Bench terraces

Risco Caído and the Sacred Mountains of Gran Canaria Cultural Landscape2019

UNESCO World Heritage

UNESCO World Heritage

Bench terraces or farming terraces are man-made structures on the landscape that make it easier to farm the inaccessible scarps, adding environmental, natural and ethnographic values to the area they mark out. In Gran Canaria, they can be found in steep, precipitous areas. Within the Risco Caído and the Sacred Mountains Cultural Landscape, they can be particularly spotted throughout the Barranco Hondo, around the Timagada settlement and under the village of Tejeda.
These crop structures have been analysed in detail in terms of the orography and geology to capture and retain the largest possible quantity of water by constructing cave ponds, channels worked in living stone and cantoneras (water distribution systems) that all make it easier to store large quantities of water at one point and subsequently distribute it over the farming terraces, encouraging what is known as “blanket irrigation”.


  • Title: Bench terraces
  • Creator: Risco Caído and the Sacred Mountains of Gran Canaria Cultural Landscape
  • Date Created: 2019
  • Location Created: Spain
  • Rights: Cabildo de Gran Canaria
  • Location: Spain
  • Inscription Criteria: Criteria: (iii)(v)
  • Date of Inscription: 2019
  • Category of Site: Cultural site

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