viva mallorca – an abbreviated trip report

I wasn’t going to do a trip report,  but the kids have asked me to write something,   so I am just jotting some notes down more for myself and them,  than as a full report. 

We have been in Mallorca for nearly a week now,   and we are all really enjoying it.   I wasn’t sure how we would find it, as we are used to the full on excitement of a Disney holiday,  but we have found plenty to do and noone has been bored yet.   The kids have voted it very good,  and they would  like to come back.  But if they had to choose between Orlando or Majorca,  they would choose Orlando.

We arrived on Friday,  leaving the UK in the pouring rain.   I was absolutely drenched on the flight as we had to transfer from bus to plane in a monsoon and I got soaked.   However, apart from the rain it was a pretty uneventful flight.   We landed on time but had to wait a very long time for our bags.   So long that the car hire rep thought we weren’t coming.   However,  we transferred to the coach and then the carhire office quite easily and picked up our car.   It is possibly the most unattractive car I’ve ever seen.  It’s a brown Lancia with a dodgy 4th gear (or possibly a dodgy driver,  I couldn’t possibly say) However,  it is getting us around, and we got all the cases in,   so it will do.

We had about an hours drive over to our hotel,  mostly across a new motorway which makes it fairly easy to get back and forth to Palma.   Our hotel is lovely and we have a nice apartment with a bedroom,  2 sofabeds, and a kitchenette and bathroom area.  Unfortunately,  the view is off an empty lot and not very attractive,   but for the price we paid,  I really have no complaints.

After we settled in and unpacked,  we walked down to the beach and had lunch.   It was incredibly windy at the beach,  and so we ate inside,   but there were still some brave souls on the beach! 
Later that evening,  we had some sandwiches in our room, and then headed down to the bar area for some ice cream sundaes and to watch the entertainment.  The kids loved the kids disco,  but it’s not really my thing…  The ice creams were quite nice though.

On Saturday, we drove along to Alcudia to see what was there,  and check out the boat trips offered from Alcudia.  We think we will take a boat trip next week.   We had lunch in a cafe by the sea,  which was very nice,  but all of these cafes are quite expensive,  we are finding it is costing around 40Euro regardless of what we seem to order!
On the way back from Alcudia we found a biggish supermarket, and bought some supplies so that we can eat breakfast and a few other meals in the room.
Then we spent the afternoon by the pool.  I’ve bought a waterproof bag for my camera,  and we are getting some great shots with it.
In the evening we walked down into Can’ Picafort,   the centre isn’t very big but it’s quite lively with shops, market stalls and restaurants.  We ended up eating in a place called Jamaica where all the staff were wearing fake dreadlock hats! It was good fun, and we all really enjoyed our evening there.  I even had a cocktail with a ridiculously long straw.

On Sunday,  we decided to go on a trip to Caves of Drach.  The SatNav got us there,  but we seemed to take a rather random route.  I don’t think it knows how to deal with the country lanes around here.    We arrived just in time for the 12 o’clock trip,   and we all headed down into the cave.  I wasn’t really sure what to expect but it was pretty good, and Katie in particular, really liked it.   In fact, she declared it a holiday highlight.  We walked down into the cave for about 20 minutes,   and were then seated in an ampitheatre by the lake,  and some musicians sailed past playing some music.   It was quite calm and peaceful.  My only complaint was they didn’t allow photographs,  so I didn’t take any,  but lots of others did,  and the flash didn’t really add to the ambience at all.
We were in the cave about an hour,  and then we emerged (via a lot of steps!)  and decided to go to the beach at Porto Christo,  which was nearby.   We had some lunch in a lovely restaurant overlooking the harbour,   and then changed into our costumes and spent a few hours on the beach.  It is a really small cove, and the beach was busy, but it’s  very pretty and there are loads of boats and yachts coming in and out,  so it’s quite an interesting beach to lie on.
When we got back to the hotel,  we were all quite tired,  so we decided to try the hotel buffet for dinner.   It was ok,  but I don’t know that I would want to eat in there every night. 

Monday was a very important day,  as it was my birthday!   There had been a lot of secret squirreling going on over the weekend,   and I was woken up to some cards,  wine and birthday cake for breakfast!!!  Molly had decorated the cake with the sparkly bits out of the ice cream sundaes.  My present was a massage in the spa.   We were all a bit tired,  so we decided to have a lazy day by the pool.  Molly went off to the kids club,   Katie found some friends to swim with,  and I went for my massage, and then spent a while on the internet and reading by the pool.  The sunbed situation is pretty bad,  and we keep ending up on the grass at the back,  as all the prime sunbeds are taken by 9am.  If we were spending everyday by the pool, then I guess we’d have to join in and try and bag a sunbed before 8am, but that’s not really me,  so we will stick with the dodgy spot on the grass….

We all got changed and headed down into Can Picafort for a Chinese buffet at the ChinaTown restaurant.  We ordered the buffet for 3, even though there were 4 of us,   and it was still too much food!  we had about 3 rounds of starters and by the time the main courses came out,  we were all rather full.   We made a valiant effort though. 🙂

Tuesday we decided to visit Palma Aquarium.   This was superb!  It had a few different areas, and we were there for most of the day.  We started out in what was a traditional aquarium, with lots of dark rooms with various tanks.  It was very busy, and it took a while to see into each tank,  but there was loads to see and the information boards all operated in many languages so we were able to read about all the fish and corals.  After we’d walked around that area,   we ended up outside in some beautiful gardens.   We stopped for some lunch and then walked around the gardens.   They were feeding the turtles,  manta rays and supposedly the hammerhead sharks,  but when we got to the shark feeding it turned out they were only fed twice a week and it was the wrong day.  However,  also in the tank with the sharks were some fish,  which we presume were pirhana although the commentary wasn’t in English so we aren’t too sure.   They chucked some fish in the water, and these fish went beserk eating,   it was very impressive!    After we had walked through the gardens, there was a forest area with lizards and then back inside to walk through a tunnel under a massive tank with sharks in it.   It was a superb place and we spent the best part of the day there.

On the way back, we stopped at a new shopping centre called Festival Park and I bought myself some new shoes.  The shoe shop at the bottom of my street sells Camper shoes and I have often admired them,  so I bought myself a couple of pairs in the outlet.

Tuesday was quite a long day,  so we decide to have a quieter day on Wednesday.  It’s market day in Port de Pollensa, so we head there.   We think we know the way,  so I don’t use the Sat Nav and we set off.  Fairly quickly we realise we are going the wrong way,  and we don’t understand how.  There is a big roundabout at the end of Can Picafort and a left turn takes you to Alcudia,  but we are heading inland through the farms.   We turn on the SatNav and she takes us down lots of very tiny windy back lanes, but eventually we end up in Alcudia and then manage to find our way to Port de Pollensa.   It takes us a while to park,  and then we walk into town and find the market.   At first glance it looks quite small, but it winds quite far back and it’s a pretty extensive market selling just about everything.   Molly buys a pen with some beads on it,  but Katie can’t settle on anything.  She is toying with getting her hair wrapped but she’s just not sure.  We shop for a while, and then find a cafe for lunch.  We are finding meals very expensive and again a round of toasties and drinks comes to 35Euros.   We walk back along the seafront, and I look in some jewelry shop windows.  I’ve seen a watch I like the look off, but so far I can only see it in the brochure,  I’ve not find anywhere that has it in stock.   Along the front, we also passed the tour companies offices and we booked a full island tour for Sunday.   It will take us through the mountains,  on a boat ride,  and also on a train from Soller through to Palma.  Something we think will be hard to do in the car.   We have to meet the bus at 8:30am,  so that will be an early start, as we haven’t really been up before 10 so far!

We find our way back to Can picafort, and discover where we went wrong.   There are 2 roundabouts and we had turned left at the wrong one!
The kids go swimming for a while and then later on we go out for a meal in Can Picafort. As we are walking down,  we see a hair wrap lady, and both girls choose to get a wrap done.    We go back to a restaurant we had liked earlier,   and we all opted for the special which is Scampi and Chips for 6 Euros.  Very nice it was too.  We sat on the seafront,  watching the sunset.  Molly went for a splash in the sea and Katie laid on the sunbed for a while.  It was very relaxing and civilised.
As we walked back up to the hotel,  I found my watch in a jewelry shop,  so I treated myself.  I said to the man I wasn’t sure as it had no numbers on it,  and he said it was similiar to a Gucci which also has no numbers.   Well, if it’s good enough for Gucci….  Although whether or not I’ll be able to tell the time remains to be seen,  but it’s a nice looking watch!

We are having a lazy day today,  Molly slept until well after 10,  Katie had already gone down to the pool before she woke up.  We’ve all been swimming,   even did some water aerobics,  and I’ve read another book by the pool.   I have read 6 or 7 books so far.  I’d always scoffed at the e-readers but I can see the advantage on a holiday like this.  I brought 4  books with me, and after I read those,  I’ve been swapping them on a book swap shelf.  I might have to buy a couple more though.

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2 comments

  1. Hi Guys, good to hear you are enjoying yourselves – we loved the caves of Drach too – John tried to film them and we have minutes of dark tedium enlivened by the occasional flash and background chatter! We never made it to the aquarium, but it sounds great.
    We did not find the food so expensive – but € to € is different to converting stirling I suppose – try a paella, or one of the local dishes and you may find its less pricey. (Jolanda would not recommend the paella as she said it was all legs and eyes, but we enjoyed it!)

  2. talking about local dishes there was a restaurant in the mountians that offered pigs trotters with snails and Jolanda said she would walk home if John ordered it!

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