Archive for Mallorca

05 Nov 2014

A Big Hole

4 Comments Mallorca, Spain

Sa Foradada is a very special place and for that reason alone it was worth returning to Mallorca for a final few days.

There are only two ways to get to Sa Foradada (a Mallorquin word which roughly translated means ‘the hole in the rock’), by boat or on foot. While our forty metre motor yacht was on the dock undergoing a final cut and polish (in our wildest dreams!), we chose the latter option. It is a steep forty-five minute walk down a dirt track, a teasing walk, offering glimpses of one of the most spectacular spots ever.

But first lunch!

At the bottom there is a restaurant, a chiringiti (beach shack) that has a reputation for some of the best seafood paella on the island. They cook it the way it should be cooked: outside, over a fire, in heavy cast iron pans, slowly — made with love. They have been preparing paella like this for four decades; first the father and now the daughter. The paella is delicious and worth the wait! It is the final lunch of the season before the chiringiti closes for the winter. We are lucky, they had planned to close two weeks earlier but the weather has played in our favour. After we pay the bill and the camarero (waiter) proudly shows us his brag book, photos of him alongside his more recent customers: Rafa Nadal, Bruce Springsteen … and now, the shutter clicks, one more for his collection — a bulbous alpaca!

After lunch we head down to the water. There are perhaps a dozen of us down there, wading in the cool clear water, smiling and laughing. I dip my head under the water and even without googles I can see the bottom. It is that clear. We bask on our towels for a while like beached whales and head back for a final swim. The paella is still heavy in our stomachs. The sun descends and we contemplate the long slow walk up.





29 Oct 2014

Life’s A Beach

2 Comments Galway, Ireland, Mallorca, Spain

I am siting in a cold kitchen in Galway, Ireland, drinking a mug of hot tea with lemon, warming myself against the sides of the mug and trying to will some feeling back into my feet. The room is silent except for the chatter of Paul’s teeth. I look outside. The sky is a singular shade of dark grey. I am thinking about writing about Galway. But I can’t, not yet. Not with my thoughts flicking back to those last few days in Mallorca — memories of water and sun, sun with heat, and water to swim in, not squelch through.

I sigh and shake my head and follow Paul out the door for another pint of Guinness!




20 Oct 2014

Decadent Daze

1 Comment Mallorca, Spain

Cala Molins

Someone told me Mallorca has more than 300 beaches and so far we have seen only a dozen or so. Who are we to argue? At this rate it will take us a long time to see them all. Some of them are pebble beaches, others white sand, and others are practically inaccessible; you need to scramble down rocky cliffs and off ledges. They have one thing in common in that they are all stunning.

For late October, the weather has been amazing — 28 plus degrees every day for the last few days. The locals are all shaking their heads and saying ‘when is it going to end’ and taking to the beaches en masse.

Last weekend we drove north and managed six beaches, a couple of dozen mussels, gambas (prawns) galore, an octopus or three, several small schools of fish, and by Sunday afternoon we were beginning to look like beached whales ourselves.



Cap De Formenter - sometimes the only way in is by boat


Cala Formenter - under the pines


Head over heals for Mallorcan beaches




In our pathetic quest to work off the aquarium we had consumed, we trekked through the S’albufera de Mallorca wetlands out near Playa de Muro, stopping at hides along the trail and birdwatching, all the while rubbing our bellies, groaning and distended, yet at the same time thinking about our next meal.



You are never far from anything. Massive coal-fired power station humming in the distance. Can you feel the serenity?