One of the best ways to visit a region is by creating an itinerary through its most iconic monuments. This will give you a general idea of the culture of its people, their art and the history that has made them who they are today.
At ROIG, we want to help you get to know our beautiful island in the best way possible, and that’s why we’ve come up with the top 10 monuments to visit in Mallorca, which will allow you to get to know the island in just three days.
1- Mallorca Cathedral
We begin our selection of the best monuments in Mallorca with a “must” for your itinerary. This is the Cathedral of Majorca and it is the star building of Palma de Mallorca, the capital of the Balearic Islands.
If you are travelling to Majorca with children, do not hesitate to include this stop on your route, as it is a cathedral built between the 14th and 16th century that will allow the little ones to understand Gothic architecture. Inside you will be able to contemplate different works of art from different periods, such as Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and contemporary.
On the outside you will see the impressive Mirador portal and the sculptures representing Saint Paul, Saint Peter, Saint John the Baptist and Saint James. Inside is the raised Trinity Chapel and the Royal Chapel, one of the oldest, dates back to the 14th century.
2- Bellver Castle
Another of Mallorca’s most important monuments is Bellver Castle. This fortress was built at the beginning of the 14th century by King James II. It has a dominant position on the top of a hill some 110 metres above sea level. In the past, it was used to watch over the waters of the Mediterranean and the Tramuntana mountain range at the same time.
It is one of the few castles in Europe with a circular floor plan, being the oldest of them all. That is why Bellver Castle is one of the monuments you cannot miss on your visit to the largest of the Balearic Islands.
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3- Capdepera Castle
Capdepera Castle is another of the monuments to visit in Mallorca. It is one of the castles that has survived the most battles and one of the monuments that you should include in your visit to Mallorca. It has managed to survive pirate attacks, struggles for power, sackings, battles, etc. It is a walled enclosure overlooking the sea channel that separates the islands of Mallorca and Menorca.
It is of great historical importance, as it is said that the reconquest of Menorca, which was in the hands of the Muslims, was carried out from this fortification. The wall surrounding the castle was built to protect the population from pirate attacks.
We recommend you visit this castle during the Medieval Fair held on the third weekend in May, as it is one of the best things to do in Mallorca in spring. There you can buy souvenirs, watch shows and try some of the most delicious dishes of the island’s gastronomy.
4- Royal Palace of L’Almudaina
You don’t have to leave Palma to see another of the island’s most important pieces of history. We are talking about the Royal Palace of L’Almudaina, which is an architectural jewel of great value to Mallorcans. This was the residence of the Kings of the Aragon crown and its architecture has Roman, Islamic and Christian influences.
Highlights include the parade ground, the palatine chapel of Santa Aina and the Great Hall of the King’s Palace. This monument forms part of the country’s national heritage and is currently the official residence of the Spanish royal family when they visit Mallorca. The palace is surrounded by walls and the beautiful Torre del Ángel (Angel Tower), which stands out among the rest.
5- Sa Foradada
Nature gives us the gift of unique places and in Mallorca we find many monuments that have not been built by human hands, but have been designed in a totally natural and spontaneous way. One of them is Sa Foradada, an authentic spectacle of nature and one of the best monuments to visit in Mallorca.
Sa Foradada is one of the most magical spots in the Serra de Tramuntana. This small peninsula ends with a large hole in the rock that has attracted the attention of locals and tourists for centuries. The best place to see this monument in Mallorca is from the viewpoint next to Son Marroig. Here you can also enjoy some of the best sunsets in Mallorca – you can’t miss it!
6- Sant Salvador Sanctuary
Do you love Mallorca’s sanctuaries? Then take note because the Sant Salvador Sanctuary is one of the most impressive. It is a 14th-century monastery located at the top of the peak of the same name, 509 metres above sea level. Inside you can see a 15th-century Gothic altarpiece and religious paintings.
This sanctuary, in turn, is framed by a pair of monuments: a 14-metre-high stone cross and a sculpture of Christ on a 37-metre-high platform. You can find the sanctuary eight kilometres southeast of Felanitx and the winding road will take you to this popular peak for experienced cyclists.
7- Llotja de Palma
Palma’s old fishermen’s market is another of the monuments to visit in Mallorca. It is a mercantile building built in Gothic style, the work of the most important architect in Mallorca, Guillem Sagrera. The rectangular hall with two entrances, divided into three naves and twelve bays, is particularly noteworthy. The exterior is characterised by four octagonal corner towers, in addition to its large windows and the richness of its sculptural elements.
Among the sculptural ensembles, the figures on the tympanums of the portals stand out: on the main portal, the Angel of the Merchants, and on the garden portal, the Virgin and Child. The interior is open to the public, so you can enter free of charge and contemplate the artistic display of this important monument to see in Mallorca.
8- Basilica of Sant Francesc
The Basilica of Sant Francesc is a 12th century Roman Catholic church located in the old town of Palma. Without a doubt, this is one of the monuments in Mallorca that is worth visiting thanks to its ornate Gothic cloister and Baroque sandstone façade. Here you can contemplate statues and works of art depicting Mallorca’s most important figures.
The vaulted ceiling of the Basilica of Sant Francesc features masonry work and some sculptures dating from the 14th century. The carvings on its walls depict some of the most important events on the island, such as the massacre of 19 Catholics in Holland in 1572. You can also visit the tomb of Ramon Llull, a philosopher and poet who died in 1315 for trying to convert Muslims in Tunisia.
9- Arab Baths of Palma
The Arab Baths of Palma are one of the few examples of Islamic architecture preserved on the island. The complex dates from the 11th century and the hot baths room covered with a dome and skylights stands out. They are located in the gardens of Can Fentirroig and have been partially preserved, as it is possible that they were part of the palace of a Muslim nobleman.
The stylistic diversity of the capitals is due to the fact that the materials used in their construction may have been taken from other buildings that existed previously. The main room was used for hot baths and therefore had a double floor with holes through which the hot water and steam circulated.
10- Lluc Sanctuary
We finish our top 10 of the best monuments to visit in Mallorca with the Lluc Sanctuary, an outstanding place of pilgrimage. This sanctuary is a 13th century monastery located in Escorca, on the coast of Mallorca. It is an important place of worship that also houses a museum where you can examine weapons, pieces of pottery and other objects.
Something very characteristic of its structure is that it also functions as a hotel, with several rooms and a restaurant on the premises. The church of Lluc is the chapel on the site, consecrated in 1691, and inside you can see a statue of Catalina de Palma, the patron saint of Mallorca.
The road to get to the Lluc Sanctuary is quite winding, but don’t despair, because the result is well worth it. Once you have seen the inside of the building, we recommend that you head for the front courtyard, from where you can admire some of the most privileged views of Mallorca’s coastline.
What do you think of our top 10 monuments to visit in Mallorca? If you loved them and want to visit them all during your holiday, the best thing to do is to hire a car to take you to any point on the island. At ROIG rent a car we can help you get the best rental cars at an affordable price, so you can get to know the largest Balearic island, at your own pace.