Azure blue seas, powdery white sand beaches and a sunny Mediterranean landscape provided the backdrop for a dream vacation. The Balearic Islands of Spain comprise four beautiful islands, each with its own special character. Mallorca has glorious churches, ancient villages, inspiring monasteries and pristine sandy beaches. Smaller and more relaxed, Menorca offers a peaceful escape for those who love the sea, nature and rural atmosphere. Ibiza Island is known for its lively atmosphere and beautiful beaches, but also has culture in the Unesco Old Town, one of the most picturesque places in Spain. For those who enjoy relatively undiscovered destinations, the island of Formentera offers sheltered coves with secluded beaches and a UNESCO-listed Maritime Natural Park that has more than 10.
1 The UNESCO-listed Old Town in Eivissa (Island of Ibiza)
One of the most beautiful villages in Spain, the Dalt Vila is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Old Town of Eivissa was the original medieval walled town. Here, tourists can discover a dreamy Mediterranean scene with charming whitewashed houses cascading down to a lively waterfront. This quaint little medieval world sits on a hilltop above the rest of the city, surrounded by massive fortifications. The ramparts were built in the 16th century on top of the remains of the Moorish walls, with three gates and seven corner bastions. The main entrance is the Puerta de las Tablas with the coat of arms of King Philip II, and the gatehouse now houses the Museum of Modern Art .
Within the ancient walls, the Dalt Vila is a picturesque labyrinth of narrow cobbled streets, winding pedestrian lanes, and grand historic houses. Above all other monuments soars the crowning glory of the old town, the Catedral de Nuestra Señora de las Nieves (Cathedral of Our Lady of the Snows). The cathedral was built in the 13th and 14th centuries on the site of the Yebisah Mosque which dates back to the era of Muslim rule. Originally the cathedral was Gothic but was renovated in the Baroque style in the 18th century. Visitors are impressed by the austere and imposing exterior with its prominent flying buttresses. From the terrace on the south side of the cathedral, tourists can enjoy the beautiful view of the bay.
Accommodation: Where to Stay on the Island of Ibiza
2 Palma de Mallorca (Island Mallorca)
Palma de Mallorca, a beautiful seaside capital, offers beautiful beaches and historical and cultural attractions. Located on the bay of Majorca, this elegant city is blessed with mild, sunny weather all year round. Presiding over the old harbour, the cathedral creates a magnificent impression from across the bay with spires and towers soaring high above the city. Another tourist attraction is the Almudaina Palace , originally a Moorish fortress that was converted into a royal residence for the Catholic Monarchs in the 14th century. The bustling Lonja Fish Market in the picturesque harbor and Plaza Mayor, the city’s main square, are also worth a visit. After seeing the sights, many tourists go to the beach. Palma de Mallorca offers several excellent beaches, including Cala Major , near the Miró Museum ; the Playa de Palma , a popular beach 10 kilometers from the city; and adjacent to Playa de Palma, the Playa del Arenal , an extensive beach with a yacht club.
Accommodation: Where to Stay in Palma de Mallorca
3 Beautiful beaches on the island of Formentera
Beautiful beaches on the island of Formentera
Less touristy than Ibiza and Mallorca, the idyllic island of Formentera offers a peaceful escape to nature. The rugged and unspoilt coastline is characterized by dramatic cliffs that drop down to beautiful beaches. Many of the beaches enjoy a secluded and well-protected environment, perfect for relaxing. Found in a quiet cove, Pujols Beach has a wide coastline of fine white sand and calm waters, ideal for swimming and water sports. This beach also has a boardwalk where people can walk around during the day and evening. Close to the towns of Sant Francesc de Formentera and La Savina are two fantastic beaches: Llevant Beach is a lively scene of sunbathers, restaurants and water sports enthusiasts. Illetes Beachis in a nice location with a beautiful view over the sea to the island of Ibiza. Other small offshore islands are close enough to reach by swimming. In addition to its charm, the area around this beach is not overdeveloped, providing a sense of tranquility.
Accommodation: Where to Stay in Formentera
4 The Charming Medieval Walled Town Of Alcudia (Island Of Majorca)
This fortified medieval city offers the charm of Old World Europe. Enclosed by the ancient defensive walls, Alcúdia’s historic quarter is a delightful world of cobbled pedestrian streets and quaint historic buildings. While walking through the city, visitors will see many beautiful churches, as well as old aristocratic houses with coats of arms and Renaissance windows. Alcúdia also has many inviting restaurants and cafes with pleasant outdoor terraces. Another interesting attraction near Sant Jaume church is the archaeological site representing the Roman city of Pollèntia dating back to the second century BC. The site has the remains of ancient Roman houses, a theater and a forum. The Pollentia Museumdisplays artifacts that were uncovered in nearby archaeological digs.
Alcudia is known for its traditional festivals and cultural events, such as classical music concerts. On Tuesdays and Sundays, the town offers a farmer’s market selling fresh produce from the local countryside. The rural area around Alcudia is a wonderful place for tourists to explore by bike or car.
5 Klooster van Cartuja de Valldemossa (island Mallorca)
Valldemossa is a picture-perfect village perched on a hilltop of the Tramuntana Mountains overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. This peaceful rural town is surrounded by wooded hills, orchards and olive groves. Visitors enjoy strolling the narrow cobbled streets and admiring fine old stone buildings adorned with potted plants. Many of the charming pedestrianized streets are lined with cafes, boutiques and art galleries. The must-see sight of Valldemossa is the Real Cartuja de Valldemossa, a medieval Carthusian monastery originally built as a royal residence in the 14th century. The famous composer Chopin rented a room here with novelist Aurore Dupin (George Sand) during the winter of 1838-1839; they were both artistically inspired by the beauty of the monastery and its serene natural surroundings.
Also part of the municipality is the Port of Valldemossa , an old fishing village with a beautiful harbour. This area is known for its excellent cuisine. Locally caught fish is combined with fresh produce from the surrounding farms to create tantalizing dishes.
6 Ses Salines Natural Park (Island Formentera)
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Natural Park of Ses Salines is a marine nature reserve that includes the area of the south of the island of Ibiza and the northern island of Formentera, as well as the sea channel between the two islands. The majority (75%) of the natural park covers water and represents 9,000 hectares of park compared to 2,838 hectares of land. An interesting feature is the expanse of underwater meadows with aquatic plants found only in the Mediterranean. These underwater environments allow a diversity of fish and other organisms to flourish. The other aspect of the park is the land covered with Mediterranean shrubs, coastal pines and rare cliff vegetation. Birdwatchers will be delighted with the sightings, with over 200 different species of birds making their home in this park. Flamingos, black-winged stilt, Audouin’s gull and the Balearic shearwater can be seen here. Other animal life can also be found in abundance, such as lizards, unique native species of snails and beetles.
7 Mahón: capital of the island of Menorca
Mahón: capital of the island of Menorca
Mahón stands dramatically on the edge of a cliff at the eastern end of the island of Menorca. The city was founded here for strategic purposes, as it has an excellent natural harbor and a protected location sheltered from wind and bad weather. Visitors arriving by sea will be delighted by the scenery as the boat makes its way past ancient fortresses, islands and bays to the harbour. Mahón is a laid-back, slow-paced city that families with children will appreciate. Enjoy a leisurely stroll through the ancient streets while taking in the sea views. Be sure to stop at the Plaza de España , a spacious village square where a traditional market is held under the arcades of a former Carmelite priory. It’s a square cutIglesia del Carmen , an impressive neoclassical church built in the 18th century. For the best view of the harbor, head to the Plaza Miranda by taking a narrow stepped lane from the Rampa. In early September, the town has a lively religious fiesta in honor of the Virgen de Gracia, with traditional processions, brass bands and colorful celebrations.
8 The chic seaside town of Puerto Portals (Island of Mallorca)
Puerto Portals is the place to see and be seen in Mallorca. This glamorous beach town appeals to upmarket clientele looking for flashy cars, luxury yachts, trendy restaurants and high-end shops. Puerto Portals attracts an international crowd of stylish visitors and has the feel of Monte Carlo in Monaco. Along the picturesque marina you will find a yacht club and many stylish restaurants. The most famous eatery is the Michelin-starred restaurant Tristan. Other options include the Ritzi Restaurant with a pleasant terrace and the Cappuccino Bistro overlooking the marina.
9 Cala Portinatx Beach Resort (Island Ibiza)
At the northernmost tip of the island of Ibiza, the Cala Portinatx is a popular holiday resort with beautiful beaches, excellent sailing opportunities and surf schools. The pristine beaches and ideal weather draw sun worshipers during the summer. Gentle waters make swimming safe; and lifeguards also survey the scene during peak season. Snorkelers and divers praise the crystal clear waters. The bay of Cala Portinatx is sheltered from the open sea by a rock barrier, which protects against tidal action and creates gentle waves.
10 The prehistoric site of Talatí de Dalt (Menorca Island)
This rare prehistoric site is located five kilometers west of Mahón in a rural landscape of breathtaking beauty. The Talatí de Dalt megalithic monument is a chamber with a thick stone slab supported by a central monolith. Built in the Bronze Age (around 1300 BC), the Talatí de Dalt represents an architectural structure of one of the most important prehistoric settlements on the island Menorca.