Read in: Nederlands (Dutch)
Mallorca in the summer
Mallorca is best known for its seaside resorts. Sun, beach and parties. It is an island that I would avoid in the summer for a number of reasons. First of all the massive influx of tourists, which makes for a less pleasurable experience. Furthermore, with temperatures around 30º Celsius in July and August, I find it too hot to do anything else than to lie on the beach or hang around the pool.
That is a double nope.
Mallorca in low season
Therefor this kind of holiday will definitely not end up on my list to Santa, despite the high vitamin sea and sun levels.
Fortunately, there is life outside the high season on this Spanish island. After the hot summer months, the weather is much more pleasant, with average temperatures between 15 and 25º Celsius during the day. Indeed too cold for swimming, ideal for an active holiday.
And, not unimportantly, after the high season, the hotel rooms tend to be a lot cheaper, still, the coastal towns make a great base for exploring the interior.
The beach is just the beginning. After you enjoyed the view:
- Rent a car, a bicycle, a motorcycle or take a boat tour and explore the island from the water. Discover the authentic mountain villages with their sandstone houses, which form a nice contrast with the modern coastal towns. Along the way, you will see almond trees, lemons, olive groves, cypresses and oak trees in a rural landscape.
- Admire the landscape, the colourful bougainvillaea, the oleanders, the scented jasmine and the unlikely blue of the Mediterranean. If you prefer to explore more actively, ride a bicycle or go on a hike.
- If you are serious about your sports endeavours, follow a golf or tennis clinic. Join one of the sports competitions, such as the triathlon in October or the cycling race in February.
- For culture visit Palma de Mallorca, the capital.
- Finally enjoy the food, wine, sunset and sea views.
Or more in detail, a week in Mallorca could look like this:
Day 1. Relax at Hotel Calvia Beach the Plaza
Stay at the übercool Calvia Beach the Plaza. This hotel is located twenty kilometres from the capital Palma de Mallorca. So when you have the energy, jump in a taxi, take the bus or rent a bike to explore the old city centre of Palma, a maze of streets which are mostly pedestrianised.
Tired? Then go no further than the 5th floor of the hotel. On the rooftop terrace, you will find a ‘hanging’ pool with a glass bottom. This allows you to look 25 meters down. In case you suffer from fear of heights, I recommend you hold your head high and enjoy the view over the Mediterranean instead.
Chances are that it is too cold for swimming outside the summer months. That does not matter, as on the roof terrace there is also a restaurant where you can delight in a meal with a view, or hire a sunbed for a much-needed siesta. No need to feel guilty. Science is on your side, a nap in the afternoon is actually good for you.
In case it is too windy to take a nap, go to your room. These are equipped with coffee and tea making facilities, fridge and a walk-in shower. In the morning the day starts with a breakfast buffet, with all kinds of bread, pastries, fresh fruits, yoghurts, eggs, cereals, etc.
In the vicinity of the hotel are dozens of restaurants, supermarkets, shops and within two minutes walk you are at the Magaluf beach.
The municipality of Calvia has 53 kilometres of coastline with beautiful sandy beaches, of which six (Illetes, Cala Comtessa, Carregador, Palmanova, Son Maties and Peguera-Torà) have been awarded the blue flag in 2018.
Day 2. Go on a hike, or two
- The Serra de Tramuntana is a mountain range that runs along the northwest coast from Andratx to Cape Formentor. In 2011, the area has been given UNESCO World Heritage status, because of the beautiful landscape and cultural significance of the region. It is a fantastic area to go hiking. From Calvía there are over one hundred kilometres of trails.
Tip: buy the Mallorca Tramuntana hiking guide, it has good altitude maps, with GPS coordinates.
- Puig de Galatzó is an iconic mountain in the municipality of Calvía, in the foothills of the Serra de Tramuntana. Various routes start from the Estate, two of which are suitable for disabled people. The shortest route is 5.8 kilometres and takes about two hours.
Click here for a description of the routes (CR7, 8, 9 and 10).
Day 3. Rent a bicycle
In the above-mentioned mountains, the Serra de Tramuntana, the Puig de Galatzó and along the Calvia coast are five cycle routes. These come together at different points, which allows you to either shortcut or combine itineraries.
- 122.7 km via Santa Ponça – Calvià – Es Capdellà – Peguera – Santa Ponça.
- 19 km route starts and finishes in Magaluf – Son Ferrer – El Toro – Santa Ponça – Cruce Andratx – Palma – Palmanova – Magaluf.
- 47 km route via Palmanova – Calvià – Coll des Tords – cruce Puigpunyent – Palma – Puigpunyent – Galilee – Es Capdellà – Calvià – Palmanova.
- 31.6km route along Illetes – San Agustín – Gènova – Coll de sa Creu – cruce Palma – Calvià – Calvià – Palmanova – Portals Nous – Illetes
- 27.5 km route to Peguera – Es Capdellà – Andratx – Port d’Andratx – Camp de Mar – Peguera .
Day 4. Sun on your plate
Your vacation only really starts when you have tasted local cuisine. With an exceptional wealth of home-grown olive oil, suckling meats, fresh seafood, home-baked pastries and sun-ripened vegetables, Mallorca is an excellent choice for a foodie.
- Start your day with an ensaïmada, a sweet roll topped with powdered sugar. Delicious with a cup of coffee for breakfast.
- Lunch with Coca de Trampó (a vegetable pizza); Panada: a meat pie and Pa’amb Oli: bread with garlic, tomato, smoked ham and olive oil. Of course, accompanied with a locally produced glass of wine.
- Your dinner is only complete with a dish from the extensive seafood buffet that the Mediterranean Sea offers its guests. Choose from octopus, salted cod, fresh oysters and of course paella.
Still, in the unlikely event that Mallorcan cuisine does not appeal to you, there is a wide choice of international restaurants on the island.
Day 5. Sundowners at the bay of Palma
Puro Beach Illetas calls itself an ‘oasis by the sea’, a beach club with wooden furniture, linen napkins, white umbrellas and views over the bay of Palma.
For the ultimate relaxation, lunch on the terrace with a wok, burger, quesadilla, salad or vegetarian curry. Make sure you do not have other plans because it takes a long time until the food arrives. Therefore, drink that overpriced cocktail and enjoy the view of those handsome waiters while you wait for your meal to arrive.
Then after your lunch/dinner rest until the sun sets with a gin & tonic at hand.
Day 6. The united colours of UMI Restaurant
The small but excellent UMI (sea in Japanese) restaurant is located at Port Adriano, the harbour. The Argentinian owner Matías Provvidenti creates each plate as a small work of art. His fusion dishes are made with flowers, fresh vegetables, raw and cooked ingredients and taste as delicious as they look.
Do leave some space for a dessert, especially the ‘green tea coulant and white chocolate’ dessert. As a self-proclaimed connoisseur of puddings, I rate this a something extraordinary, in fact probably the best dessert I have ever tasted.
Day 7. Immerse in nature
Even if you are no hiker or cyclist, you can still very much enjoy nature in Mallorca. Birdwatchers can see many different bird species, like cormorants, fulmars, curlews, vultures, chiffchaffs, eagles and many more.
Or go snorkelling, indeed the water is cold in the winter, but with a wetsuit, it is even tolerable to dive in the North Sea, so then there should be no problem in the Mediterranean. Whilst snorkelling you might see sea cucumbers, bream, red algae, barracudas, jellyfish, anemones, sea urchins, cuttlefish, dolphins and much more.
If you do not want to do anything yourself and still fully enjoy nature, then take a boat trip. If you are lucky, you will see dolphins.
And who knows after such a week, you even want to return to Mallorca in the summer.