We are entering the third week of lockdown in Mallorca. At the moment, we are supposed to get out on April 12nd, but let’s see how the situation evolves in the next couple of weeks.
Some photos of Palma empty streets during the lockdown, taken when I go to the shops:
This second week has been SO MUCH BETTER than the first one. For several reasons. Firstly, I’ve really decreased the time spent on social media. I tried my best to not check my phone before 12pm, and focus on other things in the mornings. Secondly, I’ve given myself tasks and goals for each day. Thirdly, I’ve made myself available for work and clients only between 1 and 6pm so I don’t have to be online all day long. So what do I do the rest of the time ??
I’ve kept on doing workout bootcamp on our roof terrace every mornings with my flatmates: it’s really amazing to get some fresh air and exercise in first thing.
Doing some over due cleaning tasks in the house (you know like cleaning the shower tile joints with a tooth-brush.. SO SATISFYING!) Who else is becoming a cleaning freak ?
Cooking, of course. This week I’ve made: a veggie curry, a leek and cauliflower fondue, quinoa and brocolis balls, sweet potatoes fries; and crêpes. We’re taking turns to cook with my flatmates so I’ve also eaten a tofu and veggie stir fry, chocolate mousses, lime mousses, an apple and cinnamon cake…
Writing blog posts, editing photos and drafting the new landing pages I need on my website.
Cleaning my computer storage, ordering photos and transferring them onto my hard-drive because I’m tired of the Cloud telling me it’s too full! Never enough space…
Making a Monopoly, Palma de Mallorca edition. This is my flatmate amazing idea. It’s been our project for the past two weeks and are hoping to be done soon to be able to play! We are making everything by hand from cards to bills, and even the board. The tokens are a 2 cents coin with a piece of sea glass glued on top. I hope next week I can show you the final result! It’s been so fun. Work in progress…
Watching The Handmaid’s Tale (you can watch it on HBO, there is a 2-weeks free trial). We’ve finished Season 2 and are loving it! We’ve also watched Self Made on Netflix.
Reading! I’ve finished ‘Snowing in Bali: The Incredible Inside Account of Bali’s Hidden Drug’ by Kathryn Bonella. A very interesting book. And I’ve also read ‘The Secret Life of a Slummy Mummy’ by Fiona McNeill. Super fun and easy to read.
Painting… I’m definitely not a good painter but having fun just doing some water colour paintings, and it made me able to decorate my bedroom a little bit more. I’ve also added travel memories and postcards to escape a little during the lockdown.
Small Accomplishments and Happy Moments
I’ve put on jeans for the first time in two weeks, and it still fits! Just the time to go to the shops but still… Quarantine Fashion on point! Thank God for pajamas.
Hearing everyone clapping every night at 8pm and seeing thank you messages around when going on the streets to go food shopping.
Kids finding new ways to communicate and play together: they’ve sending paper planes and balls from one building to the other (well most ending up in the streets ahah) and having so much fun doing so!
I hope you all add a good week! Remember that it’s okay to feel sad, to feel overwhelmed and to feel lazy! It’s good to have a routine, keep yourself busy and be productive but the most important thing is to keep sane! So if that means spending hours reading on the couch, then let it be!
You may think these pictures are from the Sonoran Desert in Arizona 🏜 or another far away place, but no, it is really from the most beautiful cactus garden of Mallorca.
Located near Ses Salines, Botanicactus is the perfect half-day getaway: bring your picnic and get lost between the hundreds of cactuses around you.
And of course, don’t forget to snap away
Opened in May 1989, Botanicactus is divided in 3 different zones:
Mallorquin garden (25 000 m2) in which you can find typical plants of the
Mediterranean climate, a flower garden, the picnic spot and a kid’s park.
cactus zone, a 40 000 m2 desert with 8 000 different cactus species!
humid garden with tropical vegetation and a lake.
The most impressive zone is obviously the cactus desert. There are many different paths, so the best is to just wander and enjoy the moment.
As a cactus lover, strolling in there was my kind of paradise! It’s quite impressive to see cactuses that are twice your size. And what a joy to discover the flowers…
Price: 10€ pp.
Location: Carretera, 07640 Ses Salines, Illes Balears
Opening hours: Monday to Sunday January to February from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. March from 9:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. April to August from 9:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. September to October from 09:00 a.m. to 07:00 p.m. November to December from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Be aware that in summer it gets very hot in the garden, so wear a hat and bring water! There are picnics tables so you are welcome to bring your own food – as long as you don’t leave anything behind you!
Let me know if you’ve been to the gorgeous cactus garden on Mallorca or if it’s on your list 🌵
Disclaimer: photos of the city taken on Saturday March 14th, before the lockdown.
A week has passed since we got the news of Spain entering the state of emergency due to the current COVID-19 situation. It wasn’t a shocking news as we were looking at what was happening in Italy and we knew the lockdown was the only way to prevent spreading the virus more and more.
On Saturday night, knowing that we wouldn’t be allowed outside for a long time, I went on one last walk by the sea to watch the sunset. It felt very strange, many people were outside enjoying their last moments of ‘freedom’. Who knows when we will be able to go to the beach again? …
Sunday was quite a weird day. Many people were still going out as they understood the lockdown was starting on Monday, so the police already started to go around and tell people to go home. There was no running by the sea or exercising on the beach allowed anymore. That was it: everyone inside!
official lockdown announcement, people went a bit crazy and did some panic
buying, clearing the toilet paper shelves of the shops (we are all still
wondering WHY TOILET PAPER ?!). Quickly, the shops became empty as everyone was
stocking up on food. But a few days after the state of emergency announcement,
it was almost back to normal.
Adjusting to the current situation
It took me time to adjust to this surreal situation: working from home most of the time, the idea of having to stay home and work remotely didn’t scare me as it’s already part of my daily routine. My main concern was not to be able to go outside for my daily walk by the sea, to get some fresh air and get my 10 000 steps in after spending the whole day sitting and working on the computer. Thankfully, I’m lucky to live with a former personal trainer so she’s keeping us fit during the lockdown as we can’t go to the gym. Every morning at 7.30am my flatmates and I are on the rooftop terrace to do our daily bootcamp: best way to start the day (even if some days I am grumpy and not really into it, let’s be honest!)
As the days
went by, we noticed more and more policemen around our square, controlling the
whereabouts of people walking: if you have to go to work, you should present your
work contract or a certificate from your boss; if you are coming back from the
shops, you have to present your receipts to make sure you really went food
shopping. If you’re walking your dog, they might ask you the document of the
animal to make sure it’s yours, as some dog owners are now renting their dog so
people can go on a walk!!! No jokes!
What I should have done differently
I think my biggest mistake during this first week was to spend way too much time on social media: as many people found themselves without jobs, they were so much more active on Facebook and Instagram. I’m a bit addicted to YouTube and watching stories all day long, so content creator and influencers posting twice as much as usual didn’t help me to put my phone down. One week in, I’ve decided to not turn on my phone before 12pm every day, so I can concentrate on other things in the morning without watching the news nor everyone’s accomplishments during the quarantine.
I don’t know how you felt when you started seeing everyone planning to make the most of it and taking the opportunity to do things they never have the time to do, but it made me feel super anxious, overwhelmed and sad.
Well yes: my life isn’t really different because I still have to work online part-time for my clients, and the other part of the time to work on my business, so really no more time than usual to start learning how to sew or learn a new language. I was feeling frustrated because I also wanted to be home and not work and have so much time in my hands to do so many different things.
And then I realized the problem wasn’t not having the time, but more not managing my time wisely. As every bit of ‘free’ time I had, I was spending it on social media looking at everyone living their best lockdown lives (because of course, most people are posting about the benefits and what they are achieving, no one talk about their mental breakdowns or their 3-days in a raw in the same pajamas ahah).
Learning from my mistakes
My goal now is to work on my business in the mornings (writing blog posts, editing photos, planning my social media posts and do some online courses), work for my clients in the afternoon, watch a few episodes of The Handmaid’s Tales with my flatmates (we started it yesterday and omg it’s so good!), and read before going to sleep. And let’s not forget our daily morning flatmates rooftop bootcamp.
Focus on the positive
One thing I really love about being stuck at home is that it gives us the opportunity to spend quality time together: playing games, doing crafts and having home-cooked dinners. Food has become the thing we look forward to the most as we can’t go outside, so cooking and eating is becoming our number one activity. So far, we’ve made French toasts, cinnamon rolls, an orange cake, veggie lasagna, Brazilian risoles, beetroot humus, red pepper and Parmesan dip, veggie curry and fish cakes.
I’ve also loved noticing a rise of solidarity during this difficult first week: at 8pm, every night, people go out on their balconies and clap for all the medical staff and other professions doing such a hard job. As we are young and healthy, our elderly neighbour has been asking us to do her shopping and pharmacy runs as she’s scared to go out at all; and it makes us feel useful.
How did your first week of lockdown go ? How are you feeling ? I’ll leave you with an Instagram post that I really needed to see when I was feeling low and unproductive. Hope it helps!
The winter season has to be my favourite on the island: perfect weather to go hiking and the almond trees in the fields are blossoming. I just love the pink flowers growing on almond trees between January and March.
“When an almond tree became covered with blossoms in the heart of winter, all the trees around it began to jeer. ‘What vanity,’ they screamed, ‘what insolence! Just think, it believes it can bring spring in this way!’ The flowers of the almond tree blushed for shame. ‘Forgive me, my sisters,’ said the tree. ‘I swear I did not want to blossom, but suddenly I felt a warm springtime breeze in my heart.” ― Nikos Kazantzakis, Saint Francis
You can take part into Affordable Mallorca almond blossom photo contest by sending your best snaps at firstname.lastname@example.org before February 16th. Click here for the rules of the contest and prize.
Is there almond blossom in your part of the world ? Share your photos with me on Instagram by using #yellothere
Oh, I love
December in Palma: the sun is still warming us up most of the days, the sunrises
and sunsets are colourful and the streets are magical as soon as the Christmas
Lights are turned on.
Here are my favourite spots around Palma during the holiday season.
Passeig des Born: delightful during the day and magical at night; it was quite crowded on the night they were switching the lights on.
I love the stars on Plaza de la Reina.
I don’t know why, palm trees and Christmas lights make my heart jump: I feel so luck to live on this beautiful island.
Another of my favourite corner: Jaume III
There’s something so special about La Rambla during the holiday, I love seeing the flower shops along with the Christmas lights.
I love walking through Plaza Mayor at night, the yellow – my favourite colour – plaza is even more special all lighten up.
Last but not least, Plaza Cort and its sky full of lights.
I’m going away for the holidays so I’m taking all the Christmas spirit I can get before that! I still have a few Christmas events to go to: Santa Lucia at Palma Cathedral on Friday Dec 13th, the Countryside Christmas Fair organised by my beautiful friends at Spoon Full O’Moon on Sunday Dec 15th and a few Christmas drinks with my friends.
Mallorca is known for some of its breath-taking views and amazing calas, some with access only by hiking for a couple of hours or by boat. While it might be hard to get there in the hot summer days, it’s the perfect spot to explore during the ultimate hiking season in Mallorca: Autumn.
Let me take
you to some magical spots around Santanyi.
the hike in Cala S’Almonia.
For 2 hours we walked while having great views.
the cutest house with the most amazing view! Who whished it was available on
Airbnb to be able to wake up there?
We finally arrived to Cala Dels Marmols, where we were greeted by the cutest Husky.
What’s best than having a nap on the beach on
the 1st of December? You tell me…
The way back seemed way quicker and we stopped at yet another breathtaking point of view.
Back to Cala S’Almonia, we headed to Calo d’es Moro.
What a difference a season makes: in Summer it was packed with people and we were swimming in the sea. This time we could enjoy the peaceful view and empty beach.
stop before heading back to Palma: Cala Llombards as the sun was setting and
turning the sky pink.
Twice a year, on 02/02 and 11/11, the reflection of the Roseta is perfectly aligned with the one on the opposite wall, creating the illusion of the number 8. You can find more information about this phenomenon here.
The first time I went, a big cloud appeared just before it was supposed to happen so I couldn’t see it. This year I didn’t believe it would happen as the day was not a sunny one but, miracle, just for 30 minutes, the sun was shining and we were able to witness the light show.
It was truly magical, the reflection of the lights on the wall of the cathedral made me feel so happy and lucky to be able to see such beauty.
Doors of the Cathedral open at 7.30am and this happens between 8am and 9am.
Last month, I was so lucky to witness a 100 hot air balloons taking off as the sun was rising, it was one of those magical moment, when you wish the time would stop. But it doesn’t, so the best you can do is to enjoy every second of it!
Mallorca was the host to the 2019 European Hot Air Balloon Championships in October, unfortunately, the weather was quite crappy and with all the wind and rain they didn’t manage to fly for a few days. Which made it even more special when, on the last weekend, we drove to the countryside of the island when it was still very dark (and cold), and we arrived on the field to see all the balloons getting ready to take off as the sky was turning into different shades of pink and blue.
We climbed the near-by hill as the first balloons started to fly and we weren’t ready for what we were about to see: one by one, a 100 hot air balloon started to take off and fill the sky with colours, while the sun was slowly rising and showing its first rays behind a hill.
And soon the sky was filled with all the balloons.
After this magical show, we started to drive back and found ourselves following the route of the balloons, once again it was very special to see all the balloons in the sky as we were driving. We made a stop to take it all in, it was unbelievable.
If you want to see more, check my video:
If you’re interested in flying in a hot air balloon over Mallorca, check Mallorca Balloons.