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Majorca in January

Thursday 28 December 2023

Departure from our house in Lathuile (74210)

Arrived at the Port of Barcelona at 7pm

Passing through Moll de la Fuseta and its Christmas market with Paëlla tasting while waiting to board the ferries.

The Moll de la Fusta is an iconic location in Barcelona, Spain. Located in the Port Vell district, it is a popular seafront promenade offering magnificent views of the marina, the Mediterranean Sea and the city skyline. It's a place where locals and tourists alike stroll, relax in the seafront cafés, or admire the many sculptures and art installations that dot the promenade. There are often cultural events and festivals held here, making it a dynamic and lively place to discover in Barcelona.


22H45 Departure for Majorca with a 7h30 crossing. We chose the company TRASMED and took a cabin for added comfort.


Majorque :

Majorca, or Mallorca in Spanish, is the largest island in the Balearic archipelago, located in the Mediterranean Sea off the east coast of Spain. Known for its magnificent beaches, secluded coves, rich historical heritage and lively nightlife, Mallorca attracts millions of visitors every year.

The diversity of its landscapes is striking: from white sandy beaches to steep cliffs, from the impressive mountains of the Serra de Tramuntana to the fertile plains of the island's interior. The main city, Palma, is the cultural and economic heart of Majorca. It boasts a superb Gothic cathedral, a medieval castle, picturesque cobbled streets and a lively cultural life.

The island also offers delicious cuisine, influenced by Mediterranean and Spanish cuisine, featuring traditional dishes such as sobrassada (spicy sausage), empanadas and delicious seafood.

Activities range from water sports on the beaches to hiking in the mountains, discovering picturesque fishing villages and local markets. Majorca is a destination that offers something for everyone, whether you want to relax on the beaches, explore the history and culture, or enjoy the vibrant nightlife.


Day 1

Waking up at 5 a.m. in the port of Palma de Mallorca

Off to Hotel Samaritana to take possession of our Early Check-in suite.

Incredible VIP welcome at 6.30am (instead of the usual 3pm). The suite is magnificent.


Tapas lunch at Meson Teresa. No link to this place as the meal wasn't great.


Afternoon shopping in the old town and a walk to the Catedral de Mallorca

Return to the hotel for a private spa and sauna

Massage with Marta

21h00

Evening at Quina Creu Tapas & Restaurant close to the hotel. A superb discovery in a slightly retro atmosphere. Warm welcome and reasonable prices


Day 2

We head for the beach via the Basilica. We are with our dog Sparrow, and decide to visit it another day. A very pleasant walk on the sand

Visit to the "Mercat de l'Olivar" market. This is one of the most emblematic markets on the island of Mallorca in Spain. It is located in the heart of the city of Palma and offers a wide variety of local produce, fresh produce, meat, fish, seafood, fruit and vegetables, as well as other regional specialities.

The market is a lively and colourful place where locals come to do their daily shopping and where visitors can discover Mallorca's culinary culture. The atmosphere is often very lively, with colourful stalls, tempting aromas and a typically Mediterranean feel.

It's a great place to sample local produce, go shopping or simply stroll around to soak up the local atmosphere. The stalls often feature quality, authentic produce, reflecting the island's rich gastronomic heritage.

Tapas on the premises. A real treat

Afternoon shopping in the old town, with a must-see stop at one of Palma's best bakeries and patisseries: Panaderia S'Estacio.

It's a place renowned for its delicious baked goods, offering a wide range of artisan breads, fresh pastries and other local specialities. The bakery is known for its commitment to quality, using fresh ingredients and following traditional recipes that delight locals and visitors alike. As well as its sweet and savoury delights, the bakery's warm and friendly atmosphere makes it a popular place for customers to enjoy a good time while sampling quality products. Our favourite is the Tiramisu (revisited).


Day 3

On 31 December Mallorcans celebrate 'La Festa de l'Estendard'.

Palma commemorates Mallorca's entry into the Christian kingdoms of Europe.

This historic festival is held every year to commemorate the entry of King James I the Conqueror's troops into Mallorca's capital, putting an end to Muslim rule of the archipelago on 31 December 1229. The 'Festa de l'Estendard' is one of Europe's oldest civil festivals, dating back to the 13th century.

The activities organised to mark the occasion began with an inaugural speech at Palma Town Hall. The following day, a floral offering was placed by the institutions in front of the statue of James I in the Plaza d' España, where a concert and a popular ball were held.

But the programme of more festive and traditional activities takes place on 31 December, with the ceremony of the laying of the royal standard of the conquest of Mallorca and the crest of King Martin in the Plaça de Cort.

A procession, a performance and the town's gold medals are the highlights of the festivities.

A procession made up of drums, dancers (cossiers, cavallets), the 'Joch de Ministrils' from Mallorca Council and the Palma brass band will head for the cathedral, where the Bishop of Mallorca will celebrate a solemn thanksgiving mass.

At midday, in the Plaça de Cort, La Colcada de Pere d'Alcàntara Penya (The Colcada of Pere d'Alcàntara Penya) is performed, a historical 'romance' (a poetic composition) describing the celebration of this festival in the mid-19th century.

The programme closes with the presentation of the city's gold medals and the naming of Palma's most illustrious figures.

From the cathedral, we head for the beach and lunch at Animabeach

Located on Ca'n Pere Antoni beach, Anima Beach is both a beach club and a restaurant.

Owner Marco Di Loreto strikes a balance between a relaxing place to spend the day and a cosy space for lunch, dinner or cocktails, all just a minute from the beach.

After a stroll on the beach and a bit of shopping, it was back to the hotel to get ready for the New Year's Eve party. When we arrived in our suite, the staff laid out cotillions, grapes and a small bottle of champagne.


19H30. It's time to party!

Arrive at "The Merchants Palma" restaurant for lunch, where a glass of champagne will be offered on arrival.

The setting is very pretty and the menu promising:

BLINIS, SMOKED SALMON MOUSSE, CAVIAR

Served with a glass of champagne

TEMPURA OYSTERS AND PEARLS

AJI AMARILLO, BLACK GARLIC PEARLS AND FENNEL

CREAMY FOIE GRAS WITH BROWN SUGAR REDUCTION, FIG AND PORT WINE

BRIOCHE, GOOSEBERRIES

LOBSTER AND CRAB BISQUE, BRANDY BUTTER, CAVIAR

TENDER, PERFECTLY GRILLED FILET MIGNON SERVED WITH A BORDELAISE SAUCE

TRUFFLE-INFUSED BORDEAUX SAUCE

SERVED WITH LOBSTER MACARONI AND CHEESE

A RICH, VELVETY CHOCOLATE CAKE SERVED WITH A RASPBERRY COULIS AND EDIBLE GOLD LEAF.

RASPBERRIES AND EDIBLE GOLD LEAVES

Despite the lovely menu, the restaurant didn't live up to our expectations (and especially the price of €250 per person without wine!) See our review

11.30pm departure for the cathedral for the traditional fireworks display, featuring our 12 grapes: At midnight, Spaniards eat twelve grapes simultaneously, one for each strike of the clock. Each grape is supposed to represent a month of the coming year, and eating all twelve grapes on time is considered an omen of good luck and prosperity for the next twelve months.

Fireworks over the cathedral, then off to the Place de Cort to dance the night away to festive music and an incredible atmosphere.


4th day (1st January)

Visit the aquarium in Palma, also known as the Palma Aquarium, is one of Spain's largest aquariums. Located in Can Pastilla, just a few kilometres from Palma de Mallorca, here are its contact details: Palma de Mallorca Aquarium (Palma Aquarium) Address: Carrer de Manuela de los Herreros i Sorà, 21, 07610 Palma, Illes Balears, Spain GPS coordinates: 39.5314° N, 2.7184° E Website: Palma Aquarium. This aquarium features a wide variety of marine life, from coral reefs to sharks, as well as educational exhibits on marine conservation. It also offers interactive activities for visitors of all ages.

On leaving the aquarium, we take a walk along the coast to discover this magical place: Al Faro Beach. We decide to have lunch there (see our review).

A magnificent and beautifully decorated place. Even our dog, Sparrow, got his kibble (for an extra €1).


Back to the Samaritana Suites at around 5pm.


Dinner at the hotel, where the restaurant La Despensa del Barón has a very good reputation.


Day 5

Visit the Cathedral of Palma , also known as La Seu C' is one of the most emblematic monuments on the Spanish island of Mallorca, and is considered one of the most beautiful Gothic cathedrals in Europe.

Construction began in 1229 on the foundations of an existing mosque following the Christian reconquest of the island. However, construction of the current building began in the 14th century and continued over several centuries, mixing different architectural styles including Gothic, Baroque and Neo-Gothic.

The cathedral stands out for its impressive size, its façade adorned with rosettes, sculptures and meticulous details, and its soaring spires that soar majestically into the sky. The interior is just as striking, with soaring Gothic vaults, richly decorated chapels, colourful stained glass windows and remarkable works of art.

One of the cathedral's highlights is the Blessed Sacrament Chapel, designed by the architect Antoni Gaudí, famous for Barcelona's Sagrada Familia. This chapel features an abundance of modernist details and is an outstanding example of Gaudí's work.

Palma de Mallorca Cathedral is also renowned for its privileged location on the seafront, offering magnificent views over the Bay of Palma. Its architectural beauty and historical importance make it a must-see for visitors to the island of Mallorca.

A word of advice: take an audio guide to help you find your way around the cathedral and get as many explanations as possible.


Lunch for the 1st time at our hotel (the suite has a kitchen).

A quick siesta before admiring the sunset at the Mirador del Canó Illes Malgrats

A spectacular viewpoint on the west coast of Mallorca, Spain. It offers a breathtaking view of the Malgrats Islands, a small archipelago opposite the bay of Santa Ponça.

This vantage point is renowned for offering one of the most picturesque views on the island. It is often visited by seascape and photography enthusiasts for its panoramic views over the Mediterranean Sea, with the Malgrats Islands as a backdrop. It's an ideal spot to admire the sunset, when the sky is tinged with dazzling colours above the horizon.

The best way to get there is to drive to Santa Ponça and then follow the signs to the Mirador del Canó Illes Malgrats. Once there, visitors can enjoy a peaceful natural setting, often untouched by the hustle and bustle of tourism, offering an authentic experience of Mallorca's natural beauty.


To finish the day, we head off to Port Adriano

It is an exclusive marina located on the south-west coast of the island of Mallorca.

Designed by the famous architect Philippe Starck, this port offers not only state-of-the-art facilities for luxury boats, but also a full range of top-of-the-range services for yachtsmen.

Its crystal-clear waters and elegant architecture make it a popular destination for owners of yachts and top-of-the-range pleasure craft. The harbour has more than 450 berths for boats up to 60 metres long, as well as designer boutiques, gourmet restaurants and trendy bars, creating a lively, luxurious atmosphere.

Port Adriano's spectacular architecture, combined with its exclusive services, makes it the destination of choice for sailing enthusiasts and tourists looking for a top-of-the-range maritime experience when visiting Mallorca.


Light dinner at Cantina Can Olivo. Coctails - Tapas - Dessert