Plaza de España is in the capital of Tenerife, Santa Cruz. It features an enormous central lake and is presided over by an imposing monument, as well as the ruins of the Castillo de San Cristóbal.
The Plaza de España is the central point of the city, from which the main arteries of the city emerge from.
Monument to the Fallen
Presiding over the Plaza is the Monument to the Fallen (Monumento a los Caídos), which has stood since 1944 and has a curious history behind it. It was constructed by the Franco dictatorship in honour of the fallen nationalist soldiers in the Spanish Civil War.
Architecturally, it is enormous cross-shaped tower which covers over 5000m² and is exemplary of the monumental architecture that was a key part of Francoism. It is also influenced by Italian fascist architecture from the same era.
At its base, there are different sculptures, including an allegory of the Fatherland holding the fallen soldiers, aa winged female figure representing Victory, and two soldiers representing the civic and military value.
Important spaces are concentrated around the Plaza, such as the Tenerife Island Council, which is the island’s government, and the Alameda del Duque de Santa Elena, a beautiful park from the late 18th century.
The Avenida de Anaga (Anaga avenue) is just next to the Plaza and covers most of Santa Cruz’s coastline. Along the road, you’ll find places like the Auditorio de Tenerife, the Castillo de San Juan, the Casa de la Pólvora and the Parque Maritimo, among others.
Nearby, you can also find the Plaza de la Candelaria, which is presided over by the Virgin of Candelaria (Virgen de Candelaria). It serves as a meeting point for the capital’s residents during festivals. It is a pedestrianised square surrounded by bars, restaurants, and shops.
The busy Calle del Castillo ends by the Plaza and serves as one of the main shopping streets in Santa Cruz. It stretches to Plaza Weyler, which is another central and popular square in the city. Many streets and alleyways start here and can take you to some of the city’s hidden gems.
If we return to the Plaza de España, you can also find the Plaza de la Iglesia close by, which takes its name from the oldest and most important church in the city, the Church of the Immaculate Conception. Surrounding the Plaza, there are buildings such as the Guimera Theatre, the TEA (Tenerife Arts Space), and the Museum of Nature and Archaeology (MUNA).
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