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Palma de Mallorca: Fascinating Tour of Beautiful Spanish Island City

I live in Houston and have worked as a nurse. I have a lifelong passion for traveling, nature, and photography (preferably all together!).

Street Scene - Palma de Mallorca - Mallorca - Spain

Street Scene - Palma de Mallorca - Mallorca - Spain

City Tour of Palma de Mallorca

My husband and I were fortunate many years ago to stay for a week on the beautiful island of Mallorca, and one day we took a tour of its capital city, Palma. Mallorca is one of the islands comprising the Balearic Islands in the western Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Spain.

While staying on the Spanish island of Mallorca, my husband and I were being flown back and forth for Olympic events in Barcelona. Just the evening prior, we had attended the Opening Ceremonies of the XXV Olympiad and had gotten to sleep at 3 AM.

Previously arranged was a city tour of Palma de Mallorca for this day, and we were awakened after only four hours of sleep so that we would be ready at 9 AM. We were beginning to feel as though we were a part of the Olympics as it had to do with stamina!

It was fascinating to learn some information about Palma and see some of the landmarks in the area. The history of this island started with the inhabitation of the Romans. Then there was a Byzantine presence, a Muslim period, and finally, the Spanish occupation. Many people through the centuries made their living by the piracy of seagoing vessels. Since the 1950s, primary income comes from the numerous tourists who come to the island via airplane and by sea.

You can see some of the scenery we got to view on our tour by looking at the photos and videos below. Where we got to stay and dine one evening is also included so that you can get more of a sense of what there is to enjoy in this scenic city.

Bellver Castle

Our first stop on the city tour was at Bellver Castle, sitting high atop a hill. The castle offers terrific views of old defensive architecture and also splendid scenes of the city and the Mediterranean in the distance.

Built by the same craftsman (Pere Salva) who also constructed the Almudaina, it helped to fortify this area against possible enemies for centuries.

King James II of Mallorca ordered Bellver Castle constructed in 1300. At times it has housed royalty, it has been a place of refuge, and it has also served as a prison. There was a moat around the castle, and they even had their water collection system to make them more self-sufficient.

Since 1976 this circular fortress has served as a history museum. Works of art and other valuable collections are on view within these walls.

Pueblo Español

Inside a walled enclosure is a village created to show reproductions of various styled buildings throughout Spain. It is called Pueblo Español. Built according to traditional methods and using authentic materials, it is a sizable area.

Divided into 18 blocks forming 15 streets and 12 plazas, one can see many different buildings, fountains, arches, and other things one could find in real cities scattered throughout Spain. Shops and restaurants are part of this village, and one can view and also purchase handicrafts such as ceramics, leather items, glass-works, etc.

A tourist attraction called The spanish village(Pueblo Español) in Mallorca, Spain.

A tourist attraction called The spanish village(Pueblo Español) in Mallorca, Spain.

Old Section of Palma

After seeing some of Pueblo Español, our tour group next walked through some of the old section of Palma. We saw many buildings that were close to one another. There were many balconies in which the inhabitants could get some fresh air into their abodes. The streets were cobblestoned.

On one of the plazas, there was an ancient olive tree that was several hundred years old. I got my husband to pose by it, and tourists were all taking turns getting their photographs taken by this thick and gnarly ancient tree.

Some of the buildings had ornamentation like frescoes on their exteriors. I snapped a photo of an elderly lady, who tended her caged bird, and she waved as we passed under her window.

When we were near government buildings, I intended to snap many photos, but a policeman or someone in the military warned that it was not allowed. Security is an issue, or at the least, they wish to negate any problems. So I quit taking photographs in that locale.

The Almudaina Palace

What was once a Moorish-styled fortress in the 14th and 15th century, became substantially altered to a now dominating Gothic style. Today it serves as the summertime residence for the King and Queen of Spain. Part of the building also functions as a museum. It also houses the general military headquarters for the Balearic Islands region.

The building of the Almudaina Arch took place in the 11th century. It serves as a gate to the protective wall of the emir's palace.

Part of the Almudaina Palace sits alongside the old section of the city. It is also adjacent to the Palma Cathedral.

The Palma Cathedral

This Gothic Cathedral, built more than 500 years ago, is a landmark structure in the City of Palma de Mallorca. Adjacent to the Almudaina Palace, it towers over any other building in the area.

The beautiful exterior of the cathedral also has a gorgeous interior. It is an active church, but it also serves as a tourist attraction.

Palma Cathedral in Daytime and Night with Music

Precious Water!

Freshwater is in short supply on the island, and the windmills that we saw operating bring up water from underground and used to water plants. It is too salty to be used for drinking. Naturally, water conservation is of utmost importance.

Street Scene with Windmill - Palma de Mallorca - Mallorca - Spain

Street Scene with Windmill - Palma de Mallorca - Mallorca - Spain

Valparaiso Palace Hotel

After the tour, we spent a little time exploring the grounds of our hotel. Our hosts had arranged for us to stay at the Valparaiso Palace Hotel for the duration of our trip, which included airplane flights to and from Barcelona for Olympic events. We were with a group of about 90 people who were enjoying the same wonderful vacation trip.

The grounds were gorgeous, and the hotel offered views of the city and the sea. The wait staff gave superior service, and we felt very pampered while there.

Dinner That Evening

After relaxing a bit and taking in the scenery around our hotel, we were split into groups and taken to area restaurants.

Bahia Mediterraneo Restaurante was the one that we got to enjoy. Was it ever a special treat! Crystal chandeliers, marble floors, and potted palm trees with large expanses of windows overlooking the bay comprise the interior of the restaurant. We got to sit on the expansive terrace protected by awnings and had the Bay of Palma with all the twinkling harbor lights as our decor. I can't think of a more beautiful setting for dinner. Piano music floated our way, and the wonderfully prepared food offerings and interesting company made for the most delightful of evenings.

People dine late in the evening in Spain. I seem to remember our dinner started at something like 10 PM.

I hope you enjoyed this Spanish island tour of Palma de Mallorca. It was an educational and fascinating day for us and merely the beginning of many more adventures while in Spain. One could explore much more of the city given extra time. At least our tour captured many of the highlights.

"I live in Mallorca, Spain, and I am not sure there are better places."

— Rafael Nadal

Sources:

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2009 Peggy Woods

Comments are welcomed.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on February 05, 2015:

Hi Lee aka traveleze,

Thanks for your comment. Will certainly check out your travel hubs. Traveling is not only fun but so educational! :)

Lee John from Preston on February 05, 2015:

Hi Peggy,

Just saw your blog on recommendations, glad i came across it ! I have left feedback according :) and followed you your hubs are great, I write travel hubs please feel free to check mine out, any feedback you leave will be highly appreciated

Thanks Peggy

Lee

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 11, 2013:

Hi Kalmiya,

So glad that you are enjoying the series of articles that I wrote about visiting Spain. The City of Palma on the Island of Mallorca is so pretty. I can understand why the King and Queen of Spain have a summer palace there! Thanks for the 5 star rating and your comment.

Kalmiya from North America on March 10, 2013:

What a wonderful series of hubs on Spain! I'm 5-starring everything as I appreciate your wealth of photos and info. I think I would still like to see the south of Spain as I'm very interested in the Moorish influences over architecture, etc. Thanks again!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 16, 2011:

Hi craftybegonia,

I think that you are confusing the tour of Palma de Mallorca on the Island of Mallorca (also spelled Majorca) with La Palma which is located off of the coast of Africa in the Canary Islands. Have you been there? It does sound like it would be a beautiful place to visit. Thanks for your comment.

craftybegonia from Southwestern, United States on October 16, 2011:

Those islands have always been a magnet because of their rugged volcanic beauty. Looks like you really loved your trip, how wonderful!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 16, 2011:

Hi Nell Rose,

You forget to include the link to your Mallorca hub. Or have you not written it yet?

Nell Rose from England on October 16, 2011:

Thanks Peggy!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 16, 2011:

Hi Stephanie,

Our 10 days spent in Spain during the time of the Olympics will be memories that we carry with us always. Such a beautiful country! Thanks for commenting and leaving votes on this Palma de Mallorca hub. Knowing you...you'll get there someday! :))

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 16, 2011:

Hello Lucky Cats,

Glad you liked this hub about our day tour of Palma de Mallorca. Thanks for your comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on October 16, 2011:

Hi Nell Rose,

It sounds as though your visit to the Island of Mallorca (Majorca) was equally thrilling even though we both saw different parts. Have you written about what you experienced? If so, feel free to leave a link in the comment section. Am sure that people would be interested. Thanks!

Stephanie Henkel from USA on October 16, 2011:

I've always wanted to visit Spain,and you've reminded me of this with your gorgeous photographs! One day... Thanks for a lovely hub. Voted up and beautiful, useful and interesting...as always!

Kathy from The beautiful Napa Valley, California on October 16, 2011:

Fabulous, Peggy!

Nell Rose from England on October 16, 2011:

Hi, Peggy, I have visited Majorca, but we stayed at Santa Ponsa, further around the island. I went out on a glass bottom boat! we could walk down into the pointed sides that were either side of the boat. it was like walking underwater! it is such a beautiful island. we also visited Portal Nou, which is the rich part. Wow! it was like I would expect Cannes in France to be, wall to wall yachts! unfortunately we missed Palma, but I wish hadn't! it looks amazing, lovely hub and reminder, cheers nell

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 03, 2010:

Hi again Trish_M,

Here are wishes for both of us to someday return to the beautiful Island of Mallorca.

Tricia Mason from The English Midlands on March 03, 2010:

Yes, when I was there 'Majorca' seemed to be the more common spelling, but I think that 'Mallorca' is probably used more now. It's been quite some time since I visited. :)

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 01, 2010:

Greetings Trish_M,

You are fortunate to have spent a holiday on the Spanish Island of Mallorca.......or Majorca, depending upon the spelling. Palma and the other locations are so gorgeous. Would love to spend more time on that island someday. Thanks for reading and leaving a comment.

Tricia Mason from The English Midlands on March 01, 2010:

I love Spain ~ and those photos bring back happy memories of a lovely holiday in Majorca :)

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 28, 2009:

Hi James,

Glad that you liked this hub showing photos of Palma. We took a tour of the Island of Mallorca that I will also be writing about in another hub...so stay tuned. What a beautiful place to have a home!!! Thanks for the comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 28, 2009:

Hi Candie,

My husband picks up a little color in the summertime and we were out and about quite a bit in Spain with the sun shining. He has to be careful though as he burns quite easily. Usually slathers himself with suntan lotion. Will tell him that you noticed his tan! LOL

James A Watkins from Chicago on July 28, 2009:

Absolutely awesome journey, Peggy! I have a good friend with a home in Palma, where he spends maybe a month a year. This is the first time I have ever seen a photograph of the place. Your photos are outstanding and a nice cross section of beautiful things to see. Your words were wonderfully written. I could not have enjoyed it more!

Candie V from Whereever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure! on July 28, 2009:

I was also going to ask if that's a new tan your husband is sporting? He's looking good!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 27, 2009:

Hi Ethel,

As close as you live to Spain you have more likelihood of getting there more often than us. Go for it!!! Then be sure and write it up!!! I love reading your travel adventures. Thanks for the comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 27, 2009:

Hi Pete,

Gibralter would be a great place to visit! Why don't you write about it? I love armchair traveling as well as doing it in person. Thanks for the comment.

Ethel Smith from Kingston-Upon-Hull on July 27, 2009:

I would love to see more of Spain, especially such places as this. Such beatiful architecture

Pete Maida on July 27, 2009:

You definitely take some great vacations. Some of Palma reminds me of Gibraltar, which isn't too far away.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 26, 2009:

Hi Candie,

Yes...this truly stands as the trip of a lifetime for us. And what made it even better was that we were guests and did not have to pay the bills.

The Madrid and Toledo portions of the trip were ours (and I have more to write regarding Madrid) but all of the Olympics, Barcelona and Mallorca experiences were gratis. Much more to write...stay tuned if you are enjoying this.

Thanks for your comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 26, 2009:

Hi Mardi,

Our City Tour of Palma on Mallorca was interesting and the grounds of our hotel beautiful as you saw. I agree, the swans added the perfect touch. For the small amount of time we actually spent at the hotel each day...it was a bit of paradise. Thanks for commenting.

Candie V from Whereever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure! on July 26, 2009:

Wow! The trip of a lifetime!! Beautiful pictures!

Mardi Winder-Adams from Western Canada and Texas on July 26, 2009:

How beautiful. I love the pictures of the swans and the grounds around the hotel. That is sort of what I imagine when someone talks about a "paradise"!

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