Covering a surface of around 1405 square miles, Mallorca is the largest of the Balearic Islands. In the northwest lies the Sierra del Norte, a rough mountain range comprised of scarcely vegetated lime rocks ranging in height from 1070 to 1525 meters. At the east and south east coast there are many small sandy beaches surrounded by rocky bays (Calas) and lots of dripstone caves. In the inlands you will find sloping and fertile plains. The west coast and north cape (Cabo Formentor) consist of spectacular rock formations with capricious structure and steep cliffs. Mallorca offers different residential areas where you can find luxury holiday rental villas, houses, homes and apartments.
Mallorca - Balearic Islands - Spain
General information about Mallorca
The Mallorca coastline varies from outstretched beaches to numerous bays and steep cliffs. The beaches are mostly sandy. The sea is calm and has a delightful temperature in the June to October season. A cool ocean breeze provides some pleasant freshness during the hot Summer months. The southwest coast of the island is the most visited area. The largest sand beach can be found in Palma bay.
Es Pla, a large fertile inland plain, is an agricultural area with various kinds of agriculture and horticulture. Mallorcan nature and wildlife are typically Mediterranean; there are many kinds of birds, wild vegetation and flowers. Some bird reservations and a water-abundant natural reserve are located in the vicinity of Alcudia. The Puig Major is the highest mountain peak at 1445 meters.
Although tourism provides for Mallorca's main source of income, the agricultural, mining and fishing industries also provide a significant means of existence. Grapes, wheat, flax, and olives are the most important products. In addition pigs and sheep are held. Marble, copper, and lead are the most important metals and minerals.
The Balearic island range forms an autonomous region and province of Spain. The Balearics consist of four large islands (Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza , and Formentera) and eleven smaller islands. The most important industrial products are shoes, majolica-porcelain and pearls.
The Balearics have been a well-visited holiday destination for several decades. When tourism started to grow during the fifties and sixties, Mallorca quickly became a popular holiday destination. Its success is self-explanatory. Whatever it is you expect to find in a holiday destination in southern Europe, Mallorca has it all. Beautiful beaches, nature in abundance, small cosy fisherman villages, and of course lively beach resorts.
Years ago Mallorca was taken for a cheap mass tourism destination. Much has changed since then on Mallorca, and now the island offers everything a holiday maker is looking for. Ranging from exclusive villas in remote getaways to the 'beer and chips' culture resorts, Mallorca has it all.
The most popular resorts are around Palma bay, with many of the German tourists visiting S'Arenal while the British often visit the Nova Magaluf and Palma.
In the north are more exclusive options for holiday makers. Puerta Pollensa for instance, is a popular destination for holiday villa rentals.
Geographically the island offers an overwhelming landscape and its inlands are amongst the jewels of the Mediterranean Sea region. Harbouring spectacular mountains and hidden bays, these sections of the island are rarely visited by the average tourist. Your journey through the Serra de Tramuntana, from Soller to the harbour of d'Andratx, is one of the most beautiful excursions you will ever experience. The capital of Mallorca is Palma, only minutes away from the airport.
Palma has a nice historical city centre characterised by an enormous Gothic cathedral. Most tourists hardly ever pay a visit to the city and deprive themselves of one of the most significant sights of the island.
Offering hot summers and mild winters, Mallorca is a tourist destination for all seasons. Transavia, EasyJet, RyanAir, Air Berlin, and virtually all other European carriers offer cheap flights turning Palma s Son Sant Joan into one of Spain´s busiest airports.
Autumn is the nicest time to visit Mallorca; most tourists have gone home and the climate is still very pleasant. In springtime, one can enjoy mild temperatures and the splendour of the island with six million almond trees in full blossom.
Puerto Pollensa, with its sandy beach, is stretched along a gorgeous bay at Mallorca's north coast. It is established around the fishing port that offers access to the magnificent ancient Roman city of Pollensa, situated only a few kilometres inland. A bit more inland, and more quiet, are Nova Mafalluf and Palma . However, families often decide to take to Puerto Pollensa and Cala San Vicente. The cafs, restaurants and tourist shops, combined with the nice hotels, wide sandy beach, and the bay filled with the colourful sails of impressive yachts and all add op to a sure recommendation.
Alcudia lies in the north of the island and fulfills all expectations from a vacation on a Spanish island. The fortified city of Alcudia hosts runes from Roman times and a fabulous Sunday market at which the city's streets are filled with curious boutiques selling traditional goods.
One of Alcudia's most visited sights is the harbour district. Alcdia was founded by the Phoenecians making it the oldest city of Mallorca.
The monuments scattered throughout all of Alcudia are definitely worth a visit. The Roman bridge still serves as traffic bridge. The limestone watchtowers along the coastline were once mechanisms of defence used for spotting pirate ships. The old town of Alcudia consists of close-knit rows of narrow streets and is surrounded with walls dating back to the 14th century. When visiting the old town, it is best if you park your car at the south side of the city and walk around the walls.
Public transport/Connections on Mallorca
Mallorca has a very extensive, reliable, and affordable network of coaches reaching nearly every town and village. There is also a train connection between Palma and Soller.
A word of caution: public transportation only runs until approximately 9 pm.
Infrastructure of Mallorca
The network of roads is generally good. Roads in the inlands are often narrow and delimited by semi-high stone walls. There are no deviating traffic rules. Taxis are generally affordable.
Some advice: ask for the price before getting into the taxi. Every driver has a price list in the car which they have to show when so requested. At night there is a 10% surcharge.
Car rental on Mallorca
The minimum age of the driver is 21, and the driver should have at least two years of driving experience.
Points of Interest
Similar to all other countries around the Mediterranean Sea, the population of Mallorca lives outdoors. Large warm meals are consumed in the afternoon, followed by a siesta during the hottest hours of the day, during which most shops are closed. Traditional towns can mostly be found inland (with the exception of Palma ). A visit to these is definitely worthwhile, as they turn Mallorca into an even nicer island than its sun, sea, and beaches already do.
Traditional customs come to life at feasts and festivals. In a number of towns one can witness bullfights. Those who enjoy life on the plains will welcome the fincas (old farm estates) that have been adjusted to accommodate tourists. Mills and windmills characterize the inlands. In these towns one may often find old houses with a patio (a roofless inner courtyard), and nearly all houses have green shutters in front of the windows to keep out the sun.
Activities on Mallorca
Mallorca offers many kinds of possibilities for sport-loving tourists. First, the island is ideal for cycling. This is because Mallorca has many mountains, of varying difficulty levels, offering a big challenge for the well-trained cyclist. Whoever sets out from El Arenal by bike will discover a completely different side of Mallorca , full of contrasts, with plains and mountains, with unique landscapes and panoramic views.
Beyond the shoreline lies a fascinating inland with picturesque villages, culture, and traditions left behind throughout the centuries by Mallorca's Roman, Moor, and Castilian ancestors. Cyclists provide a good source of income for Mallorca , because the cycling tourist often comes during the low-season to avoid mass tourism.
Another sporty alternative is a scuba diving holiday. Mallorca offers good possibilities. This phenomenon is gaining in popularity with today's tourists, with the youth in particular. On Mallorca one can participate in a range of scuba diving courses. At Mallorca 's east coast there are particularly beautiful coral reefs where you can scuba dive and snorkel.
Golf on Mallorca
During your stay in a holiday house, holiday villa, or finca, you might wonder if there's a way to practice your swing in a good game of golf. Well, there is! Most holiday houses, villas, and fincas are located near one or more golf courses. Mallorca is well known for its many golf courses. 'Taking a swing' between palm trees on the sloping green greens will be a welcome activity during your holidays.
1. Capdepera Golf
2. Canyamiel Golf
3. Pula Golf
4. Son Servera Golf
5. Villa D'or Golf
6. Son Antem West Golf
7. Son Antem oost Golf
8. Maioris Golf
9. Son Gaul
10. Golf Park
11. Son Quint Golf
12. Son Vida Golf
13. Son Muntaner Golf
14. Bedinat Golf
15. Poniente Golf
16. Santa Ponsa Golf
17. Andratx Golf
18. Son termens Golf
19. Pollensa Golf
20. Alcanada Golf
Cuisine of Mallorca
It comes as no surprise that fish and shellfish play an important part in Mallorcan cuisine, and whether paella is originally a local dish is no longer relevant, as tourism has turned it into one. Bouillabaisse has its local variant named sopa de pescador, and it contains plenty of onions, garlic, tomatoes, and olive oil. Tumbet is the name given to the Mallorcan tortilla, and is made of zucchini, eggs, peppers, onions and potatoes.
Each year in May, a gastronomical week is organized in Palma for the promotion of local dishes and wines, all of which can of course be tasted extensively. Mallorca has a cheese made of cow and sheep milk, called 'Mallorqun'.
The wine culture has a long and honourable history. One of Mallorca 's bodegas even dates back to 1771. Mallorca is the only Balearic island cultivating grapevines and can be proud of its own D.O., Binissalem. Furthermore, large quantities of Vino de Mesa (Felanitx, Palma ) are produced. Until quite recently, the wines from the island did not receive serious consideration, but the efforts of several bodegas attracted the attention of the INDO and the island received a D.O. Wine producers in Mallorca now focus their attention to export markets.
The holiday rental houses, holiday rental villas and fincas on Mallorca
can mostly be found in the hills, just outside the villages, close to the Mediterranean Sea. Nearly all holiday accommodations have their own garden with private pool.
Climate of Mallorca
Mallorca has a Mediterranean climate with hot summers reaching up to 35 degrees and temperate winters, although sometimes the temperature can drop to freezing point. With its 2800 sun-hours and 600 mm of rain per year (mostly in autumn), Mallorca has a delightful holiday climate.