There is nothing quite like wandering through a city—whether it be on your first or fiftieth visit—and exploring the streets with all five senses. Here, Indagare’s Blair West recaps a leisurely afternoon stroll through Old Town Palma, Mallorca: a labyrinth of ancient cobbled streets and intimate plazas, sitting beside a gorgeous, sun-soaked harbor.
Start at Hotel Sant Francesc, a stylish hideaway in the heart of Palma’s historic center. An ideal base for exploration, the boutique hotel is a renovated 19-century mansion that retains much of its old-world grandeur while also featuring a sleek, modern design. The rooftop pool offers excellent views of the city (you'll feel like you can practically reach out and touch Palma’s cathedral) and is a lovely setting for an afternoon cocktail.
Begin walking along Carrer del Pare Nadal to make your way to Palma’s Cathedral, the 700-year-old masterpiece that lords over the city’s horizon. Don't miss the chance to step inside and marvel at the Antonio Gaudi–designed interior or attend a Sunday mass.
Next, stroll through the landscaped gardens towards Placa de la Reina, a central hub filled with designer shops and outdoor cafés. Make your way to Passeg de Born, the narrow cobblestone alley of gelaterias and souvenir shops, towards the charming shopping path of Carrer de Sant Feliu. This is where Rialto Living can be found; Palma’s top concept store is set in multiple buildings and sells beautiful photograph books, home accessories, clothing, luggage and furniture, all curated by the owners (founders of fashion label Gant). A destination in itself, Rialto also has a chic courtyard café that offers elegant Mediterranean fare, coffee and treats. Further along Sant Feliu are Yvonne Rohe, which sells funky beachwear and accessories, and Estilo Sant Feliu, the boho-chic boutique that boasts distinctive Mallorquin homewares and gifts.
After getting your shopping fix, head northwest towards Plaça Major: a gorgeous square with gothic, lemon- and lime-colored buildings filled with street performers and outdoor markets. At the entrance to the square, stop into Mallorca Delicatessen to sample fresh soppressata. Every inch of this small shop is decorated with displays of local products, including cheese, cured meat, liquor and honey. This is also a great place to purchase non-perishable souvenirs, like traditional Mallorquin olive oil.
Exit the square and continue southeast to finish the afternoon with a sugar rush from a treat courtesy of Ca'n Joan De S'aigo. An institution in Palma, the café is famed as the city’s oldest gelato parlor (it was founded in 1700). Savor the homemade gelato and delicious ensaïmada pastries: the flaky breaded treat made with a variety of sweet and savory fillings (including chocolate, sausage and pumpkin).
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