There are several benefits to having a brother-in-law who lives in Majorca (i.e. Mallorca) 1) A free couch to crash on 2) having a local as your tour guide 3) getting to cram a ton of awesome stuff into less than 3 days! What else could one ask for during a weekend getaway to Mallorca? I’ve got some friends who are headed to the Balearic Islands this summer so I’m going to share my best “tips” with you all – I hope you have as much fun as we did! Keep in mind you should seriously consider renting a car; towns are really spaced out on the island (some are at least a 30 minute drive) and you will need to arrange transport if you hope to visit the not so easy to find coves and beaches. Public transport isn’t as frequent or fast as it is on the peninsula so when you’re planning your trip keep this in mind!
1. Visit the Calas of Mallorca
You’ve probably heard of the famous calas of Mallorca…there are several translations for calas in English including cove, inlet or small bay. The most important translation you need to associate with this word is gorgeous…as in calas are gorgeous and not to be missed! There are calas all over the island of Mallorca and some are harder to find than others. It seems the most beautiful ones are also the most difficult to get to…but I promise the view will be worth the 15 – 30 minute hike.
2. Day trip to Palma or surrounding beach towns
We stayed in the town of Manacor, but I would recommend staying in Porto Cristo or Portocolom if possible. Manacor is a sleepy little town so there’s not too much to do in way of nightlife, restaurants, etc. Porto Cristo and Portocolom are a bit livelier than Manacor with numerous hotels, bars, restaurants, shops –and not to mention they both have beautiful calas and beaches with easy access from the center. Palma is also beautiful; it’s full of bars, clubs, yachts, high-end shops and historic attractions like the cathedral…but it was way too crowded for me; my advice is to stay in a small beachside pueblo and plan a day trip to the big city!
If you prefer to stay in Palma you’ll have lots of things to do – but try to take a trip outside of the city to see some pueblos for a chance to do what the locals do, eat where the locals eat and discover some new calas along the way!
3. Drink a piña colada & eat paella at Can Gavella
Finding a place that serves frozen, fruity cocktails is a priority for me on any beach-inspired trip. My tiki-god prayers were answered in the form of Can Gavella. Not only were the piña coladas great, but being able to enjoy a tasty beverage with my toes in the sand and eating a delicious plate of paella with this view…priceless!
Make sure to reserve a table at this place ahead of time – it was packed!
4. Cuevas del Drach (Caves of Drach / Dragon Caves)
The Caves del Drach are one of Mallorca’s biggest attractions. The caves were formed by water from the Mediterranean Sea entering through cracks in the rocks and some of the formations in the caves are believed to be up to 11 million years old. There is an underground lake situated in the caves called Lake Martel (you can ride a boat on the lake as part of the tour) and the water is so clear you can see all the way to the bottom of the lake (4 – 12 meters deep). Something that surprised me about the cave tour is the classical music concert; at one point in the tour all the lights are turned off so the cave is pitch black…in the distance you can see small boats with lights floating towards you and in the boats are several musicians playing classical music. The reflection of the light from their boats glimmer on the cave walls and the music echoes all around you – it’s definitely something to experience!
These are my top 4 things to do in Mallorca based on our trip this past weekend – if you’ve got any suggestions on things to add to our itinerary the next time we’re on the Balearic Islands leave a comment below!