In his best-loved poem, the 20th-century Spanish poet Antonio Machado tells us, “Caminante, no hay Camino, se hace camino al andar”. It can be roughly translated as “Traveller, there is no path, your path is made by walking”; to paraphrase the great Machado. We can confidently say, “Traveller, there is a path” in Mallorca … many paths.
It seems remarkable that you can still find such marvelous and well-preserved natural environments in one of the most visited tourist destinations on the Mediterranean. Trails that date from Roman or medieval times, woodland paths used, until relatively recently, by colliers; tracks that ascend crags and cliffs or descend following dry streams; stone paths shared with mountain goats …. Paths waiting to be followed!
Hiking in Mallorca gives you the opportunity can discover stunning scenery. Pathways initially used by smugglers which lead to some of the most inaccessible corners of the coastline, and to ancient watchtowers built to defend the island against marauding pirates, “marges” or stone terraces used for cultivating fruit and vegetables, ice-storage structures, wells, and cisterns, or refuges for both humans and livestock.
Admittedly the Serra de Tramuntana attracts most ramblers and hikers in Mallorca. However, in general, the island boasts an impressive network of footpaths that traverse more gentle terrain while still offering plenty in the way of history and culture.
Of these, the best known is the “Ruta de la Pedra en sec.” Following it, we can discover interesting historical remains, myths, legends, and the traditions, architecture, customs, gastronomy, and handicrafts of this privileged corner of the island. Many parts of the route run close to the coast and up to some of the highest peaks of the Serra. We can behold spectacularly diverse landscapes, flora, and fauna here, from shady woodland to craggy peaks or abrupt coastlines to Mediterranean shrubland.
Although the route is suitable for hikers of all ages, is signposted, and features several mountain refuges open to the public, the Serra also hosts more demanding challenges such as the 105 kilometer-long Ultra Mallorca.
The hiking between the quaint villages of Valldemosa and Deià is part of the GR221 Dry Stone Route, which runs from Port d’Andratx, in the SW of Mallorca, to Pollença in the NW, following ancient cobbled paths through the Tramuntana mountain range. This is a medium difficulty walk is Deià that takes about 5 hours to complete
Difficult and potentially dangerous, the trek in the natural monument of Torrent de Pareis is one of the most difficult on the island. You will climb and descend through a fantastic landscape as the route involves finding a way through and over the impressive boulders and rock formations that form the canyon bed.
Just as impressive, but not as dangerous, the trail to The Torre Nova de Cap Vermell perfectly combines nature and adventure with excellent sightseeing. The 3km trail is not a difficult one and is very suitable for families with children. The route can be made longer and more challenging by taking Sa Font de Sa Cala as the starting point.
Choose your path, come suitably equipped, press on and discover.