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Cala D'or or Puerto Pollensa - Which one to choose?

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Puerto Pollensa or Cala D'Or which is best?

At the heart of the Balearic Islands, Mallorca, has some fantastic coastal towns. People often want to know which place to choose as a base for their holiday. Two often discussed locations are the popular coastal towns of Puerto Pollensa in the North and Cala D'Or on the south coast. Both beckon travellers with promises of sun-soaked beaches, vibrant shops, delectable restaurants, and a plethora of activities.

This comprehensive guide goes beyond the surface, exploring the nuances of each destination, from the captivating shores to the pulsating nightlife, aiding you in choosing the perfect Mediterranean retreat. Which one will come out on top?

Puerto Pollensa each with sun lounges and beach straw umbrellas
Beach Puerto Pollensa

Let's begin with Mallorca's number one attraction, it's pristine sandy beaches. Mallorca is a beach lovers haven.


Puerto Pollensa:

Beyond its sun-drenched shores and dramatic scenery, Puerto Pollensa. offers an array of water-based activities. Boat charters and catamaran excursions allow you to explore the coastline and secluded coves, providing aunique perspective of the island. For the adventurous, jet-skiing and parasailing are popular choices, offering an adrenaline rush against thebackdrop of the Tramuntana mountains. Boat trips to Formentor Peninsula unveilhidden beaches and pristine landscapes.

A short drive from Puerto Pollensa, Cap de Formentor showcasesdramatic cliffs and panoramic viewpoints. Nature lovers can explore the S'Albufereta Natural Reserve, a haven for birdwatching and tranquil walks.

Closeby beaches include the intimate coves of Cala Sant Vincente and the multi award winning Blue Flag Playa de Muro beach, recently revealed as the best natural beach in the world with the most natural wonder.

The beach at Formentor is another favourite with natural beauty, white sands and crystal-clear waters you really are spoilt for choice.

Beach and sea activities for the fit and adventure seekers include scuba diving, kite boarding, stand up paddle (SUP) board, kayaking, sailing and windsurfing. Just about any beach and sea activity can be found in and around Puerto Pollensa.

Cala d'Or:

Cala d'Or's intimate coves invite exploration. Kayaking and paddle boarding are popular activities, allowing you to navigate the crystal-clear waters and discover hidden corners along the coastline.Chartering a boat for a day trip to the Mondragó Natural Park is a serene escape, combining secluded beaches with nature trails. Snorkelling enthusiasts will find the underwater world around Cala d'Or's rocky shores teeming with marine life.

A short drive from Cala d'Or, the Cuevas del Drach (DragonCaves) in Porto Cristo offer a mesmerising underground experience with stalactite formations and an underground lake. The nearby Cala Mondragó, within Mondragó Natural Park, is a pristine beach surrounded by pine trees, perfectfor a relaxing day in nature.

Alittle further along the coast you’ll find the amazing Es Trenc natural beach surrounded by the national parkland. There are some areas of the beach designated to naturists however the majority of visitors you’ll find in swimwear!

Shopaholic's Delight:

Mallorca Shopping

Puerto Pollensa:

Puerto Pollensa's shopping experience extends beyond boutiques.The Weekly Wednesday Puerto Pollensa Market, located in the Plaza Miquel Caplllonchis a vibrant affair where artisans showcase their creations. The Old TownMarket, held every Sunday, is a treasure trove of local produce and handmade crafts. For a unique shopping experience, explore the narrow streets and discover independent galleries, offering a glimpse into the island's vibrantarts scene.

A visit to Pollensa Old Town is a cultural excursion. Wander through its cobbled streets, visit the historic church, and climb the Calvari Steps for panoramic views of the surroundings.

Cala d'Or:

Cala d'Or's shopping districts are an extension of its upscale . The Porto Petro Market, held on Wednesdays, is a delightful mix of local products and artisanal crafts. The town centre, with its boutiques and designer stores, is a paradise for fashion enthusiasts.

Venture to Santanyí, a short drive away, where the Saturday market unveils a myriad of stalls featuring handmade goods, jewellry, and local produce. Cala d'Or's sophisticated ambiance extends to its shopping areas, creating a seamless blend of luxury and tradition.

Culinary Adventures:

Puerto Pollensa:

Puerto Pollensa's gastronomic offerings are diverse. For a culinary adventure, embark on a tapas tour through the town, savouring local delicacies at each stop. The seafront is adorned with seafood restaurants, such as Los Faroles where you can relish freshly caught fish and paella. El Posito,located close to the main square, offers traditional Spanish dishes in a charming setting, especially busy for the local customary “Menu del Dia”. You can read our guide to the best restaurants in Puerto Pollensa and the best tapas in Puerto Pollensa.

Visit the local wineries in the region for a taste of Mallorcan wines. Finca Can Axartell, set against a scenic backdrop, provides a delightful wine-tasting experience.

Cala d'Or:

Cala d'Or's dining scene caters to the sophisticated palate. The Marina is home to gourmet restaurants like Port Petit, where you can enjoy Mediterranean cuisine with a touch of creativity. Es Moli Den Bou, surrounded by lush gardens, offers a serene atmosphere for a romantic dinner.

For a taste of local flavor, visit C'an Bernat, known for its traditional Mallorcan dishes. Don't forget to explore the culinary offerings in the nearby Santanyí, where charming eateries like Sa Botiga show case the region's gastronomic diversity.

Nightlife Extravaganza:

Puerto Pollensa:

While Puerto Pollensa is more laid-back, there is a moderately vibrant nightlife scene. Along the seafront promenade you can find live music at barslike the Lemon Bar part of the Daina Hotel. Stay later at one of later night bars such as Tecun, Bonys or Rustic Café. Feeling like a boogie, then head for the legendary Chivas Night Club, the only club in Puerto Pollensa that has stood the test of time and has been open for decades.

For a relaxed evening, head to the chilled terrace at the Illa d'Or Hotel, where you can enjoy cocktails with a view of the bay. The evening ambiance in Puerto Pollensa is a perfect blend of mellow and lively, cateringto various tastes. Or head for a cocktail at the Terraza 360 next the RCNPP YachtClub

Cala d'Or:

Cala d'Or's nightlife exudes sophistication. The Marina hosts stylish cocktail bars, such as La Scala, offering a chic setting to enjoy the night. For those seeking a livelier atmosphere, Dugan’s Irish bar offers live music.

The town's cocktails bars offers something for everyone, head to Bongo’s if you’re looking for a lively atmosphere or chill out at Lola’s with a cocktail or sangria with some tapas or pinxos  while the DJ plays chillout beach vibes. Cala d'Or's nightlife is a refined affair, appealing to those who prefer a touch ofelegance in their nocturnal escapades.

Distance from Airport:

Puerto Pollensa:

Palma de Mallorca Airport is the gateway to both destinations.Puerto Pollensa is approximately 65 kilometers away from the airport, and thejourney takes around 45 minutes by car. Taxis, rental cars, and shuttleservices are readily available for a convenient transfer.

Cala d'Or:

Cala d'Or is located approximately 60 kilometers from Palma deMallorca Airport, with a travel time of around 45 minutes by car. Similartransportation options, including taxis and rental cars, provide easy access tothe destination.


As we conclude this one-stop guide, the allure of PuertoPollensa and Cala d'Or unfolds in infinite dimensions. Puerto Pollensa, withits expansive beaches, diverse activities, and upmarket family-friendly charm,contrasts with the intimate coves, upscale experiences, and sophisticatedambiance of Cala d'Or. The choice between these two Balearic treasures dependson your preferences – whether you seek vibrant energy or refined tranquility, bothdestinations promise an unforgettable Mediterranean escape. Embrace the allureof the Balearic Islands, and let either Puerto Pollensa or Cala d'Or become the canvas for your dream vacation, weaving memories that last a lifetime.

Which one you will prefer will come down to how you gel with the ambience and your personal experiences of the people you meet an the experiences you will have, we know for sure that many people have their favourite one and will return year after year to enjoy it all again. There is no right or wrong choice here, we're sure you will love both places.