Playa de Las Teresitas: A European Beach Made From Saharan Sand

Playa de Las Teresitas in Tenerife, Spain, is one of the most popular beaches of the Canary Islands, but the beach is not natural—it was created in the 1970s by importing 270,000 tons of sand from Western Sahara.

Playa de Las Teresitas was very different from the beach that tourists are used to today. In the past it was a beach of pebbles and black volcanic sand and its waters were not calm as they are now. It was a very dangerous beach, where the water hit the stones hard. But it was the only beach closest to Santa Cruz. The rest were slowly disappearing away as construction companies harvested sand from the beaches. The Port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife was also encroaching upon the shoreline.

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Credit: vil.sandi/Flickr


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