Destinations

Mallorca, Spain: An insider guide to having your very own Love Island experience

Get your jugs of sangria at the ready as we show you where to stay, what to do and eat in Mallorca, Spain.

By Bella Brennan

When you think of Mallorca, the first thing that probably comes to mind is reality TV stars parading around in bikinis on Love Island.

And sure, my Love Island addiction is admittedly what put Mallorca on my must-visit list but after touching down on the sun-drenched island, I soon realised there's a reason why they film both the Aussie and UK series of Love Island here, and why thousands of tourists travel to Mallorca each year for their annual escape.

From pet donkeys, paella and picture-perfect beaches, here's your insider guide to Mallorca, Spain.

When your Airbnb comes with a pet donkey

Our base for the trip was Villa Coco, a sprawling country property nestled in the mountains of Soller overlooking the ocean, which I found on Airbnb.

Driving up the cobble-stoned path to get to the villa proved to be quite the adventure, with peak hour traffic consisting of a sheep and her baby lambs feeding in the middle of the road.

As soon as we arrived, I felt like the queen of the castle with literally no neighbours in sight. The peaceful, off-the-grid vibe meant I immediately kicked into holiday mode and spent hours on the lounger reading my book under the shade of the fig tree while lapping up the breathtaking view.

Villa Coco, a stunning country-side sanctuary. *(Image/Airbnb)*
Villa Coco, a stunning country-side sanctuary. (Image/Airbnb)

But the highlight of our Villa Coco stay had to be the fact our Airbnb came with its very own pet donkey, Rosa.

Our adorable new friend loved a neck rub or being fed a cheeky carrot, and it made for one of my most memorable holiday experiences to date.

While Villa Coco felt like it was a million miles from civilisation, it was in fact just a 15 minute drive into the bustling hub of Port De Soller.

Getting to know our new neighbour, Rosa the donkey.
Getting to know our new neighbour, Rosa the donkey.

The Spanish food you HAVE to try

After peeling myself away from the little slice of heaven that was Villa Coco, it was time to eat!

As is the unspoken rule, no trip to Spain is complete without the obligatory tapas, paella and mountains of cured meat all washed down with sangria.

You can wander along the strip of cute cocktail bars on Carrer Santa Caterina d'Alexandri before heading to El Sabor in Soller for authentic Spanish tapas, including the metre-long tray of drool-worthy patatas bravas and delectable ham croquettes.

Pro tip: While sangria is customary, you'll notice the locals love mojitos and Spaniards do a mean one.

Concentration is key when trying to get through an entire tray of patatas bravas
Concentration is key when trying to get through an entire tray of patatas bravas

God, is that you?

For your very own Love Island romantic date moment, catch the best sunset perch in town at Mirador de Na Foradada Restaurant in Deia.

The jaw-dropping views make you feel like you're on the edge of the universe.

You can take it all in with a sunset cocktail and it's worth checking out their delicious menu of local steak and seafood paella.

READ NEXT: Best child-free holiday ideas for romantic getaways and girls' trips

Spanish sunsets are best enjoyed with your beverage of choice.
Spanish sunsets are best enjoyed with your beverage of choice.

Towns to explore

Deia: If cute cafes, delicious food and gorgeous beaches are your jam, then make sure you set aside a good chunk of time to check out Deia.

Fornalutx: This was hands-down the most stunning town we visited. Think cobble-stoned paths, ancient architecture and a buzzing atmosphere. There's a reason it's been dubbed the most beautiful village in Spain and has been put on the UNESCO world heritage list.

Sóller: Head to the main square Plaça Constitució where you'll find a myriad of great cafes, or wander the backstreets and swoon at Mallorcan townhouses with traditional green shutters.

Bougainvillea and beautiful back-streets, welcome to Fornalutx.
Bougainvillea and beautiful back-streets, welcome to Fornalutx.

Make a splash with these beaches

Cala Deia: The ideal beach to spend the whole day at. Get there early to secure your spot on the cement, if not there's plenty of space on the rocks just BYO a thick towel or mat. And there's two restaurants that are perfect for a lunchtime spritz.

S'illot Beach, Alcudia: This little slice of Mediterranean heaven had the bluest, warmest water ever. This quiet secret sanctuary is the opposite of a tourist haunt and the cove of rocks means it's totally protected from the breeze.

Fancy visiting Mallorca for your next getaway? Check out Airbnb's huge range of accommodation options for all price points!

The day I visited S'illot Beach, I pretty much had the whole place to myself.
The day I visited S'illot Beach, I pretty much had the whole place to myself.