In case you’ve spent the last 72 hours living under a rock: Love Island is back.
Sherif is regretting his choice of shirt, Anton is snaking it up because there’s always one, and Amber is making young people everywhere wince by describing 28 as ‘old’.
But what about the eponymous ‘island’, which, frankly, the show grossly under-uses? Assuming you’re not one of the contestants, and therefore confined to barracks, here are a few reasons to visit this multi-talented Mediterranean wonderland…
There’s plenty to like about Sa Calobra – a postcard-perfect fishing village snuggled between mountain and sea – but this particular day out really is about the journey, rather than the destination.
The only road in winds around a succession of hairpin bends, offering panoramic views both up and down the mountain. Gluttons for punishment can join the hordes of masochistic cyclists straining and sweating up the mountain. A favourite among professionals, Bradley Wiggins is rumoured to hold the unofficial course record.
If there’s three things Mallorca is famous for, it’s sun, sand, and sea.
Ok, we know that’s basically one thing, but the Mallorcan seaside has its reputation for a reason. Cliffs, coves and even a few coral spots dot the coastline, mixing romantic, secluded bays with bustling beaches obscured by sun umbrellas.
With more than 60 blue flag beaches in Mallorca – internationally recognised for ‘superior quality’ – there really aren’t many wrong answers.
Unfairly overshadowed by Mallorca’s reputation for parties, beaches and beach parties, capital city Palma quietly boasts a melting pot of intriguing Mediterranean architecture.
Top of the list is La Seu: A cathedral built on top of a mosque, built on top a church, and designed by Barcelona’s favoured son, Antoni Gaudi. Remnants of a Moorish past remain in the Banys Arabs (Moorish baths), while the city streets are laced with examples of ‘modernisme’, the Catalan answer to art nouveau.
Go anywhere in Southern Europe, (or indeed Eastern Europe, North Africa and Turkey), and it’s odds on the Romans came, saw, conquered, and covered the land with cultural heritage.
Mallorca is no different, and the ancient city of Pollentia – said to have been founded by a Roman consul in 123BC – marks the most complete ruins on the island. Parts of the site are still being excavated, but the public can peruse the theatre, forum, and residential area of La Portella.
An unexpectedly grand mountain range dominating Mallorca’s Northern reaches, the 90km Serra de Tramuntana became the island’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2011. There are any number of hiking trails traversing the rugged crags and plunging precipices, though be wary of venturing far in the heat of the mid-summer sun.
Hidden among the cliffs lie some of Mallorca’s most Insta-worthy treasures – the Lluc Monastery, the ancient watchtower of La Torre del Verger, and the picturesque village of Galilea, the highest settlement on the island with vertiginous views of the ocean.
Ok, this one is definitely not for everyone. Its reputation precedes it from shows like Sun, Sex and Suspicious Parents and the always entertaining Ex On The Beach. It’s a premier destination for the school’s out ‘lads’ holiday’.
If you can handle the vomiting teenagers and diluted fish bowls, Magaluf has its reputation for a reason, and the half-mile strip is pure carnage night after night.
- Press Association