- Our top 5 attractions
- Palma's Old Town - Featured Sites
- Selected streets and squares
- Excursions to two nearby places
Palma, Mallorca's capital, is one of those cruise destinations that - with sufficient preparation - do not require guided tours. Palma and its surroundings are rich in attractions. One day is by far not enough to explore all the attractions.
Palma - skyscrapers on the quayside
But what are the “right” sights anyway? To make it easier for our readers to choose, we have divided the city's highlights into subject areas. All the places mentioned have one thing in common: they are easy to reach on your own.
Our top 5 attractions
Off the cuff we could list many interesting attractions. We include the following sights in our top five.
La Seu Cathedral
The most famous building and at the same time the symbol of the city is the Gothic cathedral La Seu. The foundation stone of the cathedral was laid on the site of the former main Arab mosque in 1230, a year after the liberation of Mallorca from the Moors. It took more than 350 years until the construction of the nave was completed in July 1587. After that, the work continued. The mighty main portal was consecrated in 1601. In 1851 an earthquake destroyed large parts of the church. La Seu was rebuilt and is now considered one of the most valuable Gothic buildings in all of Spain.
La Seu Cathedral
Main features: The cathedral is 109,50 meters long and 33 meters wide. The nave is 44 meters high. The two aisles are 30 meters high. Many stained glass windows and rosettes impress visitors. Also worth seeing is the St. Peter's Chapel in the right aisle, designed by the Mallorcan artist Miquel Barceló and consecrated in 2007. It differs significantly from the rest of the style of the cathedral because of its modern design.
Guided tours have been taking place on the roof terraces since 2016. The tours are offered in Catalan and English. To get to the roof, there are 215 steps to climb.
Entry price: 8,00 euros.
Opening times - daily; closed on Sundays and public holidays.
Basilica de Sant Francesc
The Gothic Basilica de Sant Francesc, which was built by Franciscan monks in the 13th and 14th centuries and is constantly being expanded, appears similarly monumental to the cathedral.
Basilica de Sant Francesc
In the 17th century the facade was renewed in the Baroque style. A Franciscan monastery with a trapezoidal cloister is adjacent to the basilica. It is considered to be one of the largest cloisters in Europe.
Basilica de Sant Francesc - altar
Basilica de Sant Francesc - Nave
Location: Plaça Sant Francesc
Entrance fee: 5,00 euros
Opening times: Monday to Saturday 10.00am to 14.30pm and 15.00pm to 18.00pm
Royal Palace of Almudaina
The royal palace Palacio Real de La Almudaina was built opposite the cathedral. It is the seat of the military command, but at the same time it is also the residence of the Spanish king when he is in Mallorca. The 20.000 square meter building was originally an Arab fortress. Also worth seeing is the 14th-century Gothic St. Anne's Chapel in the palace grounds.
Opening hours and entrance fees 2022:
1.4. to 30.9.: Tuesday to Sunday – 10:00am to 19:00pm
1/10 to 31.3/10: Tuesday to Sunday – 00:18am to 00:XNUMXpm
Regular: €7,00; Discounts are granted.
Palace tours are offered.
Castell de Bellver
In the southwest of the center, the Castell de Bellver rises up to a height of 112 meters and is visible from afar. The circular fortress was built at the beginning of the 14th century. The castle has a moat and four towers. Both make the building appear impregnable. The inner courtyard, on the other hand, is surrounded by two-story loggias that look playful. From the top of the fortress, visitors can enjoy a great view over the Bay of Palma. The museum of the city history of Palma is housed in the castle.
Regular admission price: 4,00 euros; Discounts are granted.
Llotja dels Mercaders
In the 15th century, Palma was one of the richest trading cities in the Mediterranean. 25 foreign trade agencies resided within the city walls. It made sense to crown the importance of the trading center with a representative building.
Llotja dels Mercaders trading exchange
The means to an end was the Llotja dels Mercaders, established in the first half of the 15th century. It also served as a meeting place for merchants. The 46 by 28 meter building consists of a single room, divided by six rotated columns. Light falls into the huge hall through pointed arch windows. Four towers frame the building. The outer facades are decorated with angels and the patron saints of the trading cities. The gargoyles in the form of animal heads in the roof area also deserve attention.
Llotja dels Mercaders - Entrance area
Llotja dels Mercaders - the hall
Eintritt der ist frei.
We don't know how many museums there are in Palma City. Just this much: Palma is rich in museums. Our favorites are ...
Es Baluard - Museo de Arte Moderno y Contemporáneo
The museum was developed from the fortress called Baluard de Sant Pere in the city wall and opened in 2004. It presents a diverse and exquisite collection of selected works of art on 5.000 square meters. The focus of the collections is on works that were created between the end of the 19th century and the present day.
Museum of Baluard
Location: Plaça Porta de Santa Catalina 10
Opening times: Tuesday to Sunday.
Admission price: 6,00 euros, discounts for students and senior citizens are granted.
By the way: Visitors are already attuned to the museum at the Plaça de la Porta de Santa Catalina. Giant pigeons and a church standing on its tower are the first fascinating impressions of contemporary art.
Art object on the Plaça de la Porta de Santa Catalina - Device to root out Evil
Fundació Miró Mallorca
From 1956 until his death in 1983 the Catalan Joan Miró lived and worked in Mallorca. The museum mainly shows donations from the artist, including paintings, engravings and graphics.
Pilar and Joan Miró Foundation
Location: Calle Joan de Saridakis, 29
Closed on Mondays
Admission price: 9,00 euros - discounts are granted.
Nuevo Pueblo espanol
Spain in the smallest of spaces: on an area of around 6.000 square meters, the facility presents typical Spanish buildings that are reminiscent of the Alhambra in Granada or houses in Barcelona, Madrid and Seville. The Nuevo Pueblo español is used in many ways. As an open-air museum, for conferences and events and also as a Christmas market. A few shops and a café enliven the otherwise somewhat sterile scenery.
Palma's Old Town - Featured Sites
A stroll through Palma's old town seems essential to us. Spanish and Arabic influences result in an incomparable mixture. In addition, there are sizeable squares, spacious pedestrian zones and enchanted narrow streets that can hardly be negotiated with a car.
old town alley
The Arab Baths - Banys Àrabs
Few visitors stray to the 10th to 12th century Arab baths, the Banys Àrabs, although they are considered the most important relic from the Moorish era. Unfortunately, only a small part of the original system has survived today. A video presentation also provides information in German about the previous design of the bathrooms. An upstream intimate garden invites you to linger.
How to find it From La Seu Cathedral, a signposted path leads over 400 meters through the streets and alleys of the old town.
Row of columns in the Banys Àrabs
Gardens of the Banys Àrabs
Location: Carrer Can Serra 7
Opening times: all year round; Open daily from: 10:00am to 19.00:XNUMXpm
Entrance fee: 2,00 euros
Palma's trendy La Llotja-Born district
Many restaurants, bars and clubs are located in Palma's trendy district of La Llotja-Born. In the narrow Carrer dels Apuntadors branching off the Avenida d'Antoni Maura and around the Plaça de la Drassana, visitors will find various restaurants, bars and a few welcoming hostals. And there are more pubs hidden in the small side streets of the district.
Trendy district with Carrer dels Apuntadors
S'Hort del Rei
In the Middle Ages, the S'Hort del Rei garden lay below the Royal Palace and outside the city walls. In contrast to today, the plant was a kitchen and not an ornamental garden. The area was built on in the 19th century. The houses were demolished again after 1960 as part of the urban redevelopment. As a replacement, an imposing garden was created. Trees, bushes, arcades and fountains convey the vision of a traditional Mallorcan garden. And the royal palace towers over the park.
Below the cathedral is the Parc de la Mar. The main part of the public park is made up of an artificial saltwater lake and a fountain. A paved and tree-lined pedestrian promenade borders the lake. To the east is a lawn with a children's playground. Cafes and restaurants invite you to sit down. The adjoining vaults of the city wall are used as an art and event center. According to reports, the water surface was created primarily to reflect the facade of the cathedral.
Jardí del Bispe
La Seu Cathedral and the Jardí del Bisbe, the bishop's garden, are close together. To see the gardens of the Diocese of Mallorca, visitors pass through a portal decorated with a coat of arms. The path within the gardens is lined with cypresses. There is an orchard to the left of the path, with a herb and flower garden next to it.
Jardí del Bispe
Location: Carrer de Sant Pere Nolasc
The green area is closed on Sundays.
Selected streets and squares
A lively city like Palma de Mallorca has what feels like an infinite number of attractive streets and squares. We especially appreciate and recommend the following:
Similar to Las Ramblas in Barcelona Palma's La Rambla has two lanes for cars and a distinctive median in between that invites pedestrians to stroll. Palma's La Rambla runs between the Teatre Principal and Plaça Major. The elegant avenue is shaded by plane trees. The median is not only available to pedestrians; Florists use it to sell cut flowers and plants. However, one thing distinguishes the two streets: Barcelona's Las Ramblas is significantly longer than its Mallorcan counterpart.
Flower stand on La Rambla
Passeig des Born and Plaça la Reina
And another promenade: we are talking about the Passeig des Born, which runs from the Plaça del Rei Joan Carles I to the Plaça de la Reina. Chic shops, restaurants and cafés as well as shady trees are the hallmarks of the noble pedestrian zone. Not to forget the sphinxes resting on pedestals, which "guard" access to the promenade at the beginning and end of the street.
Passeig des Born
Passeig des Born with sphinxes
Plaça la Reina is the transition from Passeig des Born to Avenida d'Antoni Maura. From a bird's eye view, the square looks triangular. Its features are a fountain in the middle of a roundabout and a green area with palm and deciduous trees. The Parliament of the Balearic Islands and Palma Cathedral can be seen from Plaça la Reina.
Plaça la Reina with the Cathedral
Passeig des Born
The rectangular, lively Plaça Major and the representative buildings surrounding it with the beautiful arches are part of our must-do list in Palma. Bars, restaurants, an arts and crafts market and sometimes street artists delight us and the other passers-by.
Placa de Cort
Plaça de Cort is lively at almost any time of the day. On the square stands the beautiful town hall of Palma. In front of it, a huge olive tree provides shade. Its age is estimated at 500 to 600 years. Around the square are attractive shops, hotels, restaurants and bars.
Plaça de Cort - Palma's town hall
Plaça de Cort - Olive Tree
The square is Palma's main transport hub. The city and intercity buses, the sightseeing buses, the metro and the historic train going to Sóller stop at Plaça d'Espanya. The square, which is partly surrounded by high-rise buildings, is also a suitable meeting place, especially since the cafés and restaurants around the square invite you to visit.
Plaça d'Espanya - Equestrian statue of King Jaume I.
The hard-to-miss statue in the center of the square depicts King Jaume I on horseback. The king liberated Mallorca and the rest of the inhabited Balearic Islands from the Moors in 1299.
Plaça de Weyler and Plaça del Mercat
We name the two adjoining squares of the Barrio de Sant Nicolau in the same breath. We don't perceive the Plaça de Weyler as a square, it looks more like a street to us. We recommend making the journey to Plaça de Weyler to see an outstanding Art Nouveau building completed in 1903. It is the former "Gran Hotel". The building is currently used by the CaixaForum cultural center. The cultural foundation of the bank "La Caixa" regularly organizes exhibitions, concerts and other cultural events in the building. The CaixaForum is home to a permanent exhibition dedicated to a Catalan post-impressionist and Art Nouveau painter: Hermenegildo Anglada Camarasa.
Placa de Weyler
Plaça de Weyler - CaixaForum
We visit the Plaça del Mercat, which adjoins the Plaça de Weyler, because of two buildings: the Art Nouveau buildings called "Casas Casasayas". The two identical four-story buildings, separated by Calle Can Santacilia, were built between 1908 and 1911. They have been included as a protected cultural asset in the "Patrimonio Histórico Español". The church built at the head of the square with a hexagonal tower is Sant Nicolau.
Placa del Mercat - Casas Casasayas
Plaça del Mercat - Sant Nicolau
Excursions to two nearby places
On a normal day at sea, the following trips by public transport are also possible. Our favorites include:
Valdemossa in the Tramuntana mountains
Steep streets, cobblestones, stone facades, churches, lush vegetation and nice restaurants and bars are the hallmarks of this lively small town of around 2.000 inhabitants.
Valldemossa - Panorama
Valldemossa - Parish Church of Sant Bartomeu
The bus line 210 (Palma - Soller) head for Valldemossa daily, mainly every hour. Traffic is reduced to a few departures on weekends and public holidays. Buses depart from the Estació Intermodal underground bus station in Plaza España.
Palma's Estació Intermodal
Visit Sóller by historic train
The historic narrow-gauge railway takes us 27 kilometers away to Sóller on Mallorca's north coast. The journey time to Sóller is about an hour. From the terminus of the small train, a tram continues to Puerto de Sóller.
Narrow gauge railway to Sóller
Soller - Panorama
The trains to Sóller start at the small station opposite Plaça España.
Update December 2022