10th July, 2023
Cruises to La Gomera tick so many boxes...
As well as no-fly, all-inclusive convenience, you’ll enjoy small-ship luxury amongst like-minded guests. And that luxury begins with a complimentary private chauffeur to the port and home again.
From your spacious balcony cabin to fine dining in a choice of restaurants, there’s no better way to explore the beautiful Canary Islands.
La Gomera – Island of untouched beauty
La Gomera is the third-smallest of the eight main Canary Islands – a lovely, untouched island measuring just 20 kilometres from north to south. Its volcanic origin accounts for its dramatic mountainous landscape: split into many segments, with deep ravines or barrancos in between them.
On the very tops of these barrancos sits one of La Gomera’s main claims to fame: Garajonay National Park. Now protected by national park status, the primeval laurisilva forest is a survivor of the last Ice Age and has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1986.
When you walk through this magical forest, remember that this is what most of the Mediterranean mountainscape was like, millions of years ago. You’re truly taking a walk back through time.
At leisure in San Sebastián: Step straight into history
Our cruise port in La Gomera couldn’t be better situated for a tour of San Sebastián de la Gomera, the island’s capital. Head for nearby Torre del Conde Park, dominated by the unmistakable silhouette of the Torre del Conde. This tower, erected in the fifteenth century, was built as a Spanish fortress and is considered the Canary Island’s most important example of military architecture.
Conveniently nearby, you’ll find a link to the town’s other main claim to fame: Casa de Colón, built on the site where Columbus stayed when he made his three visits to the island.
Today, the building houses a spectacular display of ancient pottery from the South American Chimú tribes, and an upstairs gallery featuring art and photography exhibitions.
For more about Christopher Columbus, visit Casa de Aguada. Here you’ll find a permanent collection relating to his discovery of America.
The ancient and beautiful Iglesia de la Virgen del Asunción, too, is associated with the great explorer. He and his men are supposed to have prayed here before setting off on their voyage into the unknown.
Visit the town market on Avenida de Colón, open daily from 08.00 to 15.00, to discover local delicacies including the famous sweet, smoky ‘palm honey’ made from guarapo…the sap of the palm trees that line La Gomera’s lower slopes.
For a little beach life, the Playa de San Sebastián lies directly opposite the port and boasts 500 metres of fine black sand and crystal-clear water.
Stopping for a drink and a snack? Why not try a glass of the delicious local white wine? 80% of its vines are the ‘forastera’ variety which is unique to the island.
Our La Gomera shore excursion: packed with a wealth of delights
Come with us for a day of breathtaking views and fascinating experiences.
Your coach leaves the capital and climbs through the arid volcanic slopes to the wooded valleys above. We’ll ascend to around 4,000 feet to arrive at Garajonay National Park. Considered to be a ‘living fossil’, the park is home to one of the world’s few surviving laurel woodlands. We’ll pause here amidst the drifting mists, rocky peaks and volcanic chimneys to admire the lush landscape, dotted with subtropical plants.
The ancient forest has its own microclimate and is home to thousands of species of flora and fauna. Notice the ‘old man’s beard’ – a type of moss which only grows in the cleanest of places. The whole area is crisscrossed with streams which serve as the main water source for the island.
Leaving this extraordinary, mystical forest, stop to admire the stunning views overlooking the palm-covered slopes of the Valle Gran Rey before continuing to the quaint village of Aguilo.
Stopping in Las Rosas for refreshments and a visit to the Visitors’ Centre, you’ll be treated to a demonstration of’ El Silbo’ – La Gomera’s unique whistling language. Handed down from the
Guanches, La Gomera’s original inhabitants, it was a way to communicate across the island’s vast gorges and valleys and survives to this day as ‘Silbo Gomero’ - a form of whistled shorthand with a vocabulary of some 5,000 words.
Our final stop is at Hermigua’s Handicraft Centre - your chance to discover that unique souvenir amongst the handmade embroidery, pottery and woodwork.
The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated.
The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.
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