I am currently relaxing at home from a really awesome vacation. The family and I went to Palma de Mallorca. An island off the coast of Spain, the Balearic Islands are the place to go to when you want some sunshine and warmth. We needed this and well Palma was perfect! Palma is a port city as well, you will see cruise ships, cargo ships, yachts and the like sailing through. The vision of boating coming in and out was quite fun.
The archipelagos were sight from the dreary fog and cold. The palm trees looked lush and green along the coastline. The sun warmed us and we knew that we would not want to leave. Palma is the main city of the island, it is not very touristy (in my opinion) but we also did not go there during the summer. We rented an apartment through Airbnb, which was awesome! I highly recommend renting an apartment if you have kids, it will feel like home, you can save money on food and well, you don’t need to worry about leaving so housekeeping can come in. We were able to relax and enjoy our awesome view!
That is the Catherdral of Mallorca or Le Seu off in the horizon. The sun is about to set, how lucky to have an opportunity to visit!
We got in late Thursday due to the strikes going on in France, but once we got to Palma and got settled, we were ready to settle in and get ready for the following day.
We got up on Friday and got ready, we had other plans but the kids kept seeing ads for the Palma aquarium. So we changed our plans and went to look at fish! The aquarium is literally across from the Playa Palma. You saw some of the people that were at the beach walk over. These are just a few of the photos from our venture to the aquarium. But these few show the great place this aquarium is. It is also known to have the deepest shark tank in all of Europe and it partners with other aquariums in countries like Israel.
After a day of hanging out with fish, we ate some! One of the things I love about Spain is the amazing food. Known for their tapas (small plates), Iberico ham, Manchego cheese, sangria and Paella! The food of Spain, reflects the vibrancy of its people. We went to a local place near our apartment and we ate this:
This was a seafood paella, it was yummy and had a ton of mussels, shrimp, langostines and calamari. It was so so good! As you could see, my sangria was gone, it was tasty! The boys shared a pot of clams. They loved them! La Mejillonera in Palma on the Avenida Gabriel Roca is the place! But so is Chicory which is down the street, it is a whole in the wall place that was amazing! Check out my Yelp about these places.
We were full and happy and ready for bed. We needed our rest to head to one of the great beaches, Cala Mayor. Cala Mayor is one of the larger beaches and one of the best. This beach was what we needed! It was family friendly and all you could see was water. It was the most relaxing day! I loved it! My kids loved the beach, they always do and never wanted to leave. Sun and sand, just what the doctor ordered. They have other beaches, but Cala Mayor was the calmest, most relaxing beach. I did not leave my chair!
The next day was Sunday, we wanted to attend mass at the Cathedral and sight see along the wall. The Cathedral is amazing, the architecture of the church goes with the Palace of Almudaina which is right next to it. Inside it was grand and very solemn. Attending the service was wonderful and brought me back to when I was little and attending Spanish mass at my local church back in Portland.
The altar piece of the Cathedral was designed by Antoni Gaudi who designed the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona. The church was beautiful and I was so grateful to say I attended mass there.
After mass, we walked along the wall. This wall has been around for centuries but has been modernized while preserving its history. The pool you see is to mimic the moat that once met the walls of the palace and cathedral. It was a lovely walk with an amazing view of the port.
We wanted to discover more of what Palma had to offer and went to the Arabic Baths. This site was small but had an amazing garden with the prettiest lemon tree. The Arabic baths are preserved well and show the Arab influence of much of Spain.
Palma is filled with history. Pieces of a fortress from years past are up and around the city. The modern with the old makes this not your typical beach city. I liked that it wasn’t super touristy, you were able to experience the true Palma without anyone selling you anything. The food (as always) was delicious and satisfying. I will come here again and visit the other sites Mallorca the island as to offer.
The Balearic Islands are a unique place, you have Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera. I can’t wait to plan trips to these other islands and see more of Spain.
To live in Europe and get the chance to travel within the continent is an amazing opportunity. To get to experience Palma and all it has to offer is fantastic! Every trip we take is an adventure. This is our last chance to be here and I will take advantage of every bit! If you are ever stationed in Europe, travel and discover the wonders of this continent and have a full belly while you are at it! This was a great trip and I am beyond happy! Will. Come. Here. Again!