Monday, June 2, 2014

Mallorca day 3 ~ Road trip around the island

For my third day on Mallorca, I planned to visit the island and what´s better way then rent a car and make a road trip? Surely the best way to move around most efficiently and make the most out of the day!


Map of my road trip around Mallorca.

My first stop was actually a town called Felanitx, but I will mention that one in a separate post - there was a Sunday market happening and that deserves a special mention :)

I continued my way along the coast to Portocolom. Here I stopped by the light house and took a dip on a only sandy beach. It seems that the absence of the sandy beaches around the town has prevented the touristic development... It might not be too much pity, as this way, it preserves its original charm.



Light house of Portocolom.
Between the town and the lighthouse, there is the only sandy beach in the surroundings - not that well visible on my photo though.
The town of Portocolom.
The houses seem to have entrances from water below them, for discharging the daily catch, I guess.
Next town on my way was Portocristo. It might seem suspicious why all these places are called "port -colom" and "port-cristo"... well, it´s not a coincidence. All these towns are claiming that Christopher Columbus was born there. One can´t say today which one is right...
Portocristo is known for its Caves of Dragon, quite a touristic attraction of Mallorca. Tourists come there in big cars, so it is not such a good place to visit if you fear mass tourism... I made my mind about visiting them on the last moment. The entrance fee is pretty steep (14.5 euros, no student discount) and even though the caves have splendid calcite decoration, I´d not say it is a must see, especially if you visited as many caves as I did. I heard there is an another cave  (if I find it again, will add the link here), which is nearly as spectacular, but much less touristy... That might be a place to go, if you want to chill from the summer heat.


Beach in Porto Cristo
In the Dragon Cave.
After many stop in the beginning of my route, I continued pretty much straight to Cap Formentor - a magnificient view spot on the northernmost tip of the island. The road to climb up there was a fantastic driving experience and the views were beyond amazing.
One place on the way deserves a mention though; it is Alcúdia, whose windy beaches are perfect place for kitesurfers.


The most known view of the Cap Formentor.

And just one more picture of this beautiful spot.
Access path to the view point - on the top of a steep cliff.
View to the other side.
Access road to a viewpoint.
A road which leads to sky...
It was already evening when I finished at Formentor and needed to think of return. I returned via Sierra de Tramuntana and passed by the monastery Lluc - a place that was just about to close when I passed by. I was regretting a bit not to get a chance to visit it - it looked like a very inspirational and serene place. I´d say it looked like a better choice than the Dragon Cave - but that depends of course on one´s preferences...

In total, I drove around 250-300km in that day, visiting large part of the island. It sure was a beautiful and adventurous experience. Driving on steep serpentine roads of Sierra de Tramuntana is unforgettable and very enjoyable experience. Roads are in perfect conditions and driving is very safe, therefore I´d warmly recommend such a road trip to anyone interested in getting an overview of this beautiful island in short time.



With my cute rental car. BTW, the gas consumption was impressively low...  or maybe I drive so well ? ;)

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Mallorca Day 2 ~ Shopping in Palma

Mallorca sure is a great place for shopping - I sure first think of local leather products which Spain is famous for. At the same time, the actual current fashion trends are reflected here in much more playful fashion.
I have usually hard time finding colorful (and good quality) accessories in more northern parts of Europe, where people seem to have agreed on a special sort of "chic" consisting of shapeless grey and black oversized clothes. While here, I always have impression that women put so much more effort to look put together and insist much more on true the quality of all they were. So the garments are made of cotton, linen, silk, cotton mixed silk and shoes are without compromise leather and matching (style- or colorwise). This is my personal opinion, sure, but I just like this kind of look so much more.

Here are some displays that I dared to snap (I always hesitate to ask for permission for photographing and try to secretly snap the pictures when the shop assistant is not looking my way). I sure wished I could buy many and many of these beautiful things but at least, I took them with me on photographs. I could sure spend a lot and if I lived here, my wardrobe would sure tripled its size. But the dressing up is so much more fun and  appropriate here...


Since recently, I am much more into ballerinas; I was lusting over this display of  beautiful colorful pieces.
"Local fashion" - wicker baskets, perfect for summer.

Beautiful statement jewellery
Dainty jewellery.

I still can´t understand how could I leave the shop without purchasing any of these beautiful pieces...

More and more beautiful leather products and jewellery. Probably because there was so much great products, I realized that I could not possibly choose what I preferred, and I would have to leave either with everything - which was not well possible - or just capture all I could on photos to take with me in this way...

Even the shopping bag I got my "Ibiza dress" in was special - and it doubled as a beach bag for once when I went to beach.
 An unexpected find was the Zara Home boutique. I loved these ... beach rugs are they? Anyhow, I think I have a weakness for stripes and these have beautiful colors too. The only things I left with, at the end, were what they qualified as "lounge pants" but which I believe will work very well in Morocco for a daily wear as they are so large, fluid and light.





Hope you enjoyed this "window"/"photo" shopping! Next time, I shall really come to Mallorca with an empty suitcase... 

Mallorca Day 1 ~ Visiting Palma

Because I am so very busy during my stay in Switzerland, I haven´t had a chance yet to edit photos from my trip to Mallorca. I decided to post them now nevertheless, as my trips are piling up and I can´t possibly keep up with posting about them, along with my work and - next trips planning!

So i decided to split the photos according to the days, as not to make every entry too long and show all I have to show.

I stayed in a Hostal Pinar, which turned out to be a simple hotel rather then hostel. That´s because I would not expect a room service and a pool in a hostel, that´s why... All over, I was very much satisfied with my stay there. The position was great, with several restaurants, cafés and even a large supermarket nearby. The city as some 15 minutes walk away, but there are also direct bus stops nearby and even the airport bus stopping just down at the sea promenade.

These are some of my photos from the first day which I spent in Palma, the capital of Mallorca. I wanted to "get it over with" all the touristic must-sees - the cathedral, the royal palace (highly recommend!) and a place I discovered rather by chance and I was so much happy to be there just before the closing time - the Arabian bath. Also, I did some shopping - one can definitely come to Mallorca with minimum clothes as you can get the rest on place - the white embroidered "Ibiza" dresses - as they call it here - are the perfect summer wear. Plus, visiting Spain cannot go without shopping for some great quality, locally-made leather products. I discovered a brand new to me - Medwinds, where I bought this timeless Marsella leather tote. What I like about these "less known" brands is that the products are beautiful and are actually made in the country where they were designed... Which cannot be said about some of the mid-range handbags and accessories...


Boats just down from my street.
The famous cathedral of Palma - La Seu.

Parc de la Mar.
In the streets of Palma - right next to the Plaza Mayor

Plaza Mayor - the main square of Spanish towns.

In front of a ice-cream place.
A fisherman repairing his nets - on a promenade by the sea.

Garden inside the Arabic Baths - a place that I nearly missed but would highly recommend to visit for a serene atmosphere a bit of history.
A view from the Royal Castle window.
Verdant parks and promenades in the city of Palma. Creates very refreshing air on hot summers.
Time for afternoon tapas with sangria! This was my favorite place, right next to the beautiful ancient building of stock exchange.
Afternoon sangría and chorizo snack!



Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Prepping for Mallorca...

I am trying to plan my upcoming short break on Mallorca.
I will be arriving Wednesday evening next week and leaving Tuesday the week after, which gives me 5 full days to explore the island.

First day I plan to spend in the capital, getting familiar with the place and its history. I also hope to get some good advice on where to go and what do to. I plan to spend at least one day hiking. It should be a great period, not too hot yet. I would really like to do the "Torrent de Pareis" hike, but it is strongly weather-dependent and it is not advised to do solo. I shall see whether I´ll get a chance to join some group.
Oddly, I don´t seem to find information for solo hikers on Mallorca - only links to organized hiking tours... Hopefully I´ll get more advice on place.

The useful websites I found so far are:
www.easyhiker.co.uk - some first-hand experience of couple passionate about hiking.
www.tramuntanatours.com -  one of the well-known holiday company specializing in outdoor activities and adventurous holidays.
www.mallorcahiking.com - has a really nice functionality of "Events Calendar" where one can look up what events/hikes are already confirmed for given days. Unfortunately I don´t see anything for the period of my stay yet...
www.digamemallorca.com - a comprehensive up-to-date guide for tourists as well as locals.

The weather channel I prefer now to use is yr.no. They list weather forecast of places all over the world. What I like in particular is that they don´t publish the sort of "30-day forecast", which obviously cannot ever hold (maybe only in case it would be forecast for Saudi Arabia, announcing 40 degrees and sunshine a month). The short-term forecast is for the actual day and two days to come, while even the long-term forecast is for one week. That is much more realistic in terms of possibilities of realistic weather prediction.

Anyways, for the period of my stay, the weather seems amazing as far as I can tell. 24-27 degrees C and sunshine, what else to wish for...? I guess the sea might still be too cold for swimming, but these temperatures will sure allow for some much needed sunbathing.

Friday, May 2, 2014

From around the web ~ air plants, Friday motivation, healthy snack and a vlog to follow

Beautiful way of styling succulents in terrariums that I found on lipstickwithsomesunshine.

photo: lipstickwithsomesunshine.com

It reminded me of a post I found some time ago on abeautifulmess.com, about air plants. I don´t know how I could be unaware of these adorable little cuties. Hanging from their delicate glass shelters, they look so fragile. Now, I will be on a hunt for some of these tiny plants. I have an idea of suspending 3-4 air plants arranged in those round glass holders from ceiling in one of the corners of my living room.

photo: abeautifulmess.com

Some more tips on how to grow and care for air plants I found here.

A recipe for healthy snacs from Garance Doré´s blog: almond date bars. Sounds so easy that I might actually try to make them myself, although usually I try to avoid kitchen at all costs.

A post about What to do on friday to make your monday awesome from a blog a newly follow. I especially like the tip on procrastination, as I must shamefully admit it is also one of my vices...

A youtuber I started to follow is Estée from blog essiebutton.com. Besides her blog, she has both a beauty channel and a vlog channel which is my new favorite. I discovered her, again, thanks to repeated mentions and praise from Tamira from lipstickwithsomesunshine.com. After watching just one video, I was hooked. She is spontaneous, natural, approachable and so down to earth. I could never share as much of my daily life as she does in her vlogs, but is is really great fun to follow. She skips annoying intros and bloopers that I don´t bear on other vlogs. Plus, I found that she visited Copenhagen and it is always fun to see your city through the eyes of visitors. I will also watch her series from Marrakesh, to get some tips for my upcoming travel to Morrocco.

Nice weekend to everyone!

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Thinking of life "back home" - could I be missing Copenhagen after all...?

I think that until we get to see our life from outer perspective, we can hardly appreciate the good sides of it.
I can´t exactly say that I am missing my life in Copenhagen. But being away for some time now, and looking up pictures from my camera, I can definitely realize that in fact, I am really enjoying many parts of my life there. The clean environment, biking paths, the way we learn to appreciate every sunny moment (a full day is often too much to wish for ;), the relaxed attitude of people, my friends I appreciate so much... I will sure get to name more as time goes.

I am not pressed to go back right now, but I think I will not be very sad either. And that´s good to realize! :)


View from Christiania´s Church of our Savior

Myself, posing with Havnepromenade and Opera House as the backdrop.

The art of making the most of sunny - though still chilly - days.

Everyone  takes advantage of the first spring-like weekend (this March).

Sunbathing in Christiania.