Mallorca, otherwise known as Majorca, is the largest island in the Spanish Balearic Islands that are situated in the Mediterranean.
Similar to the other Balearic Islands of Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera, Mallorca is a favourite holiday destination particularly among famous personalities who are in the field of fashion, film and even politics.
Its capital, Palma, is also regarded as the capital of the Balearic Islands’ autonomous community. It is where the international airport Palma de Mallorca is located which is only 8 km east of the capital. Dubbed as Spain’s third largest airport, it carries the record of being able to accommodate up to 23.1 million passengers in 2014.
What does Mallorca mean?
The name Mallorca comes from the Latin words “insula maior” which means “larger island.” Perhaps the purpose for such is to distinguish it from Menorca, its smaller neighbor whose name comes from the Latin “insula minor.”
If you notice, there is no letter “j” in “insula maior” which makes us wonder how it earned the name of “Majorca” in the first place. Apparently, the letter “j” is non-existent in Latin and was only introduced in around the 13th century to replace the letter “i” as a consonant.
In other words, “maior” became “major” with the British and Irish using the word “Majorca” compared to everyone else who use “Mallorca.”
Where is Mallorca?
Being one of the Balearic Islands, Mallorca is nestled in the western Mediterranean along Spain’s eastern coast. Its proximity allows it to be easily reached within a 3-hour flight from the northern part of Europe. No doubt, flying to Mallorca is the easiest and definitely the fastest way to get to the island paradise.
Another way to travel is by taking a ferry ride from the Spanish mainland (Valencia, Barcelona) which should take between 7 to 8 hours long.
Mallorca is made up of several regions and municipalities which probably explains why it is considered as the second most populated island in Spain following Tenerife in Spain’s Canary Islands. It has two mountainous regions (Serra de Tramuntana and Serres de Llevant), bays (Badia d’Alcudia and Badia de Pollenca), caves (Coves del Drach, Coves dels Hams), underground lakes and two small islands off its coast (Dragonera and Cabrera).
There are more than 50 municipalities found in Mallorca. Some of the notable ones include Alcudia, Santa Ponsa, Soller, Ses Salines and Deia which, for centuries, have all been luring visitors to come to the island.
Things To See And Do In Mallorca
If you’re a beach bum, Mallorca is a perfect destination as it boasts more than 500 km of coastline that features more than 200 beaches. Yes! You read that right. Majority of the island’s best beaches not only have holiday resorts but also have a number of other facilities that include restaurants, cafes and shops.
With its clean, crystal clear waters, Mallorca is a haven for swimming and other water sports enthusiasts such as surfing, sailing, scuba diving and fishing. Apart from these, the island also offers a wide-range of golf courses that are perfectly designed to match and highlight the surroundings.
Some of the notable areas well-worth including in one’s itinerary are the Sierra de Tramuntana Mountains which measure a peak of more than 1,400 meters above sea level; the Terrestrial Nature Reserve and the Cabrera Marine. Visit charming inland villages in the mountains such as Alaro with its 15th century castle.
If you enjoy hiking, you can enjoy the island’s numerous routes and hiking trails that are sprawled both inland and along the coast. Whether you decide to go on foot or ride a bike, it’s easy to discover and be awed with the island’s diversity with the help of signs and information panels that are found all over the area.
When is the best time to go to Mallorca?
While tourists would flock the island in mid-August, the best time to visit Mallorca is in May when spring is in full swing. During this time, the average temperature reaches a mild 15 to 16 degrees Celsius since the start of the month. It then reaches up to 18 to 19 degrees toward the end which makes it the perfect month to take advantage of a sun-filled holiday.
Festivals and Fiestas
Being typically Spanish, you can expect Mallorca to host a number of festivals and fiestas all year round. These include the agricultural fairs that occur during Spring and Autumn while summer is filled with DJ concerts and live musical performances. Other events worth checking out include religious celebrations and international sporting events.
Mallorca Tourist Offices
For a worry-free stay, you can always get valuable information from the island’s tourist offices such as maps and guides. They are also more than willing to answer your queries on topics such as places to stay, sights to visit and schedule of the local festivals.
Oficina de Turismo de Mallorca (Consell De Mallorca)
Plaza de la Reina 2
7012 Palma, Mallorca
Tel. +34 971 173 990
Fax +34 971 173 994
Carrer de sa Volta
07559 Son Servera, Illes Balears, Spain
Tel. +34 634 375 083
Oficina de Turismo Alcudia
Passeig de Pere Ventanyol, s/n
07400 Alcudia, Illes Balears, Spain
Tel. +34 971 549 022
Oficina Municipal de Turismo Port de Soller
Puerto de Soller, Muelle Comercial, s/n
07108 Soller, Illes Balears, Spain
Tel. +34 659 498 747
Oficina Municipal de Turismo de Palmanova
Passeig Mar, 13
07181 Palmanova, Illes Balears, Spain
Tel. +34 971 682 365
FEHM – Federacion Empresarial Hotelera de Mallorca
Carrer d’Arago, 215
07008 Palma, Illes Balears, Spain
Tel. +34 971 706 007
Carrer del Salvador, 15
07101 Soller, Illes Balears, Spain
Tel. +34 675 291 211
Here is an exciting video guide to help you get around when traveling to Mallorca.