If you arrive into Ibiza on a daylight flight and you’re lucky enough to have prebooked a window seat, you are in for a magical experience.
As the aircraft makes its final approach to land onto the island, be eyes ready because before your eyes will emerge the wonderful island of Ibiza and its capital city known to locals as Eivissa.
The first sights of city of Eivissa, with its walled city and the cathedral of Santa Maria de las Nieves standing proudly overlooking the marina is a breath-taking moment that you will never forget.
As we know, Eivissa (Ibiza) is extremely famous for its party scene, however, its stunning capital city has a historical past, and when you wonder the cobbled streets, you cannot help but feel encapsulated by its Mediterranean charm.
Ibiza was founded in 645 BC and over the years has been settled by the Moors, Catalans, Greeks, Arabs, Phoenicians, Romans and Carthaginian and they have all left their imprint on the island.
The island has always benefited from its strategic location between mainland Spain and Africa and has a favourable reputation for its premium Natural salt trade. For centuries the islands main economic income was based around the salt trade which still continues to flourish today.
Today, Ibiza’s picturesque capital is split into 3 distinctive areas:
The Old Town, The New Town and The Marina.
The Old Town is overshadowed by the walled fortress of the Dalt Villa which was built in the 16th century, and was officially declared a world heritage site by UNESCO in 1999.
The “walled city” has 5 entrances, and the huge dramatic main entrance has a magnificent stone drawbridge which gateway enters out onto ancient cobbled stone courtyards and narrow alleyway streets.
Tucked away behind the walls of this magical fortress you will stumble across an array of restaurants, bars and boutiques. All surrounded by a community of residents living in quaint homes adorned with picturesque balconies, windows and front doors of all shapes and sizes.
If you’re like me you will find yourself walking around for hours, filling your phone memory with pictures of random door knockers and balconies with trailing flowers whilst saying your cheeriest “Hola” to locals and tourists who are also enjoying the magical medieval surroundings.
The Dalt villa grounds are home to a variety of special museums which are important to the island’s history and culture.
The Necropolis Del Puig Des Molins is an ancient burial ground which has more than 3000 tombs, Some of which date back to as far as the 7th century!
The Archaeological Museum displays artefacts found on the island from the Phoenician and roman times, and the Contemporary Art Museum is a representation of modern era with its annual exhibitions of modern art.
The New Town is equipped with all things you’d expect from a growing cosmopolitan location. There are palm tree lined plazas, Boutiques with fancy designer good and International Brands like Mac, Sephora and Zara can be found with their recognisable window displays.
The New Town is a little more fast paced than the rest of the island, with the hustle and bustle you would expect from busy Restaurants, Casinos, Nightclubs and 5-star Hotels.
Modern Residential complexes are arising and the recent focus on restoration and improvements to infrastructure can be noticed. The new bus station and police headquarters are homed in a modern complex.
Lying in front of the walled city and the New Town is The Marina. The port of Marina Botofoch is internationally renowned for its summer mooring of super yachts, and expensive boats that you would normally see on a James Bond film. It’s a lively harbour district with a promenade which every morning transforms into an outdoor auditorium of joggers, dog walkers and Personal Trainers and at night time scene has an electric vibe and energy.
Eivissa really is a magical place with a busy community bursting with life. The past, present and Future live holistically, sustainably and respectfully side my side.
The island has historical roots and hosts a multitude of cultures and influences. The Dalt Villa and its walled fortress should be explored and enjoyed by all visitors to the island. Residents of the island will find themselves often saying the words “I live here” whenever they find themself strolling around the city,
With the increase in cultural, rural and sporting tourism I believe that ibiza and its magical city will be a focal point of all new visitors to the island. First-time visitors are warned that comfortable shoes and a clear camera roll are essential for all trips to Eivissa.