Doesn’t it feel like everyone’s in Europe right now? I’m not surprised to be seeing so many visiting that part of the world after two summers where we couldn’t get there. I had the opportunity to slip away to Spain in May earlier this year and I spent ten days on the east coast with my bestie travel friend. One of our stops was the island of Ibiza since it had held a top spot on my list of places to visit.
Ibiza is one of the Balearic Islands and it’s only accessible by air or ferry. The ferry boats we traveled on were far larger than we expected, they’re actually cargo ships that also have passenger sleeping quarters for overnight journeys. We watched semitrucks load on an off these giant ferries and it was amazing to watch the efficiency of the transport of goods on such a large scale. We crossed the Mediterranean from Barcelona to Ibiza on a ten hour overnight journey, and awoke to crew members knocking on our doors reminding us it was dawn and to hurry because it was time to offload with the cargo trucks, cars, and fellow passengers.
We arrived at dawn so after dropping off our luggage at our hotel, we had the luxury of having the streets of old town Ibiza to ourselves. The lamppost lights were still lit as the sun rose over the harbor casting its soft light on the boats parked in the marina.
For an hour we meandered through the streets of the old town, admiring the whitewashed buildings with colorful shutters and laundry hung out to dry in the European way. We shared the streets with only pigeons until the cafes began to open later that morning.
There’s a more modern business and residential section of Ibiza to the west which we walked to on foot after showering at our hotel. The promenade follows the curved shape of the beach and there are restaurants and bars where you can casually sip cold drinks and stare at the Mediterranean waters and beachgoers taking advantage of the sunshine and soft waves.
The lovely thing about the Balearic Islands is you can island hop as we did from Ibiza to Formentera for just a few hours. Many visitors go to nearby Formentera for the beaches where you can rent scooters when you get off the boat!
There are a few bars and restaurants in the heart of the port town on Formentera where you can enjoy a coffee or meal or rent scooters to zip around the island! How fun would that be? We didn’t have time but made a note for our next visit to pencil in a few hours for a ride around the island via Vespa.
Once we made it back in Ibiza by ferry, we strolled the Vara de Rey and the surrounding streets where you’ll find great shopping (both casual and upscale) and outdoor cafes set against the backdrop of the architecture in a mix of whitewashed and pastel hues.
Also in town you’ll see the Cathedral and if you’re willing to make the uphill climb, you’ll catch panoramic views from Dalt Vila at the very top.
AT nights the restaurants the line the marina are lit up with vivid colorful lights that change as you meander down alleys or streets with new music pulsing around every bend. You can feel the energy of the crowds of people both young and old mixing together in the cooler night air that’s a respite from the hotter days, and restaurants serve cocktails and tapas until the early morning hours! Ibiza is known for its nightlife and there is plenty of it!
The marina is exciting at night but such a lovely sight in the morning too!
I’ve shared many times that my favorite way to travel through Europe is by train, but I’ll take the ferry as the next best thing! Especially if it means seeing more of the Mediterranean, one of the most beautiful parts of the world. We hopped on the ferry at the port to take us to our next stop in Valencia and made the five hour journey across the sea back to the mainland.
We arrived late in Valencia where we spent a few days and then continued on to the incredible city of Seville! Olé! More on those adventures later. 🙂