Situated on the south west coast of the island, the popular resort of Palma Nova is the joint-largest development in the municipal district of Calvia and one of the earliest purpose built holiday towns in Mallorca. It is known as the quieter resort of the district, which also includes neighbouring Magaluf, and therefore more suited to families.
Yet once upon a time, Palma Nova was a humble fishing harbour, and the harbour still remains to this day, though the fishing boats have been replaced by luxury yachts moored in the nautical club and marina. More than anything, visitors to Palma Nova come to enjoy its beautiful beaches and vibrant nightlife.
Palma Nova is approximately 15km west of Palma and the Son Sant Joan International airport. From the UK and the rest of Europe there are a vast range of budget airlines offering charter flights to Palma, with scheduled flights also available via many Spanish mainland cities.
There are several airport shuttle companies vying for your custom, though given the relatively short distance to Palma Nova it may be worth jumping in a taxi.
Being a heavily developed island close to the Spanish mainland, Mallorca can also be reached by sea. Transmediterranea operate ferry services from Barcelona with a journey time of about 7 hours. There is also a high speed catamaran which only takes 3 hours 45 minutes. Ferries are also available with Balearia from Valencia (7 hours) and Denia (5 hours via Ibiza).
Like the rest of Mallorca, Palma Nova enjoys Mediterranean weather, with mild winters and hot summers. During July and August, the weather often climbs above 30 degrees and there are nearly 11 hours of sun each day in Mallorca. If you don’t enjoy excessive heat, you may want to avoid these peak months.
Also be aware that the beaches and streets of Palma Nova can get crowded and congested in high season, and this is not the place to seek out for a quiet getaway.
During November, December and January, fewer sunny days occur, and this is when Palma Nova is at its most quiet. However, the resort is still attractive at this time of the year, with fine, mild weather on most days.
Palma Nova boasts fine sandy beaches with watersports and glass-bottomed boat trips amongst the activities on offer. There are also countless shops, bars and restaurants scattered along the wide, traffic free promenades.
Visitors will be able to find all they need in the commercial centre of Palma Nova, which is sprinkled with convenience stores, souvenir shops, gift shops, camera and electrical goods stores, a chemist and clothing outlets.
Alternatively, it is easy to take a stroll across to neighbouring Magaluf, which has a larger variety of tourist-oriented shops. Serious shoppers can catch a bus or taxi into Palma, Mallorca's capital, which is famed for its excellent shopping, or visit one of the lively markets in the nearby towns and villages. A weekly market is held in nearby Andratx every Wednesday.
One of the main attractions in Palma Nova is Golf Fantasia, which is set amid waterfalls, caves and tropical gardens, and is one of the best mini golf courses on the island.
Just along the coast from Palma Nova, at Portals Nous, is Marineland, one of the most popular family attractions on the island. Here you will find performing dolphins, sealions, and parrot shows throughout the day.
Also excellent for families is the Aqualand Magaluf, located on the outskirts of Magaluf. This giant waterpark offers fearful rides for thrill-seekers, as well as tamer ones for toddlers.
Eating out in Palma Nova is a joy, with the resort home to some great restaurants including Natalie's, Churchill's, La Cucaracha-Tex Mex and Palmanova. The resort also has an array of fast food outlets, plus several Spanish bars serving up tapas snacks during the day.
Nightlife here caters heavily for the large numbers of British tourists that visit every year, with numerous English style pubs around the resort. However, there is only one disco here, and so for a raucous night out you may want to venture into neighbouring Magaluf.