Is this your first time visiting Palma De Mallorca? And you only have one day to spend exploring one of the most beautiful Spanish cities? The good news is, you can totally get a great feel and visit all the main attractions and sightseeing spots in Palma in just one day! Follow us along with this one day in Palma De Mallorca itinerary to ensure you spend your time efficiently and leave this beautiful place having experienced all the best things it has to offer!
Is one day in Palma De Mallorca enough?
Is one day in Palma de Mallorca enough? The answer to this question largely depends on the type of experience you seek and the depth of exploration you desire. While a single day in Palma may not be sufficient to uncover every hidden gem of this enchanting city, it is undoubtedly enough to capture the essence of its beauty and charm. For time-constrained travellers, the city of Palma offers a delightful array of attractions that can be savoured within a day. And the best news is, our one-day itinerary can be completed on foot – it’s the best way, as you don’t need to rely on public transportation! Palma is one of the best places to explore on a walking itinerary, as things are close together!
While one day in Palma may leave you yearning for more, it presents a fantastic opportunity to seize stunning photographs, create cherished memories, and get a taste of the city’s enchanting spirit – a perfect inspiration for your travel photography blog.
So our answer is YES! You can get the best out of this beautiful city in just one day! Our cruise ship docked at 8 am, and we were at the Cathedral at 9 am to start the exploration! Follow us along…
9:15 AM Catedral-Basílica de Santa María de Mallorca
10:30 AM Royal Palace of La Almudaina (we did not go inside)
11:00 AM S’Hort del Rei
11:30 PM Fundación Bartolomé March
12:00 PM Stroll down Passeig del Born and grab some lunch on the go.
12:30 PM Edifici Casasayas
12:45 PM Plaça de Cort
13:00 PM Plaça Major
13:15 PM Basílica de Sant Francesc
13:30 PM Banys Àrabs
14:30 End of Itinerary
Here is a link to the One Day In Palma De Mallorca itinerary map, for your convenience.
How to get to Palma de Mallorca?
If you are in Palma for just one day, you have likely arrived on a cruise ship, or taken a day trip from another location on the island of Mallorca.
How to get to Palma De Mallorca from the cruise terminal?
If you are arriving on one of the majestic cruise ships, you are more than likely to dock at the cruise terminal in the Portopi area (most likely in the Muelle De Poniente, or alternatively in Dique del Oeste). From there, you have a few options to get to the centre of Palma.
- Taxi: there are plenty of taxis waiting to take you to the centre of Palma just outside the terminal building. In summer 2023, a one-way trip costs approx. 15 euros.
- Cruise Line Shuttle: the shuttle will drop you off near the Cathedral, and will typically cost about 10-15 euros for a round trip.
- Public Transport: Bus 1 or Bus 4 will take you from the Dic Oest-Portopí bus stop right to the heart of Palma De Mallorca. If you are taking Bus 1, get off at the Argentina bus stop, and walk about 10 minutes on foot to the Cathedral. If you take bus 4, get off at 53-pl. de Joan Carles I. You can pay cash to the driver on the bus.
- On Foot: a beautiful waterfront walk from the cruise terminal will take 45-60 minutes.
If you are travelling to Palma from another location in Mallorca
If you are coming to Palma de Mallorca for a day from another destination on a bus or train, you are likely to start your day at Estació Intermodal. It is about a 15-minute walk to the Cathedral.
There are also plenty of parking places in and around the city. Find and book your parking spot here.
How to spend one day in Palma De Mallorca?
Let’s jump into our itinerary and explore how to spend one day in Palma de Mallorca. And a great place to start is none other but the Cathedral of Palma De Mallorca?
Cathedral of Palma De Mallorca (Catedral-Basílica de Santa María de Mallorca)
There is a reason why we start our exploration at this spot. Not only it is the most impressive architectural spot on the island, but it also gets incredibly busy. With tourists from all around Mallorca coming to visit the Cathedral of Santa Maria of Palma and all the excursions flooding in from the cruise ships, this main attraction of the island gets packed. As a result, we recommend getting there as early as possible so you don’t have to fight for a great spot to take photos from.
The Cathedral of Palma de Mallorca, also known as La Seu Cathedral, stands as an awe-inspiring masterpiece of Gothic architecture and is an iconic landmark of the city center. Its construction commenced in the 13th century, and it continues to be a symbol of the island’s rich history and cultural heritage. As you approach the Cathedral, you’ll be greeted by its magnificent façade, adorned with intricate stone carvings and flying buttresses, making for a striking photographic subject.
The cathedral is also open to the public, so you can explore the inside of this must-see place by buying a ticket online or on the day.
Inside, Palma Cathedral offers a plethora of photographic opportunities. The grand nave stretches impressively upwards, leading the eyes to the beautiful rose window, which bathes the interior in a kaleidoscope of coloured light when the sun shines through. The play of light and shadows within the Cathedral creates a mesmerizing ambience, providing an excellent chance to capture unique and ethereal shots. The intricate details of the stained glass windows and the ornate chapels also offer wonderful subjects for close-up photography.
Opposite the cathedral, you will see the Royal Palace of La Almudaina. It’s only a 5 minutes’ walk from the front of the Cathedral.
Royal Palace of La Almudaina
The Royal Palace of La Almudaina, situated adjacent to the Cathedral of Palma de Mallorca, is a fascinating historical gem that encapsulates centuries of Mallorcan heritage. Originally built as an Arabian fortress, it later became the official residence of the Mallorcan monarchs. Stepping inside, visitors are immersed in a captivating blend of architectural styles, as the palace underwent modifications and expansions over the years, incorporating elements of Gothic, Romanesque, and Renaissance design.
You may also visit its regal halls and rooms, where you’ll encounter opulent decor, ornate ceilings, and exquisite artwork that showcase the palace’s illustrious past. The picturesque inner courtyard, adorned with arches and lush greenery, provides a splendid backdrop for photography. Capturing the harmonious blend of medieval and Renaissance architectural elements against the serene beauty of the courtyard offers a fantastic opportunity to create stunning visual narratives.
S’Hort del Rei
A short 5-minute walk from the royal palace, you will find S’Hort del Rei – a charming hidden gem nestled in the heart of Palma de Mallorca, offering a serene escape from the bustling city streets. The garden’s name, “The King’s Orchard,” hints at its historical significance as a former fruit orchard for the Mallorcan monarchs.
As you wander through S’Hort del Rei, you’ll find yourself immersed in a peaceful oasis of lush greenery, vibrant flowers, and beautifully manicured lawns. Towering palm trees and fragrant citrus groves provide an idyllic backdrop for capturing nature’s tranquillity with your camera.
Carry on towards Fundación Bartolomé March, which is just a short walk away.
Fundación Bartolomé March
The Fundación Bartolomé March is a cultural and educational institution located in Palma de Mallorca, Spain. Founded in 1975 by Bartolomé March Servera, the foundation aims to promote the arts, sciences, and humanities. Housed within a beautiful historic building, the foundation hosts a diverse array of exhibitions, lectures, concerts, and other cultural events throughout the year. For photography enthusiasts, the foundation’s exhibitions offer a rich source of inspiration, showcasing works by renowned international artists and photographers.
Passeig del Born
Embark on an unforgettable journey through the heart of Palma de Mallorca by taking a leisurely stroll down the iconic Passeig del Born. This charming boulevard exudes an irresistible old-world charm, lined with elegant buildings, trendy boutiques, and cosy cafes (it’s a perfect place to grab some lunch on the go). As you amble along the pedestrian-friendly avenue, you’ll find yourself immersed in the vibrant pulse of the city, surrounded by locals and fellow travellers alike, all eager to savour the delights of this lively street.
Delve deeper into the surrounding tiny streets that branch off from Passeig del Born, and you’ll discover hidden squares, picturesque alleys, and charming plazas, each with its own unique character waiting to be immortalized through your lens.
At the end of Passeig del Born, take a right to carry on towards Edifici Cacacaysas.
As you stroll down the streets of Palma’s old town, you will arrive at the Edifici Casasayas. This exquisite building, dating back to the early 20th century, boasts a perfect blend of Modernist and eclectic architectural styles, characterized by ornate façades, intricate wrought iron balconies, and striking decorative details. Antoni Gaudi himself was involved in the design of the building. As you approach Edifici Casasayas, its grandeur and elegance immediately captivate the eye, making it a compelling subject for photography enthusiasts seeking to capture the essence of Palma’s unique architectural legacy.
Today, the building houses a range of cultural and commercial spaces, further enriching the vibrant atmosphere of the city centre. Whether you’re an admirer of architecture, a history enthusiast, or simply looking for a captivating photo opportunity, a visit to Edifici Casasayas promises an enchanting experience that encapsulates the essence of Palma de Mallorca’s timeless allure.
Plaça de Cort
Continuing down the narrow streets, you will reach Plaça de Cort – is a charming and bustling square that serves as a focal point of the city’s vibrant social life. Framed by historic buildings and swaying palm trees, the square exudes a timeless elegance, drawing both locals and travellers to its inviting ambience.
At its centre stands the iconic olive tree, a symbol of peace and unity, which offers a picturesque focal point for photography enthusiasts. The prominent feature of Plaça de Cort is the City Hall (Ajuntament de Palma), an impressive structure boasting a beautiful Gothic facade that adds to the square’s allure. As you immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere, you’ll find quaint cafes and restaurants, providing the perfect spot to sit back, relax, and people-watch while you capture the essence of Palma’s vibrant culture.
Surrounded by impressive facades with arched colonnades, this grand square dates back to the 19th century and serves as a testament to the city’s rich architectural heritage. Placa Major is a hub of social gatherings, attracting locals and tourists alike to its lively atmosphere. Here, you can indulge in a delightful mix of traditional markets, street performances, and alfresco dining experiences. The central fountain and a towering bronze statue of King James I add an air of regal charm to the square, providing excellent photographic opportunities. Whether you’re seeking to capture vibrant street life, architectural splendour, or the spirit of Palma’s locals, a visit to Plaça Major promises a delightful sensory experience that will linger in your memories.
Continue your way back down towards the waterfront, where you will stop at the Basílica de Sant Francesc. It is about 5 minutes away.
Basílica de Sant Francesc
The Basílica de Sant Francesc is a magnificent religious landmark that holds significant historical and architectural importance. Dating back to the 13th century, this stunning Gothic-style basilica showcases a remarkable blend of architectural elements, including beautiful rose windows, intricate vaulted ceilings, and ornate chapels. Inside, visitors are treated to a sense of serenity and spiritual awe, with its grand nave and exquisite altarpieces creating a captivating ambience. The basilica is also home to the remains of Ramon Llull, a prominent philosopher and writer.
Banys Àrabs, also known as the Arab Baths, is a remarkable historical site worth visiting. Dating back to the 10th century, these ancient baths offer a fascinating glimpse into the island’s Moorish past. Believed to have been part of a larger palace complex, the Banys Àrabs showcase the architectural prowess of the Islamic civilization that once thrived on the island.
As you step into this well-preserved historical treasure, you’ll be transported to an era of tranquillity and refinement. The baths consist of a series of rooms adorned with graceful horseshoe arches and intricately carved stone, creating an atmosphere of elegance and serenity. The central pool, fed by a natural spring, is surrounded by graceful columns. It is an ideal spot for capturing stunning photographs that encapsulate the ancient allure of the site.
Exploring the Banys Àrabs is a unique opportunity to delve into Mallorca’s diverse history and appreciate the influence of different cultures that have shaped the island’s identity. For history enthusiasts and photography aficionados alike, this site offers an unforgettable experience.
The end of Palma itinerary
After visiting the Banys Àrabs, our itinerary ends. You may now make your way back to the cruise ship (our next stop is Marseille), or your hotel, or simply sit down in Parc De La Mar with an ice cream and reflect on all the exciting things you’ve explored today! It’s a beautiful open space by the seafront that also offers the best views of Palma’s Cathedral. We hope you had a great time!
Have more time in Palma De Mallorca?
We only had from 9:00 AM till 4:00 PM in Palma De Mallorca. But if you have some more time or if it is your second visit to the capital city of Mallorca, we highly recommend including the following into your itinerary:
- Castell de Bellver (Bellver Castle): it’s a short drive from the cruise port or you can actually walk there on foot if you have enough time. It offers fantastic views of the Mediterranean Sea and the capital of the Balearic Islands in the distance.
- Llotja De Palma
- Train Sóller
Best time to visit Palma De Mallorca
The best time to visit Palma de Mallorca largely depends on your preferences and the kind of experience you seek. However, there are some general considerations to keep in mind.
Spring (April to May) and Fall (September to October) are considered the optimal seasons to explore Palma. During these months, the weather is pleasantly mild, with temperatures ranging from 15°C to 25°C (59°F to 77°F). Springtime brings vibrant blooms and lush greenery, while autumn offers a delightful ambience with fewer crowds. It’s an excellent time for photography enthusiasts to capture the city’s beauty without the intense summer heat and tourist rush.
Summer (June to August) is the high season and peak tourist season, with temperatures soaring to around 30°C (86°F) and higher. The island is bustling with visitors, especially during July and August. While the Mediterranean climate ensures plenty of sunny days and a lively atmosphere, popular tourist attractions, beaches, and restaurants can get crowded. If you don’t mind the heat and crowds, the summer months are ideal.
Winter (December to February) is the low season, with temperatures ranging from 10°C to 15°C (50°F to 59°F). While Mallorca enjoys mild winters compared to many other places, some attractions and beach-related activities may have limited availability. However, if you prefer a quieter experience and are interested in exploring the city’s indoor attractions and savouring local cuisine, visiting during the winter could be an appealing option.
For all the photography shown in this post, the following camera and lens combinations were used.
Camera: Nikon D7200 (crop sensor DSLR)
Lens: Tamron 16-300 mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II
Lens: Tokina AT-X PRO 11-16mm f/2.8 DXII
Lens: Nikon 50mm f/1.8
Extra tips for visiting Palma
- Choose comfortable footwear. Lots of cobbled streets and uneven surfaces in the Old Town of Palma De Mallorca are definitely not suitable for heels.
- Try Local Cuisine. Indulge in the delicious flavours of Mallorcan cuisine. Seek out traditional eateries to savour dishes like paella, sobrassada (local sausage), and ensaïmada (traditional Mallorcan pastry). The city offers a wide range of restaurants and tapas bars. Make sure to immerse yourself in the local gastronomic delights.
- Visit the Beaches if you have time. Palma de Mallorca boasts beautiful beaches, such as Playa de Palma and Cala Major. Take a break from sightseeing and enjoy a relaxing day by the sea. The crystal-clear waters and sandy shores provide the perfect setting for leisurely walks and stunning coastal photography.
- Embrace Siesta Time. Keep in mind that many shops and restaurants in Palma may close for siesta, usually between 2:00 PM and 5:00 PM. Plan your activities accordingly, and use this time to explore outside, relax or edit your photos.
- Be Respectful of Local Customs. While Palma is a popular tourist destination, it’s essential to be respectful of the local culture and customs. Dress modestly when visiting churches or religious sites, and avoid disruptive behaviour in quiet areas.
- Plan your toilet breaks. Unfortunately, Palma de Mallorca lacks public bathrooms. As a result, it’s a great idea to take advantage of toilets in the museums or restaurants you have lunch at.
In conclusion, spending one day in Palma De Mallorca is a great way to experience many of the city’s highlights and immerse yourself in its rich history and architectural beauty. While you may not have much time to explore every hidden gem, this itinerary ensures you cover great things like the awe-inspiring Cathedral of Palma, the historical Royal Palace of La Almudaina, and the tranquil S’Hort del Rei. Along the way, don’t miss the chance to capture stunning photographs and savour the local cuisine. With its charming streets, vibrant squares, and beautiful beaches, Palma De Mallorca is undoubtedly a good place for a memorable and fulfilling day of exploration.