With its silky beaches, chic shops, luxury marinas, and eclectic dining scene, Calvia is a favourite European escape. Discover the top ten attractions of this sun-soaked municipality on the southwestern coast of Mallorca, one of the hottest hideaways in Spain’s Balearic Islands.
Make a Beeline for the Beach
Magaluf and adjoining Palmanova boast a buzzing boardwalk lined with bars along one of Calvia’s broadest beaches. Sure, it attracts its fare share of boisterous, sunburned boys and babes, but the sands and sea are stunning, and you’re never far from a watering hole where you might spy women in whiplash-inducing bikinis gyrating atop a stage.
If you crave a cozy cove instead, Cala Portals Vells offers a variety of pine-backed coastal crescents. El Mago is nudist, but if skinny-dipping isn’t your style, continue around the cliffs to Portals Vells or the Cove de la Mare de Deu. The caves here were created when miners hauled away sandstone for a cathedral in the Mallorcan capital of Palma.
For fitness enthusiasts, Calvia features 100 kilometers of pathways and tracks, including the Paseo Calvia, a promenade connecting many of its coastal areas. Still have energy to burn? Calvia’s tourism authority offers details on more sporting opportunities, including hiking, cycling, and golf.
For two Michelin-starred cuisine, check out Zaranda in Castell Son Claret, where you can feast on locally grown traditional Mallorcan food. At Puerto Portals, the upscale marina in Portals Nous, Tristan is renowned for its high-quality offerings of sashimi, Mallorcan lamb and Galician beef, while neighbouring Flanigan serves seafood and Spanish specialties like Iberico ham and paella that are, quite literally, fit for a king. According to native son and local expert Julian Crespi Green, this popular restaurant, with its spacious outdoor terrace, is a favourite of the former Spanish monarch.
Port Adriano, a 90 million Euro project helmed by French designer Philippe Starck, is one of the newest and most architecturally arresting marinas on Mallorca. Located on the southwest bay of Palma de Mallorca, Port Adriano encompasses 25,000 square meters of mega-yacht berths, but you needn’t own a boat to stop by. Starck’s monolithic portside structure also houses hip restaurants, bars, and boutiques.
If you still haven’t got your fill of fashion, browse the blingy boutiques of Puerto Portals. For inexpensive beach basics like bikinis and sandals, you’ll find plenty to choose from in the shops along Avenue Magaluf.
“Mum, I’m boooored!” Avoid that dreaded phrase with visits to attractions like Jungle Parc Junior, where wee ones aged four to eleven can explore the tree canopy via bridges, nets, swings, zip wires, or even a “pirate boat,” and Katmandu Park, featuring everything from a water park and putt-putt golf to high-tech temptations like laser-gun “shoot outs” with zombies and Wild West villains.
When selecting a sumptuous spot for a pre-dinner tipple, your cup runneth over. Gabriel Escarrer Jaume, CEO of Melia Hotels, headquartered in Mallorca, suggests Nikki Beach, Cappuccino Grand Café, and Café del Mar. “I like to taste all these places, rather than choosing only one!” Cheers to that.
Bendy, buff-bodied “pirates” perform acrobatics to a soundtrack of throbbing dance anthems at the Pirates Reloaded 18+, for ages 18 and over.
If bawdy banter makes you blush, there’s also a more family friendly Pirates Adventure show.
Hit a beach, like Santa Ponsa or Peguera.
For birds-eye views, you can’t top the al fresco roof bar at OD Port Portals hotel in Portals Nous.
The 77-room OD Port Portals design hotel, perched on a hill above Puerto Portals, features a pool, two bars, a restaurant and sleek retro-modern furnishings. Ten junior suites offer in-room iPads.
In Magaluf, the beachfront ME Mallorca offers two swimming pools, a spa, and an “Aura Manager,” whose job is to help guests “obtain the unobtainable.” Why not put them to the test?
More info: http://www.visitcalvia.com