Exploring Mallorca

Blissfully relaxed during shoulder season, you can often find the picturesque coves all but empty and it’s a perfect opportunity to eye up new cruising grounds for the summer ahead.

North coast gems 

Blessed with around 300 days of sunshine a year, you’ll no doubt be cruising under powder-blue skies and if time and conditions allow, a leisurely trip to Sóller on the north coast tops many cruising itineraries thanks to the dramatic coastline and beautiful bays.

From Palma, cruise past the beaches on the south-west coast and drop anchor for lunch in Cala en Basset, just past Dragonara. An ideal pitstop en route to Sóller, this picturesque inlet has no main road access and the secluded anchorage affords mesmerising views of Dragonara.

Cruising further north, the coast becomes more dramatic and ruggedly beautiful with the towering cliffs plunging into the cobalt water. Watch for dolphins as you pass clifftop towns and spectacular mountain scenery.


Fringed by olive groves, Sóller old town offers Mallorcan charm, pretty streets and a quaint town square, while Port de Sóller on the waterfront boasts stylish bars and restaurants – a traditional wooden tram runs between the two and has done since 1913.

For activity hunters, the UNESCO-listed Tramontana mountains are criss-crossed with cycling and scenic hiking tracks. Or, if you’re in the mood for more sightseeing, head to the picturesque hilltop village of Deia.  But for those wanting to stick to the water, cruise on to the stunning anchorage of Cala Calobra and explore it’s gorge-flanked pebble beaches.

Eastern promise 

If the weather proves more favourable for east coast cruising, you’re also in luck. The calas to the south and east of Palma boast Caribbean-blue water and are perfect for days relaxing on the hook. Es Trenc, Cala Mondrago and its neighbouring cove of Cala S’Aramador are idyllic spots for swimming, snorkelling and sunbathing and the casual beach restaurants with open grills serve great seafood.

At Porto Petro, a couple of miles south of Cala d’Or, visitors can pick up a buoy for the night. A beautifully serene spot; in the summer you can tender ashore to the little restaurant that sets up on the launching ramp in the evening.

The pull of Palma 

On your return to Palma, save a day to travel inland to the wine producing region of Binissalem and the pretty rural Finca Biniagual. The family-run winery is part of a small village of 14 houses and a chapel, and is a self-sufficient estate.

As night falls, enjoy following your nose to the tiny tapas bars in the old town, shopping late at the night markets below the cathedral and enjoy a nightcap at the flower-filled Abaco terrace and bar hidden behind huge weathered wooden doors.

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