This walk along Palma's waterfront is good in the early morning as the city stirs itself awake and the fish market comes to life, or late in the day as the sun sets over the sea, the pavement bars begin to buzz and the cathedral and castle light up for the night.
Start in Passeig Sagrera, at the foot of Avinguda d' Antoni Maura by the statue of Ramon Llull. The short tree-lined avenue, named after the architect of La Llotja, passes several interesting buildings. First, La Llonja (or Llotja in Catalan) itself, Palma's masterpiece of Gothic civic architecture. Palma was a very important port in the Mediterranean during the 14th century (more so than Barcelona) thanks to its island position, so there was plenty of trade and the city flourished. This resulted in the desire to build elaborate buildings to house the Merchants Guild (La Llonja), which explains the detail of this Gothic building.
Just along from La Llonja, is the gated archway, Porta Vella de Moll, the old gateway to the city from the sea. Right next to this is the Consulat de Mar, the former maritime court which now houses the Baleares government. Beyond the Consulat de Mar you will find some of the old city walls which now form part of the contemporary art gallery, Es Baluard (also well worth a visit).
At the end of Passeig Sagrera, cross the main road to reach the fishing port, marked by lines of blue nets. West of here, in a small garden, is the oratory of Sant Elm. Designed as a navigators' chapel, later used as a tavern, and moved here stone by stone from Passeig Sagrera in 1947. From here the walk is straight forward - just follow the seafront west along Passeig Maritim, using the promenade between the road and the sea. A cycle path, also used by joggers, runs alongside the promenade.
Pass Reial Club Nautic, facing a section of city wall and a row of windmills; look up ahead to see Bellver Castle on its hill. As you walk on, turn around to look back at the cathedral, seen across the bay through a forest of masts. From a jetty opposite the Auditorium theatre, excursion boats offer tours of Palma Bay. Keep going, and eventually you reach Club de Mar with its luxury yachts.
Just beyond here is the commercial ferry port, where boats leave for Barcelona, Valencia, Menorca and Ibiza. To your right is the commercial shopping centre Porto Pi where you can do some retail therapy or grab some refreshments.
Return the same way or take Bus No 1 back to Passeig Sagrera. or you could choose to climb the hill and visit Bellver Castle - 14th centruy round fortress with fabulous views over the city of Palma.
Distance: 3km one way
Time: 2 hours
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