I can’t believe that its been four weeks since I came back from Mallorca. I’ve been so busy that I have only now found time to write up this walk. It is a classic walk along the corniche path above the rocky coast from Cala Tuent to the Mirador ses Barques.
We made the journey from Porto Soller to Cala Tuent by taxi, enjoying the dramatic scenery as the road descends the many hairpin bends down to the cove. Before we started walking we paused for a cup of coffee at the Es Vergeret restaurante and took in the view over the cove.
Leaving the restaurant we began the steady climb along a dirt track signposted Sa Costera, Soller. The scenery was spectacular with some rocky pinnacles towering above us.
We continued along the partially cobbled track through some mixed woodland to pass through a gap in the wall to emerge onto the coastal footpath at the Coll de ne Pollo.
The view along the coast opened out and the colour of the water was amazing. For the next few kilometres we followed this path which ran approx. 200 metres above the sea. Apart from the incredible views I spotted a variety of wild flowers.
Digitalis dubia, the Balearic Foxglove.
It is similar to the larger and more common Digitalis purpurea but has fewer flowers. It has long soft hairs on the leaves and stems and on the outside of the corolla.
Further along the path I came across some Hypericum balearicum, St John’s Wort, the bright yellow flowers contrasting beautifully against the deep blue of the sea.
The plant as a long history as a medicinal herb. Centuries ago it was believed to drive away evil spirits and protect against witchcraft. Nowadays it is a popular remedy for mild depression and anxiety.
Next I found a species of Arum (I think). The leaves and green fruit appeared similar to Cuckoo-Pint, Arum maculatum, better known as Lords and Ladies that we find back home.
I a rocky crevice I found some Balearic Cyclamen, the first time I had seen any in flower along this stretch of path.
We now came to the end of the coastal section and a ‘Mallorcan Cairn’ indicated the start of the climb up to the Coll de Biniamar.
We paused at the top for lunch, we needed the rest and then dropped down the other side and crossed the streambed before climbing up the cobbled trail to the farm of Balitx d’Avall. Here we could stop for a well earned drink, the home made pastries were hard to resist. It is possible to look round part of the property and I viewed the chapel and some of the outbuildings.
Nearby a ewe and her lamb were seeking some shade by a wall.
Another more crafty sheep found the perfect spot inside a pipe.
We now had another climb to lead us out of the Balitx Valley.
There was more to photograph, a large flying insect and a snail.
At Balitx d’en Mig, the Middle Balitx Farm I just had to stop to photograph the ‘Bison Tree’
It probably needs pruning now but I have been fascinated by its shape over the years.
We continued our steady climb up the Balitx Valley passing The Upper Farm, Balitx de Dalt and through some well tended olive trees.
Eventually we reached the Mirador ses Barques, the lookout point for the boats, where we could relax and enjoy the view looking down on Porto Soller.
The port looked a long way off and we were glad that we had left cars at the Mirador. We could now drive down and enjoy a well earned pint of beer.
That night I ate out at Campo Sol, another of my favourite restaurants. It must be the best value on the island. The set three course meal is only 14 euro.
I started with Mallorcan soup. It is almost solid. Back home we would call it a ‘pan of scouse’
Next I had Rabbit and Onions and finished off with ‘Flan’ I think they only do one pudding in Mallorca.
Of course I accompanied the meal with a bottle of Anares Crianza Rioja. It cost more that the food but it was worth it. It was superb.
The restaurant was busy and I had a bit of a wait after my main course but I kept myself occupied. My mind went back to 1960 when I did a level Biology. I decided to try and reassemble the rabbit skeleton. I was making good progress until I found my third scapula. I then gave up. It must have been the wine
Later over coffee I sat and looked out at my favourite mountains. Es Cornadors and L’Ofre as they changed colour in the fading light.
A perfect end to the day.
There are some logistical problems to sort out by anyone thinking of doing this walk. It is usually done from the Mirador ses Barques and ending up on the beach at Cala Tuent. The return can then be made on the ferry. However if the sea is rough the ferry cannot get in to the jetty and you could be left stranded. In the last two years a yellow boat has run from Porto Soller to Cala Tuent at about 10.00 am.cost 15 euro, but the only time I tried it the captain was forced to turn back due to the sea conditions. Far easier to get a taxi to the start and walk back. The cost was 60 euro in May 2016. OK if there are four of you. I you are on holiday in Mallorca – go for it. It is one of the best walks on the island.