On your trip to Soller and Puerto de Soller you are in one of the most pristine regions of Mallorca and in a landscape of contrasts on the road. You will also experience the eventful history of the Balearic island at both places. Soller and its port Puerto de Soller are the heart of the “golden valley” – a fertile stretch of land in the Serra de Tramuntana, whose inhabitants have cultivated olives since ancient times and became rich in the 18th century through the cultivation of citrus fruits. In 2011, Soller was granted the status of UNESCO World Heritage Site. In the same year, the entire Serra de Tramuntana was declared a World Heritage Site.
Soller and Puerto de Soller have never been touched by mass tourism. In the first decades of the 20th century, they were popular vacation destinations for a middle-class public from all over Europe. Today, they are among the most endearing places in Mallorca and a refuge for individual tourists.
Soller and Puerto de Soller are located in the northwest of Mallorca, just over 30 kilometers from the island capital Palma. Soller is the cultural and business center of the Serra de Tramuntana.
You can get to Soller from Palma by car, by public bus or on a historic railroad line that has been in operation since 1913. The almost four kilometers between Soller and Puerto de Soller you put back, for example, with the historic streetcar.
Sights and destinations
A vacation in Soller and Puerto de Soller is, among other things, pure relaxation. It is best to just let yourself drift and enjoy the very individual atmosphere of these two resorts. The center of Soller is the Placa de la Constitucio, where numerous stores, cafes, tapas bars and restaurants are lined up. Its surroundings are also extremely well suited for a shopping spree. In addition to fashion, craft and souvenir stores, you will also find some traditional grocery stores in the center of Soller – often located in magnificent old town houses. In the market hall at the Placa Mercat there are daily fruits, vegetables, flowers as well as fresh fish.
Puerto de Soller is a picturesque port town that stretches along an almost circular bay. On its northeastern part are the moorings of numerous yachts and sailboats. On the promenade and on the Paseo Maritimo there are numerous gastronomic and shopping offers.
The parish church of Sant Bartomeu
The parish church of Sant Bartomeu in Soller dates from the 13th century, later acquired a Baroque structure and is considered the “Cathedral of the Serra de Tramuntana”. Of particular interest is its west facade, designed in 1904 by Joan Rubio i Bellver – a representative of Catalan modernism and a disciple of Antonio Gaudi. It was built with the funds of citizens of the city who had temporarily emigrated to America and France in the second half of the 19th century.
Banco de Soller and Art Nouveau Museum
As early as 1889, Rubio i Bellver had designed the modernist façade of the Banco de Soller, another building of the Catalan variant of European Art Nouveau. If you are interested in this architectural and artistic period, you will also find it in the Art Nouveau Museum Ca’n Prunera or on a walk through the cemetery of Soller, located on the southern outskirts of the city.
The Botanical Garden of Soller
The Soller Botanical Garden was created with a scientific approach and opened in 1992. It is organized by theme and offers an excellent overview of Mallorcan flora with about 400 plant species. Attached to the garden is a natural history museum with changing exhibitions.
Other museums in Soller
The Casa de Cultura in Soller houses archaeological finds, traditional furnishings and utensils, and an art exhibition that includes a real Picasso. The interior of the Soller train station exhibits works by Picasso and Catalan painter Joan Miro.
Maritime Museum in Puerto de Soller
The maritime museum of the coastal town is dedicated to shipbuilding and the maritime history of Soller and Puerto de Soller. It is located in the former chapel of Santa Caterina, dating from the 16th century, which for several years has also served as a performance venue for classical concerts.
Weapons and lighthouses of Puerto de Soller
From the defense and lighthouses of Puerto de Soller you have a magnificent view over the coastline and the mountain ranges in the hinterland. The 17th century Torre Picada is part of a historic defense system against pirate raids – it consisted of a total of 85 towers built along the coastline of Mallorca within sight of each other. The old Far de Bufador lighthouse at the northeastern entrance to the port is no longer in use. Its task was taken over by the Far de sa Creu from 1930. Another active lighthouse – the Far del Cap Gros – is located on the west side of the port entrance.
The fascination of the beaches near Soller and Puerto de Soller lies not least in the scenic contrasts between sea, coastline and mountains. Among the most beautiful beaches in the region are:
The beaches of Puerto de Soller
In the bay of Puerto de Soller there are two wonderful beaches, Playa Puerto de Soller and Playa d’en Repic. Both are covered with fine white sand, are shallow sloping and virtually current-free, which goes a long way to meeting the needs of families with smaller children. They are managed and guarded. Right on the beach and on the boardwalk behind it, you’ll find plenty of dining and entertainment options. For water sports, however, the beaches of Puerto de Soller are only suitable to a limited extent, since there is hardly any wind and no waves.
If you prefer to relax on a natural, quiet beach, Cala Deia is the right place for you. The wildly romantic bathing bay with its pebble and rocky beach lies at the foot of the wooded cliffs below the artists’ village of Deia. The beach slopes steeply into the depths, and the sea here can at times create quite substantial waves.
Apart from a restaurant with Mallorcan cuisine, there are no other services at Cala Deia. The parking lot of the beach is often quite crowded – we advocate to use a slightly more distant parking option and walk the last stretch to the beach.
Platja de Torrent de Pareis
Torrent de Pareis is one of the most fascinating beaches in Mallorca. It is located a little north of Soller and Puerto de Soller, near the coastal village of Sa Calobra and in the middle of a gorge through which a torrent of the same name pours into the sea. Already the way to this beach is an experience, because you have to pass two narrow caves. Afterwards you can relax on white sand and enjoy a unique view of the Mediterranean Sea. This beach has a medium slope, the sea doesn’t make big waves here. You won’t find any catering or other services here. Because of the excellent acoustics, choir concerts are held at Torrent de Pareis at irregular intervals.
Cala Tuent is an idyllic bathing bay surrounded by pine forests. It slopes moderately into deep water and does not have many waves. Outside the marked areas there can be stronger currents. Cala Tuent is easily accessible by car, on foot or by boat from Soller and Puerto de Soller as part of a somewhat longer tour. It is not managed. For your physical well-being provides the restaurant Es Vergeret with delicious Mallorcan cuisine. Its location on a cliff also makes it a great viewing spot.
Market day in Puerto de Soller is every Saturday. Market activity is concentrated in Placa Mercat and Placa de la Constitucio. The weekly market in Puerto de Soller takes place every Thursday. Among other things, the merchants offer regional food, household items, clothing, leather goods as well as soap. Olives and olive oil from the “golden valley” are nationally known specialties. Among the handicrafts of this region of Mallorca are traditional weavings.
In the surroundings of Soller and Puerto de Soller, especially nature lovers get their money’s worth. Hikers, cyclists and runners will find exciting and sometimes challenging routes here. On sailing trips you will experience the island and the sea from another fascinating side. Also for other activities Soller and Puerto de Soller are an ideal starting point. For example, we recommend these undertakings and excursions:
Railway trip to Palma with the Tren de Soller
The railroad line between the island capital Palma and Soller was inaugurated in 1913. The nostalgic trains are still running almost unchanged today. The Tren de Soller – the “Red Lightning” – is a popular and highly frequented tourist attraction. We recommend booking tickets well in advance, especially during the peak season.
The Tranvia – the streetcar line between Soller and Puerto de Soller – is an offshoot of this line. Originally it was used not only for passenger transport, but also as a means of transport for agricultural products and other economic goods.
Hiking in the “golden valley”
In the “golden valley” are Biniaraix and Fornalutx, two of the most picturesque and beautiful villages on Mallorca – Fornalutx has also officially received this award several times. On a hike there you will cross a cultural landscape that is unparalleled on the island. More adventurous hikers might combine such a tour with a climb to one of the surrounding peaks of the Serra de Tramuntana.
The Ecovinyassa is a farm on the path between Soller and Fornalutx. You can visit the citrus groves, olive groves and other agricultural crops without being accompanied by the operators – including tastings of just ripe fruit. At the end of the tour, a rustic meal and a farm store await you, where you can buy the farm’s produce as a snack or travel souvenir. Children in particular will also enjoy the animal activity on the farm grounds.
Deia and Valldemossa
A little further away are Deia and Valldemossa. Deia is considered THE artists’ village on Mallorca, a visit to the numerous studios can be combined well with a visit to the beach. In Valldemossa you walk in the footsteps of the composer Frederic Chopin and his girlfriend George Sand. The two spent the winter of 1838 here, which to this day accounts for the fame of this place.
In Soller and Puerto de Soller you will find all the ingredients for an all-round successful trip to Mallorca: Sun, beach and sea, impressive landscapes, historical sights, a variety of opportunities for an active vacation as well as excellent gastronomy and shopping offers. In both places you expect a very individual atmosphere and of course a magical Mediterranean flair.