By Laura Kemp • 01 March 2023 • 10:07
Image - elvirkins/shutterstock
Named as one of the world’s best places to live by the Sunday Times, this so-called ‘pearl of the Mediterranean’ offers a vibrant lifestyle, buzzing nightlife, wonderful gastronomy and plenty of history.
A popular place for visitors and expats, Palma is also home to more than half of Mallorca’s population. Palma has something to offer everyone throughout the year, unlike many other destinations in Mallorca, and has the benefits of a spectacular seafront and proximity to stunning beaches, as well as a lively cosmopolitan city full of events and activities.
To make moving to Palma, Mallorca, a bit easier, the Euro Weekly News has put together this handy guide to everything you need to know before finalising your decision.
Palma, also known as Palma de Mallorca, is the capital city of the beautiful Spanish Balearic Islands, on the south coast of the island of Mallorca.
Palma airport, also known as Son Sant Joan Airport, is situated around five miles east of Palma. It’s a large international airport which serves the island and is the third largest airport in Spain after Madrid and Barcelona.
It is very straightforward to get to the city of Palma from the airport, with a taxi taking just 15 minutes. The EMT number 1 bus runs from the airport directly to Plaça d’Espanya in the heart of the city, where most major bus lines and train terminals are located.
Mallorca in general has quite mild weather throughout the year, with the summers reaching high temperatures – perfect for spending time on the beautiful beaches.
September is the hottest month in Palma with an average temperature of 25°C (77°F) and the coldest is March at 14.5°C (58°F) with the most daily sunshine hours at 11 in July.
During the year, there is little rainfall in Palma and the average annual temperature is 17.7 °C (63.9°F).
Buying a property in Mallorca not only offers you a life drenched in sunshine but many other benefits. The island has a thriving property market with various property types to suit single people, couples, families and retirees wishing to move to Mallorca.
Prices for apartments have reached a stable level in Palma. In the prime location of Genova, the average price for an apartment is €1 million.
In very good locations, such as the historic centre, Portixol, Es Molinar, and Ciudad Jardín, asking prices are between €700,000 and €800,000. The neighbourhoods of Santa Catalina and San Agustín display average prices of between €600,000 and €700,000.
In El Terreno and La Bonanova, apartments are on the market for between €450,000 and €600,000 on average. The area around El Arenal continues to provide properties starting at €400,000.
Many people move to Palma for the quality of life, ease of access to the UK and Spain, great food and produce and a more outdoor lifestyle surrounded by beautiful beaches and mountains. But how expensive is it to live in Palma?
The cost of living in Palma is quite similar to mainland Spain including areas like Madrid, Barcelona and Bilbao. A couple could live on €1,200 a month in Palma, excluding rent.
Eating out will cost around €15 per person at an inexpensive restaurant and around €25 per person at a mid-range restaurant. The price of beer and wine is inexpensive.
Fresh fruit and vegetables can be purchased at one of the island’s farmers’ markets, as well as meat and cheese, making grocery shopping inexpensive compared to shopping at large supermarkets.
Rent and property prices are attractive for expats, with a central, three-bedroom apartment costing around €1,400 a month. Properties in smaller towns can be considerably cheaper, particularly if they need some TLC. In the centre of Palma, property costs around €4,000 per square metre.
Basic utilities for a two-bedroom apartment cost around €115 a month.
Construction of the Cathedral of Mallorca started in the 13th century and ended in the 1630s. The Cathedral is in the Mediterranean Gothic tradition, but over the centuries, it has incorporated the cultural forms of the modern and contemporary periods.
More commonly referred to La Seu, this impressive building has an amazing buzz around it and a wonderful atmosphere. As the most emblematic building in the city and one of Europe’s tallest Gothic structures, the Cathedral de Mallorca is a must-visit.
Full of wonderful and traditional bars, restaurants and cafes to sit and watch the world go by, Palma’s picturesque old town also boasts many of the must-see tourist attractions, art galleries and museums.
Wonder around the maze of quaint narrow streets and lose yourself in the unspoilt and relaxed cafe culture.
Escape into an extraordinary marine experience and connect with the ocean at the huge Palma Aquarium! Enjoy inspirational exhibits, interact with the sealife and choose from loads of activities.
From seahorses to octopuses, rays to sharks, discovering what lies beneath this incredible part of the Mediterranean is a perfect day out for all of the family.
This large, 14th-century castle overlooking Palma now houses a museum and is well worth climbing the many steps to experience the views from the top.
This well-preserved castle offers lots of information about the history of Palma and once you reach the roof you can enjoy 360-degree panoramas of the area, including fantastic views towards the cathedral.
Paseo del Borne, or ‘Passeig des Born’ in Catalan, is arguably the most elegant avenue in Palma. Many luxury designers such as Rolex, Louis Vuitton, Carolina Herrera, and Sandro have established shops here, and the area has been nicknamed the Golden Mile.
If shopping isn’t really your thing, there are plenty of lovely cafes with terraces strategically placed to enjoy people-watching with a glass of vino under the Mediterranean sun.
Palma’s most important markets are Mercat de l’Olivar, Mercat de Santa Catalina, Pere Garau Market and the gastronomic Market of San Juan.
These vibrant markets not only offer handmade goods, quality products, clothes and fresh produce such as fish, fruit and vegetables, but they are a great way to get to know the locals and the area.
The Royal Palace of La Almudaina, which dates back to the 14th century, is the official residence of the King and Queen during their stays in Mallorca and an important landmark in Palma.
This is an architectural marvel, being a largely intact building of Moorish origin, with rooms of epic scale, soaring arches and immense walls, that is a must-visit in Palma.
This prominent public square known for its frequent outdoor craft market also has lots of wonderful shops and cafes to enjoy.
This large rectangular plaza is surrounded by beautiful buildings and is a popular meeting point for locals. Surely not to be missed, this lovely space in the middle of the city is full of history and Mallorcan culture.
There’s no need to travel far from the city to take a refreshing dip in the Mediterranean or sunbathe by the water. Palma’s urban beaches are within a short walk, bus ride or cycle from the city centre.
These beaches have all of the elements of a perfect day out, including fine sand, cool waters, and boho-style urban beach clubs.
There are so many amazing towns to discover near Palma, all easily accessible by bus or car. Buses regularly travel from the centre of Palma, making it really easy to explore the different villages and towns.
Visit the historical town of Alcudia, the mountainous town of Valldemossa, the picturesque village of Soller or the paradisiacal Port d’Andratx.
This Belgian bistro with Mediterranean touches uses seasonal products to create fresh and delicious dishes. Restaurante Toque serves dishes for all tastes, including mussels grilled or en cocotte, snails and a 3-page menu of Belgian beers (plus wines, of course).
Vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options are available here.
Website: Click here
Address: Calle Federico Garcia Lorca 6, 07014 Palma de Mallorca
Booking: +34 971 28 70 68
This Michelin Star restaurant is well worth a visit for an amazing culinary experience in a wonderful atmosphere. Located in the heart of Palma, overlooking the Torrent de Sa Riera, it boasts an intimate, bistro-style ambience with attractive bonuses such as a vertical garden and highly attentive service. A five-course menu is available at lunchtime (Tuesday to Friday), with a more gastronomic seven-course option on offer every evening and for lunch on Saturdays.
Address: Paseo Mallorca 20, 07012 Palma de Mallorca
Booking: +34 971 78 11 19
This hidden gem is chic as well as casual, with a great atmosphere that creates a wonderful experience for the whole family. Try dishes like pork belly and curry ice cream, entrecôte and bone marrow chimichurri, and fun desserts including their ‘Childhood Feelings’ – candyfloss, ice cream, popping candy and popcorn – the best end to the night for those with a sweet tooth!
Address: Placa Progres 15, 07013 Palma de Mallorca
Booking: +34 871 04 51 74
If you fancy some Indian food, Agra Tandoori is one of the most popular in Palma, known for its authentic and flavourful dishes. A firm favourite for repeat customers, this restaurant has all of the typical Indian and Pakistani dishes you would expect in addition to lots of great vegetarian, vegan and gluten free choices.
Address: Avenida Gabriel Roca, 23, 07014 Palma de Mallorca
Booking:+34 971 101 504
If you are looking for typical homemade Spanish tapas for a great price, Es Baret is a must-visit. Try their paella which is made fresh every day, roasted lamb shoulder, crispy croquettes, meatballs, chicken wings and more.
Vegan and vegetarian options available.
Address: Avenida Gabriel Alomar, 10, 07006 Palma de Mallorca, Majorca Spain
Booking: +34 670 39 46 52
If you’re craving some sushi, Japanese restaurant Izakaya uses traditional Japanese techniques to create dishes to be enjoyed in a warm and comfortable atmosphere. Their sushi is made fresh piece by piece, inviting you on an experience of flavours and a walk through Japanese haute cuisine!
Vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options available.
Address: Carrer d’Espartero, 15, 07014 Palma de Mallorca
Booking: +34 871 03 76 33
If you are looking for the best steak in Palma, look no further than Asador Bolixe Cocina Esencial, an authentic Argentinian grill restaurant with huge portions! Known for great service and friendly staff, this restaurant is also renowned for its succulent meats straight off the grill, amazing side dishes, decadent desserts and great wines.
Vegetarian options available.
Address: Calle Eusebi Estada 33B 200m from Plaza Espana, 07004 Palma de Mallorca
Booking: +34 871 94 94 47
This comfortable and old-style Spanish cafe serves local sweets, typical cafe con leche and ice-creams that have customers queuing out of their door! Ca’n Joan de s’Aigo has a wonderful traditional atmosphere, and some even say they sell the best ensaimada (a traditional Mallorcan pastry) on the island.
Address: Calle de Can Sanc 10 07001, 07001 Palma de Mallorca
Booking: +34 971 71 07 59
For incredible Italian cuisine, Gigi’s Piccolo Ristorante has fresh pizza, pasta, ravioli, vegetables, cheeses, and traditional Tiramisu. The reviews for this restaurant speak for themselves, and we highly recommend the truffle ravioli, spaghetti bolognese, and buffalo mozzarella.
Address: Calle Cazador 3, 07002 Palma de Mallorca
Booking: +34 645 45 99 70
You can’t beat a good burger! Homemade patties cooked to your liking, plenty of extra toppings, freshly-made sauces and succulent steaks – La Nueva Burguesa is anything but your average burger restaurant.
Address: Calle Sant Magi 76, 07013 Palma de Mallorca
Booking: +34 871 50 95 30
When moving to a new location, making sure there are some great schools is essential, and Palma has some impressive international and local schools to choose from.
Palma boasts international schools such as the International School Palma and Baleares International College, Sant Agusti, in addition to Bellver International College, the first private British school in both Mallorca and Spain.
Having access to quality healthcare is vital when moving to a new home and Palma has an impressive public health service as well as private healthcare options.
With more than 1000 hospital beds and 26 operating rooms, the University Hospital Son Espases is the largest hospital in the Balearic Islands. It is equipped with state-of-the-art health technology and has its own research and teaching.
The university hospital has a 24-hour emergency call number.
Telephone: +34 871 20 50 00
Address: Carretera de Valldemossa, 79, 07120 Palma
The Palma Clinic can attend to you in English, German and Spanish and cover a wide spectrum of health concerns. The Palma Clinic offers competent outpatient treatment at a high international level in a private atmosphere. The direct connection to the Quirón private clinic also enables inpatient care in one of the most modern hospitals in the Balearic Islands.
Telephone: +34 971 90 52 02
Address: Cami dels Reis 308, Palma de Mallorca
The English-speaking staff here consists of two Dutch dentists, four dental nurses and a qualified oral hygenist. The team speaks English, Spanish, French, Dutch and German and can treat a wide range of issues including general check-ups and emergency consultations.
Telephone: +34 971 75 06 89
Address: Carrer de Jesus 36a-1B, Palma de Mallorca, 07010
Moving somewhere new is exciting but it’s important to know the contact information for the emergency services.
That´s why we have included information on important contacts when moving to Palma.
Emergency services, including health, fire and police: 112
National police: 091
Local police: 092
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Originally from UK, Laura is based in Axarquia and is a writer for the Euro Weekly News covering news and features.
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