My family and I have just returned from our holiday in Los Gigantes - they've never been before and for me it was my first (and long awaited !) visit for 12 years. This was my 5th visit in total (so far). I first came in 1987 and fell in love with it almost instantly. I have been banging on and on about how great it is to my husband for a few years and I finally got my wish to return this year. I promised in an earlier topic that I would post my personal opinion on how I think it's changed since September 1996.
I've read lots of posts on this board that talk about how quiet and mostly residential LG has become. I've also read lots of posts that talk about how clique it is and how tourists are regarded with disdain - and to be honest with you all I was starting to wonder if I'd made the right decision about our holiday. I had painted such a lovely, perfect picture to my family and I was hoping that I wasn't going to have to eat some humble pie. My fears were all for nothing though - happily I can report that I felt as at home as I did 12 years ago and I was as much in love with the areas as ever. I very soon found my bearings again and discovered that, pleasingly, not too much had altered really. Yes I agree that it is a bit quieter than my last visit - especially at the harbour area, which is a shame as it has a lovely outlook and a lot of potential. I remember having my first ever Calzone down there in 1987 and was gutted to find that lovely Pizzeria closed for business (or is it being refurbed?). Another favourite restaurant in previous visits was The Tamara - and I see that has now been taken over and renamed Little Italy - hmmmm! Although the toucan and parrot are still there, bet they're not the same ones though !
On the subject of restaurants, we did try a few. We particularly liked El Pescador and CJ's - but also enjoyed many a lovely relaxing dinner on our balcony with THE VIEW. We also tried a few places for after dinner drinks and hate to admit that we did go once to the Highland Paddy III - I remember number I from my younger days. Our son decided for us on that one evening and it was a complete rip off. We bought 3 drinks and the change our of a 20 was laughable. We didn't go again! Also I've never quite seen the point of visiting another country and ending up in a bar that reminds you of home - what's the point? We liked Domingo's, Ocean Drive and again our balcony with THE VIEW.
I completely agree with whoever posted that the Oasis has more going for it than the Lido. We spent probably 5 days out of 14 at the Oasis and looked down at the Lido and didn't fancy it one bit. Too much concrete going on and even the palm trees looked a bit tired and worn.
Thank you to whoever it was on here that recommended a visit to Masca. I'd never been on previous visits and found the courage to brave the roads for a visit this year. It was absolutely breathtaking and the views from the road on the way home to LG were nothing short of spectacular. We also drove out to the lighthouse at Punta de Teno - again a perilous car journey but sooooooo worth it. Beautiful view of LG from a completely different perspective.
We only had one small hitch the whole time and that was when the car we'd hired was 'taken back' by the hire company earlier than contracted. We thought the car had been stolen. We should have had the car until 8.30am on the last day of hire and said that we'd drop the keys off at the minimarket in LG by 8.30am or the night before if we got back in time - we didn't get back until 9.30pm and the shop was closed. So the following morning when we arrived at where we'd parked the car the night before we discovered it was missing! We went to the shop to let them know at 8.30 and they were closed. We sat outside the shop for over an hour and then saw our car drive past on it's way down to the harbour. We knew this was a dead end and so chased after it. We then saw that the occupants were obviously tourists and not car thieves. The shop finally opened at 10.15am and confirmed what we'd already worked out that the car hire company had picked the car up and not told us. They must have taken it very early as we arrived to take it back at 8.15am. That was all a bit of a nightmare for 2 hours or so, but on a more positive note, it was a great car, hardly used any fuel and we'd had a lovely few days with it. All the hire company needed to have done to completely redeem themselves would have been just to stick a note or card through our door to let us know.
Anyway like I said that was a very small hitch in what turned out to be a perfect, relaxing and over far too soon holiday in beautiful Los Gigantes. It remains my favourite destination and I would love to own a property there. Prices a bit too high for me at the moment though.
I think that the greatest test of how LG is doing is to hear my husband and son's feelings about it as first timers. Ok here goes .... we're planning to return again next year and will also bring along my mum & dad in law as according to my husband "they'd love it". That wasn't my idea or decision but entirely theirs, who am I to argue!!
Roll on 2009 - I can hardly wait.