El Hierro the Meridian Island was once the end of the known world

by BardofEly

El Hierro is in the Canary Islands. It was in the news last year because of an underwater eruption but it is safe to go there.

El Hierro is the smallest of the Canary Islands
El Hierro is the most southerly and the smallest of the seven Canary Islands, which are located of the coast of North Africa and count as parts of Spain. El Hierro is probably the least well-known, and in fact, very long ago, it was considered the end of the known world for Europeans.
It's name is said to come from a Guanche word "Hero" that got transformed into "Hierro," which means the metal iron in Spanish. It is also thought that "Hero" as a Guanche term, or more technically a word used by the Bimbaches, which was the name for the Guanches that lived there, meant "cistern." This was because having no natural water sources on the islands apart from rain and mist, the people collected their water from the trees which condense it in the pine and laurisilva cloud forests just like happens still on the Tenerife, La Palma and Gran Canaria where these forests help pull in moisture from the clouds that form around the mountains.
El Hierro like its neighbouring Spanish islands is volcanic and has several microclimates and different types of countryside with mountainous areas, pine forests, grasslands, scrub and drier rocky parts. El Hierro also has many caves. Its crystal clear waters and abundant marine life have made it very popular with divers and there are many diving centres on the island.
Amongst crops grown on the island are grapes and pineapples. El Hierro has plenty of farms and a more old-fashioned style of farming

Flag of El Hierro

A symbol of the island

El Hierro travel guides

Canary Islands (Regional Travel Guide)

“Looming volcanoes, tumbling waterfalls, lava fields and trails of camels loping into the sunset… Those who love the Canary Islands know there is a captivating flip side to thos...

Lonely Planet
$9.1  $33.99

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Walking on La Gomera and El Hierro (Cicerone Guides)

Walking guide to La Gomera and El Hierro, in the Canaries, with day walks and long-distance trails including Camino de La Virgen, GR132 around La Gomera and part of GR131 across...

Cicerone Press Limited
$28.52  $24.52

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The Green Valley Valverde

It really is green

Valverde, meaning "green valley," is the capital city of El Hierro and this is where the island's airport is located. According to Wikipedia there was a population of 10162 people living on El Hierro in 2003.

Whilst the island is popular with the more adventurous types of tourist and those who really want to get away from it all it does not have the resorts like islands like Tenerife and Gran Canaria, nevertheless there are plenty of beaches.

The Ministry for Industry, Tourism and Commerce have announced that El Hierro will become the first island in the world to be self-sufficient when it comes to its energy needs. This is going to be made possible due to a €54 million project that will combine a 10 megawatt wind farm with two water reservoirs to store the excess energy.

El Hierro in the Canary Islands

What makes El Hierro an excellent place to visit

Giant Lizards

El Hierro's wildlife

The island is a wonderful place for naturalists with many unique flora and fauna and actually has a giant lizard that only lives there and is the subject of a conservation programme to boost its numbers. The El Hierro Giant Lizard (Gallotia simonyi) can reach about 2ft in length and it is omnivorous.

My personal interest in El Hierro had been recently sparked by my search for work. Apparently they needed English-speaking classroom assistants there in recent years and had difficulty filling the vacancies. It was never my plan to live in El Hierro, and it will mean a major upheaval in my life again if I move there, but if it means a permanent job doing something I love then I may end up on the island.

I quite fancy the idea of living on an energy sufficient island at the end of the once known world, an island with its own giant lizard!

Copyright © 2012 Steve Andrews. All Rights Reserved.

El Hierro on Amazon

One of the Canary Islands
El hierro que forjo a la dama (Spanish Edition)

CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Only $14.99

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Coleccion de Alejandro Dumas (Los Tres Mosqueteros, El Conde de Montecristo, El Hombre de la Masc...

Editorial Hansben
Only $8.99

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El Hombre de la Mascara de Hierro (Spanish Edition)

CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
$14.0  $15.75

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El hombre de la mascara de hierro (Spanish Edition)

CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Only $9.0

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Updated: 11/12/2012, BardofEly
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