Getting Around Mallorca
The best way to get around Mallorca is by car. Having your own set of wheels gives you the most freedom to explore the island on your time. Buses are an option, too, but service is limited, especially on weekends. In towns like Palma, there are plenty of taxis, but these are more of an option for inter-city trips rather than for island treks. The same goes for walking and biking. Although there are some lovely pedestrian areas in Palma, Alcúdia and other towns, not to mention beaches, the island is too large to explore on foot or bicycle alone.
To get to Mallorca from the United States, you have several options. You can fly to a mainland Spanish city, such as Madrid or Valencia, and then catch a connecting flight from a carrier like Iberia, Vueling or Air Europa to Palma de Mallorca Airport (PMI) – also known as Son Sant Joan Mallorca Airport – located just southeast of Palma. Alternatively, you can take a ferry (which can accommodate cars) to Palma from a variety of neighboring destinations, including Barcelona, Ibiza or Valencia.
A car will allow you the most freedom to explore Mallorca on your own terms. That said, when you're touring various cities and towns – especially Palma – you should leave the car parked and get around on foot since streets in these historic places are often narrow. You'll find car rental companies, such as Avis, Hertz and Europcar, at the Palma airport. If you're looking for a price break, however, you might check out the local companies, such as Sixt Rent a Car or Centauro Rent a Car, as they sometimes offer better deals. Also, buy a current map in a bookshop or petrol station, as the maps given by rental car companies are often out of date. And keep in mind that using your cellphone while driving is illegal here. Also, to rent a car in Mallorca, you'll need to apply for an international driving permit, which you can obtain here.
Mallorca's collection of buses connect most of the island, but they run on limited schedules, especially on the weekends. You can purchase bus tickets on the bus or pay 3 euros (less than $3.50) for an Intermodal Card, a rechargeable card convenient for multiple trips, at the Palma Intermodal Station (the main station in Palma). Prices for bus tickets vary depending on the departure point and the destination.
Mallorca's metered taxis are most helpful for travel around Palma – or travel to and from the airport. These taxis, usually cream and black in color, frequent many of the tourist attractions, resorts and hotels. To give you an idea on price, a 25-minute trip, during the hours of 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., from Castell de Bellver and the Palma Cathedral will likely run you around 10 or 12 euros (about $11 to $13.50). Rates increase between the hours of 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. and all day on public holidays.
|On Foot||Mallorca's large and small towns are best explored on foot, as are the trails of Serra de Tramuntana and many of the gorgeous shorelines. But to traverse the island, you'll need to rely on another mode of transport.|
|Bike||Like many cities, Palma too is becoming increasingly more bike-friendly. Visitors who have traveled by the city's public transportation can pick up rental bikes for free at the Intermodal Station information point in the Placa d'Espanya, though they’ll have to return them by the end of the day. From November to May, travelers can pick up and drop off bikes Monday through Friday, from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and on Saturday, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. From June to October, travelers can drop off bikes until 8 p.m. on Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Sunday.|
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