We finally have the pleasure of sharing the best things to do in La Gomera, one of the most unspoiled and amazing Canary Islands. We visit this island every year, as my mother is from here. So we hope we can give you all the information you need to organize your visit to La Gomera. From the misty peaks of Garajonay National Park to the sparkling waters of Playa Santiago, is La Gomera worth a visit? A resounding yes. This hidden jewel of the Atlantic has many corners to discover and we are going to prove it to you. Here we go!
Here is the table of contents that you will find throughout this report on La Gomera: things to do and everything to know before you travel to the island.
How to get to La Gomera: all the possible options
If you are thinking about how to get to Gomera island, the answer depends on where you are coming from. You can arrive by boat from Tenerife and La Palma or by plane from Gran Canaria and also Tenerife. The airport of La Gomera is one of the smallest in Spain. Its architecture imitates the Church of the Assumption (San Sebastian), where Columbus prayed. This tiny island is only connected by air with Tenerife North and Gran Canaria. If you are wondering how to get to La Gomera from UK or any international airport, you should know that you will always have to make a stopover in these airports. This is one of the reasons why the island is a paradise, its low connectivity makes La Gomera possibly the best Canary Island to disconnect.
How to get from Tenerife to La Gomera
The fastest way to visit La Gomera from Tenerife is by plane from the northern airport with the airline Binter. The flight takes about 30 minutes or less. Another option is to go by boat from the port of Los Cristianos in the south of Tenerife. There are several daily ferry frequencies Tenerife – La Gomera with Naviera Armas and Fred Olsen. In addition, you can take your car, motorcycle or camper.
How to get from Tenerife south airport to La Gomera
If you are wondering how do I get to La Gomera from Tenerife south airport you have to know that there are no direct flights from here. We recommend you to take a transfer / taxi / bus to Los Cristianos port and then take a ferry with Fred Olsen or Naviera Armas to San Sebastián de La Gomera port. The cheapest option is by bus (number 40, around 30 minutes). You can also arrange a private transfer to Los Cristianos with fixed price. If you are also planning to visit Tenerife, we have a full guide with local tips: main attractions, restaurants, hotels, excursions, etc.
How do you get to La Gomera from Gran Canaria
I think that this might be the best option to travel to La Gomera from any internacional airport, as Gran Canaria only has one airport and you can take a direct flight to La Gomera airport. There are two direct flights a day from Gran Canaria with Binter. You can combine Gran Canaria with La Gomera, we have a blog with all the local tips of Gran Canaria as we live here. Have a look below!
💡 Finally, to finish off our mini guide about La Gomera and how to get there, we want to warn you that, if you choose to fly, sometimes the airport closes due to weather conditions. And, therefore, you have to stay overnight on the island. Therefore, we always recommend taking the flight back in the morning. You always have the rest of the day to return by boat, although if you are going to Gran Canaria it is quite a chore. We hope it doesn’t happen to you, but be warned.
How to get around La Gomera
Once we have figured out how to get there, another key point to make your trip a success is to know how to get around La Gomera. The best option is to rent a car, as it will allow you maximum flexibility to explore La Gomera and its secret places on your own. In addition, being an island with few inhabitants and moderate tourism, public transportation is limited and infrequent.
If you are going to rent a car, it is important that you do not delay with the reservation because the fleet of vehicles is also reduced. Likewise, there are few car rental offices in La Gomera, the most convenient is to rent a car at the airport upon arrival. You can see all the rental companies operating on the island (also local) and compare their prices at RentalCars.
💡Gas stations. Being a small island, it has very few petrol stations. Pay attention to how you fuel up at all times if you don’t want to get stranded.
💡 Transfers around La Gomera by Ferry. If for some reason you don’t rent a car or want to take a break from the road for a day, there is a Fred Olsen ferry that runs twice a day in both directions from San Sebastián – Playa Santiago – Valle Gran Rey.
How many days to visit La Gomera
La Gomera is full of ravines and its road network starts mainly from the interior towards all (or almost all) points along the coast. That is to say, given its orography, it is not possible to make a circular route around it and in many cases you will have to return the same way you came. For this reason, it doesn’t matter how big is La Gomera (by the way – 370 km2), we believe that you will need at least 3 or even 4 days to get to know its main attractions. We share with you a map of La Gomera attractions in each of the six municipalities of the island: San Sebastián, Alajeró, Valle Gran Rey, Vallehermoso, Agulo and Hermigua.
The route we are going to share with you below is valid if you want to have a general idea about what is La Gomera like. As you see in the map, there are many corners to explore. So that, you may have to leave some of the more secluded beaches for another visit.
Best things to do in La Gomera, 10 must-sees
Now we finally come to the list of what to see in La Gomera. Well, there are many secret places in La Gomera and, above all, virgin areas, but this is our selection of 10 must-sees. We have ordered them by priority / importance according to our humble opinion. This way, depending on how many days you have, you will be able to better organise your trip to La Gomera. By the way, next to each area to visit, we recommend restaurants to eat nearby. These are not the TripAdvisor La Gomera restaurants, so pay attention 🙂
1. Garajonay National Park, what to do La Gomera
If you travel to La Gomera you have to visit the Garajonay National Park. As we see it, it is one of the most beautiful places to visit in La Gomera. Its beautiful laurel forest El Cedro (the best preserved in the world) and its trails surrounded by streams have to be on your itinerary. Below, we share with you two hiking routes to do in Garajonay Park. They are also two of our favourite things to see in La Gomera. Finally, we recommend a must for the whole family.
✔ Trail to Alto del Garajonay
The top or Alto del Garajonay is the highest peak on La Gomera at 1,485 m. It is a unique place in the Canary Islands, as from here you can often see Tenerife, La Palma, El Hierro and even Gran Canaria. The shortest way up to the Alto del Garajonay is from the Contadero car park, which is about 2.5 km long. If you want to do a longer route, we recommend the circular route from Pajarito, which is about 5 km long.
✔ Las Mimbreras – Lourdes Hermitage Trail
Another of the best hiking trails in La Gomera island is the one to get to know the Cedro ravine is the one that goes from Las Mimbreras to the Ermita de Lourdes (this is where my parents got married). The route is not very long and there is a picnic area near the hermitage. Once at the hermitage, you can walk in the direction of Caserío del Cedro to eat a watercress stew at the Las Vistas campsite, which we highly recommend. They also have potatoes with ribs. The path to the farmhouse is marked and is just under 2 kilometres each way (it is not circular).
✔ La Laguna Grande recreational area, La Gomera things to do with kids
If you are travelling with the family, one of the best things to do in La Gomera with children is to visit the recreational area of La Laguna Grande. There is a beautiful wooden park with a zip line, picnic areas and barbecues. There is also a restaurant just a few steps away where you can eat well. In the same way, in La Laguna you will see a Canarian tagoror, a circular enclosure formed by stones where it is said that the Canarian aborigines used to meet. Don’t miss the mythical photo with the wooden donkeys!
Bear in mind that water flows all year round in the Cedro ravine, and as it is a humid area at a certain altitude, it is cold in winter and quite cool in summer. So we recommend you take some warm clothes if you are going to do some sightseeing in La Gomera and include Garajonay in your list of places to see.
2. Valle Gran Rey, what to do in La La Gomera, Canary Islands
One of the places to visit in La Gomera and enjoy its sunsets is the village of Valle Gran Rey. This corner of the island is known for its spectacular landscapes, beaches and warm climate. In addition, given its south-west orientation, it enjoys one of the best sunsets on La Gomera. Below we will mention you all the things to do in Valle Gran Rey:
- La Calera beach. This is the largest beach in Valle Gran Rey and is recommended for families, as its waters are calm.
- Vueltas beach. Another of Valle Gran Rey’s beaches, in this case, in a seaside atmosphere surrounded by fishermen’s boats. It is also recommended for families due to its calm waters.
- Playa del Inglés. One of the most famous nudist beaches on La Gomera because since the 70s it has been one of the icons of the hippie movement.
- Charco del Conde. Is one of the beaches of La Gomera to go with children, as there is no danger of waves in the pool. What’s more, look at the great sunsets!
- Las Arenas beach. Be careful with the access, as there can be landslides, especially after rainfall, but it is a magical spot, far from everything.
- César Manrique viewpoint or Palmarejo viewpoint. The viewpoint has been closed for years, but you can look out and enjoy one of the most beautiful ravines on the island. The palm grove and the terraces built by the farmers to plant on the slopes of the mountains are worth mentioning.
🍽️ Valle Gran Rey restaurants: Restaurant Charco del Conde (Casa Ciro) and the Paraíso del mar. If you know any other restaurant in Valle Gran Rey you can leave your comments below!
3. Playa Santiago, La Gomera, what to see & where to eat
Playa Santiago is one of the island’s most popular beach destinations and an easy stopover if you arrive in La Gomera by plane due to its proximity to the airport. With its strip of black sand, callaos or pebbles and crystal clear waters, it’s an ideal place for sunbathing and sampling the island’s gastronomy. This is where we spend our summer holidays, where my mother is from and where my grandparents were from. Given its southern location, restaurants and connectivity, we think it is the best place to stay in La Gomera. Here is the Hotel Jardín de Tecina (La Gomera), a good option to stay near the airport. It is on the cliffs and there is a lift that connects the hotel along the cliff and takes you down to Playa Santiago.
Only about 5 minutes drive away there are more things to do in Playa Santiago nearby. For example, the beautiful beaches of Tapahuga, the beach of “En Medio” (in the middle) and the beach of Chinguarime, all three are next to each other, although the beach of Chinguarime can only be reached by a path from Playa del Medio. If you get to Chinguarime, don’t miss Salvao beach, as they are next to each other. We show it below.
If you have time, there are more things to do in Playa Santiago (La Gomera). For example, the Santiago ravine. You can walk along the road to the villages of Taco, Pastrana and Guarimiar to enjoy the rural landscapes and Canary Island palm groves. Don’t below our tips about Playa de Santiago, (La Gomera) restaurants.
🍽️ Restaurants Playa Santiago, La Gomera: Tasca Enyesque, La Cuevita Playa Santiago, Kuss, Bar Restaurant Playa and La Chalana Playa Santiago. The latter to have a drink practically on the beach.
4. San Sebastián de La Gomera, things to do in the capital “city”
San Sebastián de La Gomera, also known as La Villa, is the capital of the island and another of La Gomera’s tourist attractions. One of the main historic buildings to see in San Sebastián de La Gomera is the famous Torre del Conde, where Christopher Columbus is said to have stayed during his voyage to America. The walk around the town can be done in just under an hour. Make a note of the essential places to visit: the Church of Nuestra Señora de la Asunción, Casa del Pozo de la Aguada, Casa Bencomo and the Hermitage of San Sebastián.
If you like the sea, another things to do in San Sebastián de La Gomera are to visit its beaches, such as the main one, San Sebastián beach. There is also the beach of La Cueva, which can be reached on foot from the town. Just a few minutes’ drive from the centre is Ávalo beach. Finally, if you are still looking for what to do in San Sebastián de La Gomera we invite you to discover the great unknown beach of La Guancha, which is only accessible on foot along a trail of about 3.65 km each way. This is the one we show you below.
Parador Nacional de La Gomera, where to stay in San Sebastián
San Sebastián may be the best area to stay in La Gomera if you arrive on the island by ferry, as this is where the ferry companies dock and it may be the most convenient. Also, as you’ve read, there are plenty of things to see in La Gomera here. Also, in the village is the National Parador, the Parador of La Gomera in San Sebastián. This might be the best hotel in La Gomera. From here you have views over the whole village, the sea and Tenerife. The Parador de La Gomera has an à la carte restaurant, so note this restaurant in San Sebastián de La Gomera. There are no more hotels in San Sebastián de La Gomera, only apartments. You can find more than 80 places to stay in San Sebastián de La Gomera below:
🍽️ Best restaurants San Sebastián de La Gomera: Vista Hermosa, La Salamandra and on the way to Hermigua you have to go to the Inta La Gomera (5 minutes drive from the Villa). The latter is an excellent option if you want are looking for cheap restaurants in La Gomera in San Sebastián surroundings. Finally, if you are looking for more San Sebastián de La Gomera restaurants, there is a more posh place called Caprichos de La Gomera restaurant, which is not bad.
5. Hermigua natural pools, La Gomera things to see
There are more things to do in La Gomera. We recommend to include Hermigua in your route. This village of La Gomera is located in a beautiful valley surrounded by banana plantations and ends at a beach. One of the tourist attractions of the area are the famous natural pools of Hermigua and the Pescante de Hermigua, which was used for the entry and exit of goods and people. You can see it in the following photo, where you can see blocks jutting out of the sea. If you want to take a dip, be very careful as there are usually strong waves and it can be dangerous even in the pools.
There are other attractive places to see in Hermigua such as the rocks Roque de Pedro and Petra. Finally, if you have time, another beach in Hermigua to see is La Caleta, which is even less touristy. If you want to extend the route in this area, you can go to Agulo, just a few minutes’ drive from Hermigua. Its village is one of the prettiest in Spain, it also has a beach and, of course, the Abrante viewpoint, which we suggest in the next few lines.
🍽️ Hermigua restaurants: Las Chácaras and Tasca Telémaco (this restaurant in Hermigua is closed now, but I don’t know if it’s because they are on holiday).
6. Viewpoints in La Gomera: Abrante and Roque de Agando
Other places to visit on La Gomera are the island’s impressive viewpoints. The Viewpoint Abrante and the Viewpoint de Roque de Agando stand out. The Morro de Agando viewpoint can be included in your itinerary from Playa Santiago to the Garajonay National Park, as it is on your way. Sometimes the fog reaches here and you can’t see it so clear, so see if you’re lucky!
On the other hand, the Abrante viewpoint, in Agulo, is one of the places to see in La Gomera if you like photography. Here you can come and take the legendary photo at the overhanging viewpoint and enjoy the views of the cliffs, the sea and the majestic Teide. There is also a “posh” restaurant that opens randomly and, if it is closed, you will not be able to enter the viewpoint. So think carefully about this stop. Anyway, there are many viewpoints on the island of La Gomera to see, for example the Mirador de Risquillos de Corgo (Raso de la Bruma) or the Mirador del Santo in Arure. The latter especially at sunset.
💡La Gomera tourist office Juego de Bolas. If you have any questions about tourism in La Gomera, what to do nearby, hiking, nature, etc., you can get here just 5 minutes by car from the Abrante viewpoint. Also, next door is the sweet shop Sabores Gomeros, a double excuse to try the homemade biscuits from La Gomera!
7. Vallehermoso, La Gomera what to do
Vallehermoso is a small inland village full of charm and lush vegetation. It is the perfect place if you like nature. Undoubtedly, one of the best places to stay in La Gomera if you are looking for a rural and even more peaceful environment. Possibly, if you are looking for things to do in La Gomera in one day, you should leave this plan for another occasion, as it is a bit far away. However, if you need a list of places to see in La Gomera in a week, write it down without fail!
8. Los Órganos, La Gomera excursions to do
Los Órganos is one of the most difficult places of interest on La Gomera to visit. This rock formation is located in the northwest of the island and can only be seen from the sea. We are sure that it is worth a visit, although it is one of the things to do in La Gomera that we have yet to do. We always go in summer and, apparently, that’s when the sea is the worst time to make this crossing. This route is usually done by Excursiones Tina from Valle Gran Rey, but only when the sea conditions are optimal, not all year round.
9. Whale watching La Gomera, things to do with kids
If you are looking for more things to do in La Gomera with children, whale watching is an activity not to be missed. La Gomera is one of the best places in the world to see dolphins and whales in their natural habitat. A memory that you and your family will undoubtedly take with you forever. This activity departs from the port of Valle Gran Rey and there are several companies that organise it such as: Oceano Whale Watching La Gomera and Excursiones Yani.
10. La Gomera beaches
If you want to enjoy the beaches of La Gomera, we recommend to bring beach booties. The most unspoilt beaches in La Gomera are made of pebbles. It can be a bit uncomfortable if you are not used to walking on these stones, which are so characteristic of the island of La Gomera (and the westernmost islands). There are also many wonderful black sand beaches. Here are some of the best beaches on La Gomera in our humble opinion.
- La Rajita in La Dama and also La Negra, the latter only accessible by a path from La Rajita.
- Alojera beach, at the foot of an imposing cliff overlooking El Hierro and La Palma, ideal for watching the sunset in La Gomera.
- El Cabrito beach (only accessible by boat or hiking)
Remember that this list of beaches to see in Gomera also includes those mentioned above near Playa Santiago, San Sebastián, Hermigua and Valle Gran Rey. Finally, if you are lucky enough to be looking for what to see in La Gomera in 7 days or more, also note Chipude and its imposing Chipude Fortress. Nearby is the village of El Cercado, where you can visit its pre-colonial potteries. And that’s the end of our local guide to La Gomera – we hope you find it helpful! Shall we move on to the food?
Best restaurants in La Gomera
Throughout this article that compiles the best places to visit in La Gomera we have also been recommending restaurants in La Gomera by area. However, we would like to mention one of the best restaurants in La Gomera: Casa Efigenia in Las Hayas (municipality of Valle Gran Rey). It is said that Angela Merkel, a very frequent visitor to the island, has come here to eat the watercress stew and the puchero (local stew).
Finally, another famous restaurant in La Gomera is Casa Conchita, in rural La Gomera, although we haven’t been to this one. In principle, we think that with the places to eat that we have given you, you will have enough, now let’s go with the local gastronomy of La Gomera!
La Gomera food, what to order in restaurants?
We are sure that you will be captivated by the food of La Gomera. Here are some of its typical dishes:
- Almogrote, a kind of cured cheese pâté with a spicy touch (it has red pepper and garlic). It is usually served with bread and is the perfect accompaniment to any meal. We prepare it as a family every year, a delight for cheese lovers!
- Palm honey. This is another emblematic local product. It is obtained from the sap of the Canary Island palm tree and is used to make numerous Canary Island desserts such as bienmesabe, truchas de batata, leche asada (quesillo) and torta de cuajada (curd cake). In our family we also use it to make the traditional pella de gofio.
- Gomeran biscuits, buns and torta de vilana. For those with a sweet tooth, you must try the traditional Gomeran sweets. You can get them in supermarkets and sweet shops like Mimila, one of the most legendary. It is very close to the Hotel Tecina.
- La Gomera DO wines. The island has its own denomination of origin and the main Gomeran grape variety is the “Forastera Gomera“. As there are hardly any plains on La Gomera, most of its vineyards are on stone terraces built into the mountain slopes.
- Local fish. If you’re a fish lover, then you’ll love to try vieja and sama (locally called pargo), two species you’ll find all over the Canaries. You can also find traditional limpets with mojo in some restaurants.
- Papas arrugás and local cheeses. As a good Canary Island, potatoes with mojo are a must and so are the Gomeran cheeses, either in almogrote format or with a good assortment.
- Meats. As for meats, goat meat and kid are among the most popular. Also the “carne de fiesta” (fried marinated pork) and the mythical boiled ribs with potatoes and corn.
- Mangoes. The mangoes of La Gomera are from another planet. They remind us of those of Veneguera or Tasarte in Gran Canaria, in fact, the landscapes of these areas of Gran Canaria remind you of any corner of La Gomera.
Where to stay on La Gomera
If you are looking for the best places to stay in La Gomera we would choose Playa Santiago if you arrive by plane or San Sebastián if you arrive by boat. Especially if you’re coming to La Gomera and are looking for things to see in a day. However, if you like rural tourism and you are looking where to stay in La Gomera, we recommend any rural house in the interior, near Garajonay for example. However, remember that it is essential that you hire a car to get around the places to visit in La Gomera. Don’t look for La Gomera luxury hotels, La Gomera hotels 5 star or La Gomera resort in Google, as there is any. We recommend you the following La Gomera hotels:
- Hotel Jardín Tecina La Gomera (Fred Olsen hotel La Gomera)
- Parador de La Gomera hotel San Sebastián de La Gomera
- Gran Rey hotel, La Gomera – Accommodation Valle Gran Rey La Gomera
Finally, before we finish, if you like a bohemian atmosphere, Valle Gran Rey is the place for you. Many of La Gomera’s apartments are here. Anyway, you can see below all the options of rural houses in La Gomera and offers in general in La Gomera booking site.
Remember, La Gomera is an island with a lot to offer. Depending on what you’re looking for, there’s a perfect place to stay. And, no matter where you decide to stay, you’ll always be within walking distance of the wonderful attractions this island has to offer. So now you know what are the best things to do in La Gomera and where to stay, all you need to do is pack your bags and come and discover this wonderful island.
Best time to visit La Gomera
Many of you ask which is the best month to visit La Gomera. You should know that the weather in the Canary Islands is nice the whole year with temperate temperatures that are neither too low nor too high. You can have around 28 degrees during the summer months and 20 degrees in winter months. However, remember that in the upper areas such us the Alto del Garajonay the temperatures are quite fresh, even in summer. If you are looking for sun, the three places we have recommended you to look for accommodation in La Gomera (Canary Islands): Valle Gran Rey, San Sebastián and Playa Santiago are located in the south.
In the previous foto we show you the weather in Playa Santiago in December and the Tecina hotel (La Gomera) on the hill. As we see it, in La Gomera this is the best place to stay. As it is right in the south, you will have more sunny days along the year and, therefore, warmer temperatures. In the Canary Islands we usually have more clouds in the north because of the trade winds. Finally, as far as rainfall is concerned, there is not much rain on our beloved islands, nor do we have tornadoes or earthquakes. So that, every time is the best time to visit La Gomera!
Travel insurance – 5% discount
If you don’t have travel insurance yet that covers you for flight delays, luggage damage, accidents, illness, etc. we offer you a 5% discount with IATI on all travel and DESTINATION policies. This is the insurance company we always take out our travel insurance with. Finally, remember that La Gomera has a very small hospital and its offer of private doctors and on-call pharmacies is very limited. So try to bring everything you need from home, especially if you are travelling with babies and need specific formula milk, among other things.
We are Ruth & Jorge, Gran Canarians with a travelling soul. Experts in tourism and digital marketing. We share the most authentic side of Gran Canaria (where we live) and… our adventures around the world!