The sunflower field in the Canary Islands that has gone viral

A field of sunflowers in the Canary Islands has gone viral on the internet. Located in the Guayedra Ravine, it’s surrounded by the impressive Risco de Faneque, a thousand-meter-high vertical cliff, and the Tamadaba mountain range, home to a virgin pine forest.

Van Gogh would’ve fallen in love with this 3,500 square meter sunflower field, and so have hundreds of thousands of people in the online world. Located in the Guayedra Ravine, an area belonging to the Tamadaba Natural Park in Gran Canaria, this peculiar piece of land has went viral online due to the dramatic contrast the flowers build with the stunning Risco Faneque  and the Tamadaba Massif that surround it.

With a just over 1,000m vertical drop over the sea, Risco Faneque, the world’s 7th highest cliff, and the Tamadaba Massif is topped by a primeval forest of Canary Island pine, one of the best preserved in the Canary Islands. This is all part of the Cultural Landscape of Risco Caído y los Espacios Sagrados de Montaña de Gran Canaria, a World Heritage Site.

For Fernando Navarro Martínez, Manager of the Redondo de Guayedra estate, people come to this place “because they need beauty, that’s why they come, and that’s why we’re all here. And as if that were not enough, the beauty that this field of sunflowers radiates is not understood without the surrounding environment, an extraordinary natural landscape, barely touched by human activity“.

From this location you can see what the islanders call the “tail of the dragon“, the landscape of a west coast sector of the island, between Agaete and La Aldea de San Nicolás, characterized by a succession of great steep spectacular cliffs with a silhouette reminiscent of the tail of this mythological being.

Nature for influencers

Sunflowers are a spring flower, something that can be here at any time of the year, because in the Canary Islands we live eternally in this season” says Navarro Martínez proudly.

Photo shoots by international magazines like Elle or Vogue take place here, a site which has been featured by National Geographic and, of course, YouTubers, Instagram influencers and all kinds of tourists. In addition, Canarian families also come here, even on weekdays, “so that my daughters can see the sunflowers for the first time” says Raúl Chirino, an emotional father holding his baby in his arms while his wife Rachad Tahtah and grandparents, Antonio Chirino and Angelina Quintana, bring their other daughter by the hand.

Everyone poses for the photo while the little one opens her eyes wide and points at the yellow expanse that can be seen from the road. “There are more sunflowers in Gran Canaria,” Fernando Navarro says, “but they are further hidden.” So, the word gets around, and the phrase “I had to come” is the response from them both, wearing a big smile for the snapshot.

An ecotourism project, beyond its fame

This flower has been planted as part of an ecotourism project started eight years ago supporting the bee population. The Redondo de Guayedra estate project, which includes the Guayedra de Arriba site, as well as other sites located one kilometer from the cultivation area, and old cave dwellings where it is possible to find accommodation, began 20 years ago. Through the project the habitat has been created to attract the Canary Island bee, but also more than twenty birds and flowers endemic to Gran Canaria and, in the words of the director, “grandfather trees, more than 300 years old.”

In addition, there are animals and fruit trees on the property, especially tropical ones. “We believe that this is a model that can be used on other fields on the island, which can be added to sustainable tourism with measures to recover the flora and fauna of the territory or reforestation,” assures Fernando Navarro for whom, additionally, this sunflower phenomenon “has made the employees very happy, who are seeing the value of their work“. In fact, Redondo de Guayedra has been carrying out these reforestation tasks since 2012 through the Forest Management Agreement signed with the Cabildo of Gran Canaria, which has also awarded the estate the Landscape Observatory Prize of the island corporation.

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