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El Hierro: The smallest Canary island without mass tourism

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El Hierro, the westernmost and also smallest Canary island. Due to its location and somewhat difficult accessibility (there are only flights from Gran Canaria and Tenerife to this island), you will not find any mass tourism here. Mainly nature lovers and those seeking tranquility go to El Hierro. The island is know for its beautiful mountains and you can wonder around for days here.

In 2000 El Hierro was declared a biosphere reserve by UNESCO, which means that most of the fauna and flora is protected. The island is not big, but that does not mean that you are tired of the island after two days. On the contrary. Especially since most places are fairly far apart, you can easily enjoy yourself for 4 to 7 days.

El Hierro consists mainly of mountains, there are no fewer than 500 volcanoes. Many of these mountains are covered with coniferous forests. The landscape is therefore ideal for walkers. Because of the wild nature, many parts of the island can only be reached on foot.

Mirador de La Peña

Mirardor means viewpoint, but this place is much more than just a viewpoint. At Mirardor de la Pena there is a restaurant where you have a beautiful view over the Golfio Valley. It is definitely recommended to have lunch or dinner here. Or go by in the morning for a cup of coffee. One thing is certain: the view will not disappoint.


The village of Sabinosa is highly recommended. This village has a source of healing water. Sabinosa is beautifully situated on a mountain slope with a magnificent view of the ocean.

Sabinosa village - Picture by:


El Hierro is the first self-sufficient island and an example of sustainability in the Canary archipelago. From 2014, water and wind are used as energy sources to provide the entire population of El Hierro with electricity. The Gorona del Viento hydroelectric power station now supplies 10,000 residents with electricity and the island is now 100% energy neutral.

The beaches of El Hierro

If you want a sun and beach holiday, it is better to go to one of the other Canary Islands, such as Gran Canaria, Tenerife, Fuerteventura or Lanzarote. But El Hierro does have a number of sandy beaches for those who would like to spend a day at the beach. The most popular beaches you will find on El Hierro are Playa de Arenas, Tamaduste and La Restinga.

Playa de Arenas - Picture by:

Where to stay

If you want to visit El Hierro island, there are only 2 hotels of more than 20 rooms on the entire island. Parador by far is the best hotel on El Hierro. It has a wonderful location right by the wild ocean.

We enjoyed the restaurant with superb breakfast and delicious meals. In the afternoon we spend many hours on the beautiful terrace with view.

Best time to visit

Like the other Canary Islands, there is a warm climate here all year round. However, it is cooler in many places on El Hierro. This is because most locations are higher in the mountains. So we recommend to skip the months December, January and February. Click here if you want to receive more climate information about El Hierro.

This article was last updated on October 27, 2022.