When you land at Palma de Mallorca airport there is a high chance you are already in your flip flops rubbing on sun cream while the plane still drives to the terminal. I don’t blame you – most people spend close to nothing here and head straight to one of island’s many resorts. Not me, though.
Palma is worth at least a couple of hours of your time to walk around and enjoy before you skinny dip in the sea (or your hotel’s pool).
Get in to Palma de Mallorca
The airport of Palma is located only 8 km away from the city and it will take you 20 minutes and 3 euros to catch a bus to the center. You can always pick a taxi, of course, but whats’ the fun in that?
When you are out of the terminal, look for public bus stop – you will need either bus 1 or bus 26. There will be a guy selling tickets at the bus stop. He looks as a scammer at first, but that would be quite stupid to do it right in front of the bus. You can also simply pay to the driver, no difference.
The stop you are looking is Plaza Espagna which is right next to the old town. From there on no transport is needed and everything is within walking distance.
What to do in Palma de Mallorca
Palma is not the world’s capital of tourism, so apart from shops and occasional horse carriage rides there is not much prepared for attraction seekers. At least I didn’t noticed much more.
Once there, just soak in some civilization before laying down on the beach, enjoy the relaxed culture and the old colonial architecture around.
Palma’s old town is a mix of narrow streets and pathways with a cafe or a restaurant on every second corner. And every cafe is offering cava – a traditional Catalan champagne.
There are only a couple of places of interest for someone who is looking for a place of interest. Most of the action is scattered around the island, though (like caves, monastery, vineyards, etc.)
1. Castell de Bellver
If you have time, visit this Gothic style castle. It’s located just several kilometers away from the city center, but you’ll probably want to catch a bus to get there. Fun fact – it’s actually one of the several circular castles in Europe and was built in the 14th century.
2. Catedral de Mallorca
A much more convenient and awesome-looking place to visit is Palma’s Cathedral. It’s massive, it’s well preserved and wherever you look, the views are great.
Places to eat in Palma de Mallorca
Spain is a Southern country and any Southern country’s assets are fresh fruits. If you are here anytime between May and September – try to find markets where you can get fresh fruits.
In fact, right next to the Placa Espagna, just a brisk 5-minute walk, there is Mercat de l’Olivar. It’s a large market where you can not only buy freshest fruits, fish and meat, but also eat at many dining stands. If i were you, I would actually start exploring the city from here – banana in one hand and a handful of fresh figs in another.
If you are in Spain it’s a crime if you don’t taste local tapas. It’s a food that long time ago bar keepers invented not to get people too drunk too fast. So it’s like a small appetizer, but here it’s brought to a whole new level. When in Mallorca, head over to either Tast or Taberna del Caracol – you won’t regret it.
If you’re feeling festive – get a glass of Cava (a local Catalan champagne) at a local cafe. Locally made cava is much better than that available in shops – it has a much softer taste and is more enjoyable. Watch out, you won’t feel that much alcohol and you get dizzy really quickly