Voluntarily not having a place to live for a while (like me) expands the possibilities to move around. Logically.
Yet without the money of a millionaire it isn’t logical to just move around like another millionaire, thus the options decrease. Either way, as both V and I have a history with living on Ibiza – and loving it -, we thought going back for a month could do us good romantically, familiarly as well as professionally.
A) renting a place, B) friends’ hospitality, C) a cheap hotel/hostel
I suggested living in a camp or something, just taking it to the hippie-level for once, but V wasn’t too impressed by the thought of it. Besides the heat could be an issue in the morning. Also, I don’t even know if there is a campsite on this freaking island?
To solve the housing situation we found out that renting a place fairly central is out of the question as the prices are completely mental. When you consider yourself a local and know what an apartment can cost on this island, you don’t go ahead paying 1800 euros for a month all of the sudden. The holiday rental prices are obviously what we would be competing with for only a month stay.
So, we had to go for option C, as option B somehow didn’t turn out viable either.
Therefore, we are currently residing in a hotel in freaking San Antonio where we know a guy that manages a 3 star hotel in the middle of the craziness! And my friends, I can tell you: This is a completely new experience and quite frankly, not in the worst way we would imagine.
I’ll write a post about a local’s eyes on San Antonio asap, but here some shots of the area to warm you up.
A gem, right.
There was some fuzz about a Redbull event called El dia de las alas (The day of the wings) when I came back to Ibiza this summer. The event was taking place in the port of Eivissa and over 20 particpants has signed up and paid a great deal of money to join. The thing was to gather a devoted crew and make a creative structure that could fly when being pushed off a 8 meter high platform above water.
My friends were among the participants and I got to take part in their planning for it to be perfect, and hopefully for them to win the flying contest and get a ticket to Brazil. The day started with rehearsals in our house which was nothing but hilarious.
The discussions over who should enter first, who should raise their hand at what moment and how to smile reminded me of the time I worked in a kinder garden as a teenager, before the kids where to present their annual Christmas-show for their proud parents.
I didn’t actually know what to expect for the party, and as I had a lot of studies to do I decided to catch up with the guys in the harbor of Ibiza town a little bit later. Arriving there this was part of what was waiting for me. A group of .. well, groupies.
Needless to say several DJ friends were already pumping it at our stand, and (super) Sonia famous for her work at Space, had constructed a beautiful bar with Spanish traditional food. Sun was shining and people were too, many of which had specially designed Redbull t-shirts on for the occasion.
The whole event was a lot bigger than I had imagined it would be, not to mention what the crew I was a forced family supporter of had constructed for the purpose of the competition. A fly constructed as a bull by proper engineers belonging to the team measured over 2,5 meter and stood there in the middle of the crazy pre-party.
At least we got proven that Ibiza people too indeed does love their bulls and ladies in señorita dresses, men dressed like bull fighters as long as its accompanied by good electronic music.
The race itself took place far away from our stand, and to see it properly one needed to be out on the sea. Luckily, someone suddenly knew someone with a big private cruise boat to which the supporters could embark and get close to the jump to see the competition.
My friends’ team didn’t make it to the top, in fact I think the bull didn’t even fly a meer. I regret not having photos of that, but I do have some other highlights up my sleeve though. All in all another hilarious day in Ibiza with ma craaazy people.
Finally I’ve managed to list my top 7 restaurants in Ibiza for you to discover. I’ve selected places that are all unique to one another, yet that all have that special Ibizencan international touch: A mixed clientele of locals, foreigners living here, tourists (with good taste), music industry professionals, fashionistas and families with children.
Bare in mind that the information listed could be subject of change, so please don’t hold me responsible if a place suddenly doesn’t exist or is closed when they’re not supposed to. Most places have their own webpage, and I’ve provided you with their telephone numbers (part from the first listed).
Enjoy the tastes of the White island!
Starting with the obvious: The Fish Shack (Talamanca).
I love this place so much I dedicated a whole post to it last year. Its real name is actually El chiringuito de Maria, but as it´s become increasingly known among foreigners, people now know it as the Fish shack. Definitely a spot you won’t read about everywhere, which makes it more special.
The contrast between the actual restaurant (a shack) and its plastic chairs and tables that look as if they’re thrown out on the rocks in the morning, stands in perfect contrast to where it’s all located: right on the rocky beach.
As you see, it’s clever to bring your swimming suit so that you can take a dip in the water while waiting for your food. A visit to the Fish shack is a perfect break from the hectic high season, and the staff at this place are my absolute favorite on the island – as is the clientele, I think. It’s also a hotspot for A-list DJs and Ibiza frequenters, so you’ll be in good company.
The Fish shack serves some of the finest – if not the finest – fish around. The waiters speak English very well and are prepared to tell you what the Dorada and Gambas actually are. I find it impossible choosing a favorite, besides what they offer depends of the catch of the day. Try the sea bass! Don’t leave without having dessert and a café de caleta (coffee w/ species & cinnamon). And make sure you don’t ruin your appetite with the olives to start. NB! Bring cash, they don’t accept credit cards.
Open day & night. No reservatoins. Address: Unknown, but this will help: Head for the restaurant Sa Punta in Talamanca, and when you reach it, keep going. Over rocks, by the sea. Park you car on top of (or walk your last bit over) the hill when it seems like you can’t get further and soon you will see the umbrella canopy. A simple shack looking like a chiringuito (beach bar) on the rocks.
Then there is La Paloma (San Lorenzo).
Dive into this huge green garden of fluffy lemon trees and thousands of flowers, where basic fresh & healthy Italian homemade food is in focus.
This family run establishment is definitely one of my favorite spots both for lunch and dinner, and a perfect place for a romantic date. La Paloma is also known to be one of the best in veggie food on the island. Try their imported olives from Italy, they’re insane!
Open day & night (and winter). Reservations recommended. Address: Camí de Can Llatzer, Sant Joan de Labritja. (0034-971-325543)
Number 3 on the list is one of the restaurants I’ve been to the most. Sansara (San Carlos).
Featuring a large green garden and an indoor stage, it feels more like a chill hangout lounge than a restaurant, thus attracts an alternative, bohemian crowd who bring their children and dogs to the restaurant’s large garden, and offers a refreshing alternative to the dj-worshipping events in Ibiza by being a platform for up and coming bands.
The varied musical genres include flamenco, blues, reggae, rock, salsa and world music. The fusion kitchen finds inspiration from the Mediterranean and South East Asia. The fig pizza is my definite favorite and the cava sangria isn’t bad at all. 😉 Here you’ll get loads of value for the money! Open nights only. Closed Tue. (Closed Mon-Wed in winter). Reservations recommended for weekends. Address: Carretera de San Carlos km. 9,3, Ibiza (+34 971-807-231)
Balafia (San Joan).
Although I’m not a meat lover, this place manages to convince me time and again. Besides, their chickens have lived happy lives on local farms in the area! The restaurant is probably one of Ibizencans’ all time favorites, and no wonder as this is as Ibizencan as it can get. Balafia is an open air restaurant situated in a patio belonging to a typical white Ibizencan house with small wooden framed windows and basic seating. It’s known solely for its simple barbeque dishes that come with three varieties of vegetables.
They offer free-range chicken, lamb chops and steak with the delicious chips, supposedly hand-peeled by the grandfather! The tomato (and onion) salad for starter is a must, and trust me; these tomatos are something special! NB! Bring cash, they don’t accept credit cards. Open days and nights (closed Sundays). Reservations highly recommended! Adress: Sant Joan de Labritja Road 25 , San Joan (+34 971 32 50 19) Some help: map it on a GPS before going, and look for a small pink sign on a path that takes you off the main road.
A place Ive only been once, but instantly loved is Hidden bar (Cala San Vicente).
Located in Cala San Vicente, 30 minutes’ drive North from Ibiza Town – and as its name underlines – this gem of a restaurant is one of Ibiza’s best kept secrets. If you haven’t been to the wilder Nordic part of the island yet, this bar is your perfect excuse to go.
It’s like something from a movie; the pathway from the parking lot leads you from the road down into a secret garden with creative hiding spots and chill out areas that transport you from the Mediterranean island to a Victorian library to a Thai jungle. It’s set in a lush magical garden of delights, a fantasy spot where ‘Alice in Wonderland’ would feel right at home. You can sit under century old trees or go about playing. The place has a giant chess board and a golf field whose each hole is designed by artists and DJ’s. Hah!
Id say Hidden bar is a playground for the imagination and whether you are an actual kid or just one between the ears, you will have an amazing day here. Oh, and the owner is an award winning cocktail mixer and loves to have a chat with his clients, while you’re waiting for a delicious Thai-based dish. I haven’t actually eaten here myself (just chugged some of them famous cocktail), but I’ve read plenty of good reviews. Open daily (?) (One day per week in winter). Address: 5 Carrer Cala Sant Vicent, Sant Joan de Labritja (+34 971 320 253)
And then my ladies and gents, the one and only El Amante (Santa Eulalia).
Almost hanging on a cliff overlooking the Sol D’en Serra bay, this hot spot is surrounded by dramatic rocks and wild green plants. Such a special location towards Amante’s stylish decor suits a special day you want to treat yourself and your loved ones. It’s a perfect spot to plan a hangout day at the beach beneath the restaurant with fancy cocktails before you walk up the stairs to have a late lunch. Or it’s a good option for a late dinner in the evening breeze overlooking one of the island’s most precious views.
Amante offers an innovative rather pricy Mediterranean menu, but it feels like good value and holds a lot of local and healthy options of seafood and greens. Try their risotto if it’s still on the menu! Open daily day & night. (Frequently closed for private events). Reservations recommended for weekends. Adress: Sol Den Serra Carrer Fuera SN, St Eulalia (+34 971 196176). Some help: Go right through Cala Llonga and turn right at the end junction (there is an Amante sign post). Follow the road for about 900 meters and you arrive to the car park. You can’t miss the sign and the steps down to the restaurant.
The Giri cafe (San Juan).
When in plaza San Juan, I’ve always loved the looks of this place. It’s entrance somehow seems to say Hello & welcome darling every time I pass it. Don’t be fooled by the sign stating it´s a café, because this kitchen’s quality exceeds all expectations! I’ve eaten here twice and both times understood that the chef has a deep passion for every detail on a plate. It’s all about the simplicity of organic, fresh and local flavours that come straight from the soil, sea or fields of Ibiza – today.
As much as the Giri cafe is great at fusing Mediterranean flavours into innovative dishes, they’re equally good at blending original Ibizencan architecture with creative illumination and exotic design. I also think this is one of my faves what design concerns, and I’m never able to pick whether to sit inside or outside as both look so inviting. Open day & night daily (Mon only night). Address: in the centre of the main square in the San Juan village.
That’s all, folks. Que aproveche!
What the heck happened?
Love. I hope. At least faith.
No matter what, it feels wonderful just being here. First round I’m here for only ten days before I’ll head off to freaking Scotland and a wedding in which all men wear kilts with nothing under! That’s obviously piece of cake for someone like myself, and sure, Ibiza is the right place to be to warm up. Nothing is weird or too crazy on this island, and that’s one of the reasons why I love it so much here.
Anyway, there will be very little party time for this sack, at the moment I’m busy with studies and a last deadline before I only have to focus on my upcoming research project (look a lot forward to that). And I must say it’s pretty wicked to have spots like these as your study room now and then:
Of course there are some social things up in between, and honestly I just wanted to update about that itself. That – by coming back here in my social sense – I understand how much I love Ibiza. And Spain. Indeed, I love catching up with friends and I love the spirit most people have here.
Some of the hugs I got meeting my V’s friends (I thought I wasn’t going to see in a long time) were longer, harder and more genuine than the ones people give you in Norway. It just makes me feel good. Spain is alive. Si señor.
Also, when I went jogging to Es Cavallet, next to our house in Salinas the other day – one of the most beautiful beaches here, I got that well-known feeling of no other place – kinda feeling.
To be continued I guess. ❤
Then it’s time to say goodbye to Ibiza again. The 2011 season is over and gosh I don’t even know how it happened. Time flies when you’re having fun.
Living life in contrasting periods like this makes life rather uh.. periodic and divided, but that’s me I guess. And I do like it. I don’t like the packing though, or the organisation of what clothes to take and what to leave behind with all the uncertainty in my life of whether Ill be back or not.. This wee question that goes on in my head like if ever…?
But hey, then I think that’s me too, isn’t it?
My whole adult life has been like this so I’m starting to think this is how I’ll live my life. And why not?
I’m thrilled to have started the Master course in Responsible Tourism so I have that to focus on this winter, compared to last year when I was broke and felt kinda lost on my way to London, despite of the internship I had in that NGO I’m still so passionate about. Yet, I can remember getting inspired by that uncertainty as well.
So who am I?
Well, I’m certainly found of Lebanese chicken.
Argh.. Leaving Ibiza feels hard right now. I just had my mum over and we’ve had so much fun. In fact she is going to London with me as she has her connection flight there between Spain and Norway. Big V has already left and perhaps that’s why it’s sadder leaving the island now than last year. This year is different in many ways as my man is not coming with me to London and we have no plan whatsoever of when to meet during this winter… Is that normal?
We’ll just meet whenever we are not traveling or staying in separate cities. I guess I see how I need to start focus on myself and make the best out of the Master’s program, and I’m very excited about the place Ill live this winter! Together with this cute little and seemingly amazing family in London that are so kind to even offer me a room in their house for whenever Ill be around.
These things inspire me and make me want to live like this forever, hah! No, that might be exaggerated, but you get the picture. That’s me isn’t it? Suddenly living in the attic of a cool family surrounded by other families, taking part of their everyday life, trying to imagine whenever Ill – if ever – will have a family on my own..
Back to Ibiza: This little island has definitely got a bigger and bigger place in my heart the more time I spend on it outside of the party season. Yes, I love the high season, but the island is completely different then. Which is also why many people (local and the ones working here over summer that year by year choose to stay longer and longer) love this island. Cause it’s so full of contrasts.
I will really miss the calm beaches of October and November…
Also, I haven’t told you how great of an experience Ibiza Energy week in October (EWI) was. To work with the founder of that project is truly inspirational and I believe it can grow big in the years to come. In fact, it is a very good week to go to see the island after the party season and at the same time get some extra tourists and events going on, this time focusing on health though. 😉
Besides, its often still nice and warm in October and not all beach lounges are closed.
Whenever I get my writing acts together I’ll publish more posts about Ibiza that can be helpful for travelers. And I’m very keen to investigate what, if any, there are of Responsible Tourism initiatives here.. The Gipsy Giraffe on Responsible partying, haha, BIIIIG topic coming up! But seriously, a greening of those monster clubs could be a damn good idea. I think the Ibiza clubbing industry has a huge potential to take a grip on that.
Well well.. What a summer this has been.. Ill miss our little house, not to mention the garden.
I’ll miss the smells of salt sea outside of my window and our little street that we share with all kinds of random people working in Amnesia. I’ll even miss the bloody dogs barking when jogging through the neighborhood.
And my mum: She will miss driving around in this treasure:
Peace & love, J.
Yesterday we went back to a small and relatively unknown (yet to tourists) fish restaurant popularly called the Fish shack, originally named El Chiringuito de Maria. It’s a small family business and the same people are always on duty.
We only came here twice last year actually which I find very odd now that I think of it. Anyway, I especially remember one night before Cocoon with the big DJ’s and their crew how I just loved the familiarity about it all. To them it’s perhaps also one of the few places they’re left alone.
The restaurant is literally a shack placed on a hillside by the sea, where you can take a swim while waiting for your food at daytime, and watch the sunset while eating, or the old town on the other side of the bay, at night time. It’s situated next door to another more upscale restaurant called Sa Punta on the edge of Talamanca, close to the center of Ibiza, and has for long been what you’d call a hidden treasure on the island.
Outside of the main dining area small quirky tables and plastic chairs are randomly set out on the rocks for romantic dates. The waiters will on occasion tell you to pee in the bushes cause there is no toilet today, mosquitoes eat you alive and you get served amazing fresh, simple & authentic fish and seafood dishes. They have one meat option which is a plate of lamb chops that people tell me is perfect.
The menu varies from day to day according to the catches of the day. My favorites tend to be the tuna and jumbo prawns. All plates cost the same and are served with a salad and some special homemade potatoes, served cold. Delicious!
This place is definitely one of my top 3 favorite restaurants on the island.
Edit: Why not read about my top 7 feelgood restaurants in Ibiza too?
This is the garden of our new house in Las Salinas, Ibiza. It’s been a month since we moved in and I love it already so much. And hey, you are more than welcome to visit us here, whenever you like.
Hospitality It’s one of the most crucial concepts for profound traveling and an essential quality held by the people I have dearest. I fall in love over and over when I see it in my man, I get reminded where I come from and what my values are when I see it in my mum, and I understand why my closest friends are closest when I see it in them.
Lately V and I have been very hospitable again. We just love that whole mi casa tu casa thing. We haven’t taken it as far as last summer when we created an Excel sheet and told friends to tick off the weeks they wanted to visit, but we still hold our doors open, and already welcomed whoever wants to come.
Perhaps we have hospitality as a key value in common due to not having grown up with siblings, as it seems like the two of us get very excited whenever there is people around. We just love eating breakfast with friends, family and random colleagues, hosting our visitors and showing them the island. It’s the best way to create good memories and develop old as well as new friendships.