Mallorca, located in the westernmost Mediterranean, is the largest island in the Balearic archipelago. Its strategic location on the maritime trade routes brought different cultures to the island over the centuries. Its legacy can be seen today through its monuments, traditions and gastronomy.
The Balearic Islands (Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza, Formentera, Cabrera and other adjacent islands) form one of the 17 Autonomous Communities in which the Spanish State is structured. The Government of the Balearic Islands exercises the administrative and political control over the whole of the insular territories although each island has its own insular council as a representative and governing institution (Consell de Mallorca). The island is divided territorially into 53 municipalities being Palma the capital of the Autonomous Community of the Balearic Islands, and also of the island of Mallorca.
The island has an area of 3,640 km² and about 550 km of coastline that alternates beaches of various kinds (large sandy areas, sandy coves, small pebble coves...) with cliffs and steep coastline. Geographically we can distinguish six areas: Serra de Tramuntana, Raiguer, Pla, Llevant, Migjorn and Palma. The Serra de Tramuntana has the highest peaks, some exceeding 1,000 metres, of which Puig Major, which reaches 1,445 metres, is the highest. The maximum distance on the island is about 100 km from one end to the other.
Mallorca has a typical Mediterranean climate with warm temperatures in summer and mild temperatures in winter. In summer, daytime temperatures can usually exceed 30 °C, which is the sun and beach season. However, Mallorca offers more than 300 days of sunshine a year, so any time of year is good for visiting the island. In spring and autumn the temperatures are usually pleasant, you can even enjoy a few days on the beach and are ideal for touring the island, visiting its tourist resources and also doing sports activities such as cycling and hiking. The winters are mild, perfect also to practice your favourite sport and enjoy an active holiday, or to discover the real island of calm as during this season there is less tourist inflow.
The water temperature ranges from 13 ºC in winter, 15-18 ºC in spring to over 20 ºC in summer.
As in the rest of the islands, there are two official languages: Catalan, the island's own language, and Spanish, the official language of the Spanish state; although it is common to hear other languages, due to the large influx of tourists and the multiculturalism of the residents.
As in the rest of the European Union countries integrated in the Monetary Union, the official currency is the Euro.
It has approximately 900,000 inhabitants, 80 % of the entire Balearic archipelago. Almost half of the resident population lives in the capital, Palma.
Tourism has been the driving force behind the island's economy since the 1960s, with a high degree of specialisation in this sector. Industry, construction and the primary sector play a less prominent role.
Although in Spain no denomination has a state character, there is a deep-rooted Catholic tradition. With the arrival of residents and tourists from other countries there is a great variety of religions and places of worship.