Mallorca is the ideal place for water sports in the heart of the Mediterranean. With its warm climate, favourable winds, pleasant water temperatures, numerous watersports centres, nautical clubs, and marinas, together with first class infrastructure and a coastline of great variety.The important annual International Boat Show in Palma and ever-increasing number of nautical related tourists are proof of the growing popularity of watersports on the island.
A Mallorcan legend from the 13th century tells of a monk who managed to leave Mallorca by holding up his cowl with the help of a stick and using it as a sail to carry him across the sea to Barcelona. Thus he became the first surfer in history, and a picture can still be admired high up on the weather vane of the church of Sóller. These days, Mallorca is still a perfect choice for windsurfers, as the infrastructure is good, the winds are favorable and there are a great number of surf schools and surf shops.
Best areas for Windsurfing:
- The bay of Palma: Long distance surfing across the bay, wind force about 5 to 6 in winter, thermal wind (Bft ~4) in the summer.
- Beach of Palma: Good westerly winds, sometimes from southeast or southwest, good waves.
- El Arenal: Wind and squalls mostly from southwest and west.
- Ciudad Jardín: Very constant winds.
- The bay of Alcudia: Conditions similar to the bay of Pollensa and around the Cala Mesquida, in general suitable northeast winds.
Shops for Watersport Equipment:
Pipeline Joan Maragall, 38, Edif. Marina Portixol, +34 971 242 431
Bellini Fun Boats Médico Llopis, 9, Pto Pollenca. +34 971 866 138
- C´an Picafort +34 971 527 983.
- Escuela Nacional de Vela Calanova
- San Agustin, Calle Joan Miró 327, +34 971 402 51
Sailing and Motor Boat:
In the year 1867, the 20-year-old Duke Ludwig Salvator came to Mallorca for the first time on a boat cruise and was immediately fascinated by the island. The same thing happened to the first sailing tourists in the 1920s and 1930s and still happens today to thousands of sailors. The nautical industry is an important economic factor: boat building, sales, maintenance, equipment, storage, chartering, training courses and licenses, excursions, even special nautical tax offices. The range of companies is large, literature and websites are ample – we cannot even begin to list them all. My personal advice: Try a sailing trip in winter. It is in fact colder, the sun sets earlier and time is limited, but the island is less crowded and you can feel like you’re sailing through an-other century when you are the only boat out at sea.
Jet – skiing
Jet-skiing is a common sight at many beaches. There are even championships for professionals around the Balearic Islands. Jet-ski rental can be found at the centres that rent out boats or surf boards. The specialists for renting and buying jet skis on Mallorca is Nauti Parts. No licence is needed yet for jet-skiing, but the following regulations must be observed: Minimum distance to beaches 250 m – to cliffs 50m – to other jet-skis 100 m – to divers’ buoys 50m – Life-jackets obligatory for drivers and passengers.
For jet-ski courses for beginners Tel: +34 971 206 114
Waterskiing still has numerous followers, as the sea can be as calm as a lake on many days. Instruction is available for example at the Club Calanova (971 402 512) for about 200€. Ask for waterskiing facilities at boat hire and charter centres.
Luckily, kite surfing is not forbidden in Mallorca. Although the meeting point of the local scene is Can Pastilla, in addition you will find suitable wind conditions in many areas such as Palmanova, Es Trenc and Alcudia with their fine, long beaches. More and more surfing schools have added kite surfing courses to their programme. To get the best out of the different wind forces, advanced surfers should bring various sizes of kites if possible. Apart from during the summer season, you will find enough space in most places to unfold your kite on the beach and to experience the freedom of gliding over the waves. In the summer you can rely on good, steady thermal winds, but on crowded beaches you may disturb others.
Bellini Kite Surf Shop Paseo de Can Pastilla 52, Tel: +34 971 262 126
Kitesurfing and Windsurfing School Hotel Playa Esperanza, S’Albufera Tel: +34 971 890 101
Mallorca is not the best area for surfing. In the Southwest the waves are not long enough, but there are still some surfers at the beaches of Paguera, near Cala Mayor and at the beach of Ciudad Jardín. In the south near Ses Covetes or Es Trenc you will not find good waves, even though there are often strong winds. On the East coast waves can get a lot higher. The best and longest waves can be found in the North, especially when strong winds are blowing from the Tramuntana mountains. Equipment is available in most windsurfing shops.
This is the perfect activity if you find scuba diving too difficult. Mask, snorkel and fins are affordable kit and enough to admire Mallorca’s beautiful marine life. If you haven’t snorkelled before but fancy a go, just ask at one of the diving centres and they’ll give you professional advice. Snorkel and swim at more than 170 beaches and bays or start from a boat off the coast. Equipment is available in many shops or for hire at some hotels.
Decathlon (at the ALCAMPO shopping centre) Marratxi (971 604 032
Recommendable snorkelling locations:
Beach Es Braç (near Muro, rd. C-712)
Cala Mondragó (near Cala D’Or)
Cala de Portals Vells (Calvià)
La Isla de Formentor.
Mallorca offers fascinating diving sites for both beginners and expert divers. More than 50 diving clubs and numerous diving centres all over the island provide those who love the sport with all the necessary equipment and instruction. The exciting and varied dives depart from a boat or right from the coast to shallow waters – perfect for beginners – drop offs, walls, caves, caverns or shipwrecks. Admire the spectacular underwater scenery and the marine flora and fauna with lots of fish, corals, octopus and many more. All this in moderate water temperatures from about 14°C in January to over 25°C in August. Qualified professional diving instructors regard your security as a priority. Try a beginner’s course or join an organized dive to greater depths and difficult spots, enjoy a night dive or take underwater pictures in daytime.
Dives of intermediate level:
- Southwest Illa del Sec
- Northwest Cove den Geroni,
- East Cala Llombards
- South Cabrera
- Scuba Ca’n Picafort
- Nico Sport Portocristo
- Big Blue Diving Centre Palmanova
- Scuba Activa San Telmo