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Rural tourism in Mallorca: complementary activities around cottagesPrint
Ecologic agriculture is constantly growing in Mallorca. A large number of our associated accommodation establishments have ecological orchards and offer their products directly from the orchard to their guests. In this way, country estates actively participate in the ecological agricultural sector guarantying the best quality and respect to the environment. Furthermore, some of our associates offer their guests the possibility to participate in agricultural activities such the shearing of the sheep, the care of the orchard and the livestock.
The same diversity that the Illes Balears offer at a cultural level is also evident in crafts. You can buy arts and crafts in glass, ceramics, embroidery, fabrics, shoes, leather, silverware, trinkets, jewellery, pearls and all the latest trends in fashion. Among all, the wide array of handicrafts, the main handicrafts of Mallorca are:
Marratxí, also known as the land of mud, is one of the key points that focus on the best master craftsmen and potters throughout the island and across Europe, as evidenced by their presence in major international fairs. A visit to the museum of Pòrtol and Marratxí is essential because it allows knowing the strong linkage that has the mud with the history of Mallorca. The ceramic figure par excellence of Mallorca is the siurell.
The main areas of leather in Mallorca are Lloseta and Inca. Inca, in addition o manufacturing, stands out as one of the most important point of sale and design of leather of the Mediterranean.
Nowadays, three glass companies are operative in Mallorca nowadays, three glass companies are operating in Mallorca: Gordiola, Menestralia y Lafiore. The promoters of these companies began in the first quarter of the eighteenth century.
More than 300 species can be watched in the Balearic Islands which makes them very attractive especially for the ornithological tourism. The flocks of sedentary birds are joined by a great number of winter and summer birds and it is relatively easy to observe a good number of raptors during the migration period. If one of our objects during our stay in Mallorca is to observe the birds we cannot miss visiting some places like the humid parts in the north of Mallorca “Parque Natural de S´Albufera de Mallorca” and “Reserva Natural de s’Albufereta”. You can also enlist the areas rich in water birds, limicolas, herons … As well as the area in the south, “Salobrar de Campos” which offers a variety of limicolas. Along the coast of Pollença, there is a small humid area “La Gola”, which maintains an ornithological tourist center. Some information about the species and the best areas in Mallorca to watch the birds can be obtained there.
If you get closer to the “Serra de Tramuntana” and go on one of the numerous excursions that are offered there, it will be very easy for you to watch some examples of the last insular population in the world of the black vulture Aegypius monachus, Together with other species as the booted eagle Aquila pennata, peregrine hawk, peregrine falcon Falco peregrinus, vulture Gypsfulvus or the eagle Aquila fasciata (recently introduced) the black vulture can be seen in the north. The hawk from Eleonora Falco eleonorae which inhabits Madagascar and the nearby coast of continental Africa in winter, comes to our islands in April-May and stays until the end of October for raising the small birds during the mating season. At the end of June, at sunset, watching the small ones and the way they catch insects is really amazing (near son Bosc and s’Albufereta). Do not forget to take some protection against mosquitoes with you. We can also watch these birds on the cliffs of Formentor, the Natural Park Sa Dragonera and the National Park of Cabrera during the mating season. In winter we can go further into the summits of Tramuntana to observe some winter birds as the hawk finch Coccothraustes coccothraustes, brambling Fringilla montifringilla and different species of thrush. It is very interesting to watch this kind of birds in the vineyards of Martitx.
Far from the cited areas, the spots that are of great importance during the mating period are the watchtower of Albercutx (Pollença) during the antenuptial period and Cap Ses Salines during the post breeding period. These are the places where ornithologists from different parts of the island gather together to watch the passage of the raptor and other migratory species like the stork Ciconiaciconia and the black crane Ciconianigra, Grusgrus...
It is necessary to approach the spots near the sea to watch the sea birds as for example the endemic shearwater Puffinus mauretanicus The lighthouse of Capdepera, n’Amer and Cap de Ses Salines are good options for dedicating yourself to the beauty of the dawn or the sunset in waiting to watch the passage of the shearwaters (Pardelas). Other option is the lighthouse of Formentor which offers an excellent view and allows you watching the sea birds with a good telescope. Not to mention the magnificent sunrises and sunsets. You can also choose between a boat trip along the coast or a visit to the National Park of Cabrera where an ornithological tour can be organized by the specialized services. The ostrey Pandionhaliaetus, the Audoin seagull Larusaudouinii and the shag (cormorant) Phalacrocorax aristotelis have nesting populations along the coast of the Baleares and are relatively easy to be watched. The Balearic warbler Sylvia balearica, which is also endemic, can be observed in the scrubland along the coast. You can have a look at it in the National Park of Llevant (Artà), Son Real (Santa Margalida) and the slopes Albercutx (Pollença) y Cap Blanc (Llucmajor).
The central part of the island offers a very interesting rural landscape, especially in the areas where the colourful hoopoe Upupa epops and the curlew Burhinuso edicnemus, can be seen. There can be also watched the kite Milvus milvus which is tireless protecting its territory in search of food. The autillo Otusscops, the owl Tyto alba and the eared owl Asiootus are the most common inhabitants in this central part of the island at nightfall. At that time of the day, in summer, it is also very easy to watch the nighthawk (goats) Caprimulgus europaeus and listen to their ¨funny songs¨. Some migratory birds as the crane in winter, the kestrels Falco naumanni the red footed Falco vespertinus, the eared owl Asioflammeus and the precious rattle Coraciasgarrulus. have a rest and reset forces in Pla de l’Ánzell (Vilafranca) and Blanquer (Maria de la Salut), which are the largest cereal spots of Mallorca. It is very easy to observe the lark Galeridatherklae, the terrarias Calandrellablachy dactyla and the skylarks Alaudaarvensis in these parts of the island.
Every year the local group (GOB) publishes “Anuari Ornitòlogic de les Baleares¨. This issue can be downloaded from the website (the previous year editions are free of charge). This is the place where you can see the status of the species and their phenology. Some small practical guides for watching the birds in different parts of Mallorca can be downloaded too.
You should take good binoculars with you in order to bring the humid areas closer or a telescope to have a better look at the details of the birds along the coast.
There are some specialized entities for preparing the ornithological routes. Do not doubt to ask for the latest piece of information where you are accommodated. All will be done for you to contact specialized entities.
ORNITHOLOGICAL PAGES OF INTEREST
- http:// www.balearsnatura.com/parc-natural-de-s-albufera-de-mallorca
Information about the visit of this natural park: Entrance permission is required. It can be obtained on the day of the visit at the reception center. See timetable.
Ornithological tourist information center
Local ornithological group, ornithological activities and an active forum about watching the birds
Publication, recommended to plan an ornithological holiday in Mallorca
Update of the last ornithological peculiarities observed on the Baleares
Reintroduction project of the Aguila de Bonelli in Mallorca
SPECIALIZED ORNITHOLOGICAL ENTITIES THAT OFFER TOURISM
ENTITIES THAT AMONG OTHER SERVICES OFFER INFORMATION AND ORNITHOLOGICAL TOURISM
Mallorca has a road network of 1,250 km, 675 of which are local and secondary roads with an average width of 6.50 m. approximately, and 20% of these are in the mountains. Throughout the winter, the leading European teams visit the Island because they appreciate its deal conditions for training. Professional cyclists who have visited Mallorca have a highly favourable opinion of the Island. Stephen Roche (winner of the Tour de France, the Tour of Italy and the World Championship) came to Mallorca on the advice of the great Miguel Indurain. As Roche says "Mallorca is quite fascinating! It has a great climate and great scenery and it offers unbeatable conditions for both holiday cyclists and professionals."
From February to March, amateur teams spend their well-deserved holidays enjoying their favourite sport on local lanes, travelling through lovely countryside around the small villages in the interior, where they can also find the real cuisine and culture of the Island.
Located in places of great natural beauty, the Majorcan golf courses are true paradises of peace which attract thousands of people from all nations who come to visit the island throughout the year. One of the peculiarities of golf is that the best time for its practice in Balearics is in the low season, not coinciding with the months of more tourist affluence in Majorca. The excellent climatic conditions of the Balearics allows the playing of golf throughout the whole year, this, next to the quality of hotels and residences available, go some way to explain the interest of those so fond of the Majorcan golf courses.
Winter in Mallorca
Encouraged by the temperate Mediterranean climate, the first variety of the island's more than 7,000,000 almond trees timidly begin to bud in late January, a foretaste of the exquisite fields blanketed by white, delicate flowers that burst into bloom between late January and mid-February. Be it in a lone specimen or a riot of flowers, this surprising and omnipresent forerunner of spring is a special treat for visitors.
The cultivation of almond trees was introduced en masse after phylloxera devastated the Islands' vineyards in the late eighteenth century, especially in Mallorca and Ibiza. Their fruit can be sampled as is, toasted or as part of the islands' typical dishes, especially pastries.
Beaches & Coves
Mallorca offers a wide variety of beaches and coves. Among the approximately 365 beaches that Mallorca has, a swimmer can decide to visit crystalline and warm water beaches, fine white sand beaches, gravel and rocky beaches, nude beaches or with disabled access beaches. It is well worth getting a map of the beaches of Mallorca to discover the innermost.
Quality wines under Apellation d’Origine Es Pla i Llevant or Binissalem are increasingly becoming stronger. Wineries can be visited and visitors can buy wine directly there. “Las Hierbas” and “El Palo de Mallorca” are alcoholic beverages known worldwide.
Sanctuaries of Mallorca are beautiful not only for what they represent but also for the location in which they are found. Some of the sanctuaries of Mallorca have been renovated and offer accommodation. We strongly recommend you to visit El Monasterio de Lluc, the most important monastery of Mallorca that represents a place of annual pilgrimage of hundreds of local people. In the Randa Mountain, you can find Hermitage of Sant Honorat, among many other monuments in Mallorca.
Mallorca is an island that boasts a wide array of incredible landscapes. This translates into itineraries in the mountains, along the coastline and across the plains. Impressive views of the Tramuntana Mountains to the west, with several peaks measuring over 1000 m high and up to 1450 metres in Puig Major’s case, and the Llevant Mountains to the east, with their lower profile that reaches 561 m at its highest point, reflect the islands’ most rugged terrain. The marina to the south and north and the central plain conceal landscapes that astonish hikers who adventure along their paths.
Associació Agroturisme Balear and all its partners sympathize with the Slow Food. The fast pace at which we are subjected has forced us to acquire unhealthy habits that are not natural in human being. Therefore, our country-states are struggling to provide a local, traditional and friendly cuisine.
Taste is one of the senses that can enjoy more the stay in Mallorca: botifarrons, sobrasada,
sobrasada de cerdo negro, camaiot, blanquets, graxonera, pates, foie, are some of the delights. However, one of the products why Mallorca is internationally known is the ensaimada. Other typical sweets of Mallorca are: el gató, ice-cream, sweet and savoury pastries, croissants, panades, robiols, doblados, cremadillos, pies and cakes. Artisans of food and drink delights of Mallorca also make: mallorquinas, el frito mallorquín, el escabeche, berenjenas rellenas, empanadas and cocarrois.