The Valle Gran Rey is the hub for the tourists that come to get some of the canary island sun and enjoy the beautiful walks this gorgeous island has to offer. This Valle Gran Rey is well set up with everything you need whilst away from home, restaurants, shops, supermarket and pharmacies. This area is suited well to both the active traveller and or the suntan traveller.
You can get to Valle Gran Rey by ferry from San Sebastian de La Gomera or you easy get there by car or now there are good bus services as well. If you do go by car I think you will find it hard not to stop on your way into and down through this great spectacular valley. The two stops I would not miss are Ermita del Santo and Mirador Cesar Manrique.
Ermita del Santo has a small old church popped at the top of this great valley and as well as seeing this little church you will also get breath taking views of the east and on a clear day you will get to see two other Canary Islands, El Hierro and La Palma. This lookout is not for the faint hearted it is build right into the cliff and there is a sheer drop down but even for the height phobic this is definitely worth the views.
As you drive further towards Calle Gran Rey you will reach Mirador Cesar Manrique. This has been built for many to park near and head through the cactus garden to see the Valle Gran Rey in it’s full glory. Make sure the camera is ready you won’t be able to resist a couple of pictures. Built into and below this lookout and the cactus garden is a restaurant if you didn’t know you could easily miss it. This restaurant is called Restaurante El Mirador de La Calera and is the perfect stop for a break from driving. It serves a good selection of fresh juices if you are only stopping for a quick refreshment. If you are stopping for a meal you will find a great selection of seafood, fresh tuna, local canary red and green sauces Mojo Rojo and Mojo Verde and more. Also with an amazing view as you eat. This restaurant is open from 1pm six days a week, closed Thursday.
Once you make it down all the winding parts of the road. I would recommend heading straight to the beach. As I said before the Valle Gran Rey’s main attractions are hiking and sun tanning. The beaches here are beautiful black sand. I would say El Charco del Conde is the best option for calm waters and kids. But there are many options, Playa de las Vueltas near the port is a good options if the wind is strong. From here you can also take boat trips that offer whale and dolphin watching.
After relaxing at the beach the next day on my agenda is hiking. You have a lot of options there are over 60 different hikes throughout the Valle Gran Rey, So the hardest option is, which one to choose? The hiking paths have been used for centuries to connect the towns along the coast and mountain villages of La Gomera. The Hike we decided to walk was the Gran Rey to Alojera. We have been told it is difficult but with amazing views. Always up for the challenge. I have read now that it is an assent of 1519 meters and a decent 1297 meters. So not for the faint-hearted hiker it’s meant to take five and a half hours. I am excited and a little nervous.
The hike starts at the end of town LA Calera and soon although it’s been all up hill you forget about your legs as you are rewarded with the stunning views of the Valle Gran Rey and the stunning blue of the Atlantic ocean. After about a hour we reached Riscos de la Merica where we get to view both the Valle Gran Rey and the next Valley along. About 4 hours into the hike we reach the Restaurante El Jape. This restaurant serves Canarian food and is open from seven in the morning to ten at night and it very popular with hikers. At this point if you wanted you could take the bus back to San Sebastian or the Valle Gran Rey. After lunch it is hard to start walking again but well worth it. Alojera and the beautiful palm trees are gorgeous and after about 8 hours we arrive in Alojera. Then take the bus five back to the Valle Gran Rey.
We will definitely be back to try out a few more of the different hikes. We love La Gomera.