Once known as a place of all-night partying, the Balearic island of Mallorca has long since shaken its booze-fuelled reputation and has transformed into a wellness lover’s best kept secret synonymous with nature, health food and rustic beach living. Having shed the reputation of its club-heavy heyday, this breathtaking isle has become a truly grown-up getaway, with luxury boutiques, Michelin-starred eateries and yoga retreats springing out of its stone-speckled landscape. Sound like your cup of tea? We’ve rounded up some of the very best wellness activities this enchanting isle has in store.
Mountain hiking trails
For Mallorca’s best mountain trails, you’d be hard pressed to find a more beautiful spot than the majestic Serra de Tramuntana range. Cradling the island’s northwest coast, this sprawling sierra is around 90 kilometres in length, with picture-perfect villages sprinkled throughout its lush landscape. Having deservedly been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2011, this evergreen jewel in the island’s landscape is arguably one of Spain’s most scenic hiking hotspots.
There are dozens of trails for every level, from gentle winding pathways dotted with olive groves and orange trees to week-long heart-pumping hikes along rocky ridges, but one of the most spectacular is the hike from Port de Soller to Deià. Ascend dusty pathways, passing mountain goats grazing along the trail, as you glimpse sparkling ocean vistas at almost every turn. End in style with a downhill stroll into the ancient town of Deià, past traditional stone fincas decorated in eye-poppingly colourful bougainvillea and sprawling rose bushes. Don’t forget to bring your camera – you won’t want to miss the chance to capture these seriously impressive views.
If you’re more into your sun salutations than your sun seeking, Mallorca has you covered. You’ll find plenty of holistic yoga retreats across the island, whether you’re a Vinyasa virgin or an Ashtanga aficionado. Some of the most popular studios can be found in the island’s boho capital, Palma, tucked away behind a patchwork of beguiling cathedrals and hip designer boutiques. Staying elsewhere? No sweat. You’ll find serene spots to practice your flow in pretty much every corner of the isle. No matter if you opt to get your Chaturanga fix in studio, on a paddleboard or on a hilltop overlooking the Med, you’re sure to come back from your break feeling utterly restored. All that’s left for you to do is to don your stretchiest activewear, perfect your poses and reach a meditative state-of-mind.
In the past, surfers might have been inclined to get their fill of waves in nearby Portugal but off-season, Mallorca is fast becoming a great place to catch a break, with almost 550 kilometres of coastline waiting to be discovered. Although you won’t find the biggest swells here, some of its lesser-known beaches double up as the ideal spot for beginners, thanks to the quieter, more tranquil waters. One of the best places to practice your pop-ups come autumn or winter is in Paguera which boasts three solid surf spots. If you’d prefer to take things at a gentler pace, Port de Soller is a fine choice for stand-up paddleboarding experiences – no wetsuit required.
Tour de force
With acres of mountainous terrain to its name, it’s no surprise that cycling has become a popular pastime of Mallorca’s outdoorsy types. You’ll need some pretty strong legs (and nerves of steel) to navigate some of the more difficult trails, but there are plenty of beginner-friendly routes to enjoy too. One of the most popular, for those seeking a challenge, is the loop from Port de Pollença to Sa Calobra, a twisty-turny trail leading you from the backroads of the small port town, through the towering Serra Tramuntana before climbing the picturesque Col de Sa Batalla in a series of hairpin turns. At the top of the climb, visit the 13th-century Satuari de Lluc, a Moorish monastery before flying down Col de Femenia, pausing for a well-deserved coffee at one of the many stops along the way. If you’d rather stick to the sidelines, visit in February to watch thousands of cyclists whizz by during three days of racing at the annual Vuelta Ciclista a Mallorca bike ride.
It’s impossible to have a wellness break without some healthy fuel to aid your activities and Mallorca has more than its fair share of nourishing foodie finds, from supergreen smoothies to plant-based salad bowls. In fact, eating healthily here is hard to avoid, with fresh, locally-grown Mediterranean produce spilling from its myriad market stalls. Load your plate with juicy tomatoes drizzled with oil sourced straight from the rows of olive groves dotting the landscape. For a fancier, yet decidedly wholesome affair, Palma boasts a string of upscale health food restaurants from grab-and-go eatery Ziva where raw, organic breakfast bowls pepper the menu, to Bon Lloc, the city’s first vegetarian restaurant (going strong since 1978), which serves hearty vegetable-based dishes in a quaint courtyard setting. The piece de resistance is Michelin-starred restaurant Jardín where an ever-rotating menu of crowd-pleasing Mallorquin favourites are crafted using only the freshest local produce, all served al fresco in a romantic garden. Bon appetit!