In this activity, participans had to follow some directions and clues to visit important points of San Cristóbal de La Laguna. The aim of the game was to show a sample of the culture, history and traditions of the city.
As a first challenge, participants must get a map in the tourist info point. At this building they could see how the traditional canarian architecture mix contributions from Andalusian, Portuguese, Galician, Genoese, Flemish and English styles…a real european culture!. They also knew the aborigine name of the city and when it was founded.
The second clue let the participants discover why La Laguna was named World Heritage City by UNESCO in 1999. In Adelantado’s Square they had to form a compass rose, the navigation tool which was used to design the city street plan.
Then they could taste a traditional sweet called “Lagunero”. La Laguna has been always an example of multicultural exchange, having a continuous and strong link between European and American culture. This influence can be seen in arts, architecture, history and even in the language.
Through the first higher education center in Canary Islands (“Instituto de Canarias”, 1845), participants found out that La Laguna always has been a cultural and young capital. University of La Laguna was the first in Canary Islands. It was also an opportunity to know some other youth projects in the city.
Why this city name is “the lagoon”? The answer was hidden in a fountain in La Concepción square. Participants had to figure out where was the ancient lagoon (before it was drained in 1837) of the city using the touristic map.
The best way to see La Laguna is from one of its symbols: La Concepción tower. From the top of the tower can be seen why the city was designed as a territory-city, without any fortification arround its limits and built along a line inspired by maritime navigation (using the compass rose).
The last stop was very special, it was a chance to meet one of the last and oldest gofio mills. Gofio was a basic food for Guanches, the ancient inhabitants of Tenerife, and it has remained through the centuries for its excellent eating qualities. There are many different cereal grains used for the manufacture of Gofio Canario, although nowadays it prevails wheat and corn, sometimes mixed with barley. La Estrella de Oro (The Gold Star) was a gofio windmill built in 1866. Nowadays that mill keeps on working at the same place with more modern facilities and under the brand “La Molineta“. The owner kindly showed us the production process.