Think of Mallorca, and you may conjure up visions of all-inclusive resorts, packed beaches and rows of bars populated by rowdy British tourists. But there’s much more to this Balearic island. Step off the beaten track and away from the main bulk of the tourist crowds to discover tranquil villages, secluded beaches and dramatic hiking trails. Here are a few of our favourite places to escape the crowds in Mallorca this summer.
This small town on the east coast maintains the atmosphere of a working fishing port, boasting traditional fishermen’s cottages lining its harbour. There is no beach, something that has kept most of the tourists away, but still plenty of opportunities for leaping off the rocks or swimming in the harbour itself. Visitors can walk around the harbour onto the cliffs, admiring the views of the coastline or dining at the numerous seafood restaurants where you can watch the boats come in from your table. The water in this area of the island is crystal clear, with many small coves and popular beaches to discover nearby.
Cala San Vicente
On the opposite side of the island, Cala San Vicente is one of the most breath-taking beaches on Mallorca. While it is still a popular location, especially in the height of summer, the beach is mostly frequented by locals and retains a charming ambiance. Those choosing to base themselves here for the duration of their holiday have the best of both worlds, as they can alternate between relaxing on the beach and hiking in the nearby Tramuntana Mountains.
If you’re looking for something a little different to the beaches and coves that attract most visitors to Mallorca, perhaps consider a pilgrimage to Lluc. Mallorca’s most sacred site is a former monastery located in the Serra de Tramuntana mountains in the north of the isle. The monastery is now a hotel with several bars and restaurants, as well as an interesting museum. Day trippers can wander around the grounds, admiring the view of the valley below and the botanical gardens.
One of the most beautiful places in Mallorca, the only thing stopping Sa Calobra being overcrowded is its location. The two rocky beaches are located at the bottom of a deep gorge, known as the Torrent de Pareis. The scenery here is stunning, but only accessible via boat or a steep and winding descent via car. Not for the faint of heart! Those brave enough to make the drive are in for a treat, with the option of bathing in the crystal clear waters or exploring the river gorge.
Deia may not be completely off the beaten track, but if you’re looking for Mallorca at its relaxed best, this should be a stop on your itinerary. This idyllic village is best known for being the home of poet Robert Graves and for attracting a jet-set crowd with its beautiful villas. Cala Deia, located below the town, is a beautiful rocky cove, perfect for swimming, with two seafood restaurants located right by the water, serving the catch of the day.
Located not too far from Deia, Valldemossa is one of the most picturesque inland towns in Mallorca. Although the town attracts plenty of visitors, thanks to its natural beauty and plant-filled streets, its land-locked locations assures that it’s never too busy. Spend your time here wandering down the tranquil streets, sheltering from the sun in the nearby olive groves and climbing the nearby hills for dramatic views of the whole island.
Emma Lavelle is a UK based writer and photographer and has her own blog Field and Nest.