Cala d'Or Majorca Mallorca Travel Destinations Spain

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Cala d'Or is the smartest resort on Majorca's east coast and one of the most picturesque on the whole island. Having started life as a fishing village, it is now a development encompassing seven (sometimes eight it depends who's counting) small coves, all within the space of two miles. One of the middle coves is the original Cala d'Or whose name is synonymous with the tourist resort that grew up around it.

In the 1930s, when Cala d'Or's tourist contingent consisted of just a few artists, architect Pep Costa Ferrer designed a number of low slung, whitewashed, Ibizan style villas which have come to characterise the accommodation in this resort. Since then, there has been some major development, but it is less high rise than elsewhere on the island.

Cala d'Or has a reputation for being a bit chic. Do not expect St Tropez, but the fishing harbours have become marinas hosting fleets of luxury yachts. And while the resort has retained a villagey feel, it is definitely contemporary.

The biggest beach is the middle one, the pine fringed Cala Gran (100m by 40m). This is just to the east of the actual Cala d'Or, which used to be reserved for women only. On the other side of Cala d'Or, Cala Longa is the largest of the coves and has the principal marina. If you want to gawp at large yachts, this is the place to do it. Cala Longa penetrates inland, splitting the resort in two, and tourists tend to stick to one side or the other.

The pedestrian zone behind Cala Gran and Cala d'Or is the heart of the town, with the lion's share of boutiques, bars, restaurants and open air cafes. The tourist season is slow to start here, however, and many of the eateries do not open until late April.

During the day you can hop from beach to beach, trying to find the least crowded or the most amenable. Or you can try cycling, riding, golf, tennis and windsurfing. There is some decent birdwatching in the area and it is possible to arrange jeep safaris.

Nightlife is quieter than in the south west and is generally oriented towards hotel entertainments. There are a few discos, but ultra hedonists should probably think about staying elsewhere.