Acusa Seca, 35350 Artenara.
GC-210 between Artenara and Vega de Acusa, turnoff to Acusa Seca signposted.
|Classification:||Cave House Cave Castle Cellar|
|Guided tours:||self guided|
Cuevas de Acusa Seca, Acusa Seca, 35350 Artenara.
La Cueva de Piedra, Acusa Seca, 12, 35350 Artenara, Tel: +34-638-86-40-38.
Acusa Seca Cave House, Lugar Diseminado Seca, 34, 35350 Artenara, Tel: +34-656-60-42-90.
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.
|26-MAR-2010||"La Mesa de Acusa" Archaeological Zone declared an Asset of Cultural Interest.|
Cuevas de Acusa Seca (Caves of Acusa Seca) is not a name, it's a description. Acusa Seca is a hamlet which belongs to Artenara, and has one peculiarity: it is located at a cliff and all the houses were built into artificial caves which were dug into the soft rock at the foot of the cliff. This extraordinary location was finally recognized by the inhabitants, and while the island has mass tourism for half a century, they finally decided to also earn their living from tourists. As far as we know all the cave houses were transformed into pensions or hotels, are available on booking.com or on airBNB. Just be careful if you have a lot of luggage, the road actually ends at the first house, and you will have to carry your luggage on a narrow cobblestone way.
The road ends at the hamlet, and so this is definitely a place where you can find silence and peace. But the site was founded by the Guanche, probably 1,500 years ago, and for the exactly opposite reasons. The site was a natural fort, it was surrounded by steep cliffs and very difficult to conquer. The built caves and fortresses with minimal effort. It seems their live was not as peaceful as we might think today.
But even if you do not stay at one of the pensions, you should definitely visit the cave houses, and take a short walk and visit the Guanche granary. As this hamlet is inhabited, and not a tourist site, visiting calmly, quietly and with respect is mandatory. The facades of the houses have been whitewashed, the trails are in a good condition, there is nothing to say against a stroll down the trail and some photos. Unfortunately there are no open caves, either they are inhabited, or they are of archaeological interest and closed to the public. Nevertheless, if you are intent, you may see the numerous murals on the cliff, reddish and white paintings which are depicting animals, and engravings of the typical inverted triangles.
Then there is the Corrales de Acusa, a group of 9 well-protected caves known as the Grande Ravine. The caves contain the ruins of walls, and were supposedly used as barns. There is another a cave related site nearby, Cuevas Pintadas de Cruz de la Esquina or El Álamo is reached on a 700 m walk (10 minutes) from the end of the road along the cliff foot. It is the largest granary in the Acusa complex, located on the southern tip of the escarpment. At its foot there are three natural caves, where mummies were found which are today exhibited in the Canarian Museum at Las Palmas. Burial wrappings made from vegetable tissues and goat skins were dated to the 6th century AD. From here a steep trail leads up to the granary.
It was dubbed "one of the most important archaeological sites in Gran Canaria and a place without which neither the past nor the present of one of the most relevant areas in the aboriginal world of the island could be understood." Actually, this area is home to the greatest concentration and variety of aboriginal caves in Gran Canaria. This includes cave houses, collective granaries, ceremonial caves, and burial caves. There is even some rock art in some caves, hence the "pintadas". That's why this site became known as Conjunto arqueológico de Acusa (Acusa archaeological complex).
And one last word. The view is great from this place. You can see the Roque Bentayga, the Roque Nublo, and the entire Caldera de Tejeda.