North of Mallorca: The north of Mallorca has a completely different feel to the South. Its amazing bays, mountains and medieval fortifications are interesting and unique on the island. Pollensa bay is the entrance to one of the most distant (from Palma center) beautiful beaches. People compare it to the caribbean. Formentor and Cap Formentor are a must see. Pollensa Port is very family orientated, very friendly and easy. Full of restaurants and sandy beaches. Pollensa city is a fortified town. Within its wall the famous Iglesia de Nuestra Señora del Roser Vell with its 365 steps is found. Charming and traditional. Its cosyness is only supplemented by its 9 Hole Golf course and fisherman’s villages like Cala Sant Vicente.
A little bit further south Alcudia By with Playas de Muro offer visitors long white sandy beaches. It is a area full of contrast for those who know where to look, beautiful coves, natural parks and secret beaches can be found. Otherwise all you see is a mass conglomeration of monster hotels and mass tourism. From Alcudia you reach the area of Son Serra de Marina, Colonia San Pedro, Arta, Canyamel, Capdepera, Cala Ratjada. Also called North East.
North East of Mallorca: The infrastructure is not the best but is perfect. The government has really looked after this part of the island and it hasn’t been over developed. In this area you can still find first line villas, private at reasonable prices. This, the north east part of the island, has some prominent residents such as the former tennis player Boris Becker, or the former surfer Jon Van Antwerp.
Colonia San Pedro is a small fisherman’s village. It has a lovely marina and a walking promenade with good restaurants. Or those who enjoy nature, there are a few walking trails that take either all the way to the top of Cap Farrutx or all the way down to private coves. The Hermita de Betlem is a well know place to visit de to its beautiful surroundings. Artá is the next big city following the road parallel to the sea. It attracts many turists due to its medieval fortifications, old city centre and Tuesday’s market. Capdepera also has an amazing castle on top of the hill were the city stands. As you approach it, surrounded by vegetation and silence it can easily be imagined how Mallorca was in former times. From Capdepera, Canyamel is only a 15 minute drive. Its low rise houses, spectacular panoramic views, quietness, five star hotel and top quality golf course make this a perfect location for those who not have the need to be near Palma centre and enjoy beautiful sea views. Local shops and supermarkets are available in surrounding villages all year around. Cala Ratjada is another village within easy reach from Arta or Canyamel. Its promenade with restaurants and bars as well as The March Family Castle (museum) with 60,000 SQM of well kept gardens, and its little marina are a perfect place to spend holidays or an evening. Cala Ratjada does have a lot of tourism.
Around this area there are many sandy beaches such as Cala Agulla, Cala Mezquida, Son Moll, Cala Torta and walking trails connecting some of them by little paths running along the sea coast.
If you are planning to spend time around the N-NE of the island we highly recommend you hiring a car, this way to can access all the secret spots of the coast. Sometimes it can get a bit tricky to park but don’t get desperate, you will always find a parking space.
South East of Mallorca: The East is a loved area by many. The same rule applies as to the North. There is good infrastructure but it is also an area with very marked seasons. The summer is buzzing and in winter the foreigners in love with the island and locals give live to towns in a very reserved way. The beaches, coves and little marinas are charming and full of character. There are some highlighted areas such as: Porto Cristo with its stalactite caves “Coves del Drac”, little fisherman’s port and historic buildings, Porto Petro with is amazing and biggest natural harbour in the island, Cala D’or with is romantic little coves and bays as well as Ibiza style architecture. Following the coast Cala Llombards, Cala Figuera and Cala Santany are the places of preference by many returning tourists to the island. Its gold sand beaches and turquoise waters are welcoming and stunning. A little inland Santany village, Sa Alqueria Blanca are preferred living areas by those who enjoy tranquility, away from busy towns (these are about 60 Km form Palma) but with a good selections of good bars and restaurants with easy access. Even though there is not a high population in these areas the assortment of amenities is of a very high standard.
Back on the coast on towards the south Cabo Salinas is the furthest south point on the island a narrow picturesque road leads us to a typical light house and an amazing deserted rock garden. From here you can walk to Colonia Sant Jordi, a preferred holiday village for local Mallorquin people due to is family friendly sandy beaches, bars, restaurants, walking trails, easy access and good atmosphere.
South of Mallorca: Many come to Mallorca because they have heard of S’Estrenc and La Rapita. The incredible white salty mountains welcome you into a surreal scenary. From white salty mountains to golden sandy hills into crystalline waters… Here in the summer it can be bit difficult to park but do not get turned down the search of a parking space it worth the day at these incomparable long white beaches. In the summer month beach “chiringuitos” or beach bar are open to the public all the day long hence no need to drag supplies with you just take a seat and enjoy the typical Spanish tapas.
From this apart of the island if you were to come back to Palma following the coastal road the scenery is breathtaking, high cliff that drop into the sea and gorgeous Palma Bay… the road takes you through numerous residential areas which are coming very popular due to their new infrastructure, Golf Course, Beach Clubs, Five Star Hotels, closeness to Palma and mostly to the airport and reasonable prices. Sa Torre, Cala Blava, Maoris Decima… all residential areas mostly populated by Spanish. Nevertheless, in the last year the amount of foreigners who have bought and live here have increased amongst which the popular thriller writer: Jeffrey Archer.
West of Mallorca: La Sierra de la Tramuntana or Tramuntana Mountains are where all towns and villages in this area are embedded. It is believed the Tramuntana Mountains are a continuation of the Pirynees. This chain of steep mountains run from the north of Mallorca all the way to the south west along the coast. The scenery is incomparable and unforgivable. Sun sets are unmatched. There are many places of interest amongst this mountains such as: Soller and Port Soller. With amazing historic background, Port Soller is one of the few ports on the north coast hence on the most important disembarking port in former times. Now a beautiful area with many restaurants, cafes and bars. Its walking promenade, recently finished is a perfect spot for an evening stroll before or after diner. Its sandy beach of En Repic and Light House complete the picture. From here a tram or “Tren de Soller” takes you into Soller Centre. Embedded in a sunny valley. Soller is well known for its oranges, exported many countries in Europe. Here you can’t miss the old train station and the hall market what have been conserved and refurbished following old customs and materials to preserve its character. Soller is only 20 minutes from Palma and if you are looking for is a town feel with mountains and sea views this is your place.
Around Soller, villages like Biniaratx and Fornalutx can be found. Romantic little villages that take you back in time. Fornalutx has been awarded as the most beautiful town in Spain in several occasions.
Along the coast Valldemossa and Deia are also emblematic villages. Stone pedestrian streets, terraced town houses, terraced fields, beautiful-typical agriculturist and hotels, dramatic views, fishermen ports, unique walking trails. Are just some of the reasons why famous artists have chosen or chose this villages as their Mediterranean homes: Robert Graves, Michael Douglas, Annie Lennox, Julian Lennon, John Ulbricht…
From Valldemossa and only 15 minutes away by car Banyalbufar is a small village with houses on both sides of the road and vinyards that over look the sea. It is an amazing little stop over to watch the sun set.
In little valleys Esporles and Puigpunyent still offer visitors the friendly air of a small town but with all necessary to never have to drive into Palma. From either towns Palma can be reached with in 15-20 minutes. This is the reason why many choose this villages to settle new homes. For its proximity to Palma in the middle of the mountains but with in easy access to small ports visited mostly only by locals to cool down on summer days.
In this area large Fincas and traditional Mallorquin Manor Houses can be found.
Pla de Mallorca: This is the area between the Tramuntana Mountains and the coastal area of the South. It seems as if time had stopped here. All the towns and villages conserve their traditional manners and the most spoken language is Mallorquin. Agriculture is the prominent source of income. Generally this part of Mallorca is not mentioned in tourist guides which is why only those adventurous ones can finds how Mallorca was centuries ago. There are some exceptional view points such as Puig de Randa. Its rolling hills and agriculture patchwork are a great picture from the air.
South West of Mallorca: The South West of Mallorca is the most popular area on the island. This is due to its extensive and well planned infrastructure as well as for its proximity to Palma, its marinas and gourmet restaurants fashionable as well as local bars and natural coves. This area is divided into two municipalities Andraxt and Calvia. Each with its own charm, character and lifestyle. In Calvia we find Cala Mayor.
Cala Mayor is the Royal Family Residence. It is right by Palma and it offers the a large variety of shops, restaurants, night clubs, pubs, beaches, supermarkets, etc. Its proximity is ideal for residents and newcomers who do not want to be in the centre of Palma, but want to be within STONE REACH of it. Passing Cala Mayor San Agustin and Cas Catala are the next neighbourhoods. Very popular amongst local. Cas Catala is a very quiet residencial area with stunning sea views and beautiful villas. On the FOOT OF THIS HILL San Agustin enjoys exclusive lounges and hotels by the sea front. Cala Nova sailing port and school is the preferred activity by youngsters in the summer months. Windsurfing, wake-boarding, 420…. All in all a great place to spend a few weeks in the summer.
Illetas, situated in a one way system amongst hills and pine trees, is a very exclusive resort. Illetas beach it is believed to be one of the best beaches in the south west. Its lounge bar and restaurant are a perfect combination for families. Views are breathtaking. If you are looking ot be right be the sea while having a drink on your terrace this is one of the areas where Real first line properties can be found. These were all built a couple of decades ago. For example The Anchorage, ages with such charm and magnificence that it is impossible not hold it in one memory.
Bendinat, definitely a great address. Living in Bendinat is very comfortable. It is only 5 minutes from Palma, but holds selected restaurants and hotels. Its coast is absolutely amazing, rocky, tranquil, quite, lovable. Its FRONDOSA vegetation, elder trees, well kept streets, low roofs, magnificent villas are a constant in this area. There are also many very good schools in the area. Local and Private. Alt Bendinat is one of the best post codes in the island. Royal Golf Bendinat offers an extra to residents of the area. Bendinat is a good mix of locals and foreigners.
Bendinat is the entrance to Portals and Puerto Portals.
Portals Nous is the town centre of Portals and Costa D’en Blanes. With a very varied supermarket, a newspaper stand, various restaurants and cafes, banks, health centre, chemist, all in all a small but perfectly comfortable home town. Portals Beach is one of the best known in the south west due to the trendy Puerto Portals which is right next to it. Puerto Portals with its exclusive restaurants and large yachts is a great place to spend any evening. Glamour and fashion is in the air. The hills above Puerto Portal’s are a close urbanization called Costa D’en Blanes. This while area belongs to the Blanes Family, hence its name. Now a great place to live just 5 minutes from Palma or from your boat in case you get a mooring here!
Passing Portals towards the west comes Palmanova. Used it to be a very popular area amongst the British. Its long wide walking promenade by the beach and well as its various bars, restaurants, cafes and tapas places are an attraction to those who which to enjoy Mallorca as a summer destination all year around! Palmanova has a good mix of residents. Spanish, British, Germans, Scandinavian… it is a good compromise for those who which to live close to Palma with the beach at their door step.
Sol de Mallorca & Cala Vinyas are two areas which lived their golden years a couple decades ago and which are now phasing into a new era. Sol de Mallorca use to host the only casino in Mallorca, now it is purely a residential area with two of the most beautiful sandy coves in the south west. Portal Vells and Playa del Mago. Its clear waters surrounded by steep rocky walls full of vegetation are magical. The access isn’t easy but it is worth while the drive. Cala Vinyas has a few high rise buildings most of the developments, buildings and houses have the most spectacular view over Palma bay. At night all the twinkle lights of Cap Blanc (the other side of Palma Bay) can be seen, sweping away to blank black nights of first line properties. This area was the preferred one by Queen Sofia of Spain, for many years before the Marivent Palace became the Royal family Residence.
Santa Ponsa & Nova Santa Ponsa, This perfectly structured area is only 15 minutes away from Palma. It has all that is needed to never have to leave its radius. Great restaurants, supermarkets, banks, doctors, chemists, schools, charming coves and large sandy beach, three golf courses, rolling hills, sea views and exclusive designers marina, an established port, all in all a great place to live of spend a holiday. Nova Santa Ponsa is the most popular upcoming area in the south west. This due to its proximity to Palma, its commodities and high standard. It is a very trendy area which just started being developed 10 years ago. Since then it has been a benchmark for exclusivie residences. From here you can also start your marathon all the way to the airport. The bicycle route starts here and takes you along the side of Son Ferrer, Palmanova, Portals, San Agustin, Cala Mayor, Palma promenade, Portixol, Molinar and Cala Gamba.
Paguera & Cala Fornells, Romanticism mixed with comfort and lifestyle. Paguera used to be a small fisherman’s village. In the 1970’s tourism started to be attracted to its beauty. Clear waters, long sandy beaches, pine trees to shade you from the sun. Wide variety of shops, cafes, restaurants, beach clubs, all within walking distance. The beach to one side and amazing mountains to the other. Paguera may seem a bit difficult to understand to newcomers because of its one way traffic system, nevertheless once you know it is couldn’t be better. It keeps the traffic noise away and establishes a calm ambiance, perfect for walking. Paguera has a long wide pedestrian promenade. Brilliant for quite afternoon walks, Sunday brunches, evening drinks…
Cala Fornells has a completely different feel. Built in Otzoup style (the resemblance to Mexican Pueblos such as Cabo San Lucas can’t be denied) with rounded corners, romantic, charming concave spaces, spectacular views, melancholic balconies. It is place which you will always remember. Here the majority of properties are apartments. There are some amazing villas which preserve the luxury relaxed feel. From here many coastal hikes routes take you into Camp de Mar and Andratx. The green areas behind it and its little unspoilt sandy coves, known just by a few are just a few things why Cala Fornells is different.
If you were walking from Cala Fornells or Paguera to the west over a hill you would encounter Camp de Mar. If you are there by sunset then you don’t ever want to leave. Camp de Mar is a natural large cove with a great sandy beach. All the hotels, villas and residential areas have views into this magnificent protected bay or into the Andratx Golf Course, It is not for nothing the Five Star Hotel Dorint is set into this landscape., at the foothills of the Tramuntana Mountains. In season there a couple of great restaurants in the areas as wells as some shopping facilities. This is a place for those who wish to enjoy far from night life, with their families and friends.
The furthest point west from Palma is Andratx pueblo, Andratx Port, San Telmo. This where the marvelous Tramuntana Mountains, which run all along the west of Mallorca to Pollensa, are born. Many hiking trails and path also start her into the mountains. San Telmo in particular host Sa Trappa trail. A challenging one, which can end up in the ruins of the monastery or if you decide to be adventurous and plan it well you can do the whole of the Tramuntana Mountains in 5 days, sleeping in small government cottages. San Telmo being a fisherman’s village also has some great fish restaurants. In particular Cala Conills brings people together form all over the island. Its sea food is simply spectacular, its views and location are unique. This small town is calm and quite with free car centre, little table on the promenade, the sound of clinging glasses inside the Spanish bars and the smell of ensaimadas from the “Forns” (bakery’s) is irresistible. The white sanded beach is very welcoming, but is can get a bit crowed during the pick season. If you wish to escape from the crowd you can either jump on the boat that takes you to Dragonera Island (a natural reserve park) or walk along the fisherman’s houses to small patches of solitary rocks.
Port Andratx is also a fisherman’s village, but it is more of a harbor, with all its fishing boats and nets awaiting to start the day and bring the captures of the day back. Port Andratx is very popular for its dramatic views and flair. It promenade and parallel pedestrian adoquined streets are a characteristic trade of this captivating harbor. Port Andratx also has a great Marina and many scuba diving centers. The under water life is at its most here. The steep cliffs are a perfect habitat for all sorts of fish and crustaceans. Up above sea level these steep cliffs embed the most amazing villas. Their location grants them grandeur and breathtaking sea views into the openness.
The heart of Andratx is in its village where many artists have put their heart. Here the town hall is set in a 19th century castle. Nowadays Andratx is only 30 Km from Palma and it takes us only 30 minutes to get there. In former times this trips crossing the mountains on foot took three days. This is why many small harbors around Mallorca had inland agricultural sites. This way the population were self standing and only traveled to other towns if necessary. The largest private Modern Art Museum is located here. A big White Elephant, as some like to call it. It has 1,500 mts of exhibit area, a restaurant, a book shop and many artist studios.
Andratx offer a weekly market, just like every other town in Mallorca. Here you will see all sorts of people. From the Mallorquin grandmothers to the trendy “extranjers” of foreigners who have made of Mallorca their second home, like Claudia Schieffer or former manager of Michael Schumacher.