Fiery Fiestas in January

Fiestas January MallorcaJanuary enjoys two of the most vibrant fiestas here in Mallorca, and both are deeply rooted in folklore. They are celebrated with bonfires, street parties, firework displays and live musical events throughout all the main squares of Palma and many villages.

The first fiesta is that of San Antoni Abat, the protector of crops and livestock, although this fiesta also has links to Mallorca’s ancient fertility rites. Celebrated island-wide (except in Palma) on the 17th of January – Sa Pobla, Arta and Sant Joan have the biggest celebrations and even make San Antoni an official public holiday.

On the 16th of January, the eve of the saint’s day, bonfires are started throughout all the villages. BBQs are lit on street corners where families and neighbourhoods come together to party and to eat sobrasada, grilled sausages and many other traditional Mallorcan foods. You’ll see many demonic characters fire walking and dancing in the streets depicting the devil and the temptations that San Antoni battled with in the dessert.

As he was the patron saint of animals, on the day of San Antoni many families with their children go to their local church to have their pets and livestock blessed in a charming ceremony, asking for protection from the saint.

San Sebastian is the patron saint of Palma, so it is the city Palma that hosts the main celebrations for the fiesta on the 20th. This is a major fiesta with a week-long itinerary of musical and other events throughout the week prior to the 20th (you can find a list of events on the web page of the Ayuntamiento de Palma). San Sebastain was credited with the “miraculous” end to the black death plague that struck Mallorca in 1523-1524.

The main street party during this week of festivities is on the 19th of January, when there is live music in most of the city’s main squares – famous names to local folk groups to djs perform throughout the night. The evening starts early at 19.00hrs with a procession of giants, which process through the streets from the Plaza Cort to the Plaza Mayor. Again, bonfires form the centre-piece of the night’s revelries in each square – the Mayor starts the first bonfire and then all the fires throughout the city follow the lead. The music starts any time between 20.00 and 22.00hrs and plays on until the early hours of the following morning…

The 20th is the actual day of the fiesta where morning mass is held in the Cathederal of San Sebastian the Solemn.

Then on the 22nd of January, there is the spectacular Artiafoc fireworks display where it seems that everybody on the island crams themselves into Palma’s Paseo Maritimo to watch the show. Cascades of colour from screeching rockets and vibrating explosions illuminate the whole of the bay of Palma – a night not to be missed!

Receive all the latest information about Mallorca, the fiestas, the gastronomy, the historic villages and beauty spots as well as the best walking tours and tailor-made holidays by following the Mallorca Hiking blog – see below.

Don’t destroy what you came to enjoy!

dasyatis pastinaca common stingray

dasyatis pastinaca common stingray

… that’s Brad’s motto and we totally agree with him!

Brad and Bea are a passionate team and we’re happy to say that Mallorca Hiking is increasingly working together with them, particularly when it comes to activities such as scuba diving and snorkeling (as well as canyoning and rock climbing, but we’ll save those for another day!). Brad is a qualified and highly experienced PADI dive instructor and today’s post is his story:

“Another beautiful summer day in Mallorca, clear blue skies and a slight sea breeze…what an Island!

Txus is a good friend of mine and a non-diver but he asked me to take him diving for the first time….”Hombre!!! For sure…lets go!!”  We were about to see the largest concentration of rays that I have ever seen anywhere in the world… in Mallorca!

I had been told about a spot in Mallorca that has a large population of sting rays. Coming from Australia and having dived with rays there, I wasn’t expecting too much. People say there isn’t much to see in the Med… haha… this is so far from the truth.

We arrived at our dive site and unpacked the gear whilst I gave Txus a thorough briefing in my ever-improving Spanish. I explained to him the very basics of diving, what to do, what not to do and what to expect to see.  All of this was done whilst enjoying the breathtaking views of the rugged coastline and crystal clear waters of Mallorca.

When we’d finished the briefing we slipped into our wetsuits and jackets, grabbed our fins, mask and snorkel and made our way to the water’s edge. I did my final checks on Txus and myself and in we went. The first thing we do before and at the end of any dive is to inflate our BCD (buoyancy control device) – a very simple and very important procedure.

The smile on Txus´ face spread from ear to ear and we hadn’t even gone underwater yet. As an experienced instructor I know that when someone is smiling like that at the beginning of their first dive, that the dive itself will be one of the most memorable experiences of their lives.

As we exchanged signals that we were “OK to Go Down” we released the air from our jackets and Txus´ underwater adventure had begun. We were blessed with amazing visibility, and were welcomed to the underwater world by a curious yet cautious Mediterranean Rainbow Wrasse. Txus was mesmerized.

Let the fun begin…

Thalossoma pavo-ornate wrasse

Thalossoma pavo-ornate wrasse

We were immersed in an underwater landscape of white sandy patches surrounded by lush Posedonia fields, small rocky outcrops and small underwater caves. We glided through channels of sand that were lined with Posedonia  – picturesque and calm… then all of a sudden from beneath the sand BOOM… our first ray, nervous of our presence, swam off into the distance at speed. Common Sting Rays bury themselves under a light layer of sand making them difficult to see, so when you unknowingly approach them, their lightning fast movement, flapping their wings, shaking off the sand and darting off into the distance, can take you by surprise.

As we dropped down to around 9 meters we approached another large sandy area, and this is where things were going to get very, very busy with Rays. Every meter we swam, there was another ray in front of us…Txus was over the moon, his mask letting in water through the creases in his super huge smile… (top tip: happy smiling divers must clear water from their mask regularly!)

We approached a few of the rays without disturbing them, so we could get up close and personal with these amazing creatures… within 30 cm I’d say – eye to eye with a common sting ray in Mallorca… just amazing.

scuba diving in Mallorca

Coris Julis Doncella-Rainbow wrasse

The next thing I saw was a very special moment – an Ornate Wrasse had befriended my student Txus, and whilst Txus was standing upright with his right hand held out in front of him, this very curious little fish was swimming from the palm of his open hand up to his mask and then back to his palm…. This continued for 2 to 3 minutes. In my experience fish from the Wrasse family are naturally inquisitive and this little guy was no different. Txus displayed the same level of curiosity… a true connection was made between fish and man.

We dived for almost 1 hour, returning to our entry point and greeting each other on the surface with huge smiles and a big man hug…what a dive! A memorable experience for new diver Txus and another memorable experience for this salty old diver.”   By Brad Robertson of  www.OndineEscape.com

Tempted?  Why not ask us to design a tailor-made holiday for you?  We will include all the activities you like doing most – fabulous guided walks, diving or snorkeling with Brad, boating, to name but a few. Please call or email us for tips, ideas and further information.

Mushroom picking in Mallorca

Collecting mushrooms

Collecting mushrooms

One of the many things that we love about Mallorca is the island’s dedication to its traditions of foraging for local wild produce, such as mushrooms, asparagus and the like. When we’re out walking in the mountains at this time of year, we meet any number of Mallorcan families enthusiastically searching for setas, all equipped with their traditional wicker baskets to collect their mouth-watering harvest.

The Mallorcan mushroom season is usually late October to November, depending on the weather. The rains usually arrive in late August, but if like this year they’re late, the season tends to be a bit later.

 

Mushrooms or Setas in Mallorca

Mushroom varieties in Mallorca

Mushrooms are quite varied in Spain, with some very big varieties growing in the forest areas. Our weather is good for mushrooms – hot summers, high humidity and autumn rains all contribute to conditions that allow them to thrive.  Ceps, or porcini (in Spanish rovellos) are quite common, as are Chanterelles. Niscalos or lactarius deliciosus are also prolific, and are used in many of the local dishes. But here in Mallorca the real pick of the crop is the Esclata-sangs (Lactarius Sanguifluus – Bleeding Milk Cap) a large flat fleshy mushroom, which bursts with flavour when cooked…!

This island is not shy about promoting its local produce, and every year on the last weekend of November, the tiny Mallorcan village of Mancor del Vall comes alive with the Fira de l’esclata-sang i de la Muntanya. This delightful little place lies in the foothills of the Tramuntana mountains and this autumn fair is one of its annual highlights.

Esclata-sangs in Mallorca

Esclata-sangs in Mallorca

This wonderful fair aims to show and preserve traditional mountain activities and island traditions, but the main attraction is their prized mushrooms, which are showcased over the weekend in a variety of dishes offered by local bars and restaurants. You can snack on mushrooms on toast, freshly made at one of the many stalls, or visit one of the cafes or restaurants to try one of the many specially prepared dishes featuring these delicious mushrooms.

If you’d like to find out a bit more about the varieties of mushrooms you can find here (particularly the edible variety!), there is an excellent online catalogue published by the University of the Balearic Islands in conjunction with the Balearic Natural History Museum.

And then, why not “go local” and join Mallorca Hiking for a guided mushroom foraging walk. Our expert guides will take you to the best areas, talk you through the various species and keep you safe by making sure you don’t pick the wrong ones!  If you’d like to book a walk just for you and your family and friends, we’ll organise a tailor-made day out just for you… you can then go home and cook a delicious meal with what you’ve picked!

Do contact us for more information – we’ll be happy to help…

 

Mallorca’s gastronomy during hiking (part two)

jamon serrano

In our last blog post we where talking about what to bring when you go for a walk and giving suggestions and tips on delicious local food and products. Here comes the continuation on the same topic.

Pa amb oli” is the way local people from Mallorca call a slice of bread with tomatoes, olive oil and salt. This is the local sandwich base, which can be topped with other food or eaten directly as the 4 ingredients are already very tasteful. The best thing to do while hiking is to prepare it during one of our stops: cut some bread slices with a foldable knife, cut some tomato slices (the tomato should be a big one!) and then add virgin olive oil (local gold) and salt. A fresh “pa amb oli” is something that all locals go mad about!!

Dry cured cuts of meat are among the best toppings to a “pa amb oli”. Typical dry cured meat from Mallorca is made of pork meat, salt and spices. The most popular types that are eaten without cooking are sobrassada (orange soft paste that can be directly spread on a bread slice or bread cookie), paté (orange soft paste made of pork libber that can also be spread on a bread slice or bread cookie) and camaiot (grey and white color, cut in slices). These are the fatty and “unhealthy” part of the meal, but in small quantities they are just delicious if you like meat. It is common to also complement the “pa amb oli” with other Spanish dry cured cuts of meat such as Jamón Serrano, fuet, chorizo, salchichón… We recommend you to buy from small producers in order to maximize quality and authenticity. Majorcan cheese

There are many cheese producers in Mallorca, bringing lots of different products to the market. Cow and sheep cheeses are the most usual, though there are some excellent goat cheeses as well. Native red sheep are farmed to produce excellent and original flavors. There are ecologic producers who use traditional methods and reach excellent results (normally a bit more expensive than bigger producers). Curing and aging processes directly affect consistence, texture and taste of each cheese. We do not recommend bringing fresh cheese when hiking unless you bring a well functioning/long lasting cold bag. Cheese is a source of animal fat, protein, vitamins from group A, B and D, as well as minerals like calcium and phosphorus (great for our bones). It must be eaten moderately, but when you are hiking it is always nice to cut some slices with your foldable knife and enjoy its fantastic flavors, alone or combined with a “pa amb oli”.

 

Bakery products from Mallorca, both salty and sweet, normally contain pork fat. They are not healthy products eaten on a regular basis but it can be interesting to bring some of them ‘cause they are delicious and provide a caloric boost that can be needed when you have a long way to walk. “Coques” (sort of cold pizzas with only vegetables on it) with paprika, onion, tomatoes or parsley are crunchy and oily. “Panades” are round pasties filled with cooked lamb meat or bacon, onion and peas. “Cocarrois” are long pasties filled with cooked vegetables, including raisins. These pasties use to be typical Easter food, but nowadays they are baked the whole year around; they are very convenient to bring to an excursion because they last more than other bakery products. If you like sweet stuff (or you are longing for a sugar kick), then you must bring some ensaïmada, a round spiral inflated dough powdered with sugar, sometimes filled with sweetened apricots or other ingredients (cream, chocolate, etc.). There are other typical sweet baked products like “coca de patata”, “bunyols”, “crespells” and “robiols”, but easy on the sugar and fat.

panades

In terms of drinking, we always recommend to drink mineral water (preferably from Mallorcan springs). Freshly squeezed natural orange juice can be sometimes acquired in some hikes as there are some rural houses which prepare them for you in the very moment.

Finally, we sometimes like to bring some local red wine to do a small toast and savor this traditional beverage during our lunch break. But the wine culture in Mallorca is interesting and rich enough to write another blog-post…

Time to head for the beach!

Late June, July and August are hot for walking in Mallorca unless you start very early and get a few hours in before 11 am. So this is the time to head for the beach and relax and think about walking seriously again when the Autumn comes. September and October are lovely warm months still and our itineraries for early Autumn will include lots of time for relaxing by the pool of your hotel after a good walk! See you then….

Rural Wanderings – Es Capdella & the Galatzo Estate

Galatzo Wanderings Mallorca HikingAfter the noise and excitement of the San Sebastian festivities in Palma, what better way to wind down than an idyllic and gentle hike through the wonderful Galatzo Estate and the village & countryside of Es Capdella. Stunning views blended with the aroma of the almond blossom will restore tranquility and fill you with that breath of fresh air you need to shake off the winter and embrace the spring…

There are a number of different routes we can take around the village of Es Capdella and the estate lands of the Finca Galatzo, just outside the village. Many different variations make up a number of excellent walks of different lengths and duration. This is a sleepy, rural corner of the island, which has fabulous views of the conical-shaped Puig de Galatzó. The whole area is particularly spectacular every January/February when the almond trees are in flower. And this year, the winter has been so warm that the blossom is way ahead of itself and Es Capdella is already in full bloom!

Whichever route we choose, we walk out of the village along country lanes and rural tracks between casitas and fields and into the Galatzo estate with its magnificent ‘Possessio’ Manor House in the shadow of the Puig de Galatzó. Here we walk easily along broad dirt tracks to the Finca, where we get an insight into the agricultural workings of the estate’s past, and a peek into its fabulous courtyard – a feature of all significant old Mallorcan homes. Let your imagination drift back many years and its not difficult to imagine a different life, a different pace…. a different world!

At 1,027 metres high, the Puig de Galatzó is an impressive mountain that generates an air of mystery that has created many legends, myths and anecdotes reinforcing it’s magical appeal. A superb and imposing backdrop for our wanderings…

There are two options for booking this walk – you can either join one of our group walks, which are scheduled for specific days (see our calendar) or you can choose a day when you would like to go… So why not hop over to our web page now to find the best date for you and your friends – they’ll really appreciate you organising such a refreshing and relaxing outing. And if you’d like to see the almond blossom at its best, make sure you come along in the next few weeks…

Blossom Fever: guided walking holidays in Mallorca

almond blossom mallorca hikingFebruary is a fabulous time of year in Mallorca, and it is when the almond blossom is at its best. Mallorca is famous for it’s almonds and every year the island comes alive with landscapes of blossoming almond trees – and thousands of visitors flying in to marvel at it’s beauty…

Almonds are a major part of Mallorcan life. They’re an important locally grown food product and a hugely popular ingredient in many traditional local dishes, both sweet and savoury. They’re also a much-loved part of the island’s winter landscape when the almond trees burst into white and pink blossom in late January.

What better way to enjoy the vibrant colours and beauty of the island at this time, than to get outdoors with a guided walking holiday? We can arrange a “made to measure” break – a long weekend, a week – just for you and your group, or if you’re traveling alone you can join our popular annual Blossom Fever: 8-day guided walking holiday in Mallorca

This week-long itinerary is a good example of the kind of walking holiday we can organize for you at this lovely time of year. We combine the delights of the Sóller valley with walking in some of the best spots for almond blossom. You’re based in the pretty village of Fornalutx, just outside Sóller, and three of our walks are in this area – walking straight out of your hotel door. The other two are at the heart of the best almond blossom – a real treat.

Walking Itinerary

Graded: Green Boot (“Easy” enough for everyone to enjoy!)

Your walking itinerary includes 5 days’ guided walking. One day we walk around the Sóller valley visiting some of the surrounding villages and other highlights; another day we set off down to the port of Soller and the Muleta lighthouse and then on to Deia, a lovely village further along the coast (see W-NW11 for more details)… and no stay in the Sóller valley is quite complete without having tackled the spectacular Barranc (gorge) of Biniaraix – either in one direction or the other – see W-NW08.

During the course of the week, we’ll already have seen a lot of almond blossom in different areas, but for the other 2 walks on your itinerary we go further afield to visit the inland village of Es Capdella, which in our opinion, has the best almond blossom on the island. Here, we’ll meander through the village and along the surrounding lanes and visit a lovely old finca with a typical Mallorcan courtyard (see W-SW05). Another of our favourite walks for this time of year is walk Ref. W-NW01 where we pass a fabulous old senyorial manor house – formerly owned by Richard Branson – which is surrounded by terraces of almond trees.

Hotel

For this itinerary we usually like to be based in a delightful, 8-bedroom hotel in the centre of Fornalutx (see Ref. A-NW04 for details), but if you’d prefer us to organize a tailor-made holiday for you, there are plenty of others to choose from (see Accommodation).

Valentine’s Day

Alternatively, Valentine’s day is always a perfect excuse to treat yourself and your partner to a special, and romantic weekend away. So why not try something different this year – take a short flight to this sunny Mediterranean island, enjoy some lovely easy walks among the blossom, and indulge yourselves with champagne and the luxury of your hotel…. the perfect recipe for a romantic weekend getaway!

However you decide to enjoy fabulous February in Mallorca, make sure you have plenty of memory sticks for your camera and be prepared for some incredible landscape collages of vibrant colours – an unforgettable experience!

To review prices and what is included in our guided walking holidays please visit our web page at MallorcaHiking.com

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Where to walk in winter…?

Weather Chart Mallorca All YearIf you’re the type of walker that prefers mild sunny days and blue skies to blizzards, snow-shoes and crampons then read on…

In our opinion, Mallorca has one of the best climates for hiking all year round. Yes, in the summer months it gets a bit hot, and we have to be extra careful about the heat and dehydration, but if you start early it’s still possible to get a good 3-4 hour hike in, and be in the pool by 11 am. You’ll have plenty of time for a siesta, and a catch-up on lost sleep, later in the afternoon.

But it’s the winter months on the island that are ideal for hiking. Clear sunny days are the norm – in fact we’ve just had about 3 weeks of perfect sunny and warm days – it just doesn’t get better for walking! Of course we get rain, and some grey skies too, and the real excitement starts when we get a bit of snow on the mountains, but they never stick around for very long. Before you know it the skies clear and the sun’s out again – this is the Mediterranean after all.

But having said all that it does get cold here in the winter, particularly in the mornings and evenings. Recently, for instance, we had frosty, very cold mornings and temperatures close to zero. Many people who know Mallorca from their summer holidays don’t realise this, and it never ceases to amaze the residents here when they see holiday makers arriving in January, dressed in shorts and flip flops and absolutely no clothes packed for cold or wet weather.

The fact is however, that Mallorca tends to have higher temperatures than most other European countries, and more days of sunshine each year. Even on frosty mornings, once the sun comes out the days are glorious and you may be walking in a T shirt by midday.

Knowing when to visit Mallorca, and the weather and temperatures you can expect, are important facts that can make the difference between a great, or a ruined vacation. To help you plan the best time for your visit, we’re including a graph with average minimum and maximum temperatures throughout the year, as well as other helpful facts and figures. Apologies to those of you who aren’t so keen on statistics…

One thing that is absolutely certain though, is that whether you’re visiting for the warm summer months or the cooler autumn, spring and winter – Mallorca Hiking has a fantastic range of guided walking tours to show you some of the hidden secrets of this beautiful island. Take some time to browse through our list of walks or the holiday options available. Come rain or shine our walks will show you a part of Mallorca that you never knew existed.

Season averages Mallorca

  • The average temperature in Palma, Mallorca, Spain is 16.8 °C (62 °F).
  • The average temperature range is 14.5 °C.
  • The highest monthly average high temperature is 29 °C (84 °F) in July & August.
  • The lowest monthly average low temperature is 6 °C (43 °F) in January & February.
  • Palma, Mallorca’s climate receives an average of 427 mm (16.8 in) of rainfall per year, or 36 mm (1.4 in) per month.
  • On average there are 71 days per year with more than 0.1 mm (0.004 in) of rainfall (precipitation) or 6 days with a quantity of rain, sleet, snow etc. per month.
  • The driest weather is in July when an average of 5 mm (0.2 in) of rainfall (precipitation) occurs over 1 day.
  • The wettest weather is in October when an average of 74 mm (2.9 in) of rainfall (precipitation) occurs over 9 days.
  • The average annual relative humidity is 75.0% and average monthly relative humidity ranges from 69% in June & July to 83% in January.
  • Average sunlight hours in Palma, Mallorca range between 4.5 hours per day in December and 11.5 hours per day in July.
  • There are an average of 2796 hours of sunlight per year with an average of 7.7 hours of sunlight per day.
  • There are an average of 2 days per year with frost in Palma, Mallorca and in January there are an average of 1 days with frost.

Weather facts and figures supplied courtesy of: www.climatetemp.info/spain/mallorca.html

Get out of the Rat race – Start Walking in 2011

New Year Resolution - WalkingJanuary the 1st and everybody busily sets their New Year resolutions. The Christmas over-eating scores heavily on fitness and weight loss as a popular objective. And the usual solution? Another Gym membership – that may get 3 months use. Why not try something different this year?
Our daily routines are often compared to a “Rat Race” – then we finish our dialy toil and head off to the gym to get on another treadmill! Take the decision to escape the norm this year – Join the Mallorca Hiking Walking Club.
Here’s the good news:
- There’s no joining fee
- There’s no minimum amount of walks or months to take on
- You choose when you come along
- You can bring a friend – or several
- You will discover all the beauty and hidden treasures of Mallorca
- You will discover, history and culture you did not know existed
And you will get fit, feel more energetic,enjoy wide open spaces and
…escape that rat Race (even if only for a few hours).
Every week there are different Guided Walks and Tours. Check our Calendar and our Web Page to see the walks for this (and every) week.
If you fancy something special for you and some friends we can also arrange Tailor Made Walks to adapt to your tastes and scenery. Maybe:
- a Vineyard tour
- Including a traditional mallorquin lunch
- A monastry or a mountain – you choose it’s your Walk.
Take the opportunity in 2011 to discover the beauty around you that is Mallorca. You won’t regret it. And you won’t miss the treadmill at the Gym!

Christmas in Mallorca

Christmas turrones MallorcaAs we are posting lots of information about how our guided walking tours and tailor made holidays are not just a great escape but good for your health and fitness, we do not feel too guilty about telling you about all the great traditional Christmas treats you can find in Mallorca.

The month of December features all the Christmas fayres with hundreds of little stalls set up for the many shops and hand made gifts on sale. The Plaza Mayor and Plaza España in Palma city centre are always a great place to visit.

Another Christmas tradition (and only for sale throughout Spain in December) is Turrones – chocolate, marzipan and mousse style bars, sweets, candies and thousands of different varieties. From the 1st of December shops start clearing the shelves surrounding their tills to fill them ceiling-high with Turron – who knows where they go in January!

Carol singing is also very popular in Mallorca and the place to find these singing spectaculars are La Lonja and the Plaza Cort, again in Palma centre. The tradition here is for local schools to bring along their choirs, of all ages, to serenade the crowds that gather to listen. This really sets the Christmas mood!

Traditional Christmas decorations MallorcaThe Belen or Nativity scenes are prolific throughout Mallorca with many church halls, interior patios, shop windows and schools displaying impressive scenes depicting the birth of Jesus and the arrival of the three wise men. Palma’s Town Hall at the Plaza Cort has a particularly impressive Nativity scene, and has a queue of people waiting to see it, snaking in and out of the building right through to January.

As the main Christmas celebrations in Spain were traditionally for the arrival of the Three Kings on the 5th of January – the children in Spain are now really happy that the internet and commercial pressures have given them Papa Noel, or Father Christmas on the 25th of December as well. In reality though, nowadays their presents are probably just divided between the 25th of December and 5th of January. However, on the 5th of January there is an added bonus when thousands of sweets are thrown to the children on over-crowded streets,  straining to see the processions working their way from the port of Palma where the Kings arrive, to their destination in the centre of the city.

On the 24th of December, Christmas Eve, everyone stays at home and enjoys the evening with close family. Some go out for a late night drink while many others go to the magnificent cathedral (or their own village’s church) for Midnight Mass, also known in Spain as the Misa del Gallo.

The 25th, Christmas day, a big lunch at home used to be the norm, but eating out is also very popular now, so we recommend booking early if you’re planning to go to a restaurant.

While December the 26th is a normal day throughout Spain, this is not the case in Mallorca – here the Segona Festa de Nadal (Second Christmas day) will be in full swing. This is an ancient local custom, and as in the UK, it is a bank holiday.

December the 28th is the Spanish equivalent of April Fools day, so be on your guard for crazy newspaper articles or practical jokes.

New Year’s Eve is celebrated in much the same way as in other countries – by welcoming in the New Year.  Plaza Cort (Palma Town Hall) is the centre of the festivities with thousands gathering to see in the New Year in traditional Spanish style – by eating twelve grapes, one on every chime of midnight. You can even buy tins of grapes that contain the exact number required for your midnight munch!

The Christmas lights and various festivities carry on until Three Kings is celebrated on the 5th of January, and after that the shops start their New Year’s sales bonanzas, or rebajas.

So, there’s lots to do and see over the prolonged festivities if you’re visiting Mallorca. If you hanker after a white Christmas you can usually find it on the hilltops and the mountains around Lluc and the rest of the Tramuntana – so there’s something for everybody on our Christmas island.