Since my first urban exploration in Berlin, taking in the sites of the abandoned runway and prison, I have had a strange obsession with it. Before I left the UK for Tenerife, I did a lot of research on the island looking for things to explore and fill my days off with. I decided to do a search for abandoned Tenerife not expecting any results. However, I was pleasantly surprised when results for an abandoned leper village popped up. Since arriving in Tenerife, I have talked non-stop to my friends about wanting to go and explore. On my last day off, that’s exactly what we did and I had the most amazing day.
The village with no name is a leper colony that never was. The idea was conceived towards the end of the Spanish Civil War when cases of leprosy were high. The idea to build a village to separate those infected was devised however, just before the village was ready for inhabitants, Dasprone, the drug to combat leprosy came into play and the village was no longer needed.
The village with no name sits just beside a new residential area which gives it a very unusual feel. Originally built on the East coast away from the inhabitants in the North, over time there has become a greater population in the South East and the need for villages and resorts to be built. The town of Abades sits right on the footstep of the abandoned leper colony.
Pulling up to the leper village, I was so excited. Googling how to find it did not have the greatest results. One place said it was exit 42 and another said you could see it from the motorway so we just cruised down the TF-1 until we came to roughly that area and sure enough, you could indeed see it from the motorway. Easiest way to find it is follow the TF-1 towards Santa Cruz and follow signs for Abades. Once you’re in the village of Abades, it’s hard to miss.
We parked up in the village of Abades and made the ascent up towards the abandoned village. It is a slightly treacherous path up there so definitely wear sensible footwear unlike two of my companions who had decided rock climbing in flip flops was the way forward. Walking towards the village, I was so excited, I practically skipped there. This was the Tenerife exploration I had been waiting for and we were finally here!
Walking into the village is like entering the set of The Walking Dead. The atmosphere is incredibly eery and you expect something to jump out at you at any second. Right up until just before we were about to leave, which was a good two hours of exploring later, we didn’t see another soul other than ourselves. Then two teenage boys came and killed the vibe. We explored building after building, houses and the church. It’s clear that a lot of parties take place up here which broken bottles and squashed cans everywhere. There’s also evidence that the homeless have taken up residence here from time to time which doesn’t surprise me. Smashed tiles and graffiti is everywhere, the place has been well and truly abandoned with absolutely no one to care for it. Every time we heard a noise or a bird flew out of a building, we would jump out of our skin. It is an incredibly cool place but also totally creepy.
The lighthouse was also nearby so whilst we were there, we had a wander over to take a look at it and also admire the view over the ocean to the neighbouring Canary Island of Gran Canaria. Looking back towards the village, it is like the village that time forgot, a total ghost town.
Definitely not a place that is everyone’s cup of tea but I absolutely loved explored the place. It has been my favourite day off in Tenerife so far. I can’t wait to explore more of both the island and other abandoned locations across the world.
All opinions are my own and just that: opinions.