Gara and Jonay, the Canarian legend of eternal love

Following our previous blog, here it is the story of our local Romeo and Juliet, the legend of Gara and Jonay.

The oral tradition relates that long time ago, in the “guanches” times, a young and beautiful local princess lived in a town of the island of “Ghomara” (La Gomera). Her name was Gara. 

There was in “Ghomara” a water spring with seven spurts that could predict people’s destiny (this spurts still exist and can be visited at the town of Epina).

Gara went to drink from the spurts and found that the waters in front of her were all clouded. She visited the wise man of her town to decipher the indications of the spurts and he told her that her destiny was to “keep away from the fire”.

Not long after this event “Ghomara” celebrated some seasonal festivities and some of the “Menceyes” (kings) from other islands were invited. The “Mencey” of Adeje from the island of “Achinech” (Tenerife), the island of the volcano “Echeyde” (Mount Teide) arrived for the celebrations along with his son Jonay, the prince of fire, a very good looking young man.

Gara and Jonay met and fell in love immediately. They soon made public their engagement for everybody’s happiness. Jonay came back to “Achinech” with the promise of getting married soon.

Meanwhile the “Echeyde” began to erupt, splitting lava and fire, eruption seen in “Ghomara” by  Gara’s father as a bad premonition after the words of the wise man, forbidding Gara to continue her relationship with Jonay.

The bad news arrived soon to “Achenech” and Jonay sailed to “Ghomara” during the night on a small boat to meet his beloved Gara.

Both young lovers met and hid inside the forest but the persecution against them had already started. They found themselves cornered on top of a mountain, nowhere else to go. Then they embraced each eather and jumped off the mountain to live their love in eternity.

That mountain in La Gomera is called now Garajonay, in memory of the young lovers Gara and Jonay, and it is the central place of the large National Park with the same name.

Please find out more of our neighbor island La Gomera in this video: