THE BALEARIC ISLANDSTHE GEMS OF THE MEDITERRANEAN
Mallorca is the largest island of the Balearic archipelago, which, together with Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera, forms a uniprovincial autonomous community (Islas Baleares), the easternmost of Spain. The island has 3640.11 km², which makes it the largest island in Spain and the sixth largest in the Mediterranean. It is the most populated island of the Balearic archipelago, with more than 859 289 inhabitants and the second most populated island of Spain after Tenerife. Mallorca has a population density of 240.45 inhabitants / km². In the past, due to its calm atmosphere, it was also known as La isla de la calma, but now it is a very important tourist destination, both nationally and internationally. Mallorca is located geographically in the central area of the Mediterranean Sea, which translates into the blessing of a pleasant climate with more than 2,700 hours of sunshine per year. With an average temperature of around 26 ° C between May and September, they rarely fall below 13 ° C in early spring.
Without any doubt one of the pillars of the splendor of Mallorca are its beautiful beaches and “calas”. No tourist leaves the island without enjoying the splendor and calm of the Mediterranean Sea. The offer is wide and varied: in the 550 kilometers of coastline there are more than 340 beaches, from small stone coves to long sandy beaches, some accessible on foot and others only by sea, making the same authentic natural treasures to discover.
The Mallorcan relief is formed by the Tramuntana Mountainrange or “Serra de Tramuntana”, with the highest mountains, the “Serra de Levante” (Levante Mountainrange), with more modest heights, and other minor mountains. The Serra de Tramuntana, that stretches all along the northwest, forms impressive cliffs and rocky coves that contrast with the sandy beaches of the rest of the coast. The “Pla” is the fertile central plain. To the west of this plain and in the center of the bay of Palma is the capital, Palma.
The main mountains are:
Puig Major (1445 m), Masanella (1364 m), Puig Tomir (1102 m), Puig de l’Ofre (1090 m), Puig del Teix (1064 m), Puig de Galatzó (1027 m).
One of the most popular dishes is the Mallorcan fried (frit mallorquí), which consists of a liver fry with chips and peppers; It can be blood and / or roast lamb, pork and sea fennel. Another option is also the “Marinero”, with mixture of fish cut into small pieces and accompanied by fried potatoes and sea fennel. It is also worth mentioning the “escaldums or guisat of piles”, the Mallorcan soups, the “Tumbet”, with or without “esclatasang” (the most tasty variety of the rovellón mushroom found in the Iberian peninsula), and stuffed aubergines. There are several ways to prepare rice, the most typical is the so-called “Arròs brut”, which consists of a rice soup with mushrooms, snails, pork, rabbit and poultry and vegetables, although the “Arroç sec” is also very traditional, similar to paella. The “pa amb oli”, typical of some dinners or as a simple accompaniment to other meals, is one of the most traditional dishes on the island. The sausages are also one of the main elements of its cuisine; sobrasada, llonganissa, butifarrón, camaiot and blanquet among others.
The most famous pastrie is the Ensaimada that is usually taken at breakfast, but also made in familiar size filled with cream, “Cabello de angel”, chocolate or with sobrasada pieces and candied pumpkin. In Easter, empanadas, stuffed with lamb, are essential. They can be made of sweet or salty pasta, although salty pasta is more common. Also typical are “Crespells and Robiols”, stuffed traditionally with cottage cheese, “Cabello de angel” and jam. It is also very common to call the vegetable coca, the “Trempó”or roasted red peppers, along with the “Cocarrois”, which are a kind of empanadas of Arab origin in the shape of a half moon stuffed with vegetables and raisins. The “Espinegades” are also typical. Mallorcan wines have been well received in other parts of Spain and Europe in recent years. Mallorca has two appellations of origin: D.O. Binissalem-Mallorca and D.O. Pla i Llevant, as well as with a geographical indication Vino de la Tierra Mallorca.