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Alcúdia

Alcúdia

Alcúdia – Seaside Resort with Medieval Old Town

Alcudia in MallorcaAlcúdia is a city in the north of Mallorca that uniquely combines history, culture and holiday flair. A medieval city embraces the old town, about one kilometre inland from the popular tourist town of Port d'Alcúdia.

Alcúdia's inhabitants number around 19,000. The town is located in the immediate vicinity of the bay of the same name, which is famous for its beautiful beaches. The bay of Alcúdia is extremely popular with sailors and the marina serves as a first port of call for many recreational sailors after captaining their vessels from the Spanish or French mainland.

History of Alcúdia
Alcúdia has seen many rulers come and go in its eventful history. The oldest stone ruins in the city come from the prehistoric Talayot culture and are about 3,000 years old. After the conquest of Mallorca by Roman troops in 123 BC the settlement Pollentia was founded south of today's Alcúdia. The Roman city is one of the most important archaeological sites on the island. Pollentia was the capital of the Roman province of Balearica until the Vandals started to plunder in 426 AD. After that, the thriving city sank into insignificance.

A revival took place in 1298 by King Jaume II of Mallorca. In the same year, the construction of a city wall began, which still encloses the old town centre today. A second wall appeared in the 17th century, after Alcúdia had repeatedly been plagued by pirate attacks. At the end of the 18th century, Alcúdia lost its importance as a trading centre and port city, and it was not until the 1950s that renewed economic growth began with the rise of tourism. Today, the lovingly restored old town and the partially walkable city walls make Alcúdia a romantic place on the north coast of Mallorca.

Attractions in the city centre
old town of alcudiaOriginally built as an invincible bastion against invaders, the massive city walls from the 13th century still dominate the skyline of Alcúdia today. Twenty-six towers were built into the stone fortifications and some of them are directly accessible from the wall. Plaça Constitucio, is the start of the pedestrian zone in the old town. The narrow streets are full of cafés, tapas bars, art galleries and fashion boutiques. In the northeast of the historic old town is Alcúdia's bullring, which is no longer in use for its original purpose but accommodates around 3,500 people and is used as a venue for open-air concerts and open-air performances.

The neo-Gothic parish church of Sant Jaume was inaugurated in 1893, after the original 14th church on the site collapsed in 1870. The oldest church in Alcúdia is the chapel of Saint Anna. The Gothic church dates from the 13th century and consists of a nave supported by three arches. Alcúdia's aristocratic palaces located in the city centre are known as Casas Señorales and once served the wealthy upper classes as homes and still reflect the glory of bygone days.

Buildings in the old town which are well worth seeing are the two city gates of Porta de Mallorca and Porta del Moll. The splendid town hall, Casa Consistorial, on Plaça Espanya was built in the Renaissance style and Moorish influences on the facades of the houses can still partially be seen. The Moors conquered the Balearic Islands and the Iberian Peninsula in the 9th century and were not expelled until the 13th century. Sant Crist church is also a Renaissance structure that was built and consecrated in the 17th century.

Enchanting sandy beaches on the bay of Alcúdia
beach of alcudiaThe city owes its rise as a tourist centre on the northern coast of Mallorca to its magical sandy beaches on the bay of Alcúdia - the main beach is the 3.4 km long Playa de Alcúdia.

The family-friendly sandy beach is up to 80 m wide and has barrier-free access. One of the most secluded and difficult to access beaches in Mallorca is Playa Coll Baix. The pebble beach is located in an isolated bay and welcomes visitors with its turquoise blue sea and Caribbean feel.

Just outside of Alcúdia, Playa S'Illot is located on the Victoria Peninsula. The pebble beach is about 500 m long and offers a first-class view over the bay of Pollensa. The sandy beach of Playa Can Cap Bou is less crowded by comparison. It is a mecca for kitesurfers and windsurfers and has a length of 2,400 m.

Activities in Alcúdia.
The lively tourist town of Port d'Alcúdia is a centre for water sports on the northern coast of the island. There is a wide range of sports to choose from including: surfing, sailing, diving and snorkelling. It takes about 15 minutes to drive from Alcúdia to tee off at the 18-hole Alcanada Golf Club, set against a Mediterranean heavenly background. In the past, this demanding course was often the venue for international golf tournaments. Tourist facilities in the area of Alcúdia are a go-kart track and Alcúdia Waterpark. The latter is open from May to October and has numerous water slides and swimming pools.

Restaurants in AlcudiaRestaurant La Terraza, Alcudia
Behind the medieval city walls in the heart of the old town you will find several speciality restaurants. Traditional Spanish tapas are served at Tapasbar Can Punyete.If you are looking for Italian specialties, visit the Osteria El Patio. In a friendly atmosphere you can taste Italian cuisine. The culinary focus is an Italian spin on fish and meat dishes.

The old town of Alcúdia, features numerous romantic courtyards. In one of them you will find Sa Portassas restaurant, where a first-class Mallorcan snack consisting of farmhouse bread, olives, tomatoes and various items of fresh local produce. Outside the city walls lies the restaurant La Terraza on an idyllic bay. On the terrace, you can enjoy a romantic candlelit dinner as you watch the sun go down, while the waves gently splash against the stone wall.

Nearby ideas for day trips
Alcúdia is an excellent starting point for a variety of activities. South of the old town is the archaeological site of the Roman city of Pollentia. The ancient settlement was built in 70 BC and was the most important city in Mallorca for more than four centuries. During excavation work, archaeologists exposed the remains of a Roman forum, column fragments, walls of residential buildings and a Roman amphitheatre. Numerous finds from Pollentia are shown in the Monographic Museum. There you can admire coins, mosaics, engraved marble and antique amphorae.

Just outside the city is the S'Albufera Natural Park, a true wonder of nature. The wetlands are brimming with bio-diversity and are located on the road linking Can Picafort-Alcúdia and is crossed by a network of hiking and biking trails. The starting point of most circular treks is Sa Roca Natural Park Centre. If you fancy a drive, an excursion, the blustery Cap Formentor on the northern tip of Mallorca is a worthwhile excursion. The rocky cape can be reached via a narrow access road, which is often jam packed in the summer.

We hope that this feature will give you a comprehensive insight into the culture, the history of the city and the attractions of Alcúdia. If we have piqued your interest, why not choose this beautiful city on the northern coast of Mallorca for your next holiday destination.