Would you consider Mallorca as a destination where to escape winter slush? Palma de Mallorca is both the capital and largest city of Spain’s Balearic Islands. Tucked in the Bay of Palma, the city has a sunny and warm climate, even during its coldest months (January-February), average temperatures hover around 15°C. Mallorca is believed to have been inhabited since around 5000 BC. Palma was founded by the Romans in 120 BC; later, it was taken over by the Muslim Moors for hundreds of years, before being claimed by the Christian Catalonians on New Year’s Eve 1229. It’s primarily their influence still felt today, there are churches on nearly every street corner and the local Catalonian dialect is spoken. However, architecturally, culturally and gastronomically, Palma offers a fusion of Western and Middle Eastern sensibilities.
We were convinced Mallorca would tick the box. At least it couldn’t be any worse. When my husband Babai booked our winter flights to Mallorca, the weather forecast looked more than promising with lots of sunshine! We felt like the perfect time to travel to Mallorca. We wouldn’t need to worry about tourist crowds, travel costs were more than reasonable and, besides the weather forecast, also the average temperatures for the winter season in Mallorca were on our side. I’d love having 15-18 degrees, it would be much warmer than Germany!! And actually, we planned to go there for celebrating our son’s 4th birthday!! Blue beach with blue sky was the theme of Leo’s birthday. We love the beach, sand and seafood!
Who said travelling in winter, lose the beauty of Mallorca? Mallorca is spectacular even in winter time. It is a large island and has a lot of places to be discovered, and a kid can enjoy the trip a lot. There can be found green fields, mills and stone villages that look like taken out of an old movie. When we finally landed in the Palma de Mallorca at the mid-January, the captain announced the outdoor temperature was 15 degree. Before stepping out of the cosy and warm airport building, we were expecting to face sunny wind on our skin!
Entering Mallorca in winter time was like landing on a different island where calm and silence reign. The charming small city, the cobbled streets, blue beach, sand, sunrise and sunset, there is so much to explore! It was really amazing, how we fall in love with those landscapes, traditions, and inland part of Mallorca. Instead of feeling the crush of tourists, we saw joggers around the beach or streets. While most tourists flock to Spain’s Islands for the warm weather, sandy beaches and blue waters during the summer, the water was just as blue and crystal clear in the winter, though I was much less inclined to jump in!
We had a wonderful time at our Aparthotel. We stayed in one of the Superior Seaview apartments with lovely beach view, the facilities were great and well cared for, amazing service and yummy buffet food! There was a gym, indoor swimming pool and a spa area. Evenings were well organized with various events. There was plenty to see around the hotel and the beach was just a few meters away! so we observed the sunset from our balcony! Even you can enjoy the rhythm of the billowy wave as we did!! We accessed very easily by public transport from here and also close to the airport, but we were not hear noise from departing and landing planes. We reached the city centre in about 15-18 min by bus.
While staying in Mallorca, you can’t miss the capital, Palma. Here you can wander for hours in the small streets of this beautiful old town. Palma is a bustling city with quaint shops and lively squares such as the Plaza Mayor, where you can take a seat outside one of the many restaurants and taste delicious local dishes (tapas). Downtown culture lovers can enjoy several beautiful churches as well as the art museum, “Museum de Mallorca”, which is housed in a monastery of the royal palace “Almudaina”.
This old city was a perfect place for getting lost; a maze of narrow, quiet streets took us through impressive architecture and natural beauty at the same time! Such Palma Cathedral, a Gothic structure built atop a former mosque, later restored by Antoni Gaudí. The Es Baluard contemporary art museum, housed in a 16th-century fortress of the town’s walls, had worked by Joan Miró (whose adoptive city was Palma), Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dalí, and much more. This spectacular Gothic creature right in the city centre. The iconic place of the island with the beauty of architecture and nature both!
Instead of walking down the stone steps we took the longer forest path to obtain a different view on the way back. We spent the afternoon in Palma town centre strolling along the narrow alleyways of the old town, browsing in small shops and stopping for lunch beside the main square Placa Major.
The pine forest surrounding Bellver Castle has a wide network of trails, which makes it a perfect place for a little hike, jog or just a green break from the vivid city life. You only need to pay for accessing the castle, the park itself is free to enter. Bellver Castle was built in the 1300s as a royal residence. Today, the castle is housing a museum that describes the long history of Palma de Mallorca. Of course, we travelled to the castle by foot so that we didn’t reach at the peak with our little Leonel.
Palma aquarium was 5mins walks from our hotel. The Palma Aquarium, with 700 species, a deep shark tank and the largest display of live coral in all of Europe. Activities organised at the site include “shark sleepovers”, diving with rays and a shark vision boat ride. In its 55 tanks and over five million litres of water, Palma Aquarium holds one of the most diverse arrays of marine life in the Mediterranean area. View everything from rays and seahorses to octopuses and exotic fish. Feed the sharks and turtles and learn about the marine creatures that live off the coast of Mallorca. If you’re feeling brave, head to the large transparent tunnel where sharks swim behind glass only a few feet away. Qualified divers can even jump into the tank for an exhilarating up-close experience. Pre-booking is essential in order to do this along with courage. Our son loved it because of its outdoor playground which includes water features, ship and slides!
Mallorca is filled with beautiful beaches but finding an undeveloped one isn’t that easy. The best tip I can offer to any city is to climb up anywhere where you can admire the place from a bird’s-eye view. Besides the rooftop terraces of Palma Cathedral and the viewing platform mentioned above, this is how you can do it in Palma de Mallorca!