Through their devotions to a pagan god, Ibiza’s earliest settlers drafted an ethos for its people that would last for millennia. By embracing its protector deity Bes, the island ensured its destiny became as clear as its waters: to champion the good times and avert all evil.
Running from the atrocities of fascism, political opponents found refuge. Avoiding the repressions of materialism and consumerist obsession, artists, writers and hippies found solace.
Fleeing the regime of the working world under gloomy clouds, ravers found Eden. Ibiza has provided escape to generations and for holidaymakers seeking sanctuary, the island offers you too the promise of tranquilo.
Ibiza can’t be mentioned without reference to the likes of Amnesia, Pacha and Privilege. The fabled party island owes its fortunes to the legendary clubs that continue to lure hedonists from far and wide. But if dancing the night away isn’t the reason you’ve come to the White Isle, then you’ve certainly heaps of heritage to explore and scenery to be enchanted by.
Where better to start than the island’s highest point, Sa Talaia. Atop the hill you can marvel at the lush green Ibizan pines and the golden bays, and on a clear day, see Mallorca and the Spanish mainland too. From high point to “High Town” – Dalt Vila is where cobblestoned streets lead you to the ramparts of a fortress or to the charm of a marina. This UNESCO-listed site is home to some of Ibiza Town’s most historic monuments, which are oozing with Mediterranean soul.
You could take a short ferry ride to the neighbouring island of Formentera, call at Espalmador and, courtesy of Mother Nature herself, relax therapeutically in the mud baths. Go chasing sunsets in a hire car or scooter. Drive in search of your own vista or stretch of sand and wade in the waters of your own hidden cove; Agua Blanca in the north and Cala Llentrisca in the south are ultimate beach utopias.
Eat and Drink
Walk down the famous strip in St Antonio and you’ll be bombarded with offers of an All Day English Breakfast. If you’re looking for something a little more cultural than hash browns and bacon, however, Ibiza has a superb array of dining options to appease the keenest of palates.
From succulent home-cooked cochinillo at Restaurante Cas Pages to the hearty fish hot-pot at Yemanja, despite its cosmopolitan tag the island is a passionate advocate of traditional Spanish cuisine that’s particularly prevalent in the low season of late September onwards.
For a taste of Italian-Ibizan, La Paloma blends quality local crops with the authenticity of family recipes, Sa Carboneria claims to house the best steak on the island and Sa Cova provides a meal experience that’s reminiscent of a bistro in Paris.
Where to Stay
The Playa d’en Bossa is the prime location for party-goers as it allows convenient access to the main party beach and famous nightspots like Ushuaia and Space. Many of the beachfront resorts here are 24-hour entertainment hubs, boasting poolside DJs and multiple bars.
There are also family-friendly choices nearby such as the Santa Eulalia district, while the Figueretas district is a palm-lined haven ideally between Ibiza’s old town and Playa d’en Bossa.
Ibiza has become a fashionable getaway for the opulent visitor, from Premier League footballers to billionaire yacht owners. The sparkle of the sea tends to be matched by the diamonds and pearls round the necks of the women.
Designer labels along with lavish boutiques are most prominent around the port of Ibiza, and certainly appeal to the more glamorous clientele. Harkening back to hedonistic days of the 60s, markets at Sant Carles de Peralta, Santa Eulària des Riu and Las Dalias exhibit some hippie novelties which would make for quirky souvenirs.
Ibiza Like a Local
Get your hand on a bottle of Vi Pages, the local red, and sip on the fruits of Ibizan vines and soak up the ambience at the Old Town plaza. Wander the promenade in Santa Eulalia or better still, after a refreshing siesta, head for Cala d’Hort away from the bustle and gaze at the enthralling and jagged rock faces of Es Vedrà.