Like many of the Canary Islands, El Hierro as many spectacular viewing points dotted all around the Island. This is a guided tour around some of the most popular Miradors.
Starting our journey in Tigaday in the valley of El Golfo we climb up the old main road HI-1 past the church of Candelaria. It’s quite a steep climb with a few hairpin bends. As you climb the view over Frontera keeps changing from the right to the left. You pass through wooded areas which then open up again to offer plummeting views. As you climb you pass an area with wooden table and chairs regularly used as a launch pad for the paragliders to catch the thermals that climb the valley walls. There are good views to be seen from here and you can look back down onto the road you have just climbed. As the road levels out you can see signs for La Llanía. Park up here in the parking area and walk up the track in the wood which is signed for Mirador La Llanía.It’s a short 5 minutes’ walk up to the viewpoint. If you are lucky as you walk you can see the highest point of the Island Malpaso on your right. Fingers crossed that there is no cloud cover over the valley and enjoy the 1000 m drop onto the valley floor below you.
Once back at your vehicle head towards Valverde. This takes you past the wood of the witches, or Bailadero de las Brujas. Next to this is Hoya de Fileba which climbs the side of a crater giving you views into the crater, should you wish to make the climb.
Next take the left hand turn to Mirador de Jinama.Here you will find views looking all across El Golfo all the way to Playa Arenas Blancas. One of the many famous Island walk starts here which takes you all the way back down to the church at Candelaria. On a clear day as you walk back to your vehicle you can see the Island of La Palma in from of you.
Our next stop will be on the road towards El Pinar at Mirador de Las Playas, a few miles away. Take the sign posted road on the left as you start to drop down into the Canarian pine forest. The road then opens up into a large car park. The viewing point is in the form of a semi-circle and it doesn’t really matter which end you start at. Again the drop down to the coast is about 1000 m. To your left you can see one of the emblems of the island Roque de la Bonanza which looks along the coast of Las Playas down towards the Parador hotel to the right. The sea always seems to be calmer in this bay. Often you can watch the rooks playing on the thermals and flying upside down.
Our next stop is some distance away and takes in the views of the El Golfovalley from above Playa Arenas Blancas.Follow the signs for El Julan, Ermita de Los Reyes and La Dehesa. There is a viewpoint that actually looks down at the visitor centre at El Julanand down towards Los Letreros, as you travel along this narrow winding road. 40 km is the recommended speed limit in places. After you have passed the Ermita you will see signs for Mirador de Bascos. This part of the route is on dirt roads but in a good state of repair. At the viewpoint you get see the whole of the El Golfovalley and its backdrop all the way along the coast to Roques de Salmor.On a good clear day the view is breath taking. (Before heading to this location check that there is public access due to a landslide)
It is now time to partially retrace your steps but when you see the sign for Cruz de Los Reyes on your left take this turn. As you climb up through the forest on this dirt road you will eventually see signs for Malpaso. Take the turning for a 360º view of the Island. The road again gives way to a dirt track, but it is only a short climb to the car park. If you are lucky you will be able to see many of the other Islands. La Palma, La Gomera and Tenerife. In winter you can often see the snow on Mount Teide, the highest mountain in Spain. In the Spring time you can see the swallows on their migration north swooping up over the cliff edge chasing insects. More often than not you can see the cotton wool clouds below you blocking the spectacular views.
Now we take the same road back down onto the track and turn left towards Cruz de Los Reyes. The track becomes a road again after you pass this popular location. Follow the road which gives you views down to La Restinga on your right. On the left you pass Dos Hermanos another launch site for the paragliders which again offers spectacular views down onto Frontera.
At the junction take the right turn towards Valverde down through the village of San Andrés.At the roundabout take your first right exit down towards La Cuesta and Isora.Drive all the way through Isorauntil you see the signs for the Mirador. Here you will find a viewpoint with many different levels offering differing views of Las Playas.
If you are feeling energetic it is well worth the trip down the steps to see these views. From here you can look across towards the viewpoint we called at earlier at Mirador de Las Playas. To the right of the viewpoint is the start/finish of the walk down onto Las Playas.Again you can see Roque de la Bonanza.
To finish our journey we retrace our steps back into Isoraand back to the village of San Andrés.This time we take the right hand turn towards Guarazoca and Mocanal.As you travel down this road you will find the signs for Mirador de la Peña. Take the left hand turn into the car park. There is a viewing platform here which gives you a clear view along the full length of the El Golfo.You can also see to your right the Roques de Salmor. Explore the gardens here as there are numerous other little viewing areas all around the building. Then when you have finished why not go into the building which was built by the famous César Manrique from Lanzarote. One wall of the restaurant is just glass, which again offers great views over the valley and spectacular sunsets. And ladies there is a loo with a view so don’t forget your camera.
Enjoy a coffee or even a meal in these glorious surroundings.