Sunday, 19 March 2017

Mallorca Day 48 - Road trip to the southern tip.

This started out as a birdwatching trip. Dad looked up on the internet where the best places were to see birds and the couple of websites he found were full of enthusiasm but short on directions. We got the general idea that an area known as Ses Salines had marshes for birdwatching and set out. My only criteria where that I didn't want to have to go through Palma and would rather go on secondary roads than motorways.
We drove through the tunnel, Bunyola, Santa Maria, Santa Eugenia, Algaida (where we got totally lost in narrow one-way streets and miraculously ended up on the right road), Llucmajor, Campos, and Santanyi. The centre of the island is quite flat and on our secondary roads we were driving between low stone walls that divided citrus, olive, grape vine and almond orchards sometimes with flocks of sheep. We dodged groups of cyclists and crept through towns and villages that had two way streets but one lane was entirely taken up with parked cars (which resulted in a "dodge and dance" as I pulled over to let a car come by and then someone in the opposite direction pulled into a gap to let me go by, nods of thanks). It's Sunday so everyone was pretty "chill" and courteous. We stopped for coffee and a stretch after an hour an a half.
We ended up at Cala Llombards,
a totally unspoiled little beach on a deep inlet.
There was a small parking lot and we walked onto the beach, found some rocks to sit on and had our picnic lunch.
There were a few families, some groups of young people, a few topless sunbathers and a couple of wandering dogs. Crystal turquoise water, soft sand and rocks to dive off. No hotels, no restaurants, no bars, I was amazed that this kind of place still exists on Mallorca.
Heading for Ses Salines again, I pulled a quick left when I saw a sign for a lighthouse. 15 km of empty road through flattish, agricultural land with no sign of life, we suddenly came to lines of cars parked on both sides of the road, and the lighthouse at Cap de ses Salines.
That's where we were, that red dot right at the southern most point of Mallorca. The sea around is a protected Marine Reserve.
Dad opted to stay in the car and read and Mum and I walked onto the rocks, found a place to sit and sketched the islands off the southern tip; Illa des Cornills and Illa de Cabrera. Those yellow flowers were abuzz with bees.
There were lighthouses out there too.
We had thought we would sketch the lighthouse but it had been renovated in 1957 and was rather uninspiring. The area seemed quite deserted. All those cars, and the people were hidden between the rocks that stretched down the coast on both sides of the lighthouse.
I found the rock piles more inspiring.
Back to the car and still in search of birds. We accidentally (even Dad, who was map reading would agree) ended up on the right little road to the salt marshes.
Huge piles of salt with a store selling Flor de Sel. We didn't stop.
Salt flats, perfect waterfowl environment, but we really didn't see much. In the distance, a flock of flamingos.
A Redlegs.
Quite a few Shell Ducks

and a couple of Stonechats.
After driving slowly through the area and then back again we headed back home. Back the same way we came, getting turned around in the one way streets of the same little town.
Passing fields that were painted in these white, daisy like flowers or yellow ones.
We left at about 11 and were home by about 5. This island is big enough to be interesting but small enough to get across in a day trip.

1 comment:

  1. Ooo, the Stonechat looks cute! Did you swim at Cala Llombards beach? It looks incredible, like a movie/postcard.