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El Hierro – the Last Outpost

Journey to the 'Ends of the Earth'
 
Explore Europe’s furthermost outpost and UNESCO biosphere reserve on this self-guided walking holiday, with luggage transported. Revel in the tranquillity and welcoming hospitality, and discover dramatic landscapes on challenging, varied routes as you journey through the heart of the island.
El Hierro – the Last Outpost. 7 nights
El Hierro – the Last Outpost. 7 nights
 

Holiday information

 

A walking holiday on El Hierro

Furthermost from mainland Europe, little El Hierro is the least-known and least-visited of the Canary Islands. For centuries, it was seen as the 'Ends of the Earth' before adventurers and intrepid explorers began to use it as a jumping-off point for even greater discoveries. Such was its importance that the prime meridian was placed here right up to the end of the 19th century, giving rise to the island's nickname Isla del Meridiano. Today, it remains largely untouched and unspoiled by the trappings of modern tourism and is rich in folklore, making it an ideal destination for those wishing to spend time well off the beaten track.
The joy of this quiet and unassuming island is the magnificence of its varied landscapes and geography.
A cataclysmic landslip 50,000 years ago saw a huge section of the land fall into the sea, leaving an immense bay, El Golfo, dominated by a towering escarpment. The steep slopes of this bay are characterised by ancient laurisilva forest, watered by trade winds which blow cool clouds in before coming to a halt beneath the cliffs. The high ridge clearly marks the change in scenery, for, on the drier leeward side, you find stands of tall pine trees and rough moorland leading, sometimes very steeply, down to the rocky shore. The varied terrain is both beautiful and dramatic, and home to a fascinating, often endemic, array of wildlife – such as a giant lizard, once thought to be extinct – so special that 60% of El Hierro is designated a UNESCO biosphere reserve.
 
Gallery
 

Itinerary

The key to Inntravel holidays is flexibility. You can start on the day of your choice, and are free to add extra nights.
  • The average maximum daytime temperatures and monthly rainfall relate to the nearest weather station and are intended as a guide only.

    The best time for flowers is April.

     
    Average temperatures and rainfall
      Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
    °C 17 17 18 18 19 21 23 24 24 22 20 18
    mm 65 55 41 25 8 3 1 2 13 40 73 74
  • Arrival in Mocanal
    Night 1: at Hotel Villa El Mocanal (the first of two nights here).
    As your first night's accommodation is on the day of travel, Day 1 is your first day of walking.
  • Linear walk from Valverde to Mocanal: 12.5km, 4hrs; ascent 610m / descent 695m
    We suggest a linear walk for your first day, which begins after a short transfer to the charming capital, Valverde. You have time to explore this small town before setting off along a section of the Camino de la Virgen – a pilgrimage route that runs the full length of the island. The route takes you to a viewpoint and you also pass the famous sacred tree, the Garoé, which was worshipped by the pre-colonial Bimbache people due its propensity to provide water on an island where fresh water is scarce. Moisture from the clouds condenses on its leaves and the droplets collect in pits around its trunk. The original tree was destroyed by a hurricane in 1610 but another was planted here in 1949 as a tribute to the original. From here, you descend back to Mocanal, enjoying views across the sea towards La Gomera and Tenerife, and with the option of extending your walk to the shanty coastal settlement of Pozo de Las Calcosas.

    Please note: If your travel arrangements mean you have to spend your first night on Tenerife, you will travel to El Hierro first thing in the morning. You will be collected from the airport by taxi, and then dropped off at the start of this walk while your luggage is taken on ahead to the hotel.
     
    Linear walk from Valverde to Mocanal: 12.5km
    Walking path Valverde to Mocanal
  • Mocanal to Frontera: 17km, 6hrs; ascent 845m / descent 1085m
    Setting off from the door of the hotel, you walk through the village to reach the start of the route that will take you along a flower-rich path, traversing the valley above the road. Crossing through tiny hamlets, you reach the superb Mirador de la Peña from where you gaze down upon the El Golfo basin. Ascending the valley, your route takes you across the plains of the Meseta de Nisdafe where fields lined by dry stone walls are grazed by sheep and cattle. Reaching the Mirador de Jinama viewpoint, your descent into Frontera takes you down an ancient path which has been used to move livestock from high pastures to low (and vice versa) for centuries. Arriving alongside the iconic bell tower of Nuestra Señora de la Candelaria, set atop Montaña Joapira, you descend to reach the Apartamentos Los Verodes, where you stay two nights.
    Mocanal to Frontera: 17km
    Mocanal to Frontera - Mirador de la Peña
  • Choice of walks from Frontera: 9.5km or 15km

    Circular walk via Las Puntas: 15km, 4hrs; ascent / descent 370m
    This, our recommended walk, explores the fertile El Golfo valley, famed for its pineapple production, giant lizards and ancient village. It takes you along quiet roads to the coast at Las Puntas. Here you can dive into the natural seawater pools before a relaxing lunch in one of the seafood restaurants near the former ‘smallest hotel in the world’. On the way there or back, stop off to visit the fascinating eco-museum of Guinea, a small village comprising houses illustrating the development of post-Bimbache culture over the centuries; and a small reptile house dedicated to breeding the island's endangered giant lizard (it can grow up to 75cm long) for re-introduction into the wild.

    Shorter, out-and-back option to Charco de Azul: 9.5km, 3hrs; ascent / descent 220m
    Alternatively, follow a linear route out along the course of an old water pipe before descending an ancient path through terraces to reach the coast where a series of stone steps take you to the Charco Azul. Named for the remarkable colour of its water, a small decking area allows you to soak up the sun or dry off after a dip before returning along the same route.
    Charco de Azul
    Circular walk via Las Puntas: 15km
    Shorter, out-and-back option to Charco de Azul: 9.5km
  • Frontera to Sabinosa: 17km, 6hrs; ascent 920m / descent 1145m
    You begin by walking into town to reach the start of the Camino San Salvador, which takes you high above the valley into forested and mossy terrain. As your route levels out, you traverse the valley with views to the coast below before a final ascent brings you to the attractive picnic area of Hoya del Pino. Descending through lichen-covered laurisilva forest, you emerge onto a wide track which traverses the remainder of the El Golfo basin before beginning the descent into the pretty village of Sabinosa and down its volcanic cone face to reach the Balneario Pozo de la Salud. Situated on the coast, alongside a natural well famed for its health-giving properties, this serves as your base for two nights.
    Frontera to Sabinosa
  • Choice of walks from Sabinosa: 9km or 16km

    Circular walk via juniper forest (starting by bus): 16km, 6.5hrs; ascent 930m / descent 1200m
    We recommend a superb walk which begins with a short bus ride from the hotel to the village of Sabinosa. From here you ascend the face of the El Golfo escarpment along the Camino La Dehesa, frequently ascending into mists and clouds, to then traverse a narrow path lined by dry stone walls to reach the lovely Ermita de la Virgen de Los Reyes and some ancient cave dwellings. Continuing through the area known as La Dehesa, characterised by the wind-sculpted wild juniper trees which thrive in this area and which are an iconic emblem of the island, you are rewarded with impressive views over the El Golfo Bay. A short ascent brings you to the edge of a ridge where you return to Sabinosa by retracing your steps down the Camino La Dehesa. From Sabinosa you return to the hotel by a steep path which descends a volcanic cone.

    Linear walk across the Punta de la Dehesa: 9km, 2.5hrs; ascent / descent 150m
    This shorter walk leads through the Punta de la Dehesa ‘badlands’ – an area of volcanic lava on the island’s north-west corner.

    Alternatively, if you fancy a break from walking, you may choose to simply relax around the hotel and take advantage of its spa facilities.
    Sabina forest
    Circular walk via juniper forest (starting by bus): 16km
    Linear walk across the Punta de la Dehesa: 9km
  • To Las Playas: 13km, 3.5hrs; ascent 90m / descent 1410m
    The day begins with a scenic 90-minute taxi transfer, during which you may like to stop to take photos or simply enjoy the landscape. Your drive begins along the road hewn from volcanic rock which winds its way up the north-west cliff face to cross climate zones into the drier south. Continuing around the south-westerly tip of the island, you travel above the Morcilla lighthouse which stands alongside the monument to the former zero meridian, considered the end of the world until Columbus sailed west. Volcanic ‘badlands’ give way to pine forests as you travel southwards, passing above the cliffs that sit high above the southern coast of Restinga.

    Having now seen most of the island, you are dropped off on its spine, from where you set off on foot through an atmospheric forest to the Bailando de Brujas (Witches Dancing) picnic area and then make a short ascent to the rim of the Fireba volcano at the volcanic axis of the island. From there you join the Camino de la Virgen and follow it across the spine of the island where the scenery morphs from volcanic to bucolic meadows with fine views across your south east coast destination and to the profiles of La Gomera, La Palma and Tenerife on the horizon. Passing through a hamlet, you then descend a dramatic rocky path to reach the coast at Timijiraque, where a taxi will collect you for the short drive to Las Playas and the Parador de El Hierro, set at the foot of the cliffs.
    To Las Playas: 13km
    Route to Las Playas
 

Accommodation

You stay in a delightful mix of accommodation.
 

Extend your stay

 
Prices & travel options
All prices are in £ sterling (GBP). If you'd like to see what they equate to in your currency, use the converter.
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  • 7 nights: 01 September - 31 May 2020

    Start any day | End by latest date(s) shown above

    Starting Price Single room
    1 September - 31 October £960 £210
    1 - 30 November £925 £205
    1 - 11 December £895 £195
    12 December - 31 January # £925 £205
    1 February - 3 April £945 £210
    4 - 9 April £960 £210
    10 - 17 April £945 £210
    18 April - 24 May £895 £195
    3rd & 4th person discount -£70
    Single traveller supplement £70

    Includes accommodation, meals and services integral to the holiday as described, plus walking notes and maps, but no travel from the UK, nor any connecting travel from the airport unless stated below.

    # Add £50pp if staying at Parador on 31 Dec for New Year's Eve dinner

    If your flight arrives after 1200, you will spend your first night on Tenerife instead (on a bed-and-breakfast basis) and transfer to El Hierro the following morning. There is no additional cost for this EXCEPT during the Tenerife Carnival, which is on request – please call for details.

    Included travel: return flight between Tenerife North and El Hierro and transfer to first hotel and from last hotel
    Not Included: transfer from Tenerife South to Tenerife North airport or, if spending first night on Tenerife, from Tenerife South to Santa Cruz (in both cases, pay locally for taxi or bus – call for details)

     

    Book your flights through us and we'll find the best route and times to suit you. Please contact us to find out more about our flight booking service. We can also book connecting travel - see below.

  • Extra nights (£ per person per night) in a double or single room

    Balneario Pozo de La Salud, Sabinosa (with dinner) Double room Single room
    01 Sep - 31 May 2020 £60 £88
    Parador de El Hierro, Las Playas (with dinner) Double room Single room
    01 Sep - 17 Dec 2019 £120 £152
    18 Dec - 06 Jan 2020 # £130 £168
    07 Jan - 09 Apr 2020 £116 £148
    10 Apr - 15 Apr 2020 £130 £168
    16 Apr - 30 Apr 2020 £116 £148
    01 May - 31 May 2020 £110 £140
    # Add £50pp if staying at Parador on 31 Dec for New Year's Eve dinner
  • RECOMMENDED AIRPORT(S):
    Tenerife South, Tenerife North

    Travelling from the UK

    Travelling from outside the UK

    If you are flying from outside Europe,  you may need to fly to an airport not listed. To discuss onward connecting travel to the start of your holiday, please contact us.

    Outward route Airline
    Aberdeen - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Belfast Intl. - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) Ryanair 
    Belfast Intl. - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) jet2 
    Outward route Airline
    Birmingham - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) jet2,  Ryanair,  Thomas Cook,  TUI,  Vueling 
    Outward route Airline
    Bournemouth - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) Ryanair,  TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Bristol - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) easyJet,  Ryanair,  Thomas Cook,  TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Cardiff - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) Ryanair,  Thomas Cook,  TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Doncaster Sheffield - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Nottingham East Midlands - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) jet2,  Ryanair,  Thomas Cook,  TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Edinburgh - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) easyJet,  jet2,  Ryanair,  TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Exeter - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Glasgow - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) jet2,  Thomas Cook,  TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Glasgow Prestwick - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) Ryanair 
    Outward route Airline
    Leeds Bradford - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) jet2,  Ryanair,  TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Liverpool - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) Ryanair 
    Outward route Airline
    Gatwick - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) British Airways,  easyJet,  Norwegian,  Thomas Cook,  TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Heathrow - Tenerife Los Rodeos (North) Iberia 
    Heathrow - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) British Airways 
    Outward route Airline
    Luton - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) easyJet,  Ryanair,  TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Stansted - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) jet2,  Ryanair,  Thomas Cook,  TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Manchester - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) easyJet,  jet2,  Ryanair,  Thomas Cook,  TUI,  Vueling 
    Outward route Airline
    Newcastle - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) easyJet,  jet2,  Ryanair,  Thomas Cook,  TUI 
    Outward route Airline
    Norwich - Tenerife Reina Sofia (South) TUI 
    Travelling from outside the UK

    If you are flying from outside Europe,  you may need to fly to an airport not listed. To discuss onward connecting travel to the start of your holiday, please contact us.

    This list of flight options should be used as a guide only, and you should check each airline’s website for current routes, frequency and schedules. Not all flights operate daily, and may not run for the entire season. You should also heed the latest flight arrival time and earliest flight departure time stated in the connecting travel section, as it may not be possible to arrange connecting travel outside these times. Please do not book your flights until we have confirmed your accommodation to you. Alternatively, our expert reservations team will be happy to offer advice and to make flight bookings for you. We charge £30 per person for our flight booking service (£50 for India and Nepal). Your flights are then covered by our package-booking conditions, which give you greater protection in the event of delay or cancellation, as well as providing ATOL cover.

  • Prices below are based on 2 people travelling together. If you are travelling solo or as a party of 3 or more and our arrangements include a taxi, please contact us for prices; additional passengers often pay less.

    Connecting travel options - flying via Tenerife South

    Outward route Price per person Latest flight
    arrival time
    bus or taxi Tenerife South to Tenerife North (1h, pay locally), Binter flight - Tenerife North to El Hierro (1h check-in + 0h40 flight), taxi El Hierro airport to hotel (0h20) included 1200 or 1000 Tues, Fri & Sat
    Homeward route Price per person Earliest flight
    departure time
    taxi hotel to El Hierro airport (0h20 + 1h flight check-in), Binter flight El Hierro to Tenerife North (0h40), bus or taxi Tenerife North to Tenerife South (1h, pay locally) included 1400

    Connecting travel options - flying via Tenerife North

    Outward route Price per person Latest flight
    arrival time
    Binter flight Tenerife North to El Hierro (1h check-in + 0h40 flight), taxi El Hierro airport to hotel (0h20) included 1400
    Homeward route Price per person Earliest flight
    departure time
    taxi hotel to El Hierro airport (0h20 + 1h flight check-in), Binter flight El Hierro to Tenerife North (0h40) included 1200
What is included
  • 7 nights
  • 5 dinners
    2 picnics
    7 breakfasts
  • luggage transported
  • route notes and maps
  • return flight from Tenerife North
  • taxi from/to El Hierro airport
 
Reviews

If you've experienced this holiday first hand, why not write a review?

We are keen for as many customers as possible to review their holiday. To make it easier to do so, we include a specific review section on our post-holiday questionnaire, and this is what we publish here, unedited. Read our full review policy >

 

FAQs

If you have any questions relating to this or any other Inntravel holiday, our friendly travel experts will be happy to help. You might also find our General FAQs section helpful.
  • We’ll send you route notes and maps 2-3 weeks before your holiday. The route notes not only contain directions to get from hotel to hotel, but also include practical information about places of interest and eateries along each route, plus cultural information about the area. If/when you are moving between hotels, you leave your luggage in reception as you leave, and it will be transferred ahead to your next accommodation, meaning that all you need to take with you are a camera, sun cream, drinks, food and waterproofs.

    For more detailed information, see our walking holidays in Europe page.
  • We can book a wide range of airlines and routes from the UK. As well as being more convenient for you to book all elements of your holiday together, it also means that we’ll accept liability for your travel arrangements, so if things go wrong, such as the airline going bust, we’ll make suitable alternative arrangements for you. For Europe and Morocco, there’s a £30 booking fee per person (£15 for children aged 2-11). For India and Nepal, the booking fee is £50 per person. More information on flights >
  • We can’t book flights that originate outside the UK, but if you wanted book your own flights to London (or elsewhere in the UK), we can make all onward travel arrangements (including flights) from there. Alternatively, if you are booking your own flights to an airport in continental Europe that’s appropriate for your holiday, we can book onward rail travel and/or taxis. More information about how we can tailor holidays for customers outside the UK >
  • Since our holidays are self-guided, we recommend calling us for a chat about your plans before making a booking, especially if it’s the first time you’ve booked with us.
    The price panel shows the supplement for a single room and also the single traveller charge (this covers (luggage) transfers and other costs which are usually shared between two people).
  • Once you’ve decided on your exact itinerary (our travel experts will be happy to offer advice), you need to provide us with your party’s details, either by phone or via our booking form. At this point we also ask you to pay a deposit so that we can secure a room for you immediately on confirming availability with the hotel(s). If it turns out that we can’t secure the accommodation for the holiday you’ve requested, or offer an acceptable alternative, we’ll refund your deposit promptly and in full. After booking your accommodation and other key elements, we'll then book your travel (or you can do so if you’re making your own arrangements) and send you a Booking Confirmation and Invoice.
  • Yes, it’s something we insist on, even for holidays in the UK. The vast majority of holidays go smoothly, but when things go wrong, it can be expensive to put them right. Buying a new pair of walking boots after your suitcase is stolen mightn’t seem so bad, but the bill for being airlifted down from a mountain with a broken leg or flown home while still recovering from an illness or accident can cost tens of thousands of pounds.

    You don’t have to buy our policy (if you live outside Europe you’ll definitely need to make your own arrangements, as the policy is only for UK and EU residents), but you do need to make sure that you’re covered for medical emergencies and repatriation. We also recommend that you are covered for other eventualities, such as cancellation and loss of luggage and passports.
  • It is your responsibility to ensure you are in possession of the correct travel documents, with the correct validity. If you’re a UK citizen, you need a full British passport to travel to Spain, but not a visa (if you are travelling after 31 October 2019, see the Brexit question below for more information). If you are a citizen of another country, you’ll need to check requirements with the national embassy or your own consulate.

    Current information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found through the following NHS link: www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk/advice/ You must make sure you have adequate insurance cover for illness, accidents and repatriation (see the insurance question). UK citizens should also obtain a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) by applying at a Post Office or at www.ehic.org.uk. The EHIC allows reciprocal health care but should not be seen as a substitute for travel insurance. EHICs may cease to be valid in the event of a no-deal Brexit.
  • (Castilian) Spanish is one of several official languages; in Catalonia, for example, Catalan has equal status. The currency is the Euro. Spanish time is GMT/UTC + 1. It uses Daylight Saving Time, so in summer is on BST + 1.
  • Even in the event of a no-deal Brexit, it’s been confirmed that flights will continue as normal and that you won’t need a visa to go on holiday (the limit on stays is 90 days). What you will need if there’s no deal is a passport that is valid for at least 6 months beyond the date of your arrival (extra months added because you renewed your passport early do not count) and adequate travel insurance to cover you for accidents and illness in case reciprocal health deals are suspended. If you are driving while on holiday, you will probably need an International Driving Permit (plus a Green Card if you are taking your own car to Europe). More information >
  • The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) provides up-to-date, country-by-country travel advice, as well as information on security, local laws, passports and visas for UK citizens.
    If you live outside the UK, see our essential travel information page for a list of relevant websites.
Last fetch time is : 8/18/2019 10:16:56 AM