The Adventure Route in La Gomera
La Gomera is the second smallest island in the Canary Islands, but it shouldn't be neglected due to its size. When the influx of tourism is overcrowding Tenerife, with Jeep safaris, water parks, and biking tours, then La Gomera is a piece of paradise that gives any traveler the thrill to discovery. The rugged terrain, winding roads, steep ravines, and far reaching peaks are the main characteristics that define this untouched Canarian archipelago. For those seeking to conquer the extreme landscape of La Gomera, we advise you to spend a day or two making a trip around the island.
- Route Name: Adventure Route in La Gomera
- Duration: 1 1/2- 2 days (While the route is described to be a 4-hour long trip, the curvy, mountainous roads will take much of your time and attention while driving. Keep in mind that you won't be able to see the entire island and get back to Tenerife.) Total length: 144 KM
- Best time to go: March and April for superb hiking weather. Summer months are quite hot, exceptional or beach goers.
- Best by car
- Highlights: following Christopher Columbus last point of call, Garajonay National Park, the beautiful town of Agulo, and the resort town Valle Gran Rey.
SAN SEBASTIAN DE LA GOMERA
Before embarking on your tropical jungle route, you'll probably set foot in San Sebastian on a ferry from Tenerife. The island capital is a historical treasure, lined with 17th-century custom houses, local restaurants and businesses along the main street of Calle del Medio, and the Parish Church of Our Lady of the Assumption, which has a long history dating back to centuries. And yet modern boats and yachts dock themselves on the harbor along the shore line that always maintains an island holiday vibe. You can venture through time and walk in the historic footsteps of Christopher Columbus, as this was the last departure point before he set sail on his grand sea voyage to discover the Americas. Rumor has it that Columbus started an affair with Beatriz de la Bobadilla, the wife of the island's governor, who locked herself up in a local tower called Torre del Conde.
SAN SEBASTIAN - HERMIGUA
Since the roads in La Gomera does not make a complete circle, there will be many zig zagging and back tracking along the route to see all of the stunning attractions. Start your journey on the GM-1 towards Hermigua. This seaside village, nestled between two mountain ranges, is stunning for its lush valley slopes and a perfect scene for a pit stop. The highlights of this town are two distinct volcanic structures jutting out from the ground, a great place to hike up to. For lunch, make your way through the banana plantations and stop by the seafront for a picnic at Playa de la Caleta. The weather here is the perfect temperature, never dipping under 17 °C and over 27 °C.
HERMIGUA - AGULO
From Hermigua, you'll continue onwards to Agula, the most beautiful village on La Gomera and also the oldest town on the island. Wander through the colonial style architecture coupled with cobble stone streets as you take in the view of the ocean and Teide mountain on Tenerife. Another nature phenomenon lies in the very heart of La Gomera, Garajonay National Park, which has entry points at La Rosas and Juego de Bolas. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the park offers a variety hikes through the Misty Laurisilva forest, information center and the highest peak of the summit of Garajonay. Take your time to wander through the beautiful hiking trail and observe the subtropical vegetation that existed during the Tertiary period. (Note: the national park has many access points from the main roads across La Gomera).
AGULO - VALLEHERMOSO
Continuing towards Vallehermoso, the northern part of the island, you'll be greeted by a town located under the looming volcanic structure, Roque Cano. In the central plaza, you'll be able to spot by the Iglesia San Juan de Bautista, small cafes and the lush orchards, where you can purchase produce grown locally. You can also find the Jardín Botánico del Descubrimiento de Vallehermoso, a botanical garden covering 16,219 square meters of the area. The garden houses flora from five different continents, planted by explorers who discovered the new world.
VALLEHERMOSO - VALLE GRAN REY
Drive along the winding route on GM-2, and you'll arrive at Valle Gran Rey. This popular seaside town has a drastic entrance that opens up to the sea. Tired from the road? The town has much to offer and will reward you with the warm, coastal beach, ready for some cozy beach front vibe. Soak up some sun on the beach or relax by the many beach cafes at this secluded location.
VALLE GRAN REY - PLAYA SANTIAGO
Back on the road, and you'll want to stop by Restaurante la Montana, a little restaurant known for the Gomeran cuisines. Sample the Miel de Palma Lemonade, cactus jam, and orange liquor if you're in the mood. Once you've fueled yourself up, make your way to Playa Santiago. This sleepy, fishing village is where travelers can enjoy a nice stroll along the harbor promenade, and sample some of the local cuisines at the bars and restaurants. Or a little further from the center, you'll find Playa del Medio where you can properly unwind as the gentle waves ring up against the shore.
For more adventures on La Gomera, check out Tineke Zwijgers's 'Go La Gomera' Guide (in Dutch) for more pristine locations, beach locations and local tips!