Following our tradition of impromptu vacationing, Piers only started Google searching for our next location a day before we had to leave our current location.
We were in Palma, the main city in Mallorca. We decided we wanted to stay at a beach, next, so Piers started going through lists on the Internet.
First hotel on the list was full.
Second hotel was full.
Third hotel had one vacancy. Bingo.
So it was totally due to chance that Cala d’Or became our next location.
Cala Esmerelda cove in the city of Cala d’Or.
Cala d’Or is a resort city built around many beautiful cove beaches which look like they could be the smallest beaches in the world. (I think “cala” means cove.)
They’re the smallest I have ever seen, anyway. I never knew beaches could be that tiny.
Although tiny, they’re beautiful. Each features clean, fine sand as well as sparkling clear seawater lapping gently at the rocks forming a beautiful natural cove that, at a point, widens out into the Mediterranean Sea.
We stayed at the Barcelo Ponent Playa Hotel, built right on top of Cala Ferrera beach, which boasts a whole 60 metres of shoreline, the longest in Cala d’Or. (The shortest shoreline belongs to Cala Serena at 20 metres.)
Cala Ferrera Beach
The shore length may be short but the width is something else!
Piers arranges our parasol and towels so that I get shade and he gets sun.
Our view from our camp spot.
Piers will kill me for this photo.
There are fruit hawkers on almost every beach presenting their sales pitches by wailing in singsong manner.
View of our hotel from the beach at night.
While the beach was lovely, I can’t say the same for the hotel.
We had a good first impression. The lobby looked decent, the staff was very friendly and helpful, and we had a basic but clean room with a balcony overlooking the hotel pool.
Barcelo Ponent Playa Hotel
It took some time before we realised that the aircon wasn’t working. It blew stale, lukewarm air. At night, the air outside was cooler than in our room. The tap water had a diluted salty taste.
On our second night, I woke up in the middle of the night with a hangover (thanks to our three jugs of sangria), feeling intensely dehydrated after two sessions of throw-up. We had run out of water and, obviously, the tap water couldn’t be drunk.
There was no room service and no bar fridge. It was past 2 am. I resigned myself to death by dehydration.
Fortunately, Piers suddenly remembered vending machines at the car park so he ran out to get some water for me.
Only Coke was available, but that was okay. That was good. It made me feel better.
And then the noise started.
Every half an hour, a truck or a coach would pull into the hotel driveway, either chugging loudly or reverse beeping annoyingly. Some would stay for only two minutes before rumbling off, but some chugged in the driveway for a good ten minutes.
I thought they were maybe trucks delivering goods or something, but Piers said they were coaches delivering tourists (he went out the balcony to look once). This went on every 30-60 minutes for the next five hours.
Why would there be so many tourists arriving nonstop in the middle of the night?
We hardly slept all night and, at 8 am, I woke a groggy Piers up for breakfast because my hangover was demanding fruit and toast in epic quantities.
I was glad we were only there for two nights.
Sangria aka source of my hangover. One jug at lunch and two jugs at dinner.
If we were to go to Cala d’Or again, I might choose to stay at the Inturotel Cala Esmerelda Hotel, which is situated by the Cala Esmerelda beach.
It’s only a short walk from where we stayed. Wherever you stay in Cala d’Or, you’d probably be within walking proximity of at least two beaches.
Cala Esmerelda is smaller than Cala Ferrera but prettier, all 40 metres of its shoreline.
Cala Esmerelda Beach
We briefly visited a third beach, Cala d’Or beach, but I don’t know why it’s called that, since it’s one of the smaller ones (35m shoreline) and not like in the centre of Cala d’Or or anything.
The area around this beach seems quite luxurious, populated by beautiful white holiday bungalows. The Cala d’Or Hotel is right beside the beach, looking gorgeously Mediterranean. I would love to stay there if we ever go back to Mallorca.
The beach is really crowded though, cos it’s so tiny. But the cove is just as beautiful as the others, if not more.
Well, they kind of all look the same after a while, to be honest, so I’m very proud of myself for being able to remember which is which.
Cala d’Or Beach
Apart from beaches, there’s a nice marina in Cala d’Or filled with Sunseeker boats which Piers excitedly recognised because Sunseekers are made in Poole, the town next door to us.
Piers is a bit silly about boats, almost as silly as he is about planes and cars.
When we’re at a marina, I tend to marvel at the water sparkling in the sun while he drools at the big boats.
We’d go, “Wow!!!!” in unison but we’d be wowing at different things.
Marina Cala d’Or
Along the banks of the marina are elegantly styled restaurants and club houses. We ate at one of those restaurants on our last day in Cala d’Or.
I had roast suckling pig. It is apparently a speciality in Mallorca.
It was alright. Tasted a bit like German pork knuckles. Chinese suckling pig tastes better, but that’s a different dish, I suppose, since we mostly eat only the skin.
The French onion soup was great. I have never liked French onion soup but have acquired a taste for it since coming to the UK.
The carbonara was not so great.
Restaurants are like a box of chocolate. You never know whether the dish you pick is good or bad. Until it’s too late.
There’s a nice Mexican grill called El Patio in the town centre at Cala Ferrera. You can’t miss it. The town centre is tiny.
You go up to the second floor where it’s really breezy, taking care not to trip over the fake Mexican dude lying on the steps.
El Patio Restaurant
I don’t know if the grills are any good but I really enjoyed the breeze.
They serve unlimited BBQ pork ribs there (eat all you can for one price) and it looked quite good. We saw a guy having it.
We were kind of full at that time so only ordered some snacks. They were very good.
My fried chicken wings were perfectly crispy, juicy and tasty, salted just right. They came with an interesting dip that was sort of like a cross between sweet chilli sauce and BBQ sauce.
My grilled corn was so sweet, juicy and crunchy, just the right amount of doneness. The corn came with a giant pat of delicious herb butter which would be the death of you if you attempted to clean it all up.
I would have gone back there for another meal since we were in Cala d’Or for about three days, but then our hotel booking included complimentary breakfast and dinner (unremarkable buffet fare) so we didn’t have many meals outside the hotel.
We just had a lot of sangria.
You must have sangria if you go to Spain. We had five jugs at different establishments and they were all great.
Okay, I think I’ve just about covered everything I can (or want to) about Cala d’Or.
Coming up in the next post, the amazing gorgeous villa where we spent a week of our vacation.
Check back soon!
Sheylara at the Marina.