The Pityussae: Pine Covered Islands
To find such an incredible air fare deal to Ibiza was quite shocking already, but to find out that Ibiza is by far much nicer than I expected, was the real deal. I know it was also the perfect match of the circumstances, like the weather reaching 30 degrees centigrades, the great hotel, spa and the pools, and the unexpected room upgrade just because we and few other tourists were the last guests to stay in the hotel before they were closing during the winter season months.
So what it makes for you to find a cheap ticket here? Going off season, time when as well, all that great discos are closed. This makes the difference between cheap and affordable, or as expensive as if going to Dubai instead. Really, I have seen cheaper tickets to Dubai than Ibiza in July. Then off-season, it is not only that you pay that little, but the hotel deal will be your next surprise, and having so few tourists around. I personally would not like to travel to Ibiza in peak season unless my plan is just to party and go clubbing, and get to the crowded beaches.
On the same note as we did in Tenerife or Kos in other trips, the best option if you want to visit the most the island has to offer is to rent a car. Also inexpensive when out of season. This island is small enough for a cultural weekend trip. But an extra day would be ideal as this would allow you to reach the small sister island of Formentera, just a short boat ride across.
I totally can understand that going in October might not be as enjoyable as July or August, when you can enjoy the many beaches and the warm waters. Still, and as the weather had been so good for so many months, the water was still warm and the beaches were empty, all for us.
Ibiza has 3 UNESCO World Heritage Sites listed. One the Punic Cemetery, then the old city called Dalt Vila and as last, something unique to the islands of Ibiza and Formentera, the Posidonia Oceanica. This is the tapestry of underwater sea grass off the coasts of both islands that creates such beautiful deep turquoise waters. The rest of the island is dotted with calas (bays) everywhere, these are small beaches surrounded by mountains; forests and beautiful nature.
Now talking about the other sort of entertainment, Ibiza is world known for having one of the best clubs and discos in the world. It hosts the world’s largest nightclub, Privilege; and hundreds others incredible large, others posh and exclusive. No wonder why this is the island where to find the top DJ’s in the planet nightly. It caters for everyone; trance, house and chill out are the best examples.
With regards to food, you can get really good quality and cheap if going for the “Menu del Dia”, this is, the menu of the day. Mostly served during lunch time, you might find some places offering it also during dinner. Now, perhaps because it was low season when we visited, or maybe because it really is like this, the amounts were huge and the prices less than 10 euros. We really had superb experience, but I won’t be surprised if, unfortunately, you have a totally opposite experience during the high season.
For more information about Ibiza, check Wikipedia and Wikitravel. Spain’s currency is the Euro (EUR). Please note that any price reference is true as from when this guide was created, therefore check prices in advance as with the time they change.
What to see and do in Ibiza
- Ibiza Town Incredible beautiful on every corner. A maze of small streets and alleys all enclosed by the city walls.
-Dalt Vila Barrio Alto. The UNESCO area on the hill over the city.
-Skyline view For the very best picture of Dalt Vila and the sea, go to the port. Once you are around the Nautical Club, you will see small fishing boats. There you will have the perfect picture.
-City Walls Special mention to the Renacentist Door. The whole of the Dalt Vila is enclosed within walls perfectly conserved and complete.
-Santa Maria d’Eivissa Cathedral The main site of pray and devotion in the island.
-Episcopal Palace Next to the Cathedral.
-City Hall Occupies the building of the former Dominicann Convent.
–Castle On top of Dalt Vila, where you will get the best views of the island, Formentera and islets nearby.
-Punic Necropolis of Puig des Molins Used since Phoenician times, is part of the Ibiza UNESCO designated sites.
-Sa Penya neighbourhood On the footsteps of Dalt Vila. The typical white houses are literally hanging from the rock.
-Sant Jordi de ses Salines On the other side of the airport are those salt lakes.
- Around the island Plenty of beautiful corners everywhere. Most of these landscape and natural ones, where the land meets the sea among cliffs and small bays. And since the overall distance taking the farthest points is really small, you can circle the entire island in a day.
-Cala Llonga Not far from Ibiza Town heading northeast.
-Santa Eularia Small port village with a nice beach.
-Cala Llenya Farther northeast after Santa Eularia, with beautiful turquoise waters.
-Cala de St Vicent Nice medium size beach aligned with resorts.
-Portinatx By the northern tip of Ibiza. Small village with one of the nicest beaches in the island, although small and can get quite crowded during the summer months.
-Port de Sant Miguel Along the western coast.
-San Antonio de Portmany On the west side, the second largest city after Ibiza Town. Famous for the sunsets. Notably world renown places from where to get the best sunset with chill out music are Cafe Mambo, Cafe Del Mar or Savannah.
-Formentera The small sister island is only 30 minutes away by boat. Very frequent boats from many companies depart from the Port of Ibiza. It is in here where you will find the paradise beaches, but beware that during high season, it will definitely be over packed with tourists and party goers.
The international airport is merely 7 km south west of Ibiza Town. There are buses every 20 minutes from 06:30am through to 00:30 past midnight to Estacion de Autobuses in the city centre. Then if staying only at Ibiza Town, there is no need for taking nay further public transportation. Every sight and important point is within walking distance; however this means you will only be staying in the city.
Therefore, the best way to move around is by renting a car. This is really inexpensive, specially when out of season as the prices are slashed to less than half. Having a car is the only way to experience and enjoy the island in full, and the only way to reach that idyllic and almost hidden small bays and empty beaches.
Buses do cover and circle the entire island of course, but you will be dependent on timetables and certainly will miss the more secluded and nicer places along the coast.
When in high season this can be tricky. While there are hundreds of hotels and resorts, these tend to get fully booked and prices can be seriously high. On the other hand, if travelling out of season, the choice of hotels gets extremely reduced as most of them close down for the winter months. But of course, there are some which are permanently open. You can get really bargains for luxury properties during these dates. Having a look at some of our preferred affiliate hotel search engine such as Hotels.com, Booking.com, Expedia, Otel.com, Agoda, Opodo, LateRooms, Ebookers or TUI is the best way to start. Then, if your budget is still not met, there is a good selection of properties through airb&b and the likes of course.
From our experience, we will remember this hotel for long time. It was just perfect! When we did check in we were told the hotel will be closing down for the winter months on the day of our check out and they upgraded us for free to a deluxe room as a treat to be one of the last few guests in-house. Not only the staff is so helpful and caring, but the property itself was stunning. The hotel was the Garbi Ibiza & Spa, on Calle Murtra 5, Playa D’en Bossa. As the name indicates, it has a great spa and a good choice of outdoor pools and jacuzzi, not to mention direct access to the beach.