For decades Majorca has been Europe’s playground. The island measures 72km (45 miles) by 96km (60 miles), and well over half of the population lives in the animated and cosmopolitan capital city of Palma de Mallorca.
La Seu, the formidable Gothic cathedral, was founded in 1299 - after the Reconquest by Jaume I (the Conqueror) - and dominates the seafront. The interior’s magnificent proportions and traditional splendour are enhanced by Gaudí’s baldachin hanging over the main altar. It’s a wonderful addition to Majorca’s list of attractions.
Exploring Majorca’s 965km (600-mile) -long coastline clockwise from Palma, the first stop must be the marina and restaurant complex of Portals Nous, where huge yachts are moored up in clusters. High-rise Magaluf, though, is attractive mainly to the Brits who flock there in their tens-of-thousands. Port d’Andratx lies close to the western tip of the island, on a sheltered bay popular with boating fans. Banyalbufar, to the north, has some of the island’s finest terraced orchards, and Esporlas has La Granja, a cross between a stately home, craft centre, traditional farmhouse and museum of rural life. Don’t forget to perch on the beach - this is undoubtedly one of the top Majorca attractions! Plenty of watersports are also available to make the very most of the water.
Valldemosa, which lies just inland, is a magnet for tourists who come to visit the monastery of La Real Cartuja built on top of a royal castle. In it, you can see exhibits relating to the novelist George Sand and her companion, Frédéric Chopin, who rented rooms here between 1838 and 1839.
Deià, probably the island’s most attractive town, a pretty hilltop community built from honey-coloured stone. It’s definitely up there as one of the top Majorca tourists attractions. Something of an artists’ colony - Robert Graves, the English poet and novelist, author of I, Claudius, is buried in the cemetery - this is also a good base for visiting the Tramuntana region in the north-west. A favourite haunt of the independent traveller, there are few beaches here, but a spectacular - and hair-raising - road allows fantastic views.
Majorca is a haven for shoppers. Find artificial pearls which have been made in the area, these are so convincing that experts are often fooled. Some say the test is to rub them along your teeth - the real ones are more gritty. Majorca is a centre for glassmaking. The typical blue, green or amber bowls, glasses and jugs are sold in many mainland stores. Even if you’re not shopping, browsing the shops are one of the top Majorca sightseeing experiences
Majorca is renowned for its vibrant and exciting nightlife. With plenty of clubs, bars and dance floors, Majorca never sleeps. Jam-packed with evening entertainment, you won’t ever be bored here. Gringos is a top-quality nightclub for dancing the night away!