Ingenio and Aguïmes are 2 villages on the east coast of Gran Canaria. In the villages themselves there are some smaller sights but the main one, and for us the only reason to go there is the Barranco de Guayadeque.
This is a long, narrow gorge that cuts inland over a lenght of 7 kilometers.
The first signposts to the barranco are only found in Aguemes. At the last one, we miss the exit left to the GC-103. We have to drive a kilometer further to turn around in Ingenio, the sister town of Aguemes on the other side of the gorge. As a result, we already see the bottom of the gorge and when we drive back we see the houses of Aguïmes gleaming on the flank of the valley, with their yellow-red pastel colors.
On the first part of the GC-103, where it is still inhabited, the road is very narrow, especially because cars are parked along one side of the road. After a kilometer the road becomes wider. it is recently renovated and is in an excellent condition. It winds through the narrow barranco for 7 km. You will see impressive rock formations, in which numerous traces of cave dwellings can be seen. In the last section we see, at the end of January, numerous almond trees in bloom, not yet in full magnificence but already strikingly present.
At the beginning of the gorge, there is a museum on the left, where the archaeological finds from the 15th century are exhibited.
Halfway you come to the tiny mountain village of Cuevas Bermejas. On the right is a small parking lot. If you go to the church on the left side; can you link up the mountain path. There are some cave dwellings at the bottom of the steep rock wall, which look pretty bright. One is even for sale. Some of the caves are still inhabited. One of the residents even likes to show us his 'cave'. They are 2 small rooms: a living room and a bedroom, where there is hardly room for a bed. The 'kitchen' is outside, under a roof. Inside, the temperature is constantly 20 ° C, winter and summer. The wedding suit of the man, a typical Canarian outfit, shows off on one of the few walls. Of course there is a small fee for the visit, but we gladly pay it.
At the last cave, after only 100 meters, we return. If you fancy a brisk walk, you can follow the path further (blue line on the map in our guidebook). You then come across another 'authentic' cave from the time of the guanches. When you get higher, you have a nice view of the valley and on the other side of the village on Aguïmes. Our guide counts 1 ½ hours for the walk (back and forth). We suspect, however, that this is only the first part of the walk (to the right of the map - to be found in our guidebook), which brings you to an altitude of 750 meters (the starting point is 550 meters). If you want to go all the way to the highest point (left of the map) at 1150 meters, you will probably have to add a few hours.
When we walk back to the parking lot, we meet a young couple at the church that just got married. We even see the wedding bouquet flying through the air. Apparently the spot is a popular place to get married!
At the end of the GC-103 (which by the way is a dead-end) you arrive at 2 restaurants. You park the car before crossing the river on a parking lot on the right (we notice it only when we get to the first restaurant.
The restaurants are at the bottom of the Montaña las Tierras. Around the mountain there is an easy walking path that is barely 400 meters long. You have a beautiful view of the barranco and the GC-103, along which you have driven up. You also come across some souvenir shops.
Walk along the caves
The Tagoror restaurant is surprisingly large. Feel free to go around. You walk from one cave to another.
TIP: to avoid the crowds, go to the barranco very early or very late. We are there at the beginning of January and can imagine that in the high season, at noon, there must be a lot of people, as it seems to be a popular target for group excursions.