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Celebrate St Andrew’s Day in Tenerife

A famed 800-year-old dragon tree in the town of Icod de los Vinos

Toasting in Tenerife

More famously associated with the tartanry of his patron nation Scotland, St Andrew is also a big deal in the sunny Canarian island of Tenerife. Known here as San Andrés, his saint’s day coincides with the arrival of the season’s new wine – every year producers in the vine-strewn north throw open their cellar doors so locals can toast the occasion with the latest vintage. Festivities centre on Icod de los Vinos, where townspeople wander, sampling glasses of young wine and traditional snacks like roasted chestnuts and grilled sardines, before watching the bizarre ritual Las Tablas (the boards). In tangential tribute to the old practice of rolling wine barrels towards the sea for export, exuberant youths take to tar-greased wooden toboggans for snow-free sledging down the town’s steepest streets.

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Lonely Planet
December 2015

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