Cathedral La Seu Palma in Mallorca

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Palma is the capital of Majorca, the largest of the Balearic Islands, which are located in the Mediterranean Sea. It's the gateway to one of the most popular holiday destinations in the world and many people by-pass it en-route to their resort. However, it is worthy of a break in its own right.

Why go?

This fine city is much underrated. Not only does it offer some stunning places to visit, it also has excellent shopping and nightlife...

Palma is famous for its hot, dry summers and is within easy reach of the traditional beach resorts of C'an Pastilla and Cala Mayor, which lie roughly four miles to the east and west of the city. The best time to visit Palma is during the summer months of July and August. The maximum average daily temperature is between 29 and 31 degrees Celsius at this time of year and there is very little rainfall.

Car hire in Palma is available from Palma de Mallorca Airport (PMI), located less five miles east of the city centre. Palma is an intriguing city in its own right, but can also be used as a base for exploring the rest of the island of Majorca, which is only 37 miles across. Magaluf, renowned as a party destination, is situated roughly 10 miles west of Palma at the western end of Palma Bay, while the traditional towns and villages of Valldemosa, Deia and Soller all lie within 20 miles to the north.

Public transport in and around Palma is available in the form of buses, trains and taxis. Nevertheless, Palma car hire is often the most convenient way of getting around, particularly if your itinerary includes some of the more rural Majorcan towns and villages.

Where to explore?

There is much to see and do in the city itself as well as around the rest of the island - car hire helps you to see more on your break...

Things to see and do in Palma include the magnificent Gothic cathedral, known as La Seu, the 14th-century royal fortress Castell de Bellver, which overlooks the city and Palma Aquarium, which is home to the deepest shark tank in Europe. Numerous bars, cafés and restaurants offering local and international cuisine are scattered throughout the city.

Head north to Soller and Puerto Soller, a journey that will take you up into the mountains onto the dramatic western coast. You can drive along to Deia, famous for its five-star hotel and home of the writer Robert Graves. Further down the coast you reach the monastery at Valldemossa where Chopin stayed, before returning to the capital along the beautiful coast road.