We finally made our Euro Summer 22′ trip and this time we visited Spain for the first time! And of course we had to hit the islands first. Mallorca is the biggest of the Balearic islands and has always been on my bucketlist for its dreamy calas (beach coves), charming towns, history, culture and more. It is a popular summer destination in Europe and makes a wonderful vacation spot for couples, families, friends or solo travelers too. Once I heard that there was a direct United flight from the US ( the first and only direct route from the US to Mallorca!) I booked the trip sooner than you know! Below is my travel guide to all the things you need to know to travel to Mallorca.
Best Time to Visit :
Shoulder months like Sept-Oct or April-May would be the best time to visit for good weather, less crowds and better prices. I must note that we went in early September and it was still very hot! But the crowds were less. Perhaps mid-end September would be better.
How many days in Mallorca:
Mallorca is such a big island and if you want to even scratch the surface of it you would need a minimum of one week, which is what we did. It also takes a decent amount of time to drive from one part of an island to another so its hard to do too much on one day. Most of the best beaches/calas are on the east coast while the pretty village cluster is on the west coast so it would also be a good idea to split your time between the two. Keeping this in mind 7-10 days would be ideal.
Getting around the island :
Having mentioned that the island is so big – yes you do absolutely need a car if you wish to explore around! Its very easy to drive ( similar to the US) and the drives are so scenic, so its a win-win!
Where to stay :
Belmond La Residencia has always been very high on my list of bucketlist hotels and let me tell you it is even more unreal in person! It is a Mediterranean dream come true and just ridiculously stunning at every corner. Set in 30 acres of olive and citrus groves on a hilltop in Deia, it has spectacular views of both the mountains and the sea. And like any Belmond property, La Residencia is steeped in history – the main buildings here date back to the 16th century. The resort has the perfect balance between luxury and island heritage.
We loved our stay at beautiful Castell Son Claret, also located at the foothills of the Tramuntana mountains in the Mallorcan countryside. This is part of the Leading Hotels of the World and was also recently voted as one of Europe’s best hotels . This used to be a 19th century castle that was converted to a luxury hotel but still manages to retain all the historic details and charm. Read more in my blog post here.
I wanted to include at least 1 hotel recommendation on the east coast if you want to stay closer to the Calas. Cap Vermell Grand Hotel is also part of the Leading Hotels of the World, so you can’t go wrong here.
We loved this charming little airbnb right outside Valldemossa town that was located within a quaint little local farmhouse. The rooms were clean, basic, comfy with large patios overlooking the olive groves.
Best beaches in Mallorca :
Mallorca has over 200 calas to choose from – from the quintessential dreamy coves to wide white sandy beaches, there is something for everyone! Here are a few of my favorites :
Calo Des Moro
My no 1 favorite beach on the island. It is drop dead gorgeous with its rugged cliffs, crystal clear waters and views for days. This is easily the most photographed cala on the island and I personally thought it had the best water color and clarity!
It is a tricky find and a bit of a walk but oh so worth it. The parking for Calo Des Moro is closed in the summers and the closest parking you get is the street parking outside the area of the calas. Arrive early to claim a spot else you will have a very long walk! The beach is also tiny with little to no sand so most people either lounge on the rocks or in the water. Arriving early also means claiming a good spot on the beach. Both Calo Des Moro and Cala S’Almunia are in the same area. When you start walking to the Calas, you have two choices: down a rocky path to Calo Des Moro, or continue down the paved road and then at the end follow the steps down to Cala s’Almunia. You can also access Calo Des Moro from Cala S’Almunia if you continue left after you get down the staircase.
Tips on how to get here are above. This cove is so picturesque with its electric blue water and little boathouses. Perfect for swimming, cliff jumping or sunbathing.
A charming little cala in a fishing village, not appropriate for swimming but great to spend an afternoon at a cafe overlooking it or strolling along the Cala.
One of the most popular calas on the island and I can see why! Crystal clear waters makes this a popular swimming spot and there is lots of cliff and sand space to set up for lounging. This beach also has a little shack so you can also grab a bite/drinks while you have a beach day here.
This postcard perfect beach is so pretty! Especially loved the views cliffside as well as the popular photo opp on the cement slab overhanging over the Cala here.
One of the few calas we visited on the west coast sits right below the village of Deia. The water here is the prettiest shade of an azure blue! It is a rocky beach so it wasnt my fave for spending extended time unless you are okay sitting on the rocks like most people were. However its still worth the visit – not only for the beach but also for Ca’s Patro March. Also arrive early to claim a parking spot here.
The only Cala we visited in the Andratx region. Similar to the above it is a rocky beach but the views here are so spectacular!
We visited 2 Northeast beaches mainly cos we wanted to also visit 2 long white sandy beaches for a change. Cala Agulla is a heavenly large bay with crystal-clear water and white sands. It also has facilities such as palapa rentals and restaurants on the far end. The south east side of the bay is the only part that is developed and is home to an array of hotels and restaurants, which merges into Cala Ratjada. It does get very crowded so arriving early will help you beat the crowds! It costs 6 euros to park here.
Cala Mesquida is just a 10 minute drive from Agulla. Cala Mesquida is located in a large bay, surrounded by rocks on both sides. It was so amazing to swim in these warm turquoise waters ! The beach also has a beach bar on the beach and a restaurant on the far end where you can grab lunch or drinks.
Mirador Es Pontas
Not really a Cala, but I wanted to add it in here. This is a stunning natural arch in the water and its definitely worth a visit whether its for a photo opp or whether you want to take the trail down to the water.
Other Calas :
Here are some of the ones that we couldn’t visit but that were on our list – Sa Calobra, Es Trenc, Cala Romantique, Cala D’Or.
Towns to visit :
Valldemossa is a what fairytale dreams are made of! Just 30 min from the capital, it feels like a world away. It is located in the Tramuntana mountains ( a UNESCO World heritage site ) and is perched on a hilltop surrounded by terraced terrain. Exploring this quaint storybook town is such a pleasure – it has the dreamiest cobbled street alleys, lined with potted plants with mountain views from every corner.
Handsdown my favorite part of Mallorca was Deia town, I liked it even more than the beaches! And thats a lot for me to say cos you know how much I love beaches. Deia is a small town also in the Tramuntana mountain range. The cobbled streets of this picturesque town are full of charm and its no surprise that Deia attracts a ton of artists from all over the world who have made this little island mountain town their home. Getting lost exploring the alleys here was such an amazing experience.
Nestled high up in the Tramuntana mountains, Fornalutx has been voted has as the “prettiest village in Spain!” The cobbled streets, quaint alleys, stone buildings and red tiled roofs with sweeping views of the mountains combined with the scent of the surrounding citrus groves gives this town the most undeniable rustic vibe.
Another cute little village in the Tramuntana mountains. You can also couple this visit with a trip to Cala Banyalbufar.
Soller’s village square is at the Sant Bartomeau church. This lively part of town is worth a visit for the restaurants, boutiques and also the historic tram that connects Soller to Port de Soller.
We didn’t visit Palma this time around since we wanted to stick to the small villages. But the capital has plenty to offer! Don’t miss out on Bellver Castle and the Palma Cathedral.
Places to eat :
Es Taller (Valldemossa)
Voted one of the best restaurants in Mallorca! This is Tapas culinary heaven – try the ceviche here, thank me later.
Super cute tapas restaurant in the heart of town.
Barba Florida cafe (Valldemossa)
Loved the burgers here ! It is also located in the main square of Valldemossa.
Cafe Miro (Deia)
One of our favorite meals of the trip! Cafe Miro at Belmond is incredible. Aside from the delicious food, the whole vibe here is on point from the ambiance to the music to the views.
El Olivio (Deia)
Also at the Belmond – one of the best fine dining restaurants on the island. Reservations are needed months in advance.
Olivera (Es Capdella)
Loved the dinner here when we stayed at Castell Son Claret. The food, presentation, ambiance and service were excellent.
Nama Deia (Deia)
Great spot for Asian dinner in Deia. Voted one of the best restaurants in Mallorca. Reservations recommended, ask to be seated on the terrace.
Cute little tapas restaurant in Deia.
Ca’s Patro March (Deia)
Voted one of the best restaurants in Mallorca! Yummy seafood and arguably the most beautiful restaurant on the island. Reservations are needed months in advance or ask your hotel concierge to book you in. They also do walk ins but be prepared to wait. Good thing that its right by Cala Deia so you can spend time here while waiting.
Other recommendations :
Not any restaurant in particular but I wanted to mention some of my favorite Mallorcan delicacies I tried that you must try while you are on the island :
- Almendra cake – an almond cake ; pairs so well with coffee or ice cream
- Sobrassada – Spanish chorizo (if you eat meat). Anush loved this as a topping on pizza!
- Coca Mallorquina – like a flatbread pizza! So so yummy and comes in many flavors.
- Ensaimada – the most popular Mallorcan pastry! Looks and tastes like a croissant. Perfect with coffee!
- Trempo – Mediterranean salad with tomatoes, onions and olive oil.
Outfit Inspo for Mallorca :
Here are some of my outfits that I packed for Mallorca :
Get Inspired to visit Mallorca :
Dreamy alleys of Valldemossa town
Popsicles and Gelato breaks to beat the heat!
From beach to..
..to the pool..
around Belmond La Residencia
Deia town is my absolute favorite!
Ca’s Patro March
Mediterranean love affair with my one and only!
Hope this guide helps you plan your trip to Mallorca or inspires you to add Mallorca on your travel radar! Thanks for stopping by! xoxo