for lovers of historical centres, flower gardens, stonework artistry and rum
Arucas is situated only 15 minutes driving from the centre of Las Palmas in a hight of 240 metres above the sea level with approximately 32 000 inhabitants. No matter from where will you be arriving here, always the first thing that will capture your sight is the so called Cathedral of Arucas, that overtops considerably all the other buildings of Arucas and has a very dominant appearence.
The church is dedicated to St. John the Baptist and it is not as old as it looks like. Its construction started in 1909 and its main tower haven´t been finished before 1977. It was built in the place where originaly used to stay the parish of St. John the Baptist from the 16th century. The neogothic style allowed the local stone dressers to show their art in all its beauty.
If you belong to the lovers of stonework artistry, you can visit the local Stonework Museum that is situated close to the city centre. The stone cutters from Arucas used to work especially with the vulcanic basalt and were very famous, that´s why you can see their foot-prints all over the island.
On your way from the cathedral to the Municipal Park, don´t forget to have a look inside the House of Culture (Casa de Cultura). It is painted in green and decorated, of course, by the local stone cutters. The House of Culture is a traditional canarian house from the 17th century, the entrance is for free and in its yard you can admire a mysterious high dragon tree (drago).
Arucas is sometimes called the city of flowers. That´s why don´t forget to visit the ornamental Municipal Park (free entrance) or the Marquise´s Gardens (1,5 km from the centre, entrance 3 €). Next to the Municipal Park there is the Municipal Museum (Museo Municipal). The traditional canarian house was once owned by the aristocratic family of Gourié, that used to govern the area of Arucas in the past. The entrance is for free and you can admire here the pieces of some of the local painters and sculptors.
Walking threw the municipal park your attention will be kept by a majestic house of “Heredad de Aguas de Arucas y Firgas” (Arucas and Firgas Water Rights Association) from the beginning of the 20th century, that serves as a domicile of the institution managing the local rich water resources. In the past the area used to profit because of the production of sugar cane and cochineal, today the important base of the local economy are the plantation of bananas and production of rum in the rum factory of Arehukas, that you can visit in the morning hours of the labour days.
If you´d like to refresh yourself on the beach while visiting Arucas, try the small bay of Banaderos close to the main coastal road with a small sandy beach protected from the waves (see photos and video). The beach is located 5kms far from the centre of Arucas. If you are a lover of beautiful views, don´t forget to climb (walking or by car) the Mountain of Arucas. It is possible to have a lunch there too.