Mallorca s Nature Parks more popular than ever
May 18, 2015
Last year more tourists than ever discovered the natural beauty of Mallorca, some by joining excursions organised by their tour operators, others hiring a car at Mallorca Airport to explore the island's wonderful national parks on self-guided tours. Some 80,361 people alone visited the maritime natural reserve of Cabrera, making the small island the most popular of Mallorca's nature parks. Cabrera saw an 18.9% increase in visitor numbers, compared to 2013.
Based on the number of people who made inquiries at local tourist information centres and visitor centres of natural parks, around 287,000 visitors explored nature reserves and natural parks last year, an 11% increase on the previous year.
The wetlands of S'Albufera's nature park were hardly less popular than Cabrera, welcoming 72,371 visitors last year. The Llevant nature park in the east of Mallorca has also won in popularity, counting 45,307 visitors in 2014. The Llevant is a great place for hiking and cycling, while S'Albufera is particularly popular with bird watchers, boasting the most bird-rich wetland on any of the Mediterranean islands.
Better marketing and a UNESCO World Heritage Site "badge" have also helped the Tramuntana Mountain communities to attract more tourism. Local tourist information centres counted 43,056 visitors. Only the nature park of Cala Mandragó near Santanyí recorded a slight drop. Although the nature park still attracted 18,699 visitors, the visitor centre recorded a decrease of 4,000 people last year. I
It is not entirely clear why visitor numbers dropped, although some tourism experts believe that holidaymakers with car rental from Mallorca Airport object to having to pay for parking at the attraction - other nature reserves on the island are still offering free parking spaces.
Cala Mandragó near Santanyí has also long been popular with bird watchers, who come in the hope of spotting the White Crane and other regular feathered visitors to the park. The fine white sand dunes, tranquil wetlands and well designed trails of the park are perfect for those who are looking for relaxation and a glimpse into how Mallorca looked before the high-rise hotel chains and apartment developments arrived back in the 1960s.