Anyways, our hostel was right in the center of Palma, which was nice. It also had a terrace on the top floor where we could enjoy views of the Cathedral, the Mediterranean Sea, and the harbor, which was filled with dreamy yachts and sailboats. The location was great, but there were lots of tourist traps. It seems to be an extremely popular vacation destination for Europeans. The majority of the people there were German and French. In fact, when going out to eat, it was more common to see menus in German than in Spanish. Interesting, considering Mallorca is still part of Spain!
Friday morning, we woke up early to head to the beach. There are TONS of beaches around the island. I really want to go back someday to see more of them, especially because it is nearly impossible to get to the extremely beautiful and secluded beaches (the ones that you see on calendars and computer wallpapers) without your own car. We asked our hostel what they recommended, and ended up at Ses Illetes. The water was gorgeous. I have never swam in water so blue! There were also lots of rocks jetting out into the sea, and it was nice to lay out on them and let the waves spray you. After spending the day at the beach, we headed back to take a siesta before going to a different beach to watch the sunset. We ended up finding a really cool and relaxing beachside restaurant for dinner, too.
On Saturday, my friend and I woke up early to catch a bus to the other side of the island. The bus ride was a little over an hour. The bus took us to Las Cuevas del Drach, which are four caves. The caves have tons of stalactites and stalagmites, which are really cool to look at. Inside the caves is Lake Martel, which is one of the largest underground lakes in the world. We explored the caves for about an hour, and the tour ended with a live classical music concert. We were seated in complete darkness, and little rowboats lit up the lake and a quartet played. Following the concert, we were taken across the lake in row boats.
After the cave tour, we had a couple of hours to kill. We noticed an overlook where you could see the ocean. People were taking pictures in front of it, but nobody seemed to be going down to the water. There were no signs saying not to, so we decided to make the hike down the rocky mountain side. Unfortunately, we were wearing flip flops, but there were no casualties and it was so worth the journey! At the bottom of the cliffs, there was a cove that seemed like a pretty well-kept secret. There were a few people snorkeling in the bright blue water, and we wanted to go in so badly. We didn't think we had enough time because of our bus schedule, so we climbed back up the mountain. However, right when we got back to the top, we immediately regretted not jumping in the water. We made an impulse decision to run to the gift shop to buy big t-shirts (We didn't want to wear our nice clothes in the salt water, but didn't want to flash the snorkelers, either!) and quickly scaled the cliffs one more time so we could jump into the water. We had to dry ourselves under the bathroom hand dryers so we could get on our bus back to Palma. It was well worth it!
On Sunday, we had breakfast on our hostel terrace, which was beautiful. After breakfast, we visited the Palma Cathedral. Like every other cathedral in Spain, it is very impressive. I actually think this is my favorite cathedral thus far. The ceilings are very high, and there are stained glass windows everywhere. Each window is unique, intricate, and made of vibrant colors. I wish my camera could take better pictures! When the sun shines through the cathedral windows, the colors of the glass reflect on the floor, altar, and pews. There is also a huge organ, and when I saw it, I wished I could hear it. About ten minutes later, a mass started, and it began to play!
It's no secret that I love pearls, so of course I had to buy a pair of Majorica Pearl earrings before I left. Mallorca is known for their man-made pearls, which have a much closer resemblance to natural pearls than most. This is because they coat their pearls with "pearl essence" about thirty times. They use natural organic elements of the Mediterranean Sea such as the insides of oyster shells to create a formula that reproduces the iridescence and resistance of natural pearls. Pretty interesting!
Visiting Mallorca was very relaxing and refreshing. As much as I love learning about history and culture and visiting museums and landmarks, it was a nice change of pace for the weekend.