From a distance La Gomera appears as an impenetrable fortress ringed with soaring rock walls. Noodle-thin roads wiggle their way alongside cliff faces and up ravines, and the tiny white specks that represent houses seem impossibly placed on inaccessible crags. Viewed from up-close, however, that rough landscape translates into lush valleys, awe-inspiring cliffs and stoic rock formations sculpted by ancient volcanic activity and erosion.
La Gomera does not offer the standard tourist resort trappings of golden beaches and an animated nightlife. It is also relatively laborious to reach; the ferry from Los Cristianos is a filter of sorts, visitors here tend to be walkers heading for the myriad hiking trails that weave across this lush and spectacular island.
La Gomera also has a tangible bohemian air; and you will spy plenty of grey ponytails from foreign residents who arrived here in the 1960s flower power days – and stayed.