A RAINY DAY IN PUERTO DE SÓLLER
Visit to the Royal Palace of La Almudaina
During the winter months, rainy days are quite common in Puerto de Sóller, restricting outdoor activities like hiking in Sierra de Tramuntana or leisurely walks around the port. However, there are nearby options to make the most of these days. Explore the history, culture, and architecture of our islands with an alternative plan: a car trip to the Royal Palace of La Almudaina, an official residence of the Spanish Royal Family in Mallorca!
FROM AIMIA HOTEL TO THE ROYAL PALACE OF LA ALMUDAINA
Embark on our visit to the Royal Palace of La Almudaina from Aimia Hotel by car, heading towards Plaça de La Reina in Palma de Mallorca, situated at the end of the iconic Passeig d’Es Born, linking Plaça de ses Tortugues, where local sports victories are celebrated, with Plaça de La Reina. In about 30 minutes from Puerto de Sóller, you'll reach Plaça de la Reina, featuring a central water fountain. We'll leave this monument to our left to access the underground parking located just to the right of the square. From here, our visit continues on foot.
Just after exiting the parking, a few meters away, s'Hort del Rei awaits—an enchanting public garden with an Andalusian style, originally part of the royal palace, boasting decorated fountains and tree-lined pathways. It's noteworthy that due to the surrounding mountains of Valle de Sóller, rain may occur in Puerto de Sóller but not on the other side of the Tunnel, meaning it's possible that upon arriving in Palma, there might be no rain. With this in mind, we'll stroll through s'Hort del Rei, heading south until reaching the Arco de la Drassana, a grand stone arch granting direct access from the sea to the pier of the Palace of La Almudaina, providing a private port within the palace walls.
Continuing in the direction of the Royal Palace along Passeig de Dalt Murada, we'll ascend stairs leading to Carrer del Mirador. This spot is one of the most iconic in Palma de Mallorca, offering a view of Palma Cathedral to our right and the Royal Palace of La Almudaina to our left—the starting point for our interior palace visit.
The Royal Palace of La Almudaina, built in the 14th century, serves as the Official Residence for Their Majesties The Kings during their stays in Mallorca and hosts the Annual Reception for representatives of Balearic society. Reflecting Mallorca's history, this palace showcases artistic styles evolving over the island's centuries. Built between 1305 and 1314 for Jaime II, it swiftly became the court seat for the Kings of Mallorca. It served as the Court of Justice from Felipe II, the residence of the Viceroy and the Captain General, and the administrative center of the Royal Heritage on the island before becoming the official residence for H.M. the King during visits to Mallorca.
During our palace interior tour, we'll explore the Patio de Honor or Weapons' Courtyard, where official receptions for the Royal Family take place. Here, a white marble lion remains as a testament to the Muslim heritage. Next, we'll visit the Arab Baths, once private for the Muslim Walis residing in the ancient Alcázar, comprising cold, temperate, and hot rooms. Lastly, we'll explore the Gothic Hall or Great Hall, a grand and solemn room built during Jaime II's reign, traditionally used for large festivities.
Upon concluding our visit to the Royal Palace of La Almudaina and delving deeper into Mallorca's history, we may choose to complete our day by visiting Palma Cathedral.
THE CATHEDRAL OF PALMA DE MALLORCA
The Cathedral-Basilica of Santa María, also known as the Cathedral of Mallorca and popularly referred to by locals as La Seu (Seu or Seo being the name given to cathedrals in the Crown of Aragon), stands as the primary religious edifice on the island of Mallorca.
Recognized as a Historic-Artistic Monument in 1931, this cathedral allows us to explore one of the most exceptional architectural wonders in the capital of Mallorca. For the first time in history, visitors can not only tour its interior but also ascend to the cathedral's attic, offering unparalleled views of Palma de Mallorca and an up-close view of its architecture. Admission is 9€ for general entry and 25€ for guided tours. Undoubtedly, a monument we highly recommend visiting.
Following our visit to two of our island's most iconic monuments, we'll return to the parking lot via Carrer del Palau Reial, turning left onto Costa de la Seu, a street leading back to Plaça de la Reina and our parking area. Alternatively, before heading back, consider dining in the capital; we suggest stopping at Ca’n Eduardo, a restaurant located less than a 5-minute drive from the Plaça de la Reina parking lot, offering its parking facilities. Undoubtedly, this dining spot will beautifully complement your visit from a gastronomic perspective.
Driving duration from Puerto de Sóller to Plaça de la Reina: Approximately 30 minutes.
Palacio Real de La Almudaina Hours:
Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM (last entry at 5:00 PM). CLOSED ON MONDAYS.
Free access: Wednesdays and Sundays from 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM (last entry at 5:00 PM). Check terms: https://www.patrimonionacional.es/en/system/404?destination=/&_exception_statuscode=404
La Cartoixa de Valldemossa Ticket Prices: General Entry: 7€