May 7, 2021

Guide to the Island of Ibiza, Spain

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We tell you what’s happening on the island – the epicenter of European nightlife, and tell you where to look for the best beaches, hotels and restaurants.

Ibiza has changed a lot over the past few years. Once the beloved island of hippies, the epicenter of informal culture and underground, it turns into a kind of French Saint-Tropez or the Sardinian coast of the Costa Smeralda. Expensive chain places like Cipriani and Cavalli Ibiza Restaurant & Lounge are opening.

The trendsetters of the global luxury leisure and entertainment industry come – for example, the Spanish gastronomy revolutionaries, the Ferran brothers and Albert Adrià, together with the founder of the Canadian show Cirque du Soleil Guy Laliberte, opened an exemplary Ibizan club-restaurant of the new century in the island’s marina last year.

Their establishment, Heart, combines a gourmet restaurant, a street food space, and a stage for performing artists and musicians. It is curious that the Space Ibiza club – the visiting card of Ibiza at the end of the twentieth century – in 2016 will open its last, 27th season on May 29th.

But no matter how Ibiza migrates towards luxury, for me, its charm is in simplicity and freedom. I don’t know how long the restaurant-circus of the Adrià brothers will work, but the restaurant on the Sa Caleta beach, I am sure, will stand still for years. Like all the other places that I will talk about.

The swimming pool of the Ushuaia Ibiza Beach Hotel in the village of Sant Jordi de Ses Salines in the south of the island of Ibiza.

The swimming pool of the Ushuaia Ibiza Beach Hotel in the village of Sant Jordi de Ses Salines in the south of the island of Ibiza.

How to Get There

The peak season in Ibiza is from July to August. If you want to avoid the crowds, come in early June or already in the second half of September, when the big parties are taking place in the clubs that close the season.

Be sure to rent a car. Order it online from Moscow in companies like Avis and get behind the wheel upon arrival at the airport. The main thing is to choose a simpler car and buy full insurance: returning from the beach to the parking lot, you can find the car crumpled by those who tried to squeeze into the parking lot.

Where to Live

Where to stay in Ibiza hotels Rurales (country inns) in the northern, quieter part of the island. There is pristine nature here: pine forests, almond groves, beauty and silence. The only negative is that it takes about half an hour to get to the city of Ibiza, the capital of the island and the center of nightlife, by car.

If you are traveling with a company or with children, it is better to rent a villa. The most prestigious area is in the south-west of the island, near the beaches of Sa Caleta, Cala Jondal, Porroig, Es Cubells: Karl Lagerfeld, Mario Testino, the Spanish rich and Russian oligarchs rest here. Also popular are villas near small bays with the beaches of Cala Vadella, Cala Tarida, Cala Moli, Cala Carbo. There is no nightlife here, just a restaurant.

The swimming pool of The Giri Residence boutique hotel in Sant Joan de Labritja village in the north of Ibiza. thegiri.com

The swimming pool of The Giri Residence boutique hotel in Sant Joan de Labritja village in the north of Ibiza.

1. CAN TALAIAS

An old farmhouse perched on a hill in a fir forest near the village of San Carlos, a famous hippie settlement with stunning sea views. The owners, true hippies, created the atmosphere of an artistic dacha: they put a stove with tiles in the dining room, a piano in the living room, breakfast is served at any time of the day, anywhere. There are 6 bright rooms with wooden furniture, yellow and orange walls, cozy terraces. The most luxurious is the Girasol Suite in a round tower, with a fireplace and statues in niches. The hotel has a swimming pool.

2. CAN CURREU

More sophisticated hotel in the same village of San Carlos. Each of the 17 rooms has polished wood furniture, candles in cast-iron candlesticks, spacious terraces. The restaurant is luxurious and serves Mediterranean cuisine. There is a spa with a 30-page treatment menu and a riding hall next door for horse riding enthusiasts.

Where to Sunbathe

There are about eight to ten beaches in Ibiza – all different, and this is their main charm. First of all, go to Cala Conta, a 20-minute drive from the capital – not to sunbathe (there are always crowds of hippie youth), but to take a selfie at sunset: there are beautiful cliffs near small bays, in addition, the beautiful island of Illa des lies opposite the beach Bosc.

1. ES CAVALLET

The antipode of Ibiza’s most fashionable and crowded beach, Las Salinas, is located on the other side of the reserve, a 10-minute drive from the island’s capital, Ibiza Town. To get comfortable, you need to walk for about 20 minutes. But even at the peak of the season, you can find a place where not a soul will be around for a hundred meters. It is worth arriving at about five when the sun is no longer baking and staying until sunset.

At the very beginning of the beach, there are 2 good restaurants: El Chiringuito (trendy, in the style of Saint-Tropez, top models Natasha Poli and Carmen Pedaru are here; It is also worth having lunch in the restaurant here because there are practically no parking spaces from 14:00 to 17:00, and so you will have every right to use the valet service.

2. AGUAS BLANCAS

A real hippie beach half an hour from the capital, in the northeast of the island. You can sunbathe without clothes and feel the atmosphere of old Ibiza. Nature is different from the southern coast: the landscape is more mountainous, the water is 1-2 degrees colder, the forests are thicker. But there are no jellyfish, the sand is coarse, yellowish-golden, and the ideal waves are slightly gray (hence, apparently, the name of the beach – “White Waters”). There is no restaurant, only a kiosk with expensive semi-finished products.

3. CALA VADELLA

Family beach in the west of the island, near the village of San Jose, half an hour drive from the capital. The only one in Ibiza where the width of the bay allows you to stretch a net to protect bathers from jellyfish. There is a time in Ibiza when the whole west coast is teeming with them and you cannot go into the water for three days. Here, however, such problems do not happen.

4. SA CALETA

A tiny beach by the airport with a beautiful view of the planes approaching and taking off. At the entrance to the water, there are pebbles with sand, but a sandy shallow pool, ideal for children, stretches two meters from the shore. On this beach, fashion brands often shoot advertising campaigns – against the backdrop of the stunning beauty of sheer red cliffs.

5. CALA GRACIONETA

Micro beach with shady dense pine trees near the town of San Antonio, half an hour drive from the capital. There is a nice restaurant with tables arranged on terraces like an amphitheater. If you are here for the first time, limit yourself to understand simple dishes from the menu, do not order fish or lobsters by weight – they will definitely cheat you a little, it will not be so much a pity for money as it is insulting. The fact is that the restaurant’s traffic is small, and the owner is trying to compensate for this in a not very sophisticated way. The food is good though.

Best Restaurants in Ibiza

1. ES XARCU

A small establishment hides behind a small promontory in Cala Jondal, a hundred meters from the ever-bubbling Blue Marlin, an analog of 55 Club in Saint-Tropez. Wooden tables sit on the terrace on the pebble beach. Prices are twice as high as the average in Ibiza, but the food is excellent.

2. SA CALETA

Located next to the beach of the same name. One of the oldest establishments on the island, open 7 days a week, 365 days a year, from morning until midnight. The owners – father and son – for the first time, as it may seem to you, will not pay attention to you, but if you come to the second and third, they will serve you with respect. The restaurant has a garden with hammocks and sun loungers. During the season, it is worth calling at least an hour in advance.