Porto Colom has managed to retain a quaint character, despite the significant development of many of Majorca’s resorts. Formerly a fishing village, but the resort has an exciting namesake, taking its name from the famous explorer Christopher Columbus, who was supposedly born here.
Like the rest of Majorca and the Balearics, Puerto Colom has a rich history. Its location meant the Romans, Moors, Catalans and Spanish all tried their hand at conquering or ruling it. This exciting past is reflected in the architecture, culture and cuisine on show today. But luckily, today it’s calm, quiet and peaceful.
The village itself is nestled in one of Majorca’s largest sheltered bays. The picturesque marina is home to modest fishing boats and luxury yachts. Its attractively coloured, traditional buildings on the water help it keep a distinctly local feel.
Summer temperatures here comfortably hit 25 degrees and often soar beyond. No surprise, then, that the resort is best known for its stunning beaches. Tucked away in a natural cove, Cala Marcal is the star attraction. The smaller S’Arenal beaches make this resort a paradise for sunbathers and water sports aficionados alike. A selection of trendy bars and restaurants along the waterfront also make for a perfect end to a relaxing day in the sunshine.
A charming town just inland from Porto Colom, Felantix is situated in the fertile hills known for their production of capers, as well as the grapes which make the local region’s excellent wines. The Church of San Miguel is an important focal point and an impressive sight in its own right. A traditional market is held on Sundays in Sa Plaça and is perfect for picking up fresh produce, local crafts and souvenirs. Visits to the Castel de Santueri and Santuario de San Salvador are also not to be missed. Their vantage points offer incredible views of Majorca’s east coast and the surrounding countryside.
A quick drive south from Porto Colom will take you to the peaceful town of Santanyi. It’s a must visit for those with an interest in the local history. There are over 150 archaeological sites in and around Santanyi, dating back thousands of years. The town is also a short hop from a number of great beaches and sits beside the beautiful Natural Park of Mondrago. It’s a perfect location for those hoping to unwind and soak in some local culture.
If you’re after a livelier experience, the small resort of Cala d’or could be the place for you. Activity centres around the marina at Cala Llonga, where waterfront bars and cafés cater for entertainment needs throughout the day and long into the nights. You can channel your inner Columbus here too – it’s 4km of beaches and rocky coves are begging to be explored.
Exploring Porto Colom…
The jewel in the Porto Colom crown, Cala Marcal is a gorgeous sheltered sandy beach surrounded by wooded cliffs on both sides. The crystal clear water gets deeper very gradually, making it a perfect spot for a dip with the family. A promenade hugs the cliffs on one side of the bay featuring shops selling holiday essentials and supermarket staples, as well as a selection of restaurants. Those who don’t want to venture too far from their sun lounger can nip to the handy beach bar for refreshments.
Cuevas del Drach
The Cuevas del Drach is one of the island’s most popular tourist attractions. The systems of caves are 25m underground and extend over 1km in length. Visitors can take in a classical music concert, as well as a boat ride on Lake Martel – thought to be one of the world’s largest subterranean lakes.
Natural Park of Mondrago
Near the town of Santanyi lies the Natural Park of Mondrago. A number of paths weave through the remote wilderness, leading to secluded beaches and coves and providing fantastic views of the coastal cliffs. The park is teeming with botanical beauty and is also a haven for birdlife.
Majorcan cuisine is rooted in local produce. Many islanders’ days start with an ensaimada – a sweet breakfast pastry made with pork lard (trust us, it’s tasty!). The island’s varied produce comes to the fore in the traditional Tombet dish, a medley of fried vegetables that is a staple on restaurant menus. Fideua, a Catalan-inspired take on paella using noodles rather than rice, is a popular option.
As on the mainland, tapas dishes also make up an important part of many meals. Majorca has a long history of wine making. Most of its vineyards were destroyed by disease in the nineteenth century, but the industry has been restored over recent years. Many high quality local wines are impossible to find anywhere else, so get your fill while you’re here!
Porto Colom restaurants
Porto Colom is a treat for foodies, with an ample selection of restaurants offering a range of cuisines. Locally caught seafood takes pride of place on specials lists throughout town, and many of the best eateries can be found along the seafront at the marina. If you’re visiting in the last weekend of June, you can experience the Fira Gastronomica D’es Pop festival, with a host of local establishments taking part to show off their best octopus dishes.
With its perfect sandy beaches, brilliant blue waters and sophisticated waterfront restaurants, Porto Colom is an ideal destination for some well-earned time away from the daily grind. Full of character and close to a host of attractions to suit all ages, the spectacular scenery is not the only thing that will leave you suitably impressed.
For a truly straight forward and cost effective option, you can book your flight and hotel together with easyJet holidays. If you’re not quite set on Porto Colom, or are just intrigued to see what the rest of the island has to offer, take a look at our other Majorca destination guides!