Climate and time to travel
The climate on the islands is Mediterranean, which means that the summers are hot and dry, winters are mild and autumn comes with its occasional moderate showers. Minimum temperature on the islands is around 10°C in winter and in July temperatures can reach around 35°C. The water temperature is never less than 14°C, but most agreeable from June to November.
You can visit the islands in winter if you want to escape from the Northern cold towards more agreeable temperatures. Being the most austerely located, Ibiza and Formentera are the most ideal winter destinations. Just be prepared for the occasional rains and storms.
The most delightful period is before the main tourist season when spring is about to start. Then you can enjoy the opening of the roses and nature coming back to life in all tranquility. Note that it can be difficult to find accommodation in this time, because some hotels close from October till March. On the other hand, the hotels that are open, often offer very interesting prices.
The summer time is of course very suitable for beach holidays. If your purpose is to sunbathe and relax and to experience the exciting nightlife of the islands, July and August are the best months to travel. The islands are quite crowded during the summer, but outside the tourist centers it is even possible to still find some beautiful, quiet beaches.
As elsewhere in Spain, the Balearics have revived their own dialects since the death of Franco. A dialect of Catalan is spoken throughout the islands, though each of the three main islands has a different sub-dialect – indeed, many inhabitants object to their language being called Catalan at all. Generally the islanders speak their native language and Castilian (Spanish) with equal fluency. The influx of tourists also means that you’ll find no shortage of people with fluent English, German or sometimes French.
It is better not to take big amounts of cash with you when traveling. Not only is it safer, it’s also more convenient. The best option is to bring a credit or debit card. Most credit card types are widely accepted and sometimes it’s even possible to use them in the smallest souvenir stands. Besides that there are more than enough ATMs available in the city centers and tourist places. If you bring a credit card, always remember to note down the phone number of your bank somewhere and keep it in an agenda or book. In case of theft or loss, you will then always be able to immediately block the card.
What to bring
From June to September you can bring only light summer clothing and a light jacket or sweater for the nights or occasional summer storms. If you plan to do many tours and excursions on the islands it’s recommended to bring good shoes, the paths to the most beautiful parts of the Balearics aren’t always easy to walk. Don’t forget to wear a protecting sun cream and a hat at all times.
If you bring a photo or film camera, note that it’s often very bright on the islands and you’ll need accessories to adjust the light, and while you’re at it… Don’t forget the charger or extra batteries.
Even though the signs along the roads are very helpful in getting you anywhere on the islands, it could be useful to have a roadmap with you in case you get lost along one of the smaller or unpaved roads.The variety of bird life on the islands is certainly worth bringing a pair of binoculars on any excursion.
In case of an emergency
The emergency number on the islands is 112. Every city on the islands has its own separate numbers for police, fire brigade and medical emergencies. Make sure that upon or before arrival at your destination you note the local important phone numbers.
If you take medication, always take it with you in your hand luggage. Take the prescriptions with you too so you can get the medicine at any pharmacy when necessary. In case of serious illness or an accident contact the nearest hospital. For smaller problems you can go to a private doctor or public health center. Make sure that upon arrival at your destination you find out where the nearest medical centers are located.
• 1st January: New Year
• 6th January: Three Kings
• 1st March: Day of the Balearic Islands
• March/April: Semana Santa (holy week) and Easter (stores close at holy Thursday in the afternoon until Tuesday after Easter)
• 1st May: Labor Day
• 15th August: Ascension of the Virgin
• 12th October: National Holiday of the Virgin Pilar
• 1st November: All Saints
• 6th December: Constitution Day
• 8th December: Immaculate Conception
• 24th December: Christmas Eve
• 25th December: Christmas Day
• 26th December: Boxing Day
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