Having “done” Palma, on Sunday we decided to drive around part of the SW coastline, swerving past the tourist meccas of Magaluf, Cala Major and Palma Nove. It might not be as bad as I feared though it did look pretty built up from the air and loads of coaches had been waiting at Palma’s airport to transport the tourist hordes.
My beloved has business contacts who live in Port Andratx and have declared it the best spot on the island. We put their assertions to the test and found a lively, sheltered bay, populated with plenty of charming shops and restaurants plus some serious property and boat porn. German appeared once again to be the most used language rather than Catalan or Spanish.
We dallied at Cappucino, a multi-branch local restaurant, which serves excellent coffee before heading to Soller for lunch. We took the coastal road where cyclists easily outnumbered motorists 1,000 to 1. All of the groups we saw were self-guided and were largely English or German-speaking, wearing mostly Rapha and Assos kit. Mallorca really caters for cyclists with its temperate climate, wonderful undulating terrain, great road surfaces and plenty of cycle lanes in urban areas.
Port Soller proved to be another idyllic sandy inlet much populated, for a change, by local Spaniards enjoying the sunshine and a lunchtime seafood paella. We ate at a local restaurant with the obligatory white linen tablecloths and plenty of locals. We were not disappointed.
After a stroll along the bay we drove into the hills to check out one of the hotels we’d spied from the beach. Opened in 2012, the hotel is part of the Jumeirah Group and a warm welcome, plus panoramic views, awaited us in the bar. I think we’ve resolved where to stay on our next visit.
Having much enjoyed our panoramic trip to Soller we opted for the much shorter return on the main road and motorway. We returned to base in time for my beloved’s private pampering session in the Spa. On our final evening we were content to nibble once more on tapas in a lively bar nearby before sinking again into oblivion.
I’d intended the weekend to be an opportunity for my beloved to relax. His laptop had been banned though I did allow him to respond to urgent emails on his iPad. It’s good to decompress from time to time to avoid burn out.
We flew back home on Monday morning and both agreed it had been a relaxing weekend and somewhere we’d be happy to visit again. We’d also solved the thorny question of where to spend Christmas. We’ll be off to southern Portugal. My beloved has never visited while I last visited Lisbon and Estoril some 55 years ago!