Ibiza Island holidays

Experience Ibiza Island

Experience [destination]

Best Places to Visit

Ibiza, one of the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean, is known the world over for its outstanding nightlife and beaches. However, while this reputation holds true, history and marine life also make it an appealing spot for those into heritage, water sports, diving and archaeology.

No visit to Ibiza would be complete without exploring Ibiza Town, home to the World Heritage-listed Ibiza Castle (Dalt Vila). Apart from historic sites, churches and a necropolis in and around Ibiza's old town, there is also a vibrant clubbing scene, including some of the island's most famous night spots. In Ibiza Town, it's easy to spend a relaxed day meandering the historic areas and architecture before settling down to linger over an evening meal. When the sun goes down, Ibiza comes to life, and visitors can enjoy a variety of entertainment from wild nights out to balmy evenings spent in the old town streets.

San Antonio is a clubbers' paradise, offering 24-hour partying that is popular with the young British and European crowd. It is a photogenic town, and visitors can snap the best-known landmark, a statue of an egg commemorating Christopher Columbus, or stroll along the Passeig de Ses Fonts, the harbourside promenade, taking pictures of the gardens, fountains, harbour and ocean.

Santa Eularia des Riu is the southeastern region of Ibiza, known for its countryside, hippy markets and beaches. The small, fortified harbour of Sant Carles de Peralta is a relaxing, lovely town. Visitors can explore the nearby chimneys and ruins of the ancient Carthaginian lead mine, snorkel at Pou des Lleo beach or see the Torre d'en Valls pirate tower.

Ibiza's northern region, Sant Joan de Labritja, is renowned for scenery and attracts visitors to some of Ibiza's most stunning resorts, including beautiful Portinatx and family-friendly Cala de Sant Vicent with its sandy beaches and fascinating caves. Apart from these tourist areas, the region is almost completely rural and is also the least-populated in Ibiza.

The Sant Josep de sa Talaia region, in the middle of the island, has the most beaches and coves on Ibiza. Apart from enjoying the beaches and World Heritage listed attractions, tourists can visit Ses Paises de Cala d'Hort to see the old Punic-Roman farm settlement or stop in at the World Heritage-listed Phoenician village at Sa Caleta.

Top Landmarks

The World Heritage-listed Ibiza Castle (Dalt Vila) is Ibiza's walled old town and can be entered through five different gates. The most impressive is the Ses Taules Gate, flanked by two Roman statues that are reproductions of ancient originals which are now housed at the Archaeological Museum. Within the walls and perched atop the mount sits the 14th-century cathedral of Santa Maria d'Eivissa.

The port of San Miguel hides the fascinating Can Marca Caves formerly used by smugglers and now a tourist attraction. Visitors can navigate the old smugglers' paths to marvel at the cave's rock formations, underground lakes and waterfalls.

No visit to Ibiza would be complete without visiting one of Ibiza's pirate towers, lookouts built by locals to watch for pirates. The round Torre d'en Valls tower at Pou des Lleo is an excellent example and offers stunning views of the coastline.

Ibiza and its waters are home to some unique natural environments, including the salt lakes of Ses Salines National Park in Ibiza's south. The area is rich in wildlife, and visitors may be lucky enough to spot a fishing eagle or the migrating flamingos that frequent the area during late summer.

Visitors to Cala d'Hort beach area can marvel at the mysterious, rocky island of Es Vedra which some say is the remains of Atlantis; others claim it was the isle of the Sirens from Homer's stories.

Entertainment

Ibiza is an island which has become dedicated to the entertainment of visitors, from the world famous nightclubs and large music venues to smaller restaurants and bars. Most of the action is centred on Ibiza Town and San Antonio, where predominantly British and European holidaymakers party the days and nights away with hedonistic abandon.

Ibiza Town is the ideal place for a night out. Home to some of Ibiza's most famous clubs, including Pacha, Amnesia and Privilege, the visitor is spoilt for choice. For gamblers, there is the small but reasonably equipped Casino de Ibiza. Alternatively, a handful of live music venues is on hand.

The real nightclub centre of the island is Ibiza's legendary San Antonio. Clubbers flock to this harbour town to visit super clubs like Eden on the waterfront or Es Paradis and its famous water party. There are also numerous bars and restaurants to choose from, covering almost every cuisine.

Space is a nightclub that has frequently won the International Dance Music Award for the 'Best Global Club'. Situated at Playa den Bossa, in the Sant Josep de sa Talaia region of Ibiza, this venue offers visitors a stellar day or night out.

Outside the main towns of Ibiza and San Antonio, nightlife at the seaside resorts such as Santa Eulalia and Portinatx tends to cater to the preferences and tastes of visitors. With less in the way of nightclubs, there are nonetheless some good bars and restaurants that keep all ages entertained until late.

Dining Out

As Ibiza is one of the Balearic Islands, the traditional cuisine here tends to be Mediterranean with a strong Catalan influence. With Ibiza being an island, seafood and seafood stews feature strongly, as do olive oil and almonds, which are grown throughout the Balearic Islands.

A typical meal might begin with burrida de ratjada, skate with almonds, or one of the famous Balearic style vegetable and bread soups, such as las sopes mallorquines. Mains may include el guisat de peix (seafood stew) or coques - meat and vegetables wrapped in a square pastry - all accompanied by red wine or sangria.

One of the most famous dishes of the Balearic cuisine is caldereta de langosta, a lobster stew made with local lobster, garlic, onions and tomatoes. The Spanish chicken and seafood rice dish paella is also common.

Mahón is the local hard cheese and is similar to parmesan. Ibiza also produces its own herb liquor - Hierbas Ibicencas - which packs a punch at 26 per cent alcohol.

Being a top tourist destination, Ibiza also boasts a vast variety of restaurants covering all cuisines, including Chinese, Indian, Japanese, German and Italian for those who don't fancy the local fare. There are also specialist vegetarian restaurants.

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Need to know

Need to know [destination]

Language

Although Ibiza is a part of Spain, Catalan is the official language. However, most people on Ibiza speak the Castilian form of Spanish. Many Ibiza locals also speak English or German, with English being widely understood throughout the island, particularly in tourist areas. Visitors travelling to more rural areas may find a need for a phrasebook whereas those visiting purely for the clubs and tourist hotspots should have no problem with ordering in English or speaking to service staff.

Currency

Like the rest of Spain, Ibiza uses the euro as its main form of currency. Money can be changed at registered bureaux de change and at most banks and large hotels, many of which also cash travellers' cheques, although it is a good idea to travel with some euros ahead of arrival. ATMs are commonly available; almost every bank will have one as well as many supermarkets, and they exist in almost all small towns. Cash is the most common form of payment although credit cards are widely accepted.

Visas

Visitors of most nationalities, including British citizens, can stay for up to 90 days in Spain, including Ibiza, without a visa on the condition that they hold a return or onward ticket. Passports need to be valid for at least six months after the date of entry into Ibiza. As Spain is part of the Schengen Agreement, holders of Schengen visas can travel to Ibiza from other Schengen areas without further immigration checks.

Climate

Ibiza has a mild but seasonal climate with warm, mostly dry summers and cool, wet winters. Summer runs from June through August, with average temperatures ranging between 17°C and 30°C. Spring showers are common in April but they largely dry up by May, with spring temperatures averaging from 9°C to 22°C. Autumn, September to November, tends to be mild and warm with temperatures from 12°C to 27°C. Late-season breaks in October and November (after the club season has died down) will cost less than peak season, and the weather is often very pleasant. Winter is often wet and sees temperatures of between 8°C to 16°C.

Main Airports

Being a small island, Ibiza has just one commercial airport, Ibiza Airport (code IBZ), located nearly four miles (6km) from Ibiza's capital, Ibiza Town. British tourists generally fly to Ibiza from London, Birmingham or Manchester. There are also regular air links to Ibiza from Madrid and Barcelona on the Spanish mainland.

Flight Options

As Ibiza is a major tourist destination, around 50 different countries fly into Ibiza Airport. Major carriers service Ibiza year-round from London, while routes from Barcelona and Madrid are also popular. Tourists can also get to Ibiza from Dusseldorf or from Palma de Mallorca all year round. The flight from London to Ibiza usually takes just under 2 hours and 30 minutes.

Travel Advice

Prices to Ibiza are highest from June to September, so travelling during the shoulder months of April, May or October can provide savings. Visitors who arrive at Ibiza Airport can take the half-hourly direct bus to Ibiza Town, which is the cheapest method of transport. Taxis and private transfer services such as shuttle buses are also available, or you can hire a car or scooter.

Other Transport Options

Visitors can reach Ibiza by boat as regular ferries cross from Barcelona, Mallorca, Denia and Valencia to the ports at Ibiza Town and San Antonio Harbour. The trip takes about 9 hours from Barcelona, 3 hours from Denia, and between 5 and 7 hours from Valencia.

Getting Around

Most tourists arrive in Ibiza by air although some come by ferry. A reasonable, well-maintained road network connects the resorts towns and beaches of Ibiza. Half-hourly buses link most destinations on the island and are a cheap and comfortable means of transport. For those who prefer a little more flexibility, hire cars and scooters are readily available, as are taxis. Remember to drive on the right-hand side if hiring a vehicle.

Bus

The bus is a cheap and popular means of transport for travelling around Ibiza. Buses tend to be air conditioned, comfortable and frequent, linking most towns, resorts and beaches. There are four main bus companies: Autobuses San Antonio, Autobuses Voramar-El Gaucho, Autocares Lucas Costa and HF Vilas. A night bus service is provided by Discobus from 16:15, and from midnight elsewhere..

Car

There are many car hire operations in Ibiza, including most of the major international chains. Tourist can hire a car from Ibiza's main towns, resorts or the airport. Ibiza has good roads and driving is on the right. Some of the driving can be fast or erratic, particularly in high tourist season when the population of the island increases enormously, so tourists are advised to drive with care.

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IBIZA ISLAND`S WEATHER TODAY

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FACTS

  1. In a bid to attract a high-end clientele, Ibiza has introduced a policy that all new hotels must be of 5 star standard. Some of these newer luxurious boutique hotels can be found dotted throughout Ibiza Town.
  2. Hues of burnt orange can be seen on rural ground across Ibiza. This is due to the amount of pine trees, which drop tannin-rich needles into the soil, giving it a distinctive orange colour.
  3. Much like the theories of the Bermuda Triangle being a geomagnetic anomaly, the large Es Vedra rock to the east of Ibiza's coast is said to be the third most magnetic spot in the world due to its composition.

FACTS

  1. In a bid to attract a high-end clientele, Ibiza has introduced a policy that all new hotels must be of 5 star standard. Some of these newer luxurious boutique hotels can be found dotted throughout Ibiza Town.
  2. Hues of burnt orange can be seen on rural ground across Ibiza. This is due to the amount of pine trees, which drop tannin-rich needles into the soil, giving it a distinctive orange colour.
  3. Much like the theories of the Bermuda Triangle being a geomagnetic anomaly, the large Es Vedra rock to the east of Ibiza's coast is said to be the third most magnetic spot in the world due to its composition.

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