Saturday, December 5, 2020

Shaka Restaurante in Palma

My dear readers, I hope you're all doing fine. We are probably all looking forward to Christmas and some down-time by now. I'm planning to go to Germany in two weeks to spend the holidays and some quality time with my family so I hope everything will work out fine with the flights as they have been changed so many times already. I just wanna spend Christmas in Germany with my family because I wasn't really able to be with them much this year.

Shaka Restaurante 

Today I have a new post for you, a restaurant recommendation for those who live in Mallorca or plan to visit the island anytime soon. I got invited to try Shaka Restaurante in Palma yesterday and left with a full belly and happy heart. I had heard about Shaka when they opened last year and had seen photos of their beautiful restaurant before. But the place looks even more stunning in real! Their interior is a creative mix of everything I love. Colors, tropical details, plants, unique tiles, elegant furniture. Interior Designer Cristina Egurolla of Lala Home Mallorca, who I've met before at her restaurant Randemar, has done an amazing job creating this tropical oasis with a Hawaiian touch in Mallorca's capital.

The interior design was only outdone by the excellent food my boyfriend and I could try yesterday. Luis, the lovely waiter and restaurant manager, was a great help recommending different dishes that could go well together. We enjoyed a lomi lomi as a starter, which is basically a salmon tartar with kiwi, ginger, pineapple, tomato and onion in a lime sauce. It was so refreshing and delicious, a great mix of sweet and salty. As a main course we chose the Shaka Poke, a lobster poke bowl with quinoa, and pulled pork tacos that came in blue corn tortillas. Ahh, I could have licked my fingers, it was a true culinary delight. The tacos were beyond amazing, a mix of sweet and spicy flavors and the meat was so tender. The lobster poke bowl was equally delicious and fun to eat with the lobster on top. The desserts left nothing to be desired either. We chose a matcha coulant with ginger beer sorbet and hot apple crumble with almond sauce. All dishes were a real treat for the eyes and the taste buds! 

Thank you so much Lucas, Luis, Matias and the rest of the Shaka team. We couldn't have imagined a more delicious and surprising lunch. We will definitely be back soon with our friends and families for another unique food experience!

C/ Hostal de Santayí 11, 07002 Palma de Mallorca
+34 871 177 066

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Hike to Cala Matzoc

Dear readers, a few months have passed since I last sat down to write a few lines on my blog. Many things have happened. It's been a strange year. A sad and also an exciting one. It had both its positive and negative moments. Many people have sadly lost their lives due to Covid. I myself have lost a beloved family member this year. But not because of the virus. Even though I had never imagined that one day he wouldn't be with us anymore it was time for him to go. It was a very sad and heart-breaking but also beautiful and peaceful goodbye. On the other hand, my family has gained a new little member who really makes the world shine a bit more. We are very much in love with the first baby in our family and oh, what a cute one! She makes my heart so happy and puts a smile on my face every day. 

What else has happened? As I told you in one of my earlier posts, here in Spain, more precisely Mallorca, we have spent a few months in lockdown. Literally, we were not allowed to leave the house at all. So my boyfriend and I, just like the rest of the island, were stuck in our little apartment for almost three months and were only allowed to leave home for grocery shopping. It was weird and a bit scary to be honest but we also kinda enjoyed it. Fortunately we got along really well which has only shown me once more that he's a great life partner I dearly love. 

It's also been a really strange year for me jobwise with lots of ups and downs and worries. I currently work in a villas rental agency and as you can imagine it was a tough year for us with almost no tourists coming to Mallorca. We experienced an unprecedented, short two-month season. Mallorca received the first tourists in July and by the middle of September they were all gone again. It was a quite agonizing sight, seeing the beaches, hotels and restaurants all empty or closed. I remember a day I walked down the beach with my boyfriend in August and felt like a light panic attack was creeping up. I had never seen the island like this before (in the middle of summer) and suddenly felt such a heaviness in my heart, pain and sadness thinking of all the employees who have lost their jobs this year. Families in Mallorca, and around the world, who have no income this year. It's a difficult year for everyone and those who can allow it themselves should help others by donating food, money, clothes or time. Right now, it's more important and appreciated than ever.

Nevertheless, I also enjoyed the calm season and having the island all for ourselves. Since I worked less this year (due to the lack of work) I was able to spend looots of time with our new little family member, went to our neighbor island Menorca twice this year and went on some beautiful hikes with my friends. 

Hike to Cala Matzoc

And that's what today's post is about. A new hiking route for you. For those who will hopefully come back to Mallorca next year to explore and enjoy the island and spend their vacation here. 
The starting point of this hiking trail is in Cala Torta, a beautiful sandy beach near Artà in the north of Mallorca. My boyfriend and I left our car in Cala Torta and walked over to Cala Mitjana from there, all the way along the coast to Cala Estreta and finally to Cala Matzoc. The hike only took about 40 minutes with a picnic stop in between. We went a bit further in the end, up to the Torre d'Albarca, an ancient watch tower from where you have stunning views of the coast and open sea. I'd love to do this hike again in the middle of summer (with lots of sunscreen and a hat as there is almost no shade on this hike) because the day of our hike it was quite cloudy and windy so the water was a bit wild. But I'm sure that on a calm, sunny day Cala Matzoc is a stunning cove with crystal clear, turquoise water perfect for a refreshing swim. It's also a lovely sand beach so you can have a picnic there and just chill under the surrounding pine trees.

I hope you like this post and that it makes you look forward to your next vacation on Mallorca. I'll be uploading a few more posts these days about some more cool things to do on the island. I was just really lacking a bit of motivation (not material, as I got loads!) to publish new blog posts this year. I hope you forgive me. Thank you for being here. We'll get through this together. 

Friday, September 25, 2020

Best Activities in Menorca

Hello there, I hope you're all enjoying this late summer as best as you can. It's a difficult year but we should never lose our hope and stay positive that better times are coming. To me personally, one of the hardest part of this year was not being able to travel. As you know I live on an island in the Mediterranean called Mallorca and I love living here cause my life feels like I'm constantly on vacation. However, every now and then it's nice to get away for a bit. One of my biggest passions is traveling, exploring new countries and their landscapes, cities, cultures and food. So this year was a bit tough for me in this regard. I spent a week in the Maldives at the beginning of the year and it was an amazing trip but that was about it for this year. So my boyfriend and I took two short island escapes this year to our neighbor island Menorca which I love so dearly. Menorca to me is like a vacation from Mallorca. It's more quiet, laid-back and more virgin. And even though it's a small and relaxed island there are thousands of things to do! I picked a few of my favorites for this post, so here we go.

Best Brunch in Menorca

My boyfriend and I started our second two-day trip to Menorca this year with an amazing brunch at Quitapenas Menorca. Our friend picked us up from the ferry in the morning and we went straight to Biniali, where this unusual restaurant is located. They call themselves a 'chiringuito de campo' which is an open-air restaurant in the countryside. I found this place on Instagram and because their food looked so good we decided to give it a try. And let me tell you, we were amazed by the place! Quitapenas really does what its name promises: It takes away your stress and pain. The restaurant is such a beautiful, laid-back place with so many details and cool retro vibes. You really do feel carefree when eating here. And their food, seriously, I haven't eaten such a delicious brunch in a long time! At Quitapenas you can expect healthy, colorful, tasty and surprising food. I kicked off my meal with a yummy matcha smoothie followed by an avocado and carrot hummus toast, both delicious! The boys tried toast with salmon, avocado and popcorn and benedict eggs with beetroot salsa. Omg, it was all so yummy! We ended up sharing our plates and I loved each and every one. For the sweet touch we ordered a French toast that came with vanilla cream and bacon, ugh I wanted to lick the plate. Never has a restaurant surprised me so much. Thank you for an amazing brunch, Quitapenas Menorca, we will surely come back! 

Next Stop Binibeca

When visiting Menorca I always love coming to Binibeca. It was one of the first places I visited on this island (see the post here) and I fell in love with it back then. Binibeca is such a charming little town with its whitewashed houses and narrow, winding alleys. It's just a five-minute drive from Quitapenas and other beautiful little towns like Binisafuller. You can spend an hour here or two, depending on how many photos you take, haha. You can also go for a coffee here or just chill and wander this magical, white little town. It's up to you!

Cova d'en Xoroi, a truly magical Experience

We spent a relaxed afternoon at our friend's home and decided to go for a sunset drink at the Cova d'en Xoroi. Now I have to be honest, you better plan your visit of this 'cave club' in advance (you can even buy tickets online) because otherwise you may have to wait in line for over an hour like we did that day. We caught the last sunrays just in time before the sun eventually set because we really had to wait that long before they would let us in. Once inside though, you will not be disappointed. The Cova d'en Xoroi is an impressive club located in a natural cliff with several tunnels and terraces on which you can enjoy spectacular sea views day and night. It really is a unique place in Menorca (and mabye the world) that you should definitely visit when coming to this island. We were lucky because that day they had a live concert with an amazing duo that made the setting feel even more magical. Sipping rosé and listening to 'Your Song' by Elton John in a cave right next to the open sea, is there anything more romantic really?

S’Albufera des Grau Natural Reserve

On our second day of this trip it was a bit grey and cloudy so decided not to head to the beach directly but go for a relaxing walk in the natural reserve of S’Albufera des Grau which covers more than 5,000 hectares in which a large variety of animals and plants live. We have a similar natural reserve in Mallorca, just ten minutes from where we live, and we love going there for walks in nature. It just helps you disconnect from daily life, which can be stressful at times, and reconnect with Mother Nature. Miguel and I went for a two-hour walk with a picnic stop in between and we saw only three persons in the entire park. It was beautiful to have this calm, soothing place all for ourselves... and some turtles and birds. 

Paella in Sa Mesquida

We ended our trip with a relaxing break at the beautiful beach of Sa Mesquida which our friend had recommended. The beach was absolutely amazing. Almost empty, surrounded by lush dunes, with golden sand and crystal clear water, what else could we have asked for? We spent a quiet hour here and swam a bit before meeting our friend for lunch at the nearby Cap Roig Restaurant. We ordered their seafood paella for lunch which was heavenly! The restaurant offers stunning views of the Sa Mesquida bay and surrounding cliffs. All in all, it was a short but very sweet trip to Menorca. We have discovered many new places, tried new restaurants and were beyond happy with all of them. A perfect island escape <3

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