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 Matthew Hirtes

Go Expat In… Moving to La Gomera

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This week’s “Go Expat in…” article from Matthew Hirtes features moving to La Gomera. Some of you may remember how enamoured Alan was with this little island during his walk in 2012. It really is stunning, and… should a Euromillones win come up… we have our eye on a holiday property in the valley that leads down to Valle Gran Rey in the South.

Small is beautiful on the Canary Island’s second-littlest isle

Ups
La Gomera’s old-school Canarian. You won’t find any faux Irish bars here. Nor all-day English breakfasts or American burger chains.

Downs
There are more baby boomers on La Gomera than babies. This Canary Island has an ageing population. The young tend to relocate to the likes of Tenerife and the Spanish mainland for the extra employment opportunities, although they’re looking even further afield thanks to La Crisis.

In and out
The nearest resort to La Gomera airport’s the southerly Playa Santiago. However, it’s only 34km to the capital San Sebastían de la Gomera in the north east of the island. The airport’s tiny and accommodates inter-island flights during daylight hours.

Education
International schools simply do not exist on the island. So you’re going to have to go state. Which has its drawbacks as the public Spanish education system goes big on learning by rote rather than encouraging pupils to think independently.

Shop until you drop…
There’s no mall culture in La Gomera. Playa Santiago, one of the main resorts which nevertheless still feels like the fishing village it originally was, has a handful of souvenir shops and not much else. If there, pick up some almogrote, La Gomera’s famously piquant cheese paste.

Property types
Capital-dwellers favour apartments, as is the case across the Canary Islands. However, Fred Olsen have created Pueblo Don Thomas in the south of the island if a villa’s more your idea of home. Which is either expat heaven or hell with its adjoining country club, golf course, and gym.

Market watch
One-two bedroom apartments, €100.000-€150.000. Detached Villas, €250.000-€500.000.

In Praise Of

“The Gomerans are a very friendly and accommodating people who will go out of their way to make you feel at home and help you improve your Spanish. It’s a bit like my county in Ireland,Donegal, except it’s got sunshine virtually all year round. There’s a unique Mediterranean rain forest on the top of the Island which is a throwback to before the last ice age, and it’s green and lush with fabulous walks for all to enjoy.” Andy McCarter (Gomera Walking)

• Are you an expat in La Gomera? What do you like/dislike about it? Let us know below.

About your questions…

Sorry – but we do not offer relocation advice on an individual basis through Spain Buddy. There are a number of relocation experts who are better placed to advise you on your new life in sunny Spain.
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One Response to Go Expat In… Moving to La Gomera

  1. John Brindley March 2, 2017 at 8:04 pm

    As a Lanzarote resident who has been to ten of the islands, La Gomera is my favourite to visit. Go in May, when the fields and roadsides on the higher slopes are a riot of wildflowers, and the Laurisilva forests at the highest points have beautiful footpaths beneath tunnels of trees dripping with mosses.

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