “hardening quite a bit.” They left on a Saturday morning from Vilaflor and arrived the next day, at noon, at La Orotava. They spent the night in a vacation home in Portillo Alto. «The idea was to unite on foot the distance that separates the Vilaflor Town Hall door from the La Orotava Town Hall door. The route traced in many of its sections as GR-131, which is well signposted, as it crosses the municipality of Vilaflor to go into the Teide National Park, at the summit of La Degollada de Guajara. It crosses the Siete Cañadas, passing through the Portillo Alto and Bajo, going downhill through the pine forest of the Valley. Once you have reached the mythical landmark and resting place of La Cruz del Dornajito, it goes down almost in a straight line of steep slope, to La Candelaria del Lomo, along Camino de Chasna, thus entering the historic center of La Orotava ».
For Nauzet, another participant, “the hardest part of the route was the ascent from Vilaflor to La Degollada, which is above 2,000 meters of altitude. And perhaps the final part of the descent through the streets of Camino Chasna ». However, he is left wanting to repeat himself and, why not, “do the route in reverse”. Pérez Baso also advocates resuming in the future an experience that “allows you to enjoy the southern landscape, the supranubius world of the Teide National Park and the Valle pine forest, and also, like those former travelers, the Vilaflor breakfast stops, with their almond cakes, and lunch with goat meat the next day in La Orotava ».