Largest of the Balearic islands, Majorca (or Mallorca in Catalan, the language spoken by its residents) is in a lot of ways Ibiza’s big, sensible sister. Since the explosion of the “rave” scene in the late 1980s, those tourists of a certain demographic and certain appetites have essentially left Majorca alone. While this might be seen by some to imply that a stay in Majorca would be boring, a sizeable proportion of other tourists would disagree.

Indeed, the explosion of tourism in nearby Ibiza has helped Majorca manage its visitors in a more measured way, giving it time to expand the valuable tourist industry while maintaining much of the traditional lifestyle and natural beauty which attract visitors in the first place. Broadly speaking, Magaluf is the island’s main destination for party marathons.

As a result of this, there is a wide and varied range of hotels in Majorca around the island which give access to Majorca’s unique landscape, history and living traditions. Here is a broad look at what is on offer for the discerning visitor.

Majorca’s capital and regional capital, Palma hosts the majority of hotels on the island. As the airport is nearby, visitors not intending to stay in Palma itself are catered for by the airport’s short-stay accommodation. Hotels in the city itself are plentiful and often of modern design, having been built in numbers to cater for the burgeoning tourist trade. As the city overlooks the beautiful Bay of Palma, those hotels offering a bay view are among the most expensive.

Palma has other attractions, however. In recent years, the district of Santa Catalina has emerged as a magnet for hip tourists looking for a new take on an old destination. Once considered a poorer part of the city, home to artisans and fishermen, its compact streets now host boutique, niche hotels and guest houses which look great on social media, especially with a rave review about the local seafood specialities and the area’s pan-Mediterranean vibe.

A major destination for holidaymakers with package deals, Magaluf comes with a certain reputation not unlike Benidorm or some parts of Ibiza. However justified this reputation is, it has a definite downward pressure on the price of hotels. With prices as low as €15, a night in a hotel in Magaluf is easily worth investigating considering what is on the doorstep.

Magaluf is a resort based around a number of small towns and villages, all of which lie on the western edge of the Bay of Palma. It also looks out more directly on the huge expanse of the Mediterranean and the north African coast. As well as a beautiful coastline, the good value of Magaluf hotels is especially welcome between late August and November, then April to late June. At these times of year, the weather is not oppressively hot, and neither is the resort overly burdened by the sometimes unwelcome summer influx.

The Mountains
On the northern edge of the island is a range of mountains known as the Serra de Tramuntuna. A Unesco World Heritage Site, this part of Majorca offers a totally different tourist experience of that to be found on Majorca’s southern edges. As a natural fortress, the Tramuntuna was a valued landscape as it is not easily accessible and was easily defended. Consequently, most of the building in the region is old and very stout.

This means that the accommodation is in buildings that were often small forts, or at least the villages they inhabit are built of stone, the streets are narrow and wind up quite stiff gradients. If this sounds like too much hard work, the Tramuntuna is probably not for you. If you’re fit and looking for a truly unique European location, it is perfect.

Because the buildings are necessarily small and the rooms compact, prices are very competitive. With rooms starting from around €20 per night, this extraordinary part of the world is well worth exploring. Although not always possible, more and more of these establishments have en-suite facilities and Wi-Fi as standard.

Mallorcan Life
Towns and villages throughout the island of Majorca have managed to retain a great deal of what is known by travellers as “charm.” This is because a lot of Mallorcans, especially outside of Palma, live and work in viable, vibrant communities which, although often in settlements more than a thousand years old, are increasingly able to accommodate modern tourism, with all that entails.

A large part of Majorca consists of the main central plain, south of the Serra de Tramuntuna. This mainly flat, sparsely populated expanse offers the chance to stay in spectacular scenery in villages which are deceptively well equipped. Some Majorcan landowners built impressive town houses which have now been converted into near luxury hotels. A lot of smaller properties are run by the families who live in them as guest houses. At the top end of the geographic scale are fincas; country houses in estates with vineyards and often very large estates, which can be hired in their entirety. Just be sure to book early.

DJ Yabis is the poster boy of Dream Euro Trip and a modern day renaissance man. Originally from the Philippines, he loves throwing dinner parties and stalking rock stars in music festivals. Subscribe or follow his adventures LIVE on Facebook or Instagram. Learn how to plan your own eurotrip.

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