At Mallorca - the largest of the Balearic Islands - our ship docked early in the morning. From the upper deck it was clearly visible as the sun's rays furiously tried to disperse the morning haze, licking the roof of La Seu Cathedral. We tumbled to the shore and were immediately trapped in a dense ring of pesky taxi drivers offering cheap chic sightseeing tours. We lost the battle with them and were taken prisoners by a charming taxi driver ending every sentence with the phrase: "Do you understand now?"...
, built in the 14th century on the nearest mountain:
It was planned as a summer residence of the Spanish king, but eventually was used as a prison for political prisoners:
From the roof of the castle you can clearly see the entire city:
My kids were playing the knights in the castle, riding the imaginary horses and brandishing invisible swords. After defeating all the infidels, we continued the tour.
Our taxi driver drove us through the narrow streets of
, constantly cursing other drivers and contemptuously calling the majority of them "Italiano". Sometimes I, sitting in the front seat, wished to snuggle closer to her, as the stone walls literally squeezed our car. Oncoming pedestrians were hiding in the shallow arches and mirrors periodically were treacherously crackling, scratching one or another wall:
As a result, we stopped at the Pueblo Espanol - complex of buildings that replicate the most famous buildings in Spain. Watchdog was on duty at the entrance. My son managed to lull its vigilance and we slipped inside:
The territory is very complicated. We wandered through the narrow passages intertwining in houses-exhibits:
You can walk not only on the ground but also climb to the upper floors:
In the center of the complex there was a little space for the square:
Most of these buildings hid artisan and souvenir shops, in one of which I spent the last money to buy a small magnet. On the way to the next point I asked the guide to stop at the ATM. It stood inside the Citibank branch. I really liked the "inner bar" used by the bank:
Apparently, to compensate the device's reliability, police officers on bikes were on duty outside:
Here is the biggest and the most prominent building in Mallorca - La Seu Cathedral, built on the site of the Arab mosque:
Its construction lasted almost 372 years:
As well as the cathedral could be seen from our ship, the ship was clearly visible from the cathedral:
Before entering my sons fought with the Russian speaking Bulgarian. He warned us about the gypsy women at the square outside the cathedral, offering flowers and stealing money from the pockets at this time. We came to the cathedral on pins and needles but didn't see any gypsy with a flower in the hands:
Instead of finishing the tour at the ship, we went out in the city center, on the local "La Rambla". It significantly loses to Barcelona's one in terms of length and in the amount of walking people:
Next to it we went into a small restaurant, which was recommend by our guide at parting. It was a wonderful restaurant. The first thing we ordered was Sangria. The owner first tried to tune out and pretended he did not know what it was. When we told him that we came here on a tip from a taxi driver, who praised this restaurant for the best Sangria in the city, he broke into a satisfied smile, and after 5 minutes came out with the first pitcher.
He obviously knew a lot about Sangria and cooked it not only with lemons and oranges, but also with pieces of strawberry, kiwi, apples, peaches and pineapples. Like in Barcelona, the pitcher was empty even before the owner went into the kitchen.
For snack I was brought shrimps bouncing and gurgling in boiling oil:
In general, this cruise was marked by overeating. Every meal ended with tightly-stuffed belly, and after returning the scales treacherously squeaked under a couple of extra kilos.
I was surprised that in a nearby cafe some worker tried to run the heater for the capricious visitors, and this was despite the fact that it was 28 degrees Celsius outside:
We had a couple of hours left to the ship and we decided to go to the public beach:
The water was cool and I could get in it only with my fists doubled and eyes closed:
It was almost evening. It was time to go back to the ship.