Most people associate Mallorca with stunning coastline and sweeping beaches but it is also home to some of the most picturesque towns that Spain has to offer. One of my favourites is historic Santa Maria del Cami (or Santa Maria to the locals).
Situated on the fertile central plain, it offers magnificent views across to the the Tramuntana mountain range. Easily reached by car or by bus or train from the central terminus in Palma in 20 minutes.
At first glance you will see a sleepy Mallorcan town, locals passing the time in one of the many pavement cafès. But don’t be fooled. Santa Maria has many hidden treasures.
The fertile plain has allowed Santa Maria to enjoy a long history of wine production and, surrounded as it is by vineyards, it is home to several bodegas such as Maciá Batle , Sebastia Pastor, Celler Romanya and Jaume de Puntiro. Mallorca Wine Tours offers a unique ‘wine train’ tour which wends its way through the fields of vines stopping for commentary and wine and nibbles along the way.
Also home to several artisans, drop into Bujosa Textil, a family workshop which has not changed for generations and is the oldest cloth producer on the island. See the iconic Mallorcan blue and white fabric Tela de Lengua being handcrafted before your eyes. You will not leave empty handed.
But the piece du resistance is when this sleepy town really wakes up to the largest and most impressive market on the island every Sunday. Full of tempting fresh produce, tomatoes, pimentos, fruit and cheese, chorizo, artisan foods, clothes and of course homeware. Handmade ceramics and basket ware are in abundance. Dozens of stalls snake their way around the vast plaza and spill out into the neighbouring streets while shoppers jostle for position. It is a wonderful way to spend a Sunday morning.
And having worked up an appetite, there are fabulous restaurants to tempt you. For traditional Mallorcan fare, Celler Sa Sini is a great choice, popular with locals and watch out for the dessert trolley ! For contemporary tapas and salads try the lively Restaurant 19 by Living Dreams on the main street with covered front terrace and pretty garden at the back.
Santa Maria has something for everyone and is a must for a day out on the island.
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