I will fully admit that I’m a bit of a snob when it comes to travel. I hate touristy places, big resorts full of English people eating all inclusive food, and beach promenades lined with shops selling tacky souvenirs and giant pool floats. This is what I imagined Mallorca would be like which is why it was never somewhere I had pictured myself going.
But now that Little Miss Ayla is in the world, while we’re still travelling as much as we used to pre-baby, our style of travelling has had to change a slight bit. It’s now less about the challenging hikes and full on sightseeing itineraries and more about the I-have-a baby-to-look-after-every-day-at-home-so-on-holiday-I-just-want-to-chill-the-F-out!
So Mallorca it was! I found us a gorgeous and secluded place to stay in one of the most rural and scenic parts of the island, far away from the touristy towns and the all inclusive resorts – which I will of course write about soon. Magaluf aside (let’s just stay as far from that corner of the island as possible!) what surprised me the most was how stunning and traditional the majority of the island really is. I guess I shouldn’t be so quick to judge a place so here are 8 reasons why you should visit beautiful Mallorca.
1. Breathtaking views over the island’s most northerly viewpoint, Cap de Formentor. After driving up the winding mountain roads this view of the rugged tip of the island jutting out into the deep blue sea is just incredible.
2. The bustling capital of Palma with its cafes, designer shops and gothic cathedral. We didn’t have long here (as most of our days were filled with relaxing by the pool) but Palma is a city that I would love to return to to explore some more. Even Mr Ayla commented on how it was the perfect place for the city girl in me!
3. The stunning drive along the winding coastal roads of the Serra de Tramuntana mountain range, a World Heritage Site where the mountains meet the ocean. It reminded us of the drive along the Big Sur which is one of our favourite ever road trips.
4. Pretty little mountain villages like Deia and Valldemossa which are nestled along the west coast of the island in the Serra de Tramuntana. The towns are tiny but seriously couldn’t get any cuter.
5. White sandy beaches with shallow clear blue sea. As we visited in the height of summer it was of course ridiculously busy, so much so that we actually struggled to find a place to sit on our towels. But off season it looks like this…
6. Small traditional rural towns nestled in the centre of the island surrounded by the lush countryside. Each of these towns had narrow cobbled streets lined with brick buildings with cute green shutters; a small and pretty main square adorned with an old church; and cosy cafes full of locals – not tourists (woo!). These are the traditional places that I love finding and make it so worthwhile exploring off the beaten path. Our favourite town was Sineu, which just happened to be the town closest to where we were staying, and we loved this part of the island so much that I’ll be writing another post about it soon!
7. A vintage train and tram ride through stunning scenery and coastline. The vintage train from Palma to Soller takes an hour each way, travelling through the lush countryside. The tram is a lot quicker but still just as beautiful with a 20 minute ride from Soller to the gorgeous Port de Soller. Full of plush yachts and lined with palm trees and harbour side cafes, Port de Soller is a lovely little town and I would have loved to have spent a bit longer here.
8. It’s has something for everyone. The island really does cater to all types of travellers – romantic views for the couples, heavenly beaches for the sun seekers, hiking and cycling trails for the active, party towns for the groups of friends, and great accommodations and friendly locals for the families. We spent a week here and enjoyed both exploring as well as the relaxing side of island life but it just wasn’t long enough to satisfy the love that I very quickly felt for this place.
Have you been to Mallorca? What did you like most about the island? Have you ever been surprised by somewhere that was so much better than you expected? Let me know in the comments below or at: