Sun, sea, sand, sights and cycles
I've often written about the popularity of cycling for the sporty types all over Mallorca, which with its challenging and not so challenging routes, is ideal for honing your skills and physique using just pedal power.
However there are also some great routes for those of us who wish to see the world from a saddle at a more leisurely pace and perhaps spend the day tootling about, stopping here and there to take in the ambiance, have a breather, a beer, a swim or just watch the world go by.
I speak from experience as I've done this myself, that Palma – big city though it is – is the ideal spot in Mallorca to hire a bike for a day and ride off into the sunset. A video recently posted on Facebook by Hi Balearic illustrates perfectly the sights and atmosphere on a cycle ride along Palma's coastline.
Starting up at the main port area where the cruise liners and ferries dock, a cycle lane runs along the long, flat Paseo Maritimo all the way to Playa de Palma, a distance of about 17 kilometres. The emphasis here is on the word flat, because the cycling is easy, no hard work is involved and it's an absolute pleasure not having to worry about traffic in the city.
As you'll see in the video, the route takes in the shimmering sea on one side, boats big and small bobbing at anchor in the port, and the glitzy sea front apartments, hotels and discos of the Paseo on the other. You'll glide past the city walls, Llonja, and mighty cathedral on the left as Palma's urban beach, Can Pere Antoni – bounded by Anima and Nassau beach clubs – comes into view.
Follow the lanes through the Portixol and Molinar harbours where you'll find some fantastic restaurants and tapas bars to suite all tastes and pockets and continue along to the small resort/suburb of Ciutat Jardin which has a lovely beach and a couple of well renowned seafood restaurants.
Round the next headland, stop at El Peñón 1957 restaurant and admire the views of the city, Bellver Castle and the Cathedral in the distance. Beyond, you'll see the little port of Cala Gamba, Puro Beach Club near Can Pastilla before arriving at the long traffic free promenade of Playa de Palma, full of Bier bars, cake shops and for navigation purposes, the famous Balnearios, all numbered so you can remember where you are.
It's a fantastic way to spend a day out in the sun – remember to take your protection – with so many things to see and do. You might want to hire one of the funky Urban Drivestyle bikes to cut a dash along the way!