HighlightsRelaxed self-guided walks and excursions | six full day walks | route notes, map and cultural commentaries | stay in Soller | small, elegant 4 star family owned hotel | pool | local restaurants | spectacular coastal scenery | unspoilt picturesque villages | exotic flora and fauna | swimming opportunities on some walks
Description of Majorca self guided walking holidayOn this Majorca self guided walking holiday, spend eight days in the central Tramuntana, a walker's paradise in the northwest of the island. Here, Majorca is at its scenic best, far away from the crowded and overdeveloped coastal resorts often associated with Majorca. From your delightful hotel in Soller, you will discover the island's indigenous and rural character as you follow scenic paths through the island's most picturesque landscapes, the air heavy with the scent of wild thyme, garlic and rosemary.
This holiday is tailor made to your requirements and can be reduced to three, four, five or six nights if required. This is a varied programme of relaxed self guided walks and excursions. Stay at a small, elegant four star family-owned hotel, quietly situated in the heart of old Soller, minutes from the lively central square with its many pavement cafes. You’ll eat in carefully selected local restaurants for lunch (no squashed cheese sandwiches!) and in the evening enjoy fine dining under the stars. See dramatic sun-drenched landscapes and spectacular coastal scenery, all framed by the backdrop of the Tramuntana mountains. The walks will take you to unspoilt picturesque villages of honey-coloured stone, admiring exotic flora and fauna, with swimming opportunities on some walks and in the lovely hotel pool.
Majorca is a year round walking destination. The climate is typically Mediterranean with mild winters and hot summers tempered by sea breezes. The rainfall is heavier during the winter months with up to eight days of rain per month, but the sun shines on average for five hours daily. The best months for walking are spring, early summer, late summer and autumn with the swimming season running from May to September. The average temperature in May is 22C when four days of rain can be expected during the month.
Your base, Soller, is easily accessible from Palma, 45 minutes by road or rail. It is idyllically situated amongst orange groves with easy access to the sea and varied mountain countryside, an ideal base for walking holidays.
The walks in our programme are flexible, allowing on occasion some options for shortening or lengthening the walks. The routes consist mainly of former mule tracks and ancient pilgrim paths through citrus and olive groves, pine forests, mountains and valleys, coastal paths, gorges and lakes. Easy walks do not exceed five miles (9km) daily; moderate walks do not exceed nine miles (15km) daily. Many of the paths on the moderate walks are rough with uneven surfaces.
The Ca'l Bisbe Hotel is a 4 star hotel occupying a sensitively refurbished former bishop's palace, complete with beamed ceilings, pool, walled garden, Jacuzzi and sauna. It's idyllically located in a quiet back street and yet just minutes from the lively main square. Whilst retaining its authentic character, the hotel boasts modern day comforts and particularly friendly staff. Most rooms have balconies overlooking the pool. For further details see www.hotelcalbisbe.com. If you prefer more modest accommodation, please ask us about Casa Bougainvillea or Hotel el Guia - both also centrally located.
|Day 1:||Arrival at Palma airport followed by a transfer by bus or taxi of 45-60 minutes. This is not included to allow you to choose. Following arrival at your hotel and, depending on the time of year, a relaxing swim, stroll to the centre of Soller to visit one of our recommended restaurants for dinner or enjoy dining at your hotel under the stars.|
|Day 2:||Villages of Fornalutx and Biniaraix. A choice of a 5-mile or 7-mile walk with some gentle gradients. We have crafted this route to give you an overview of the Soller Valley. Walk straight from your hotel on a stunningly beautiful circuit, deep in the Soller valley, among terraces of olive and citrus groves, surrounded by the island's highest peaks. Visit a beautiful old Majorcan townhouse where the same family has been pressing oil for over 300 years. Then, a freshly-squeezed juice in the village before following quiet country lanes with splendid panoramic views over Soller. Down ancient stone steps into Fornalutx with its honey-coloured stone houses to a favourite restaurant for lunch on vine-covered terraces. Having explored the village, said to be the most beautiful on Majorca, return to Soller along centuries-old wayfarers' routes before finally stopping for a drink in the colourful Placa d'Espanya. (The easier version of this walk omits the climb.)|
|Day 3:||Deia via the Cami de Castello to Soller. A choice of a fairly easy 5 miles with gentle gradients or a moderate 8 miles with more gradients. Take the bus to Deia to visit this beguiling village, the former home of Robert Graves who is buried in the village hilltop church. Strolling through cobbled streets of pastel-coloured houses, explore twisted hidden alleys and descend to the picturesque bay of Cala de Deia for a swim before lunch. Then cross scenic agricultural landscapes with wonderful views of the mountains of the Tramuntana towering above. On reaching a charming farmhouse with little terrace tables, stop to sip freshly-squeezed juice and perhaps savour a delicious home-made pastry! More picture-book panoramas unfold above the belltower of a tiny 13th century chapel, the majestic backdrop of Puig Major soaring beyond. Descend into the port of Soller through ancient olive and citrus groves, perhaps time for a drink before taking the tram back to Soller and journey's end.|
|Day 4:||Valldemossa & The Archduke Bridleway. The easy walk omits the strenuous Archduke Bridleway. Following a bus ride to Valldemossa, our notes guide you to the magnificent Carthusian monastery whose cloisters were once home to those famous lovers, Frederic Chopin and George Sand. Chopin described Valldemossa as 'the most beautiful place in the world'. In the monastery you can view the piano on which Chopin composed the famous Prelude and enjoy an excellent art collection that includes works by Picasso and Henry Moore. Valldemossa offers various places of interest, all described in our comprehensive notes. For the moderate walk there follows in the afternoon a magnificent circuit through holm oak woods to a mountain 'crossroads' where you join the 'Cami de S'Arxiduc', the creation of the Archduke Luis Salador. This takes you across a high limestone plateau with magnificent views towards the rugged coastline below and towards distant Palma. Your descent is through holm oak woods where wild goats graze followed by the bus back to Soller.|
|Day 5:||Cuber Lake & The Barranc de Biniaraix. Opt today for an easy 5 mile walk with only a few gentle gradients or a 9 mile route with a short moderate ascent and a long, stepped descent. Take the bus to Cuber Lake situated in the heart of the Tramuntana mountain range, an area rich in birdlife where ospreys and red-footed falcons circle high on the thermals. There follows a walk around the lake, where you will enjoy its serenity and beauty, and watch the occasional trout leap out of deep blue water. A gentle rise up through pine woods towards the Coll de L'Ofre at 875 metres rewards you with spectacular views of the lake glistening below in the distance, the imposing slopes of Puig Major towering above. Descend into a beautiful gorse-covered valley followed by a walk down through the dramatic Biniaraix Gorge. The ancient cobbled pathway was cut by Carthaginians 2,500 years ago and was once part of a pilgrims' route crossing the mountains to the monastery at Lluc. Enjoy your picnic overlooking the gorge. The easy version of this walk omits the ascents and descents; instead enjoy a relaxing day beside the lake followed by a bus ride back to Soller.|
|Day 6:||Visit to Palma. 4 miles of easy street walking. No visit to Majorca would be complete without visiting Palma, its vibrant and cosmopolitan capital. Take the old wooden train that rattles 'wild-west' style along its narrow-gauge track. The train retains its original character, the journey through orange, almond and olive groves remaining virtually unchanged since its inception in 1912. Palma, a beautiful Mediterranean city, is full of architectural and cultural delights. Your notes guide you on a tour to give you a taste of Palma's varied and cosmopolitan character, bringing in elements of past and present. After an authentic Spanish lunch at a favourite tapas bar, spend the afternoon visiting the spectacular cathedral, a Gothic masterpiece, Es Baluard Museum, Renaissance city walls, Bellver Caste, or, of course, simply shopping! Return to Soller by bus or train.|
|Day 7:||Mirador de Ses Barques to Cala de Tuent. The choice today is between an easy 4-mile route to Port de Soller or an undulating moderate 8-mile walk to Cala de Tuent. Today's walk is a fitting end to this most scenic of walking holidays. The route takes you high above the sea, displaying the entire scope and beauty of this wild, deeply indented coastal landscape with its many bays and capes. From the viewpoint at the Mirador take the Cami Vell de Balitx, through a wonderful terraced valley of ancient olive trees, almond groves and bubbling springs. Stop for a rest and a freshly-squeezed orange juice in idyllic surroundings before climbing up out of the valley to the Coll de Biniamar. Further spectacular views await you as you wind your way above an azure sea. A descent through rosemary and myrtle brings you to lunch on a terrace overlooking the sea (seafood highly recommended!). Finally to unspoilt Cala Tuent for a swim or paddle in crystal clear waters followed by a boat back to Soller Port. You'll enjoy some of the best sea views on the island. Time for a drink before boarding the tram back to Soller for a final dinner, the perfect end to a perfect walking holiday in Majorca.|
|Day 8:||Departure for Palma Airport.|
All tour descriptions and conditions are given in accordance with the information of Responsible Travel