Europe | Spain

Mallorca

 

Over the years of 2009 and 2015 my family were part owners of a sailing yacht (“Solana”) located in Santa Ponsa in the south-west of Mallorca. We would usually go on a week or two holiday annually in the summer and slowly I began to learn the basics of sailing with the help of my dad. I didn’t particularly enjoy it, but like most things in my life I like to gain as much experience as possible because everything comes in handy at some stage. However, as much as I dislike being in the sea, I love being on it. You get a real sense of freedom, as if the whole ocean is yours to explore, and it's so peaceful and quiet.

Santa Ponsa

Being just 8km from Magaluf, certain areas of Santa Ponsa bares many similarities to it. Luckily enough for me, we spent very little time in and around the party-area of Santa Ponsa because, just like Magaluf, its a dirty and run down area and not the type of place you would take your family. We spent the majority of our time around the main beach, Playa de Santa Ponsa, and the restaurants and shops nearest the promenade and marina. 

  • Playa de Santa Ponsa: This blue flag beach is more than 500m long and offers a range of activities 

  • Caló d’en Pallisser: A smaller beach nearby to the main beach. This one is used more by locals because its quieter and theres less Brits.

  • Club Nautico Marina: "Solana" was moored in this private marina, which allows boats up to 20m long. There is a jet ski company situated at one end and we used them a couple of times (thankfully never fell off)

  • Jungle Parc: Adventure park with zip-lines, obstacles and a total of 100 platforms. 

  • Cruz del Descubrimiento: Take the easy walk out of the marina up to this viewpoint for an awesome view and if you're into cliff jumping.

 

So many factors make this area of the world awesome; the climate, the scenery, the small bays you discover and anchor up in to explore the small villages/towns, or you might even be lucky/unlucky enough to anchor up beside a nudist beach. 

 

I was lucky enough to see so many towns and bays that most people probably wouldn’t know existed thanks to having a boat. The main place we went to was Palma de Mallorca, the biggest city on the island and sort of the island's capital. If you were to drive from Santa Ponsa it would ordinarily take about half an hour. In a sailing boat, however, without using the engine which my dad insisted on, usually took us about 3-4 hours hours. Palma itself is a beautiful city with so much to offer so we made this an annual visit and then slept in the Palma marina. It's the type of city you could spend weeks in. The medieval streets and historical design make it such an attraction to me.

Palma de Mallorca:

  • Arab and Jewish Quarter: Take a guided tour around Palma's old areas or just wander by yourself through the narrow and picturesque streets

  • La Seu Cathedral: The city's "centrepiece" and most prominent landmark

  • Es Baluard Art Museum: A modern art museum featuring work from some of the greats. 

  • Cycle/walk the Marina: I've always liked just wandering around marinas and checking out other boats that I cannot and will probably never be able to afford. Some of the things are bigger than houses

  • Santa Catalina Market: Local seafood and meat market

  • Shopping: There's everthing in Palma. Shopping centres, designer shops, budget shops, cafes, restaurants etc etc etc.

  • Wander

Other places we sailed to were Port d'Andratx, Porto Vells and Portopetro which are all places straight off a postcard. Tropical bays and sandy beaches, and all without the noise and other baggage that you get when you visit a city. 

 

Unfortunately, Solana was sold in , but I look forward to visiting the new one in Roses, mainland Spain.

 

 

Barcelona

 

Unfortunately, my memory of Barcelona is extremely poor and I barely remember a thing. I went in 2013 for only 3 days and I will have to revisit before I update this part.

© James Lilley 2018