When arriving on Formentera for the first time, you get the feeling like you’ve been let in on a really big secret. This little island can only be accessed by boat from Ibiza, but this inaccessibility is what keeps it so special. Formentera has spent much of its life in the shadow of its bigger, brasher Balearic siblings. But, like any good thing, the secret is out and progress can be heard knocking at the door.
There are many elements of this island that make it stand out against its European peers. The island satisfies the notion of paradise; long stretches of white sand and crystal clear water. Due to its small size and low relief, the climate remains consistently hot and cloud-free throughout the summer. Sun-kissed signoritas cruise the beach circuit on mopeds establishing that effortlessly cool vibe. And a generous peppering of culinary delights makes it a serious food destination.
But asthetics aside, there is a heart and soul that can only be realised when you spend longer than your lunch break here. Formentera’s relatively small population of inhabitants have a fierce respect for nature and a commitment to sustainable development which once again distinguishes it from other European (and global) holiday destinations.
Above all, there is a freedom which enables creativity to flourish and evidence of this is displayed at any number of markets occurring daily and nightly throughout the island. The colony of happy, eco-conscious hippies maintain the survival of the island’s own culture and have been doing so for a long time before we stumbled across their Isla Bonita.
Playa Mitjorn; longest beach on the island – set up camp around the 11km mark right in front of Flipper & Chiller.
Cala Saona; a small cove where the beach is deeper than it is wide. Amazing sunsets with a cute chiringuito and a great taverna called Sol.
Platja Llevant; sister to famous Illetes beach but less crowded and no beach merchants. Stay south for more secluded sections.
Unnamed beach; just south of Platja sa Roqueta in an unmarked turn off. Turquoise water and zero entrance fees unlike Illetes.
10.7 – Mitjorn (exit on 10.7km); epic salads and modern, fresh food with Italian or Asian influence and arguably the best view on the island.
Can Toni – La Mola; tapas bar with great atmosphere, a welcome pitstop after your compulsory visit to the hippy markets (Wed & Sun evenings).
Juan y Andrea – Illetes; the obligatory lunch and sand-in-toes dining experience.
Mercado – Sant Ferran; buzzy restaurant next to lovely night market serving the best pizzas on the island.
Can Carlos – Sant Francesc; classy but cool Formentera institution, dining under fairy lights.
Beso Beach – Illetes; palm fronds and DJ playing house music.
Piratabus – Mitjorn 11km; a chiringuito (beach shack) serving classic rock tunes with some of the best mojitos on the island.
Blue Bar – Mitjorn 7.9km; literally blue with references to aliens exuding that old-school hippy vibe. One of the few places on the island opened late and the party really gets going after 11pm.
Lucky – Mitjorn 7.9km; the coolest of all chiringuitos.
Chezzgerdi – Es Pujols; spectacular setting and extensive cocktail menu.
Cap de Barbaria lighthouse; beautiful sunset spot. Be sure to climb down through the cave to find a breathtaking view of the ocean!