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KNOW BEFORE YOU GO - STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD (foreign office travel advice)

Porto Colom

Porto Colom Holidays

Nestled in a sheltered cove on the south east coast of Majorca, Porto Colom has been welcoming visitors to its shores for decades. Unlike other resorts though, Porto Colom has successfully retained its quaint, rustic charm over the years. Its bustling harbour is studded with boats of all shapes and sizes and set against the backdrop of row upon row of pastel-coloured villas. Cheap holidays to Majorca do not have to be in built up tourist areas, but can be in authentic and charming areas too.

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Porto Colom's laid-back lifestyle and organic origins make it a more authentic holiday option for holidays to Majorca than some of the other resorts on the island's coastlines – which is why it's an ideal choice for those looking for a more charming holiday experience.

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Awash with local colour

Aside from the picturesque fishermen's cottages, each with its own soft hues and landing dock, Porto Colom also boasts plenty of colour in its heritage. It's one of several places around the world which claims to be the birthplace of Christopher Columbus – hence the name.

Though it's unlikely Columbus himself was born here, the nearby town of Felanitx is home to another famous son, painter and sculptor Miquel Barcelo, whose work is on show at such prestigious locales as the UN's Human Rights and Alliance of Civilisations Room. As such, Porto Colom basks in the reflected grandeur of its neighbour and locals are very proud of their heritage. Santueri Castle and the San Salvador Monastery are both striking examples of Gothic architecture in Felanitx.

Perhaps the most impressive historical attraction in town is the Naveta, an archaeological dig site showing nine distinct rooms dating back as far as 2,000 BC.

Streets running with wine

The region of Felanitx in which Porto Colom lies is famous for its proud tradition of producing some of the finest wines in Spain. In fact, up until the end of the 19th century, Porto Colom enjoyed a position as the main hub for wine exports to France.

Unfortunately, when the parasite phylloxera did irreparable damages to the vines of the district, the town's importance diminished. Despite the best efforts of the troublesome parasite, the nearby Pla y Llevant vineyards - which once flourished - are still operational today. There are several wineries within a short distance from Porto Colom which are open to public tasting tours and tutorials.

A food lover's paradise

As well as from the superior wine on offer, the gastronomy in Porto Colom is another of its major draws. Due to its background as a fishing village, the town excels in some of the finest and freshest fish and seafood you're ever likely to taste. In particular, you don't want to miss the 'langostina a la parilla', a barbecued local lobster garnished with a special homemade mayonnaise.

Meanwhile, the island's proximity to Catalonia means that much of its cuisine has been influenced by Catalan culture. This means there's a heavy emphasis on pork as a key ingredient to many dishes, as well as a subtle combination of sweet and savoury flavours.

In fact, foodies will be in their element in the last week of June, when the town plays host to the Fira Gastronomica D'es Pop. During the week, upwards of 15 restaurants around town pull out the stops to offer their finest delicacies to those lucky enough to visit.

Activities for all the family

As with almost any resort on Majorca, the main attraction is the beach and Porto Colom is no different. Here, the principal beach is Cala Marcal, which holds the Blue Flag for cleanliness and facilities. It offers the twin delights of luxuriously soft sand with an incredibly gentle slope into the turquoise waters, making it an ideal place to splash around in. The beaches are child friendly, making Porto Colom perfect for family holidays to Majorca. Scuba diving and snorkelling opportunities are to be found in abundance for those with an interest in exploring the great blue beyond.

Away from the seashore, hiring a car is a convenient way of reaching the attractions surrounding the resort. First, there's Santanyi, an attractive village constructed almost entirely from sandstone. Or take a trip to the breathtaking landscape of Mondrago Natural Park, which boasts sublime steep cliffs dropping away to crystalline waters and wildlife-rich wetlands.

Alternatively, golf enthusiasts can squeeze in a quick back nine, or leisurely 18, at Vall d'Or Golf Club just a stone's throw from Porto Colom. The resort also boasts a generously-sized swimming pool, paddle courts and a sun terrace, so there's something to keep everyone busy while the next Tiger Woods is perfects his swing.