A very beautiful royal destination: Basilica of Our Lady of Candelaria at Tenerife

The Basilica of the Royal Marian Shrine of Our Lady of Candelaria is
a very surprising and beautiful royal destination at Tenerife, Canary Islands,
Spain.

Basilica of Our Lady of Candelaria Tenerife - own picture taken in  2016


Some, royal, history

On an evening, two natives leading their cattle saw some goats refusing to
come to the mouth of the ravine. They sent forward one of them thinking
that there were people who wanted to steal them. Suddenly they found, on
a rock, the statue of the Virgin of Candelaria. Later this Virgin was declared
the principal patron of the Canary Islands. Shortly after a chapel was built.

Our lady of Candelaria - own picture - taken in 2016


In 1596, King Philip III of Spain became the protector of the
Virgin of Candelaria.


Felipe III of Spain - Source picture: Wikipedia

After ascending the throne, the Spanish monarch gave the title of "Royal" to the
sanctuary of the Candelaria. It is also the first sanctuary to have received that
title.

Later the present basilica was built over an old church that was destroyed by fire
in 1789, however the building works were postponed.

The Bishop of Tenerife, Domingo Pérez Cáceres promoted the construction. He
ordered the architect José Enrique Marrero Regalado. The new sanctuary would
be a neo-Canarian eclectic mix of styles.

On  February 1st. 1959, the basilica was consecrated in a large religious ceremony.
Nowadays Candelaria is the main Catholic centre of  pilgrimage in the Canary
Islands and one of the main ones in Spain.

inside Our Lady of Candelaria - Tenerife - Spain - own picture taken in 2016

Important visitors

King Juan Carlos I of Spain and his wife, Queen Sofia visited the church in
1977.

In 2011, Pope Benedict XVI granted the church the title of 'basilica'.

Feasts

Every 14th. and 15th. August, this basilica houses pilgrims who come to celebrate
the Virgin of Candelaria.

February 2nd. also is an important date. Then pilgrims came to the basilica to
celebrate the liturgical feast of Candlemas.

The Basilica of Our Lady of Candelaria is open every day of the year.


Our Lady of Candelaria - own picture taken in 2016