Towards the end of May, we booked a spur of the moment (stupid cheap) Ryan Air flight to Mallorca, Spain. I told Chris that it would be a delayed present for his 28th birthday; but let's be honest, it was more of an excuse to escape a miserably long Belgian cold spell. Spain had also claimed a special place in our hearts and a prominent spot on our travel calendar after a trip to Barcelona (If you're interested, find some of our Barcelona info here, and here).
I think there was still snow on the ground as we boarded a flight bound for Spain's largest island. I had heard about the neighboring party island (Ibiza), but the only reason we chose Mallorca was because there was a direct flight from Brussels to Mallorca for less than an Italian dinner for two (Italian is about the cheapest sit down dinner option you'll find in Europe). My type A-must-research-every-detail-of-a-trip-to-a-new-city-personality sort of took a vacation, and I threw planning out the window! I mean, how hard could it be for us to get down to a beach, lay out our towels, and relax on the warm sand?!
I learned my lesson (again), because what we wanted and what we walked into were so completely far off from each other!
At the airport, we caught the local bus #21, and within ten minutes we were walking into the lobby of Java Hotel. Our accommodation was right in the middle of Playa de Palma, and while the hotel itself was newly remodeled and reasonably priced, the long stretch of beach outside of the hotel was less than relaxing! What we had wanted was a slow couple of days sprawled out on the sand followed by seafood dinners at beach front restaurants. What we actually got was this:
It was like Spring Break and a million bachelor parties all rolled into one disgusting, loud, crowded, binge-drinking beach party. Everywhere we turned, groups of young and old people were sucking on long straws trying to get as much alcohol out of massive, community buckets of sangria. For a moment, I thought I was watching pigs slurp up slop out of a trough. Then I had a fleeting thought - are we just getting old?! Should we want to join in since it's sort of Chris' birthday? I immediately told myself to dismiss such an idea. The whole scene was just plain gross!
We tried to walk, or run, away from the madness, but it seemed that the party beach never ended. Playa de Palma Beach must have gone on for about 10km, and it was actually quite far from the main city of Palma de Mallorca. Chris and I quickly settled on the idea of renting bikes for 5 Euros a day and biking far away from the whole scene. We must have biked about an hour north, past Palma de Mallorca, before stumbling upon several hidden beaches. We don't even remember the names of the beaches, but to us they were simply called PARADISE. I think that the locals kept them hidden for a reason. Needless to say, the following day we got back on rented bikes and spent a relaxing afternoon on those same secret beaches.
As a result of finding those beaches, I can say that we would absolutely return to Mallorca if the price was right. We would never stay close to Playa de Palma beach again though. Apparently there are even more stunning beaches to explore if you have your own transportation. Maybe next time we will rent a car and find other hidden treasures in Mallorca.
Can you tell it's starting to get cold again?! I just hate being cold! What is your favorite sunny destination?
Pic #1- A hidden beach / Pic #2 - Playa de Palma beach party / Pic #3 - Biking away from the madness / Pic #4&5 - The city of Palma de Mallorca / Pic #6-9 - Amazing hidden beaches / Pic #10 - We did find wonderful seafood / Pic # 11&12 - Playa de Palma beach at night is not so bad.