The four islands off the coast of Spain that make up the Islas Baleares or Balearic Islands all possess the glorious climate and matchless beauty of the Mediterranean Sea, but each has its own special appeal.
The total ‘native’ population is somewhere around a million people, but the rest of the world has ‘discovered’ these islands, and for at least six months out of the year that million is multiplied many times over. So it is hardly surprising that tourism is the chief industry of the islands, but what is rather amazing is that the islands have managed to retain most of their natural beauty and charm.
Mallorca (or Majorca) is the largest of the islands and closest to the Spanish coast. The island pretty much has it all, from wide white sand beaches to rugged mountains and from sizzling nightlife to solemn, ancient ruins of bygone civilizations.
Majorca is the destination for a large percentage of visitors planning Balearic Islands holidays, and there is certainly no lack of accommodations and things to do. If your Majorca holidays are focused on the beach, luxury hotels such as the Cala Mesquida and the Oasis Punta Amer offer some of finest beaches plus every amenity and convenience.
Towns like Soller, in the Northern part of the island, have a somewhat different atmosphere and a slower pace geared more to the peace and rugged beauty of the mountains and the traditional Catalan lifestyle.
The Hotel Es Port, for instance, is a fortified mansion dating back to the 17th century, now offering both modern amenities and a sense of the past and the peace of the Mallorcan countryside. Another excellent spot is the Hotel Aimia, as advertised “between the mountains and the sea” and offering the best of both attractions.
The capital city of Palma de Mallorca is home to about half the entire population of the Balearic Islands, and the centre of economic and cultural resources in the Islands. Palma has a marvellous mixture of old and new, beaches and world-famous sites such as the Castle de Bellver, built in 1309 and the only circular castle in Spain, a huge and spectacular Gothic cathedral, and outstanding museums.
The city boasts a wide variety of excellent hotels, from small family-run operations like the Hotel Abelay to the grandest and most luxurious, such as the Gran Melia Victoria.
The island of Ibiza is the party place, and its nightclubs and entertainment draw hoards of party people from all over the world. If nightlife is big on the agenda, Ibiza is the place to be, and here the accommodations are also plentiful and diverse.
In Ibiza Town the Ibiza Gran Hotel and the Royal Plaza are examples of maximum luxury. On the other side of the island in San Antonio, the Club Victoria Country Hotel and the Stella Maris Holiday Club are just two of the top-ranked establishments.