Close your eyes, take a deep breath. Imagine a warm, sunny day with clear water in front of you, and sand beneath your feet. The only thing missing is popcorn. And if you happen to go to Spain’s wonderful Canary Islands and witness loads of popcorn thrown across a beach, don’t be surprised. And definitely don’t start eating yet. While the Popcorn beach looks from a distance like any other beach, a close look will reveal warm, popped corn.
The peculiar beach of Fuerteventura island looks tempting, but those aren’t snacks that we’re seeing spewed across the landscape. By a trick of nature, these are calcareous algae mixed in sand.
For the shape to manifest has taken over half a century, and this aging and formation is what millions visit this beach in the Canary Islands for – to witness nature’s enticing, drool-worthy miracle.
But hold on. It’s not only fifty years that have done this trick. The beach has been in Spain for centuries, so these formations have been taking place for eons, too.
Called rhodoliths, the formations take place under water and grow only one millimeter a year. This means that if you find a slightly big formation, there’s a chance it’s been in the making for centuries. Literally!
Popcorn beach is, quite obviously, not its real name, but the name it’s known globally by. In truth, the beach is called El Hierro beach, and it is located in La Oliva. If you decide to visit, try not to take popcorn from here, no matter how much you want to. The corals are important for this ecosystem, taking away carbon di-oxide from the sea and ultimately helping battle climate change.
We want the beach to be there forever, don’t we?
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