This cosmopolitan island, the third largest in the Balearics, has a reputation for being a party paradise – and it absolutely still is if that’s what you are looking for. Scratch beneath the surface, however, and Ibiza is an island of contrasts loved by the international jet set and families alike. There’s an abundance of world-class beaches and restaurants, chic boutiques and hippy markets, as well as Ibiza Old Town, which boasts Unesco World Heritage status. Health fanatic? Discover the tranquil, holistic side to the ‘White Isle’, featuring unspoilt villages dotted with almond blossom trees, plus first-class yoga and wellness retreats.
Why cruise Ibiza
Ibiza has so much more to offer than its nightclubs and late-night party scene. A Mediterranean cruise to Ibiza is a great way to experience the other more serene side of the beautiful Balearic island, visiting Unesco World Heritage sites, hidden coves and unspoilt, secluded beaches. Cruises tend to visit the historic old quarter, Ibiza Town, with its 16th century citadel and fortifications, Gothic Catalan cathedral and contemporary art galleries, as well as the island’s unspoilt sandy beaches.
What to see and do in Ibiza
Held every Saturday in San Carlos, this is the most famous of Ibiza’s hippy markets and well worth a look, if only for the authentic atmosphere. Buy anything from clothes and jewellery to local crafts, many of them handmade. There’s also a restaurant and Moroccan tea tent. In high summer it can get very busy, so visitors should head there early to avoid the masses.
Las Salinas Beach
Want to mingle with the beautiful people? This is the beach in which to see and be seen in Ibiza, attracting a varied crowd, plus a fair share of superyachts. A ten-minute drive from Ibiza Town, the beach offers golden sands, water sports, restaurants, bars, showers and a beach boutique. This is one of the liveliest and most exclusive beaches in Ibiza – so expect prices to match.
Just walking distance from the port, this medieval castle and UNESCO World Heritage site dates back to the 16th century and offers panoramic views of the island from the battlements. There is a maze of narrow, cobbled streets lined with restaurants, shops and boutiques, selling everything from souvenirs to art and handmade clothing. There is also an archaeological museum featuring collections from the Carthaginian era.
Sample the cuisine
You can’t visit a Spanish island not partake of some tapas and popular restaurant Mar A Vila in the heart of Ibiza Town serves classic small plates begging to be shared. Alternatively, Moroccan-inspired French restaurant El Chiringuito has been an Ibiza staple for 10 years now and situated by the seaside, is perfect for a long afternoon in the sun.
If you can’t get enough of Ibiza’s hippy markets, then try Punta Arabí. This long-running alternative to Las Dalias is where you can scour for more fashion and craft bargains. You can also head to the south-east of the island to the de facto capital, Ibiza Town, and explore its incredible selection of boutique shops and high street favourites.
Need to know when travelling to Ibiza
Getting around in Ibiza
It has only been in the last two decades that the Port d’Eivissa has been equipped with the infrastructure it has in place today – with almost 250,000 cruise ship passengers are expected to visit the island this year. Smaller ships can dock at the port in the heart of the old town while the extended Botafoc dock is where larger cruise ships berth. Ibiza Town and Dalt Villa are both within walking distance of the old town port, however, if you are based in Botafoc, you’ll need to catch a shuttle bus.
When to go to Ibiza
The best time to visit Ibiza for the best weather is between May and October. If you wish to avoid Ibiza at its most hectic, then visit at the beginning of the opening parties in May or in October when they’re dying down.
Ibiza uses the euro. You will find ATMs scattered around the island and the majority of places will accept credit and debit cards.
If you hold a British Citizen passport, you don't need a visa to enter Spain unless you’re planning a stay of longer than three months.
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