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Ibiza Beaches - Benirras Beach Ibiza

BenirrasThe cove of Benirras is well known beyond this island's shores. Artists, hedonists and hippies have been meeting here for years to enjoy, dance and drum the day away. The annual drumming festival for world peace in August and the spontaneous jam sessions at sundown, or on nights with a full moon, have attracted film teams and journalists like moths to a flame.

These days the old flair shares the place with modern tourists and visitors. This gorgeously located cove on Ibiza's northern coast pulls people from all over who come to enjoy the very special atmosphere.

However, the flood of visitors has had its consequences. The drumming festival for world peace has been banned and the full moon parties have been proscribed by the police. There's no question that the legendary hippy era, when everyone could do whatever they felt like, is long since past, but Ibiza wouldn't be Ibiza if at least a soupcon of freedom and individuality hadn't survived. The musicians are in it for the long haul and didn't allow themselves to be driven away from the beach. The Sunday sunset jam sessions have survived to this day, and they shouldn't be missed.

Those who desire a little more seclusion shouldn't visit this pine tree surrounded cove on a Sunday. During the week it's much less crowded. It's actually wonderful no matter which day you come and even if it isn't a Sunday you're sure to find a few musicians and hedonists whenever you're here.
To find it follow the signs from the road between Sant Miquel and Sant Joan.

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Beaches - Cala d'Albarca

Cala d'Albarca
A visit to this bay is more of hiking expedition than a day at the beach. There is a road that takes you most of the way to the bottom, but it's not a road that you'd risk taking your own car down.

Cala d'AlbarcaThe sensible and not unpleasant walk down this rugged camino to the cove is a trip back to the way the island would have been when people traveled on foot or donkey from one corner of the island to the other - not that they very often did!

By virtue of being almost totally untroubled by human interference, the lizards here are the friendliest on the island.

They won't mind at all if you clamber over the rocks to cool off in the sea before the long walk back to reality.

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Beaches - Cala d'en Serra

This bay offers a real taste of paradise - island insiders have been raving about Cala d'en Serra, located to the east of Portinatx, for years now. The tiny, craggy bay is rather difficult to reach, which means that it has not been monopolised by the masses.

The sandy beach is small, with a wonderful view of the rugged cliffs and the location is ideal for snorkelling. If you opt out of taking a dive, you only have yourself to blame. You won't find any pedalos or jetskis here, because Claudia, the owner of the one and only beach bar, wants to keep things the way they are. She likes her peace and quiet. Her beach bar offers snacks and drinks. The atmosphere is relaxed and cosy and many holidaymakers choose to return here year after year.

Just in case you're visiting Cala d'en Serra for the first time, the ugly ruins of the building overlooking the bay have been crumbling away for almost 35 years. No one knows what?s going to happen but many plans have been put forward - some of which involve tearing the old walls down, others suggest putting up new ones - but to date, neither has happened.

How to get there:

Cala d'Hort They do say that it's often worthwhile to go the extra mile - and this is especially true when trying to avoid the holiday crowds. It is actually impossible, but the extra mile can often deter the worst elements of modern tourism leaving you with at least a bit of class on the beach.

Living in Santa Eulària we find ourselves spoilt for choice in the beach department, having a dozen to choose from within five kilometers of home and since the main reason for going to the beach is to get out of the hot and into the wet, traveling miles in holiday traffic seems counter productive.

However, there are exceptions to every rule, so when I'm feeling particularly pleased with myself and worthy of reward I make a day of it. Once in a while it is nice to get away from it all and remind oneself just how lucky we are to live in this island paradise. On days like this I tend towards the rugged north coast, and often to Cala d'en Serra.

When the day is mine and time is not an issue I take the circuitous route cross country through the Morna Valley and along the magnificent coastal road to Cala San Vicente, with its picture postcard views over Aguas Blancas and Es Figueral, then Cala San Vicente itself.

Cala d'en SerraA left turn over the mountain to San Juan follows with the ascent offering spectacular views of the northern coastline and your passengers cooing with delight as they take in the views. Taking the first right turn as you enter San Juan takes you over another range of hills with yet more spectacular views out to the sea beyond the Portinatx lighthouse - so don't forget the camera!

At the bottom of the descent Cala d'en Serra is signposted off to the right, but your adventure is far from over yet! Lots of sensible people park their cars where the tarmac runs out at the top of the cliff overlooking the pretty bay.

Unfortunately, the first time I found the beach I met a group of heavily perspiring 'sensible' car owners as they returned to their vehicles at the top of the hill - and curiosity got the better of me...

To call this route of descent a 'camino' would be generous, and an insult to the many other miles of self-respecting camino. This one is more of a roller coaster than a route, but in the summer months I suppose it keeps the 'riff-raff' out?

Cala d'en SerraIf you've found a parking spot after your adventure the last few yards down to the beach will seem like child's play. There - we've finally reached the beach and already had more than a day's worth of adventure?

The beach is quite small, some 45 metres long by 20 metres wide, and is flanked by boat-houses to the left. It is terraced into two levels the upper of which is served by a chiringuito without a name run by Claudia who, when pressed, calls it 'Cala d'en Serra.

The food is good, particularly the 'patatas ibicencas' served with alioli, and the drink refreshing enough to take your mind off the return leg of your journey home. Being horse-shoe shaped the bay is sheltered which makes it nice for swimming and particularly snorkeling, as there are so many cliffs surrounding the water's edge.

Incorporating snorkeling into your day gives you the best of both worlds - a bird's eye view of the island on your way here and a fish-eye view of the world upon arrival?

You'll sleep well tonight?

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Beaches - Cala Des Moultons

Cala des MoultonsCala des Moultons is one of the least known of Ibiza's beaches - and a real gem.

To reach the tiny bay just outside the port of Sant Miquel, you'll have to walk a short distance along the craggy coast from Sant Miquel beach. Walk up the hill right beside the Port de Balanzat restaurant. The narrow dirt path is bordered on either side by shady pine trees.

The path itself offers a magnificent view of the cliffs and the sea shimmering in myriad shades of blue.

Cala des Moultons Rest assured, once you reach the minuscule bay, your privacy is assured.

The small, rustic bar with its white and rather weather beaten plastic furniture will probably be closed, and the atmosphere is anything but trendy.

Nevertheless, Cala des Moultons has long been a favourite with the locals and at the weekend the bar owner, Juanito, throws a sardine barbecue. Every Friday, he fires up his grill at 8 p.m. sharp. Remember to order in advance or you probably won't get a bite...

Unfortunately, this winter has taken its toll on the beach, as you can see in the photo to the right. Winter rains have washed the sand from the beach to the seabed, but we're sure that this will prove to be a temporary problem...

Hike C - Around Port de San Miguel

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Beaches - Cala Xarraca

Cala Xarraca
Cala Xarraca in the north is one of the few places on the island where you can still breathe easy and relax, even in July. Between oleander bushes and villas a narrow road leads down to the cove. The sandy beach is small but fabulous.

Rugged red cliffs, aquamarine waters - what more do you need?

The restaurant on the beach has been run by the Tur family for more than 30 years.

Cala Xarraca

Fresh fish and typical Ibicencan rice dishes are the specialities. The rocky coastline makes Cala Xarraca an outstanding place to snorkel.

Cala Xarraca
To the west of the cove a narrow path runs parallel to the water and leads to the cliff lined coast off Illa d'en Calders.

Be sure to take the walk before or after your time on the beach.


To get there take the road to Portinatx and make a left at the sign to Cala Xarraca to get down to the beach.

Hike A - From Cala Xucla

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Beaches - Cala Xucla

Cala XuclaIt's rare to find a bay on Ibiza without a beach bar. Especially if it's accessible by car.

Cala Xucla, in the north of the island, is one of these places. It has only a tiny chiringuito, which is open in July and August to serve visitors to this tiny bay surrounded by cliffs.

Carlos and his sister, Sara, have taken charge of the chiringuito, which their father first opened in 1980, and moved it from the left hand side of the beach to the right, where the view is better.

Cala Xucla The food on offer varies from 'patatas & allioli' at 3,50 euros to a selection of beautifully prepared fish.

Apart from this, this part of the coast is for self-catering visitors only. The main equipment you will need to bring with you: a picnic basket with refreshments, a hat to protect you from the sun and a snorkel.

Cala Xucla A good book is also a useful accessory as a relaxing day at the beach is guaranteed. This is not a place for people who live for beach recliners and noisy beach bars.

Those who enjoy the unspoilt beauty of nature and strange cliff formations will be more than happy to do without these creature comforts, however.

The small beach with its coarse sand fills up quickly in the summer, and visitors will have to look further afield to the rockier areas. The ground may not be as soft, but you will have your privacy.

Cala Xucla: Take the Portinatx road and watch out for the signpost on the left just after the S' Illot d'es Rencli bay. Watch your speed on the narrow road down to the beach!

Hike A - From Cala Xucla

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Beaches - Cap Des Rubio

Cala Xarraca
Cap des Rubio is actually the name of the imposing cape that forms part of the rugged northern coatline of the island.

There is an access to the sea, as shown in the picture above, but you'll need to be prepared to clamber over the rocks at the water's edge to enjoy the waves.

The area is best known for the stunning views that it offers along the coast in either direction.


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Beaches - Grand Arenal

grad arenalThe three coves in Portinatx: s'Arenal Gran, s'Arenal Petit and es Port - are all idyllic although they're all located in the main tourist centre of the Sant Joan municipality.

There may be many hotels and apartment complexes near to the beaches, but even the clutches of mass tourism haven't been able to destroy the raw natural beauty of the landscape. A rocky coastline, pine forests and crystal clear water make for a welcome contrast to the architectural horrors of decades past.

Grand ArenalThese beaches are perfect for families with children. The distance from the hotels to the beach is short and there are plenty of shops, bars and restaurants.
Children and adults can enjoy themselves in a nearby aquatic park and night owls in this area can still pay a visit to the clubs, just half an hour away by car.

There's even a hippy market every Sunday starting at 6 pm.

The fine sand on the beach makes entering the water no problem, even for the tender feet of kiddies. For fun on the water you can hire pedalos. If you're more interested in the underwater flora and fauna, you can take a trip in a glass-bottomed boat. In es Port a diving school offers beginner's courses as well as underwater expeditions for advanced divers.
Our tip is to take a walk along the rocky coast where the quaint charm of northern Ibiza comes to the fore.

To get there follow the signs to Portinatx from the San Joan road.

Hike B - Around Portinatx

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Beaches - Petit Arenal

The three coves in Portinatx: s'Arenal Gran, s'Arenal Petit and es Port - are all idyllic although they're all located in the main tourist centre of the Sant Joan municipality. There may be many hotels and apartment complexes near to the beaches, but even the clutches of mass tourism haven't been able to destroy the raw natural beauty of the landscape. A rocky coastline, pine forests and crystal clear water make for a welcome contrast to the architectural horrors of decades past.

Petit ArenalThese beaches are perfect for families with children. The distance from the hotels to the beach is short and there are plenty of shops, bars and restaurants. Children and adults can enjoy themselves in a nearby aquatic park and night owls in this area can still pay a visit to the clubs, just half an hour away by car.
There is even a hippy market every Sunday starting at 6 pm.

The fine sand on the beach makes entering the water no problem, even for the tender feet of kiddies. For fun on the water you can hire pedalos. If you're more interested in the underwater flora and fauna, you can take a trip in a glass-bottomed boat. In es Port a diving school offers beginner's courses as well as underwater expeditions for advanced divers. Our tip is to take a walk along the rocky coast where the quaint charm of northern Ibiza comes to the fore.

To get there follow the signs to Portinatx from the San Joan road.

B - Around Portinatx

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Beaches - Port de San Miguel

Port de San MiguelPort de San Miguel The tourism infrastructure is spot on - the Port de San Miguel, on Ibiza's north coast, offers every possible comfort.

Bars and restaurants line the cove, there are supermarkets and cars for hire.

They also offer every sort of water based activity - there's a diving school, you can water ski, go for a spin on a "banana" boat or take a relaxing ride in a pedalo and explore the cove.


Port de San MiguelPort de San MiguelYou can also pay a visit to the caves of Can Marçá that are within walking distance of the beach. Just head past the hotel complexes and up the road towards Benirràs.

On the left-hand side of the cove there is a narrow path that meanders along the coast to Cala d'es Moultons.

It's a lovely walk through the shade of the pine trees.

Hike C - Around Port de San Miguel

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Beaches - Sa Guardiola

sa guardiolaSa Guardiola
This beach sits at the head of a natural cove on the village's northern boundary.

This natural cove is protected from the rough sea to the north and has been a natural harbour in a storm for centuries.

It is also shallow for a long way out, which makes it a favourite of families with very young children.

Sa Guardiola
Nowadays, with the arrival of a road connection over the mountains to San Juan to bring in the tourists, the beach and surrounding area are busy during the summer season, but uncannily quiet through the winter. Sa Guardiola

On the far side of the bay a secret beach can be found, which cannot be seen from the main beach and few are aware of.

Nobody seems to know the name of this little beach, but the scenery up the north coast from nearby is spectacular...

Hike B - Around Portinatx

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Beaches - S'Illot d'es Rencli

S'Illot des Rencli The beach at s'Illot des Rencli is a mixture of sand and rock and the surrounding sea is a little reminiscent of a tacky postcard - except that here, it is for real! The sea is a palette of different blues that stand out against the craggy coast, and the effect is heightened by the juxtaposition of different levels of rocks.

The red rock of the cliffs along the coast and the green of the pine trees contrast beautifully with the sea.

The sandy beach is tiny and cramped. If you prefer a more peaceful spot, you should follow the line of the cliffs and venture a little further down the coast.

S'Illot des Rencli Here, you will find plenty of relatively flat rocks to sun yourself on and escape the crowds.
However, you will need to be prepared to do some clambering to get down to the sea - and don't forget your flip-flops. Antonio Mari's beach restaurant overlooks the bay.

S'Illot des RencliTall pine trees provide welcome shade, the crickets chirrup non-stop and a cool breeze wafts in from the sea - what more could you ask for?

This well appointed restaurant gets pretty full in the summer season, so we recommend booking a table for lunch before setting off to the beach in the morning.


How to get there: the bay is located alongside the road to Portinatx. Turn left towards Portinatx just before San Joan. Drive for about five kilometres, till the signpost indicates your left turn.

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Moon Beach

Moon Beach
This mystical, or mythical, spot is hard to find. It's not only hard to find, it's also hard to get to, so only the most determined explorer should attempt this route.

Take the C-733 from Eivissa towards San Joan, but take the turning towards Portinatx before you reach San Joan. From this turning follow the road over and down the other side of the mountain for 1.8 km turning left at the "es Calo de S'Illa' signpost, which shows two people hiking, suitably attired.

Moon BeachThe reason for this becomes apparent later! Follow this road for another 1.3 km taking the left hand fork at the turn to Xarraca. 800 metres further on the tarmac stops and the road rapidly degenerates into a very rough camino.

1.5 km later, if you haven't had a puncture by now, you'll find a flat area which is suitable for parking, and to your right you will see your goal. After another 300 metres you reach a hairpin bend with enough room for anyone daft enough to have continued on in their vehicle to turn around, in trepidation at the prospect of retracing their route.

Those of us on foot will notice a small blue arrow beneath the dominant pine tree pointing into a small wood.

Moon Beach Normally one would say "just follow the arrows', but on this occasion the wood is criss-crossed with paths, but has steep cliffs to either side, which funnel you towards your destination.

As you leave the wood you find yourself on a plateau overlooking a peninsula that ends in an imposing horseshoe shaped island, which appears to have been thoughtlessly lobbed into the sea by a passing giant.

Moon Beach
Before this lies a mass of twisted lava, which you can descend to down a tortuous path covered in treacherous slippery pebbles.



Once again the way down is marked by a blue arrow and if you survive that descent at the bottom you'll find yourself in a lunar landscape with two tiny disappointing beaches to your left.

Just as well you enjoyed the walk then? If you are fortunate enough to possess a GPS tracking device you can download the GPS file to your PDA or GPS device and follow this route using your pointer.

The download address is www.ibizaA-Z.com/download/moonbeach.gps

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Beaches - S'Illa des Bosc

S'Illa des BoscS'Illa des BoscThis curious little beach is easily seen from the beach of Port de San Miguel as it is on the opposite side of the same bay.

However, it is hard to find and the road that leads to it is not kind to cars.

If you want to attempt the journey, from Port de San Miguel head towards the Hotel Hacienda and watch out for a signpost off to your right.

Alternatively, there is a pleasant path around the bay which we describe in our 'Activities' section (Hike C).

Once you get there you'll find a nice sandy beach facing the bay to your right and a boulder strewn beach on the other side facing out to the occasionally violent sea.

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Beaches - Ibiza North

The beaches are few and far between along the towering north coast of Ibiza.

Those that exist are predominantly small, nestling as they do in coves that have been cut into the surrounding cliffs by "˜torrentes' carrying the rain from heavy storms on the mountains steeply back down to sea level.

Some of the finest snorkeling around the islands is to be found from these beaches.

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Beaches - Port de Ses Caletes

Port de Ses Caletes Port de Ses Caletes
This little isolated beach in the wilderness of the north coastal mountains is almost entirely untouched.

A collection of half a dozen ancient boathouses offer the only clue to previous human presence.

The rugged camino that led down to the beach has been properly surfaced, which only slightly increases the odds that you won't find yourself there alone...


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