1686974412 This Secret And Stunning Island Destination Is Just 30 Minutes | phillipspacc

This Secret And Stunning Island Destination Is Just 30 Minutes From Ibiza


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Ibiza is one of the trendiest summer islands in Europe.

Famous for its whitewashed capital, where an ancient fortress stands on a hill, luxury resorts and gated communities, and a lively social scene, hosts more than 2000 tourists for every 100 inhabitants.

Despite Ibiza’s undeniable allure, crowded beaches and raucous partygoers can put off wary travelers like you. Still, not all hope is lost: there is a smaller, lesser knownand equally impressive island just 30 minutes southwest of Ibiza that is sure to steal your heart.

Aerial view of Platja Ses Illetes, a beach with crystal clear waters in Formentera, an island in Spain, southern Europe

Known locally as Ibiza’s ‘meek’ sister, it’s a Mediterranean gem few Americans know about, and your best bet for a truly relaxing sunny getaway.

Welcome to the Paradisiacal Formentera

Formentera is the smallest of Spain’s Balearic Islands, covering an area of ​​just 80 square kilometers and home to a population of 12,111, mostly of Catalan ethnicity, according to the latest official estimate.

Although lies just 4 miles south of Ibizathe closest island with an international airport, it is often described as a more picturesque traditionally Mediterranean island municipality, as most tourists remain on the neighboring island without taking the ferry.

Outside of the Balearic Islands, a group that comprises not only Ibiza and Formentera but also the trendy summer resorts of Mallorca and Menorca, the latter of which recently began receiving non-stop flights from the Americas, the island in question is the the only one that does not house any commercial flights

A Quiet Beach On Formentera, The Smallest Of The Balearic Islands In Spain, Southern Europe

Apart from a handful of heliports, it lacks an international airport, meaning the only way to access it is via ferry from certain Ibiza ports.

With several ferry companies operating on the Ibiza-Formentera route, the fastest ferries take just 30 minutes to crossdeparting from Port d’Eivissa, with prices ranging from 18 to 29 dollars standard tickets.

Formentera is still largely untouched by over-tourism

If you’ve been following travel trends in Europe in recent years, you may have noticed that the presence of international airports in traditional communities is partly the reason why overtourism and eventually gentrification occurs. .

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Young woman taking pictures of the brilliant blue Mediterranean ocean in Formentera, an island in the Balearic Islands, Spain, southern Europe

Of course, Formentera is no hidden gem among the spanish and its European compatriots, serving as a summer escape since the 1960s, when it became a popular hangout for hippies, but most Americans won’t even realize it exists.

This is mainly because travelers originating across the pond prefer easily accessible destinations, and while Ibiza itself is not home to direct flights from the US, it does have an airport, nonetheless, connected to numerous transit hubs. in all Europe.

The easier a destination is to reach and the more attractive it is, the greater the risk of visitors overrunning it, so while Ibiza has flourished in recent decades as a Mediterranean resort, The less prominent Formentera remained largely a « niche » destination..

Turquoise waters of the eastern Mediterranean off the coast of Northern Cyprus

It is still sought after almost exclusively by travelers looking to relax and soak up the subtropical vibes.

It may be a small island, but it has no shortage of beautiful swimming spots to discover and stunning scenery.

An Exclusive Luxury Destination Under Construction

Formentera is not a cheap island getaway either.

Although you’ll find cheaper overnight stays in the major settlements, you should expect to pay as much as US$577 per night in the ultra-luxurious Five Flowers Hotel & Spa.

Wooden stairway leading to the sea in Protaras, Eastern Mediterranean, Cyprus, South Eastern Europe, Western Asia

With very few, if any youth hostels in sight booking.com He doesn’t even list them: It’s not a destination for the masses, but instead serves as a luxury getaway for vacationers who aren’t afraid to splurge, if that means more exclusivity and fewer crowds.

From the rugged Els Pujols coastline to the La Mola peninsula, fringed by stretches of sand fringed by the brilliant blue waters of the Mediterranean, Formentera feels more like an untouched nature reserve than a proper tourist destination.

beaches galore

If it’s beaches you’re after, you’ll want to visit the iconic Platja Ses Illetes, in the far north of Formentera, ranked as one of the most beautiful not only in Spain, but All Europe.

Swimmer enjoying a day at the beach in Sant Antoni de Portmany, Ibiza, Spain, Mediterranean Sea

At 1.5 km long, this smooth, chalk-white sandbank rises from an aquamarine lagoon, sloping down towards the bluer hues of the Mediterranean in the distance. The sea here is calm and shallow, which makes Ses Illetes perfect for bathing.

Similar to the stunning peninsula described above, Cala Saona is another beautiful palm-fringed family beach with shallow shorelines and turquoise waters.

Formentera is known by the locals laid back attitude to life, and as a place where you can practice nudism without judgment. Some of the most famous naturist spots are Migjorn, Llevant and Sa Roqueta, not far from Els Pujols.

woman on the beach in mexico

Els Pujols, on the other hand, encompasses both a jagged coastline and a sandy crescent that connects an up-and-coming resort area with the town of the same name, where travelers will find a selection of bars, night clubsand restaurants worthy of a Michelin star that serve Mediterranean food.

The only other major settlement on Formentera is the island’s capital, Sant Francesc. It is dominated by a picturesque whitewashed church and an imposing town hall, from where narrow, paved streets meander, leading to traditional restaurants and souvenir shops.

Regardless of where you are on Formentera, be it San Francesc, Els Pujols, or other smaller coastal settlements, one of the top-rated activities to do is rent a bike for one or two days.

A paradise for bikers

Bicycles parked at a viewpoint overlooking the Mediterranean Sea in Formentera, Spain, Southern Europe

Because the island is so compact, it’s possible to cycle all along the coast and even explore secluded spots inland, where the arid Mediterranean coastal landscape gives way to rolling green fields dotted with vineyards and century-old Catalan vines. -Peoples of speech.

Bikes can be rented directly from your hotel or accommodation provider.

The island is crisscrossed with paved roads, but at its core it’s a cyclist’s paradise, with lanes dedicated exclusively to biking. along 40 km from north to southwhich leads to secluded beaches, 18th century Martello towers and natural parks.

An island for poets

Tourist woman with a sun hat looking happy on a beach in the Mexican Caribbean, Mexico

If you are visiting Formentera in June and you are a fan of jazz music, you may want to attend the annual event Formentera Jazz Festivalheld in celebration of the musical background of the island.

It has been quoted by several artists, including the Brazilian Bossa Nova icon Gilberto Gil and Pink Floyd.

it is also where Joni Mitchell wrote most of her 1971 album Bluein addition to serving as the official residence of Bob Dylan, who installed his base in an emblematic lighthouse in Cap de Barbaria.

If you stay on Formentera long enough, you will soon realize why it has been the muse of so many poets and musical artists.

The high season in Formentera has just started and lasts until August, when the seas are warm for swimming and the sun always shinesit is the best time to enjoy the unique atmosphere of the island.

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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com