Located in the Mediterranean Sea, Palma de Mallorca is a capital city not only of Mallorca but probably of the most popular tourist destination in Spain, the Balearic Islands as well.
Except for Mallorca, there are three more islands Menorca, Ibiza, and Formentera that form the Balearic Islands. Palma de Mallorca is one unique cosmopolitan city that truly has much to offer.
Except for the beach tourism and lively way of life, for which this city is most famous for, Palma is a city with rich cultural and historic heritage worth exploring as well. This 7-day Itinerary serves as one recommendation on how to get the best of your short vacation.
Although there is a slight difference if traveling in a couple, alone or with family and kids, in my opinion, there is no better deal than purchasing one of the Turbopass city pass tickets. If planning to spend 7 days, for example, the 5-day city pass is an excellent option since you can have your free time to enjoy the beaches for the rest of your vacation, where you’ll find plenty of interesting things to do as well or just relax and enjoy the natural surroundings in Palma. This ticket costs only 89,90 euros and the price covers all the entries for the activities, parks and cultural attractions. So, all of the visits to the attractions and parks as well as the guided tours described in this Itinerary are included in the price.
1. Spending some time on the beach
When visiting Palma in summer there is certainly a no better way to start the first day by going straight to the beach. Visiting the urbanest one, Playa de Palma, and taking a little bit of that famous Mediterranean sun on the skin and swimming for a couple of hours sounds great. Renting sunbeds, umbrellas, and pedal boat as well as surfing and water skiing, are one of the services available. This beach is one of the five beaches in Palma that has been awarded Blue flag for the coastal environment, water quality and access for all.
With so much sun and swimming it’s normal to get hungry on the way, so the next important thing is the food. Now, a great idea for that, if you like tapas, is to choose from the tapas tours offers since with this pass you’ll get 20% off on these offers. Moreover, in those 3 hours, you’ll be introduced to some nice places for food and the best-known dishes and get the best tips from the local tour guides right from the beginning. You’ll have a little bit of fun, and you’ll feel more comfortable with the food and the local products for the rest of the vacation.
Spending the first day as near as possible to the beach and the sea is most usual desire. Now, all fed up getting back on that nice sandy beach and inhaling a little bit more of the Mediterranean sea just fits well. Even better, there is a one small red train Tran Cala Miro that rides all along the 4,5 km long Playa de Palma promenade. This route covers 60 min and it’s a nice opportunity in one relaxed way to simply see the whole beach and to get the picture for where you’d like to spend some more time on Playa de Palma in the following days. Taking the route sometime before the sunset it will be a good ending to a one beautiful day in Palma.
2. Exploring the historic city center
For the following, the second day of your stay, as a good starting point could be exploring the historic city center for a while on foot. These guided walking tours that last for 90 min, starting 30 min before noon are a great way of immersing yourself in the culture and history of the city of Palma de Mallorca. In the historic center, you’ll be introduced to the city Cathedral of Palma, commonly known as La Seu standing as a most important cultural attraction in Palma. This Cathedral build in a Gothic architectural style has 7 rose windows and 83 windows that provide a lot of light in the interior for which is also known as the ”cathedral of the light.” Next to the Cathedral stands Diocesan museum where one can observe remarkable pieces of arts and collection of the Mallorcan church heritage while enjoying the outstanding views of the Palma bay. The guided tour includes the visit of the Palma’s Es Baluard Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art as well. Located in the Sant Pere neighborhood that has its roots in the Islamic era, the museum features collections and exhibitions from a domestic and world-known artist. The only building in Palma, dating from the Arabic era are the sauna-styled Arab baths. Open to the public and part of the historic city center the baths’ courtyard can be visited every day except Sunday.
After the extended cultural tour, the timing for food is just perfect. There is no better way to have your lunch somewhere by the sea and near the inviting sandy beaches that Palma has to offer. The Palma bay has an extended choice of restaurants and cafes, but there are a lot of beautiful sandy beaches that are near the city center where one can relax and enjoy one nice swim. The most popular and visited beach near the city is Cala Mejor. This small beach is mostly surrounded by hotels. There is a one tapas bar with a very nice name, Joy and another place Calypso where you can grab a bite. Except for the huge popularity, this beach is very conveniently protected of the north winds which makes it an excellent spot for socializing during the whole year. Being one of the beaches that are Blue flag awarded in Palma this beach provides amenities like showers, toilets, lifeguards, first aid station and access for disabled persons as well.
Finally, as a wonderful end of this second day will be the red sightseeing boat, a one hour tour where one can enjoy the view of the coves of Palma and the beautiful coastline from the sea.
3. Visit of the Palma aquarium
A little bit of fun and meeting some of the animals on the island is a good plan for the day. For those that truly enjoy water activities, there isn’t a better fun than visiting the Palma aquarium. Very conveniently located right on the Playa de Palma it’s one of the most popular spots among visitors. With the city pass, all the activities are included in the price and there is plenty to do and see. Diving with rays and sharks as well as snorkeling among the corals with turtles will cover a full day program of water activities. There are a few restaurants here, so worrying about the food isn’t allowed. Don’t miss out buying souvenirs and typical Mallorcan products from the souvenir shop in the Palma Aquarium. The good news is that with the city pass you’ll get 10% off on the price.
In the afternoon exploring the city in one different way and taking one of those friendly guided bicycle tours of Palma seems quite lively. The stops over the Cathedral, the King’s Palace and the historic city wall are included. Take a bike and ride a little bit in the tiny alleys of the city where only locals know the way through.
4. More of the cultural side of the city
With hop on hop of bus, city guided tour, you can explore all the churches and museums located in Palma. In this open-air bus, you’ll learn a bit more about the city of Palma available in a few different languages. For the whole day, you can have a ride on this bus and take off at the stops at your convenient. So, today is a bus day. One of the attractions worth visit is Palau March (Bartolome March Foundation). Bartolome March was an established art collector and significant bibliophile, expert. He is the founder of the foundation where today one can admire the exquisite pieces of modern and contemporary art. The stalactite Cuevas de Genova is very interesting and must visit. Extraordinary visual experience is given by the different mineral colors of their speleothems. These guided tours through naturally formed corridors on 36 m depth last for 45 min and are suitable for smaller groups. What’s even more suitable, is that after the tour a worth visiting is a Mediterranean restaurant located right next to the Cuevas, for a one nice lunch break. Next, the visit to the La Porciuncula church with its remarkable glass walls is definitely a site worth exploring for a while.
Can Pere Antoni is another city beach of Palma, well known and visited as well. This beach is very well connected to Playa de Palma with pedestrian and cycling track. Spending at least one afternoon on this sandy beach is an expected activity during your visit to Palma. Swimming and sunning for a while in one leisurely and ease off afternoon waiting for the sunset would be a nice closure of the day.
5. Visit of the Marineland
Visiting Marineland with the Dolphinarium as a high point of the day. The best time for a visit if planning to attend on any of the dolphins’ shows is around 12 p.m. If you arrive a little bit earlier you’ll have the time to explore the whole park. You can visit the zoo first and admire, among other animals, the flamingos, and turtles some other birds and explore furthermore in the aquariums. Afterward, you’ll be able to watch the exciting dolphin show and spend some time with these very social and smart animals. Moreover, there are also two more truly interesting exhibitions of the parrots and the sea lions as well. So, spending most of the day in this animal wonderland will be nothing less than pure excitement and joy.
Near the Marineland, there is one very nice restaurant Flanigan 30 where I’d gladly like to recommend trying the Mallorcan Tumbet, the Lobster salad, and one nice Colunad dessert.
In the late afternoon hours sit back for a while on one of the tranquil and locals favorite sandy beach, Ciutat Jardi. This’ll be way more than just a good end of the day, it’s simply more than anyone could wish for. There are a lot of popular and frequently visited restaurants and cafes on this beach. Moreover, you’ll have all the amenities provided as mentioned on the previously described beaches since this is also a Blue flag awarded beach which stands as confirmation of the water quality and accessibility.
One vacation wouldn’t be complete without a decent shopping experience. Moreover, this will include strolling some of the most famous streets in Palma. Get lost in the street brands like H&M and Massimo Dutti at the Passeig des Born. This is the most popular shopping street in Palma where you can revel in the luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton and Hugo Boss as well. At Avinguda Jaume III you’ll find the stores of Mango, Kiko, and El Corte de Ingles.
I’d warmly like to suggest to buy and bring home a few souvenirs that are emblematic of Mallorca. Being the first country where Hispanic-Moorish pottery was developed, ceramics figures, pots and plates are very common and unique to this island. One of the most typical ceramic pieces is the figure siurell and the plate used for traditionally cooked meals known as greixoneres. The long shopping street of Carrer de Sant Miquel offers a lot of jewelry shops where you can purchase beautifully made Mallorcan pearls. The Mallorcan shopping experience must include at least one pair of nicely produced Mallorcan footwear for which this island is most famous for. Shopping shoes and artisanal Mallorcan leather bags is a must.
As much as fun shopping can be, requires a lot of energy and walking too. When shopping one can easily forget about the time and then, suddenly, in one moment realize that 4 or 5 hours have passed by so quickly. Facing the reality at that moment your body starts to feel exhausted and hungry, in most of the cases. For one great shopping experience, you’ll have to consider at least two breaks, one for food and one for coffee, ice cream, or aperitif, as you wish. It’s crucial to always have in mind some restaurants or cafes that you like near the shopping malls or streets.
7. Fun for the whole family
There are moments where some of us just wish they can get back in time and feel how is to be a kid again, experiencing the thrill and acceleration of excitement once again when visiting those adventurous parks full of action and fun.
The biggest Aqualand El Arenal park in Mallorca is located in Palma. There is no greater thrill for the whole family than spending one full day in this park with the possibility of using all the amenities available in the parks combining with a lot of fun water activities. A lot of slides and tubes for your total splash adrenaline experience. There are pools for the youngest and even a pool where one can experience the real 1m high waves just like in the ocean. With the city pass, all activities are included in the price and you’ll be privileged to skip the lines.
Feel free to spend a few hours at Katmandu Theme park located right on the shore. This park is one unforgettable experience in particular if traveling with kids. Engage with a whole range of fun and exciting activities in 10 different parks, from water splash to 4D experience. A full unforgettable enjoyment of the whole family.