Good Friday is often a great opportunity for a spring time walk, especially in Mallorca where there was not a single cloud in the sky and temperatures were in the mid 20s.
So I set of to the small village of Rando on this beautiful spring morning for a guided walk with From Mallorca Adventure Company.
I joined a very international group made up of a German family, a Mallorcan family and our guide, Julio, who splits his time between the mountains of Mallorca and the Pyrenees for a short hike.
As I drove out into the countryside in the South of the island near Llucmajor first thing in the morning, the hazy sunshine cast a beautiful light on the surrounding countryside and it felt like the trip was promising to be a great day out!
Our guide informed us that we were going to do an easy 6km hike up to the monastery at the top of the Puig de Randa. So of we set up from the village, firstly on the road and then on a lovely secluded path with great views for miles over to the Tramuntana mountains and to Palma. We wound up this varied and at times very steep path, with frequent breaks to take a drink and to enjoy the views until we reached the monastery at the top.
We didn't see a single other walker on the way up - walking with a a guide is always a great way to see the best of a place. Taking advantage of their local knowledge to get away from the crowds to enjoy fantastic views.
Julio's knowledge of the island impressed all of the group, from his identification of flowers and trees along the way, to information about the military station at the top of Puig Major, which was visible from the path. He even took us through an abandoned tunnel which had been used to store artillery during the Spanish civil war, which was very impressive and interesting.
He was also able to tell us about the three monasteries on this single hill and we visited two of them as part of the route. The monastery at Puig de Rando is a lovely spot for a well earned rest, with views in every direction over the island, a museum, a beautiful and very peaceful church and a great cafe.
After our well earned coffee break, we returned to the village by a different route, giving us alternative views over the small town of Llucmajor and giving an easier decent for the children who were starting to play the 'are we nearly there yet' card.
This is one of the reasons that hiring a guide is great for a family excursion - the parents in the group could relax and enjoy the day out, confident that the route that Julio had planned was manageable and enjoyable for the children. He had even prepared a 'plan B' in the case of small legs getting tired and and was happy to come to collect the children in the van if necessary.
The whole team managed the circuit with no problems whatsoever though, returning at lunchtime satisfied with a lovely morning out.
There are a whole host of tours available in Mallorca which allow you to discover the island accompanied by an expert guide. This really is a stress free way to enjoy a great experience whilst on the island, leaving the efforts of route planning to those in the know!