10 Best Things to do in Palma de Mallorca 10 Best Things to do in Palma de Mallorca

10 Best Things to do in Palma de Mallorca

Imagine a place with all the charisma and buzz of a great European city but with the relaxed nature of an island: this is Palma de Mallorca in Spain. With its palm tree-lined boulevards, upmarket shopping, and Michelin-star restaurants, it’s a favorite with luxury travelers. However, look closer, and you’ll find all the rustic character of a traditional village, with dusty bookshops, family-run bakeries, and colorful fruit markets. Discover all the best things to do in Palma!

Things to do in Palma, Mallorca

Palma is the capital of Mallorca, an island just off mainland Spain. It’s easily accessible by plane or boat. For example, from Barcelona, you can fly in 50 minutes or travel by ferry in 5-7 hours (book tickets here).

things to do in Palma streets old town

Like much of Spain, Palma (also known as Palma de Mallorca) has experienced different rules, including Moorish, Christian, and Byzantine. The influences are evident in the beautiful buildings of the Old Town, nestled between palm trees and orange courtyards. It feels like a smaller version of Barcelona and its famous Gothic Quarter!

store front palma de Mallorca

1. Palma de Mallorca Cathedral

Discover one of the most beautiful cathedrals in Europe! This Gothic cathedral, dating back to the 13th century, is one of the greatest Palma attractions. It faces out onto an artificial saltwater lake (Parc de la Mar), which, in turn, looks over the Mediterranean Sea. The cathedral has seen many architectural changes over the years, some even made by the famous Gaudi

things to do in Palma Cathedral

Inside, you’ll find a 44-meter-high nave, beautiful paintings, and 60+ stained glass windows. Visit on a sunny day when the rays create beautiful dancing colors through the glass — it’s spectacular to see! You can also climb 120+ spiral stairs to the top of Palma Cathedral, where you’ll be rewarded with a 360-degree view of the city.

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10 Best Things to do in Palma de Mallorca
cathedral facade sunset things to do in Palma

Opening Times and Tickets

Cathedral door Palma de Mallorca

2. La Almudania Palace

Just a stone’s throw away from the cathedral is the iconic La Almudania Palace, one of the most spectacular attractions in Palma, Spain. Dating back to the 14th century, it’s also one of the oldest Moorish buildings on the island. Today, it’s still the official residence of the Spanish royal family whenever they visit Palma de Mallorca! 

La almudania palace garden things to do in Palma

When the King and Queen aren’t visiting, the palace is open to the public. Take a couple of hours to admire its beautiful tapestries and paintings, as well as its charming inner courtyard with palm trees. There’s also a fantastic roof terrace with stunning views over the city and Palma de Mallorca Beach.

things to do in Palma Almudania Palace Facade

Opening Times and Tickets: Tuesday to Sunday (closed Mondays) from 10 AM – 6 PM. On Wednesday and Sunday afternoons from 3 PM, it’s free to visit. The standard entry is 7 EUR.

details la almudania palace Palma de Mallorca

3. La Lonja, Palma

Nestled on the edge of the Cathedral and Almudania Palace is the magnificent La Lonja: the old market of Palma. This incredible medieval building was designed by a famous Mallorcan sculptor and architect named Guillem Sagrera. His work in Palma, Mallorca, was so famous that it inspired the design of La Lonja de Seda in Valencia.

Inside, you’ll find a vast open hall with beautiful arches and spiral stone pillars reminiscent of palm trees. This room was once the city’s central meeting point for merchants and traders.

Opening Times and Tickets: Entry is free. Open from Tuesday – Saturday, 11 AM to 2 PM and 5 PM to 9 PM.

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4. Palma de Mallorca Beaches

Mallorca is famous for its stunning and diverse beaches. To the south, you’ll find long white stretches of floury sand. Whereas, in the north, you’ll discover charming calas (coves) with rocky shores and emerald and turquoise waters. 

palma de mallorca beaches

There really is a beach for everyone in Mallorca, and Palma is no exception; it’s home to some of the nicest ‘city’ beaches in Europe! Spend a morning relaxing and swimming before a morning of sightseeing. Here are some of the easiest beaches to reach on foot or by public bus:

  • S’Arenal
  • Playa Can Pere Antoni
  • Cala Estancia
  • Ses Illetes
  • Cala Mayor

Tip: You can explore these beaches by joining a boat tour from Palma marina.

Alternatively, if you rent a car, you can explore beaches further afield. For example, Cala del Moro, Playa des Trenc, or Cala Deia. We drove 40 minutes to Sa Rapita and did a fantastic Llaut tour (traditional wooden boat) of the southern beaches — with plenty of time for snorkeling! 

mallorca beaches

Sa Calobra Beach (Unmissable Thing to do in Palma!)

If you want to visit one of Mallorca’s dreamiest beaches, head to the mesmerizing Sa Calobra, located in the north. 

The beach is special, but the journey there is even more mind-blowing. Drive to the summit of Puig Major, the island’s highest mountain peak, passing through carved-out tunnels and artificial lakes. At the top, stop to take in the views before worming your way down a 12-km spiral mountain road. 

how to get to sa calobra mountain road mallorca

Once you reach the bottom, you’ll be greeted by a small port where you can park your car. From here, walk to the right through a narrow tunnel; the view at the end will take your breath away! Emerge at the stunning cove of Sa Calobra, where two rocky outcrops frame a narrow turquoise channel.

Sa Calobra Beach walkway rocks things to do in Palma de mallorca
How to Get to Sa Calobra

There are only two ways to reach Sa Calobra: by car or boat. If you want to experience the incredible views from the mountain road, we recommend driving. However, arriving into the cove by catamaran or speed boat is equally beautiful (trips usually leave from Puerto de Soller).

Sa Calobra things to do in Palma

5. Bellver Castle

On the fringes of Palma, perched high on a hill overlooking the sea, discover the circular Bellver Castle. It’s said to be one of the only circular castles in Europe!

Bellver Castle interior square things to do in Palma de mallorca

Climb 400+ steps to reach the top, where you’ll find fantastic views of Palma de Mallorca, the surrounding woodland, and the Mediterranean. Wander along its ancient stone walls at sunset for one of the best things to do in Palma! 

walk in the walls Bellver Castle things to do in Palma

Bonus: Once you’re done exploring, head into the beautiful pine woodland, where you’ll find a network of hiking trails. It’s a great place to immerse yourself in nature; bring a picnic and make a day of it!

statues inside Bellver Castle Palma de Mallorca

Opening Times and Tickets

  • Winter hours (October to March): Tuesday to Saturday, 10 AM – 6 PM (Mondays closed). Sundays 10 AM – 3 PM
  • Summer hours (April to September) are extended until 7 PM
  • Tickets cost 4 EUR. However, it’s free to visit on Sundays
  • Please note that Bellver Castle is on the hop-on, hop-off tourist bus route. This allows you to combine your visit with other top things to do in Palma
archway interior Bellver Castle things to do in Palma de mallorca

6. Explore the Old Town 

Get lost in the medieval streets of the Old Town — one of the best things to do in Palma! Known as ‘El Casco Antiguo’, it’s home to beautiful stone townhouses, timeworn bookshops, quaint ‘hornos’ (bakeries), and stunning plazas.

Nearby is the beautiful boulevard of Passeig el Born, which felt like a mini version of La Rambla in Barcelona. The Paseo, lined with palm trees and luxury shops, is also known as one of the most elegant places to visit in Palma, Mallorca.

building old town palma de mallorca

Did you know? The Old Town is also one of the best areas to stay in Palma! Among the maze of narrow streets, you can find some fantastic boutique hotels and luxury apartments.

stay in old town things to do in Palma

7. Take the Train to Soller (Best Thing to do in Palma!)

One of Palma’s most spectacular day trips is to the beautiful town of Soller in northern Mallorca. The town is split into two parts: Soller, which sits inland, basking in the shadow of the mountains, and the Port, which is a 10-minute drive away on the coast. However, the real beauty of this day trip is the journey to get there! 

Soller day trip things to do in Palma de mallorca spain

Jump on a 100+-year-old train, comprised of wooden carriages and leather seats, from Palma train station. On this 1 hour journey to Soller (27 KM), you’ll weave through the Tramunta mountains, passing by orange and olive groves, traditional Mallorcin villages, and mountain tunnels. You can also open the windows in the carriages to take photos of the dreamy scenery as you travel!

train Soller things to do in Palma Mallorca spain

Train Schedule: We recommend taking the 10.30 AM train from Palma to allow for more time in Soller. You can then return on the last train at 5 PM.

gardens Soller town sunset mallorca

Soller Town and Tram

Once you arrive in Soller town, explore the charming village streets and pretty plazas for an hour or so. Afterward, hop on the famous vintage tram ride to the port (every hour from outside Soller Station/8 EUR one way). The 15-minute journey meanders down to the coast before traversing along the horseshoe bay to the marina.

tram soller cathedral things to do in Palma de mallorca spain

Note: The tram from Soller to the Puerto is marketed as one of the most beautiful journeys in Mallorca. However, we didn’t find the trip to be that scenic. It’s a nice thing to do if you have the time and budget. Instead, take the local public bus for a cheaper alternative.

beach Soller Palma de Mallorca

Puerto de Soller (Port of Soller)

Once in Puerto Soller, wander along the beautiful marina with luxury yachts and small fishing boats, stopping for ice cream or a cold drink on one of the sun-drenched terraces. On the left side of the bay (the furthest from the marina), you’ll find a popular swimming beach, so factor in some time if you’d like a quick dip before returning to the city.

Puerto de Soller things to do in Palma

8. Visit Mountain Towns: Deia + Valldemossa

High up in the Tramunta mountains, nestled into the cliffs of Mallorca’s craggy northern coast, lie the stunning towns of Deia and Valldemossa. Both villages are beautiful in their own right, but the cliff-top road connecting them is the real jewel in the crown.

valldemossa town day trip things to do in Palma de mallorca

We recommend renting a car for this day trip so you can stop to take photos at various viewpoints along the way. One of our particular favorites was Mirador de sa Foradada, where you can sit at a clifftop bar with incredible views out to sea. 

Mirador de sa Foradada things to do in Palma de mallorca

Valldemossa

Valldemossa is the closest town to Palma and is the first stop on this day trip route. This beautiful stone town sits on top of the hill, with green shutters and charming church spires. The onward-facing view as you approach from the mountain road is truly unforgettable!

viewpoint valldemossa sunset things to do in Palma

The real beauty of Valldemossa is simply wandering around and discovering charming buildings and viewpoints at every turn. This one was our favorite

Deia

The romantic artist’s village of Deia lies a little further along the coastal road, about a 15-minute drive from Valldemossa. Once famous as a hippy town in the mountains, frequented by musicians, poets, and artists, Deia has maintained its name among the rich and famous, now home to luxury hotels and fine-dining restaurants. Despite this, it still has its old-world charm, with quiet stone-stepped streets that weave amongst cypress trees and traditional houses.

mallorca deia town belmond hotel

Grab an Ensaimada (Mallorcan sweet pastry) from the local bakery and wander up to the cemetery for fantastic views over the village, olive terraces, and the rocky coastline below.

viewpoint Deia town things to do in Palma
Cala Deia

There is a beautiful farmland walk from the village down to Cala Deia (the local cove). Stop for a swim in the crystal-clear turquoise waters, grab a fresh seafood lunch at Ca’s Petro March, or join one of the many coastal hiking trails that snake up into the cliffs.

deia streets things to do in Palma Mallorca

How to Visit Valldemossa and Deia

Numerous buses leave Palma Bus Station throughout the day to both villages (check bus schedules here). However, having a car gives you more flexibility to explore the nearby calas and viewpoints.

How to visit Valdemossa Deia things to do in Palma

If you have time, we recommend staying overnight in Valldemossa or Deia as part of your Mallorca itinerary. Watching the sunset go down, and the old-fashioned street lamps turn on in these magical villages is an incredible experience.  

deia town building facade things to do in Palma

9. Santanyi Market

Discover the colorful market of Santanyi, which takes place every Wednesday and Saturday in this charming inland village. Here, you can find everything from fresh food to clothing and handicrafts. It’s very colorful and vibrant; you’ll see plenty of tourists buying souvenirs and locals doing their weekly grocery shop, so it’s a great mix of all. 

Santanyi market things to do in Palma de mallorca

Arrive early, grab a pastry and a coffee, and watch the vendors set up their stalls. As the morning progresses, the atmosphere really comes to life as local people open their shutters to sit out on their balconies and listen to music, barter, and talk.  

restaurant santanyi market things to do in Palma

It’s best to reach Santanyi by car (50 minutes) as the public bus takes a few hours with changes. We also recommend arriving early to get a good parking space. 

woven bags market mallorca

10. Arab Baths

The Arab Baths in Palma, or Banys Arabs, are the perfect place to escape the summer heat. Deep in the Old Town of Palma, these perfectly preserved baths from the 11th century are surrounded by tranquil gardens filled with fragrant citrus trees. The baths are one of the few remaining bits of Islamic architecture left in Palma.

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Opening Times and Entry Fee: During the summer months (April to November), the baths are open from 9 AM to 7.30 PM. In the winter season, they close an hour earlier, at 6 PM. The entry fee is 3.50 EUR (cash only).

Where to Stay in Palma

Palma is a relatively small city, so you can stay anywhere and be only a short bus ride away from all the best Palma attractions. However, we recommend staying in the Old Town; it’s the most scenic spot with a good mix of trendy hostels, charming boutique hotels, and upmarket apartments

Tip: If you’d rather stay outside of the city, you can choose one of the nearby villages on the island and make day trips to the center. 

colourful buildings old town palma de Mallorca

How Many Days in Palma?

You need at least an afternoon or a day to see some of Palma’s best attractions. However, Palma’s cozy, small-town feel means that it’s a great place to base yourself while discovering the island:

  • 1 Day: If you’re staying elsewhere on the island, allocate a day of your Mallorca itinerary to discover Palma.
  • 3 Days: This is a good amount of time to discover all the top things to do in Palma. Three days is also enough for a one-day trip. For example, Soller or Deia.
  • 5-7 Days: A week is best for a Mallorca itinerary, allowing you to see Palma and other places on the island.
souvenir shop palma mallorca

How to Visit Palma, Mallorca

Palma’s international airport has flights from all over Europe and Spain. Additionally, there are direct routes from the USA during peak months. The airport is massive, so make sure to allow a reasonable amount of time to walk to and from your gate.

Find flights to Palma ✈️

From the airport, you can take a bus or a taxi into the city in less than 20 minutes.

how to visit palma mallorca motorbike

Getting Around

We don’t recommend driving if you’re staying in the heart of the city, as it can be challenging to find permitted street parking, and parking garages can be expensive. Because of this, it’s easier to explore the city on foot or by bike. (Book this popular bike tour in Palma)

If you’re also planning some day trips, use the bus/train system or rent a scooter.

bicycles old town things to do in Palma

Tip: If you’re following a Mallorca itinerary, hire a car and stay on the city’s outskirts for the most ease and flexibility.

Best Restaurants and Cafes

Dine on delicious tapas, fresh seafood, and the sweetest oranges; this is island living at its finest! Along with its tourism, Mallorca has also developed an incredible dining scene, with renowned chefs coming from all over the world to showcase fusion menus, classic Spanish favorites, and international fare. 

restaurants and cafes Palma Mallorca

Palma is undoubtedly one of the best places on the island to eat out. Some of our favorites were:

  • OMBU Passeig del Born
  • Lili’s
  • Assaona Gastrobeach Club Palma
  • Temple Natura Cafè
  • El Camino
  • Mallorca Delicatessen
  • KAIZEN Restaurant
  • Che, Tú.
  • La Finca
  • Restaurant Botànic
  • Berlin Coffee Roasters
Find all locations in our Google MapsFind in our Google Maps
restaurant esplanade palma mallorca

Tip: On mainland Spain, restaurants generally don’t open until after 8 PM. Because Mallorca is more set up for tourism, they open a bit earlier (we recommend always reserving in advance). Please note that during winter, especially in more remote places like Deia, the majority of the restaurants close for the season.

cocktail where to eat in palma mallorca

How Much Does Palma Cost?

Although Spain is generally known as a cheap European destination, Mallorca is noticeably more expensive due to the high tourist influx.

shop interior market things to do in Palma

Palma, in particular, attracts people from all over the island looking to come and enjoy the gastronomic restaurants, high-end shopping, and beautiful spas and hotels. If you look in the right places, though, you can still find some ways to cut your budget: grab a delicious bakery pastry for breakfast, choose a Mallorcan cafe with a cheap ‘menu del dia’, or take public transport. (Learn more about how to travel cheap)

Costs of Traveling in Palma

Travel on a budget in Palma, from $510 − $570 USD weekly per person, mid-range $1530 − $2810 USD, and high-end from $2840 − $4190 USD. However, costs depend on factors like accommodation, transportation, and activities. We did not include flights. Check flight prices here

* Average daily costs
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store front old town things to do in Palma

Best Time to Visit

The shoulder seasons of spring and fall are the best time to visit Palma, especially when there are sunny days and fewer crowds. The winter months are also just as beautiful, with cooler days that are better for sightseeing.

Best
Good
Mixed
Poor
🌤
13°C
Jan
🌤
16°C
Feb
🌤
18°C
Mar
🌤
20°C
Apr
☀️
25°C
May
☀️
29°C
Jun
☀️
34°C
Jul
☀️
34°C
Aug
☀️
30°C
Sep
🌤
24°C
Oct
🌤
17°C
Nov
🌤
15°C
Dec
🌦️
8°C
Jan
🌤
11°C
Feb
🌤
13°C
Mar
🌦️
16°C
Apr
🌤
22°C
May
🌤
26°C
Jun
☀️
31°C
Jul
☀️
30°C
Aug
🌤
24°C
Sep
🌤
19°C
Oct
🌧️
12°C
Nov
🌦️
10°C
Dec

Note: Mallorca can be hectic during the summer. Although this is the best time to enjoy the island’s stunning beaches, you’ll need to make reservations well in advance for parking, restaurants, hotels, and tours.

18/05/2024 https://www.saltinourhair.com/spain/things-to-do-palma-mallorca/
Blog comments (4)

Looking for more travel information? Plan a chat with us for personalised travel advice or get an answer from the Salt in our Hair Travel Community on Facebook.

  • Puja

    Awesome guide 😀 looking forward to get the day wise itinerary. Bus schedule link is not working.

    • Salt in our Hair

      Thanks! We’re working on the Mallorca day-to-day itinerary. Regarding the bus schedule link; which page does it take you to? Thanks!

      • Puja Saha

        Every time I click on the link of bus schedule it takes to a page tib dot org but not opening.

      • Salt in our Hair

        Hi Puja, yes that is the correct website. If it’s not working maybe it’s because of the location you’re in? Try a VPN.

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