Those 300 days of Mallorca sunshine not materialising? Well don’t despair. We’ve got some great ideas for fun without sun. No more rainy days' blues!
Food, Glorious Food #
Mallorca is no slouch when it comes to choices in food possibilities. What better way to spend a dreary day then munching your way through one (or more!) of Palma’s indoor markets. With three to opt from, you’re sure to get a little bit of everything you love without breaking the bank. The Mercat d’Olivar is a hop-skip from the train station in Palma, and a great place to start. If you’ve not had your fill there, head to the relatively new Mercado Gastronómico San Juan where you can feast on rustic local pintxos followed by a sophisticated plate of oysters washed down with local vermut. Then make your way back to the Mercat de Santa Catalina is for more tapas and enjoy the scene as locals go about their day buying up fresh flowers and ingredients for that night’s meal.
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If the thought of all that moving around makes your feet ache, why not stop into one of Mallorca’s many top-rated restaurants and make an afternoon of it. Many restaurants still continue the Spanish tradition of offering a three-course midday meal at cut rate prices.
Affordable Mallorca Tip: Even some of the Michelin-star restaurants offer a menu del dia, and whilst it is not exactly cheap eats, it is a lovely indulgence that won’t wreck your budget.
Or why not consider learning how to recreate some of these amazing local dishes yourself? My Muy Bueno, Lonja 18, and Grounded Living offer cooking classes that range from €70 for a 3-hour course to €195 for an all day one. The best part is you get to enjoy your creations after!
Sporty Set #
If you are more the “get up and go” type, then there are also options for you.
Head to Bowling Mallorca. For €6/weekdays and €6.50 on weekends and holidays, you can practice your skills and have a good laugh at the same time. They also have karaoke for the more intrepid.
Address: Camí dels Reis, 211, 07011 Palma
Leaps and Bounds
There is also Palma Jump. For €10 you can spend an hour (or more) practicing trick moves on dozens of trampolines, or give trampoline basketball, obstacle courses and ninja warrior courses a go.
Address: P.I Son Moix, Calle Textil, 3, solar 33, 07011
And if you like solving puzzles, there is always Best Escape Rooms Mallorca, where you use brawn and brains to find your way through a maze of rooms, solving clues the whole way. Great to do as a family, as real teamwork is required.
Address: Carrer del Bisbe Pere de Puigdorfila, 1, 07010 Palma
Spas and Hammams
And when you’re done with all that exercise, get thee to one of the island’s many fantastic spas for a nice relaxing massage or to a hamman to sweat out the kinks. There. Doesn’t that sound better already?
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Art and Culture #
Art Galleries and Museums
There are a number of small galleries and ateliers, located in nearly every part of the island, meaning you won’t need to travel far to get a good selection of mostly local artists. Most items in galleries are for sale, so you may find that perfect piece for the entry way or above the fireplace. There are too many here to list them all, but a few of note are ABA Art in Palma, Addaya Centre d’Art Contemporani in Alaro, and Ahoy! in Palma.
If you are not in the market to buy, but prefer to browse, Mallorca also has a number of excellent museums. Pilar and Joan Miro Museum and Es Balaud Museum of Contemporary and Modern Art are perennial favourites in Palma, as is the Fundacio Caixa housed in a stunningly beautiful building. Its not an actual museum but the architecture and the art collection are second to none.
Outside Palma there is the Ca’n Prunera Museum of Modernism and Sala Picasso y Sala Miro, the permanent exhibition at the railway station, both in Soller, the Museo Sa Bassa Blanca in Alcudia, and the Museu de Pollença in Pollença, of course! CCA in Andratx deserves honorary mention for its interesting gallery and regular workshops, talks and events.
Other Arty Places of Interest
Why should painters and sculptors get all the fanfare? Mallorca’s craft tradition is alive and well and a fun diversion when you can’t get outside.
Visit local textile makers Teixits Vicens and get a guided tour where you will learn about Mallorca’s rich textile making history and get to see the fabrics actually being made.
Address: Rotonda Can Berenguer, s/n, 07460 Pollença
Glass blowing and making is another form of art, and you will see quite a show if you pass by glass making factories Lafiore in S´Esgleieta, Menestralia in Campenet, or Gordiola, in Algaida. All are open to the public and have extensive shops where you can purchase items similar to what you see being created.
Just because the weather isn’t cooperating doesn’t mean you can’t get a dose of nature. Caves are a great rainy day place to visit, as it doesn’t much matter what’s going on outside, when there is so much to see inside! Drach Caves are the most famous, but don’t overlook Campanet Caves and the Caves of Génova.
Last but not least is Palma Aquarium. Featuring sea life from all over the world, it’s like taking a trip without leaving town. You’ll see everything from sharks to seahorses, coral to clown fish. There are also interactive exhibits and activities to fill in the day. And since 2014, the aquarium has been instrumental in rescuing and rehabilitating marine animals from their Marine Fauna Recovery Centre, making it not just a fun choice but a responsible one as well!
So don’t let the rainy day blues get you down! Get out there, and make hay while the sun doesn’t shine!
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By Stephanie Horsman
21 October, 2019