Inside the remote mountain village where Jay Slater went missing after leaving party

The windy road into Masca
-Credit: (Image: MEN)


Tucked away in the mountainous terrain of northwest Tenerife, you'll find the charming village of Masca. This small hamlet, with a population of just 90, offers stunning views of the surrounding peaks and the North Atlantic Ocean.

Reaching it is no easy feat - it's off the beaten path, accessible only via a single, winding road that skirts the edges of towering cliffs. Despite its allure, search teams looking for missing British teenager Jay Slater have labelled the area as 'dangerous'.

Jay, a Lancashire lad on his first solo trip abroad, is believed to have travelled over 30km from the island's south on the night of June 16, after attending the NRG music rave. Reports suggest that Jay returned to an Airbnb rental with two men he met at the event. He reportedly left the holiday home the next morning, Monday (June 17), and ventured alone into the mountains, reports the Manchester Evening News.

READ MORE: Jay Slater's dad says police 'keeping family in dark' after CCTV sighting

Since then, there has been no sign or sound of him, with extensive search efforts now entering their second strenuous week. Despite potential CCTV footage, which his family think could be him, there have been no confirmed sightings amid the ongoing missing persons investigation.

Travelling from the southern resort of Los Cristianos, where Jay had been holidaying with mates, to Masca takes roughly an hour. It's believed he returned to the village after a night out partying.

In the vicinity of Masca, located in the Rural de Teno Park, there are a few cafes and bars. There's a bus stop with sporadic services, and the locals aren't fluent English speakers.

On the fifth day of the search, the owner of the Airbnb rental told the Manchester Evening News that Jay had enquired about the bus schedule out of the village before she saw him 'walking off alone', uphill into the mountains.

However, there are limited footpaths - with just one well-paved road leading in and out of the area, winding around the massive peaks. Adventurers and thrill-seekers do try to climb the mountains - but not without prior experience.

If Jay had walked downhill, he would've reached the heart of the Masca village in just fifteen minutes.

Jay is reported to have left the cottage on foot around 8am. Despite its remoteness, the area is still a hit with tourists; those with car rentals dare to drive up to the site, while regular tour buses also transport visitors there and back several times a day.

The small car parks are completely packed as early as 10am - with tourists snapping selfies against the dramatic backdrop, scrambling for parking spaces, and pausing for lunch at one of the few local cafes.

The road, which is flanked by concrete barriers to prevent vehicles from veering off the edge, is said to have been the route he took uphill. The M. E. N has noted a steady stream of traffic and pedestrians in the area during multiple visits to the search site, both in the morning and early evening.

Nearby, construction workers are busy at a site close to the holiday rental, with temporary traffic lights currently in operation.

This bustling activity has led Jay's family to question how he could have disappeared on the morning of June 17 without being noticed by anyone.

His distraught father Warren expressed his confusion, stating: "No matter if you were drunk or whatever, you don't go off that road up there.

"And there are people up there... you don't go along that road for more than 20 minutes without somebody stopping you or passing you.

"I knew right from when I went up there that he wouldn't have gone [off that road]. He isn't stupid. When I saw the police I asked them, seriously, 'would you go off that road? ' and I think it woke them up a bit. People that go out to a party don't come up here."

His grieving mother Debbie also shared her bewilderment with the Daily Mail, asking: "If he is lost then why hasn't anyone seen him? It's busy with hikers and holidaymakers up there so if he was lost then someone would have seen him."

The search for missing Jay, which is continuing to focus on a 30km area and three main ravines in the Rural de Teno Park, entered its second week on Monday (June 24). The Civil Guard, mountain rescue teams and fire crews are continuing in their efforts in a desperate bid to find him.