An open-air platform where nature, beach and clear waters collide, Ibiza can be a hedonistic party scene or a bohemian escape of secret coves and peaceful hideaways. There’s the unspoilt non-commercial atmosphere at the south-west’s palm-lined Carla Cabo beach and the bohemian hangout at the north’s Benirras beach where water is crystal clear and sunsets are spectacular. Then there’s iconic Las Salinas in the south where super salty water makes it easy to stay afloat and DJs spin tunes until the sun goes down.
Head to the laid-back town of Santa Eulalia for soft sandy beaches and an exclusive yacht marina; the perfect spot for families and travellers looking for a more tranquil holiday. Half an hour away in Ibiza Town – known locally as Eivissa – you’ll find winding white-washed alleys leading to the UNESCO Dalt Vila, plush yachts moored at the Marina and Ibiza’s most famous nightclubs, restaurants, beaches and shops. Just up from the marina is Talamanca, a quieter spot where soft white sands and plenty of beachfront eateries can be found. For something a little wilder and remote, explore the north of Ibiza walking the cliff-top trail from Portinatx to the lighthouse. And for a rather special day trip take a boat over to the Caribbean-like island of Formentera or the uninhabited island of Es Vedrà for a dramatic landscape of monolithic slab where it’s possible to spend the day snorkelling.
Where is Ibiza?
Ibiza is the third largest of the Balearic Islands, in the Mediterranean Sea off the eastern coast of mainland Spain.
Car hire provides the most freedom if you want to explore all of Ibiza, but taxis (expect queues and waits in the summer), buses and ferries are all convenient ways to get around the island too. The best way to experience Ibiza Town is to walk around and there are plenty of hiking opportunities in the north. More secluded spots tend to have dirt roads on the way and roads are not always clearly signposted so be careful when driving. The Ibiza Disco Bus will safely transport you to all the major clubs and daily ferries take you over to Formentera from Ibiza Town.
Pick up batik wraps, silk dresses, hand-made leather moccasins and hand-crafted silver and gold jewellery at little independent boutiques and those famous hippy markets found all over the island. Some of the best include all-day atmospheric Las Dalias on Saturdays and Wednesday’s Punta Arabí market in Es Caná. You’ll find high-end fashion stores in Ibiza Town, one-off pieces from local designers at Las Salinas’ Experimental Beach and plenty of little boutiques offering affordable gifts including scented candles, scarves, beach totes and swimsuits.
Food and drink
Steeped in traditional fishing and with a fertile land, you’re guaranteed to eat well on Ibiza. You’ll find classic Spanish dishes alongside fusion cuisine and lots of dazzling design-led restaurants. Find some of the best eateries on the island along the cobbled streets of Dalt Vila, sip cocktails at sunset in dreamy bars overlooking the sea and recharge after a night out at one of the many raw, organic juice bars. Expect restaurants and bars with DJs spinning tunes all day, many with kid-friendly play areas and some even with yoga studios. Locals eat late, meaning some of the best tables in the house can be found around 8pm before the Spanish arrive a couple of hours later. Imagine seafood paella, fresh fish infused with saffron, Catalan fish stew, a mix of chicken, lamb and Ibiza sausages and lots of tapas offerings between meals.
Visa not required for UK passport holders.
A tourist tax applies to all hotels in Ibiza and is only payable locally.