Mallorca 2005

In the fall break Nicole and I spent a week on the island of Mallorca. Mallorca belongs to the Balearic Islands, which lie in the Mediterranean Sea, politically they belong to Spain. Mallorca often is considered the 17th federal state of Germany, because so many Germans spend their vacation there. As well as British and Scandinavian people. It *is* nice to have quite a short way there, the flight doesn’t even take 2 ½ hours from Berlin.

We left Wednesday in the early afternoon, the plane left at 3.40 pm. We arrived at about 6 pm, boarded the bus and arrived at the hotel in Cala D'Or at the southeastern coast shortly past 8 pm. The room we got was really nice, with a separate bedroom and a small kitchen line with a fridge – great to keep some water cool. We got a late dinner and when we stepped out of the restaurant, it rained!

The next morning we woke up to a cloudy sky. You can imagine my slight disappointment, as we left Berlin in bright sunshine, though crisp air. It was warmer in Mallorca :). We puddled around the hotel on the first day, checking out the amenities. It was raining on and off, so we didn't walk around much. At the reception desk, I looked for excursions, since I didn't really want to rent a car for the week. We booked a full-time island tour for Friday, hoping for better weather (the reception clerk assured us that it would become better!), and a half-day tour visiting the Caves of Drach on Tuesday. I had wanted to visit Palma, the capital of the island, to visit the cathedral, but there were no offers over the weekend. Anyway.

The island tour was long and exhausting (10 hours), but really nice. The bus picked us up close to the hotel in the morning, went to pick up more guests and then went across the island to the northern coast. The first stop was in Inca, visiting a leather store. Every commercial bus tour seems to have to stop at stores… We then went through the Tramuntana mountains and had breathtaking views! I didn't really expect Mallorca to be so mountainous! Unfortunately we didn't stop for taking pictures, so I took some through the bus window. Our first final destination was La Calobra, a small fisher's village, which wasn't accessible by roads until the 1920s. We spent lunchtime there, and walked to a place called Torrentes de Pareis, a river mouth between two steep faces. I was fascinated, the stone walls reminded me so much of the Californian canyons. From there we took a boat and drove for 45 minutes along the coast to Puerto de Soller. I love boat rides! I love feeling the wind and the sun in my face and I love smelling the salty air. From Puerto de Soller we took the bus again to Soller, which is just a few kilometers inland. At the train station an old wooden train waited for us and we rode it through many, many tunnels through the Tramuntana mountains towards Palms, where again the bus waited to drive back to the hotels. We were pretty tired by the end of the day, but enjoyed the scenery immensely!

The whole weekend was really sunny and warm, so we spent most of our time at the pool or at the beach. On Monday we decided for another boat ride, every day there were several tours directly from our small bay. We chose a three hour tour along the southern shore to Cala Figuera, had a layover for about 40 minutes and went back. It became more and more cloudy again, but it was still nice and warm. Then Tuesday we had the other excursion in the afternoon, to the Caves of Drach. We –of course- had two more stops before we arrived in Porto Cristo, where the caves are located, both in Manacor. One stop was at a factory for artificial pearls, Majorica, it is the only factory for pearls of this kind worldwide. Naturally, there was a big shop with all kinds of pearl jewellery, and this time I actually bought earrings for both Nicole and me. The other stop was at a shop for things made of olive wood, which actually was quite interesting, plus I had the chance to buy a couple of souvenirs. Then finally we went to the caves and did a guided tour. I wasn't allowed to take pictures in there unfortunately. The highlight was a lake in the cave, we all sat on benches there, the lights went out and three illuminated boats came out of the back, with *real* people playing some classical music. That was so extremely kitschy, that it was actually wonderful!

Wednesday was already our last day. A week is way too short for Mallorca, so we definitely will go back one day. We packed our suitcase, deposited it at the reception desk and strolled around downtown Cala D'Or. We bought some olives and salami sausage for Christian, had lunch and went back to our hotel, where we were picked up for transportation back to the airport. The flight back was uneventful. Christian picked us up – Nicole really missed him towards the end of our stay. Me too… As I said, we will go back one day, with Christian.