Hi travellers! We are Franziska and Matthias (@traveling.fishjar) – a couple of soulmates and travellers from Germany. Welcome to our travel article on the gorgeous little La Gomera island in the Canary Islands.
Franziska grew up in a small town near Karlsruhe and Matthias grew up in a small town near Stuttgart. We met for the first time in 2008 at university while both studying French. Now we are both teachers and love our jobs.
Our passion for travel has always been with us. We have always been interested in other languages and cultures. So Franciska became a French and Maths teacher while Matthias became a French and Spanish teacher.
Seven years ago, we took our first vacation together. Ever since then we have been exploring the world. Every year we have explored new places like Israel, Denmark, Portugal, Azores and Greece. But this year has been a special year for us – we are currently on a one year world trip (a sabbatical).
It has been a dream come true and we are so happy that we could start this trip in September despite COVID-19. Both of us had already been to the Canary Islands but we had never visited together. So we thought it would be the perfect trip for November to escape the German autumn.
A Wonderful Week in La Gomera
There are no major buildings and the entire island has the diameter of 25 kilometres which makes it the second smallest of the Canary Islands. The people with whom we spoke were all very friendly and open minded too.
Our favourite place in La Gomera was Valle Gran Rey. It has beautiful beaches, a cute little village and the moment you drive into the valley you are immersed in a wonderful landscape. The sunset photo we took there was one of our favourite Instagram photos from our Canary Islands trip.
Top 7 Things To Do in La Gomera
La Gomera is small but it packs a punch! This volcanic island, like all of the Canaries, has so many incredible things to see and do. From hiking in forests, to relaxing on the beaches, to checking out the best viewpoints, to dolphin and whale watching – there is never a dull moment in La Gomera!
- Hike in La Gomera: Hiking is a must-do activity here especially in the forest of the Garajonay National Park. Hike to the top of the tallest mountain of the island called Alto Garajonay for incredible views.
- Relax at the Beaches of Valle Gran Rey: You can choose from a range of different beaches – all with nice waves, not too wild, great sand and not crowded. Some of the best include: Playa de Valle Gran Rey, Playa de Vueltas, Playa de Argaga, Charco del Conde and Playa de Ingles.
- Visit the Impressive Mirador de Abrante: This glass-floored viewpoint allows visitors to float over a precipice with jaw-dropping views over the ocean. A seven metre overhang that will take your breath away!
- Go Whale Watching and Dolphin Watching: We didn’t do this activity but they say La Gomera is the perfect place to do so. Choose from a variety of companies and head out onto the water for an amazing day.
- Learn about El Silbo: The culture of the La Gomera locals is fascinating. One of the most unique aspects about the culture is el silbo which is a whistling language. It has been used by inhabitants over the years to communicate across the deep ravines and narrow valleys. The whistled language was even declared as a UNESCO Heritage of Humanity.
- Explore Garajonay National Park: Visit this national park as often as you like, you will never get bored. The national park is situated right in the heart of La Gomera and 70% of the park is covered in laurel forest.
- Spend Time in the Capital, San Sebastian de La Gomera: Explore the capital and its history. San Sebastian is not big but you will find nice cafes to relax in. Be sure to do so while a cruise liner is in the harbour.
Need to Know Before you Go
We visited La Gomera in November, 2020 in the middle of the pandemic. Our contact with the local people was limited due to this situation. We really had an experience on the island without tourists which was great but it would have been nice to have mingled more with the locals.
If you visit in normal times, definitely get to know the locals. Especially learn about el siblo – the amazing whistled language. Also, we rented an Airbnb in the middle of the island in a valley surrounded by mango trees and fruit trees. If you can, try finding unique Airbnb accommodation.
Probably the most important thing is to rent a car. There are buses on the island but don’t use them. The roads on La Gomera are extreme and there are literally only winding roads. So a place might seem close (40-50km) but it takes you up to two hours to travel this short distance.
We arrived at the port of La Gomera by ferry from Tenerife. This was easy and cheap. There is also a small airport (more like a bus station) with cheap flights to Tenerife or Lanzarote (with one stopover in Tenerife). Thanks for reading and we hope you enjoy exploring this wonderful Canary Island!