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Sóller

Skyline view of San Bartolomeu Church in Soller

In the midst of the most beautiful valley of the island, in the Huerta de Sóller (Garden of Sóller), you'll find this charming and lively town, neatly tucked among the highest mountains of Mallorca.

Sóller

Vall d'Or - Valley of Gold

Sóller, with its 14,000 inhabitants, can be found 35 km north of Palma, in the center of the fertile Valle de los Naranjos (Valley of the Oranges), protected by a circle of high mountains. A narrow river valley connects Sóller to the sea. The sunny plain of Sóller is one of the most charming landscapes of Mallorca. Orange, lemon and mandarin trees flourish in the valley. Almond, fig and olive tree plantations stretch up the slopes. This fertile valley enjoys bountiful, early harvests every year. Arabs called the valley Sulliar (Valley of Gold), not for any traces of the actual metal, but for Sóller's golden fruits, which brought wealth and prestige to the city. Oranges and dried figs were in very high demand, and were exported to France through the Port of Sóller. The surrounding mountain range protects Sóller, but also isolates it from the rest of the island, which made the locals look for other markets where they could sell their goods. It wasn't until the completion of the rail link with Palma that Sóller could also serve the island market. The trade flourished, elaborate, richly decorated houses were built, and now a neat tram line connects the city to the harbor. For a long time Sóller was the biggest orange producer, until the Andalusian orange plantations took over this role.

San Bartomeu - Sóller

Special Flair

The best atmosphere in Sóller can be found in the charming village center with cozy cafes, magnificent buildings, and nice shops. The prosperity built up during the days when commerce was flourishing and is especially evident in the numerous buildings with Art Nouveau facades. Today, the cityscape is dominated by beautiful, patrician houses with balconies from the 17th and 18th centuries. Among the must-see attractions, the most important are the church of Sant Bartomeu and the bank Banco de Sóller.

Rose Window in San Bartomeu - Sóller

Sant Bartomeu

Sant Bartomeu (or San Bartolomé) is located in the town center, at Plaça Constitució. The church was built in the 13th century and has been repeatedly restored and modified over the years. You can visit the remains of the Romanesque gates, windows and fortifications from the 16th century. The current building of Sant Bartomeu displays a baroque style with a neo-Gothic belfry. The modernist facade was designed in the early 20th century by Catalan architect Joan Rubió i Bellver, a disciple of Gaudí. Take a moment to go inside the church and admire the breathtakingly beautiful rose window.

Banco de Sóller

Banco de Sóller

The same architect designed the equally impressive modernist façade of the Banco de Sóller (Banco Central Hispano) right next door to the church

Doorknob San Bartolomeu - Sóller

Galleries, Museums and Shopping

One of the most exciting places to visit is the art gallery Ca'n Prunera. The art collection includes works by national and international artists such as Picasso, Miró, Matisse, Basquiat, Rusiñol, Magritte, Léger and Chillida. The building of the gallery itself is an architectural gem (built in the early 20th century) and well worth a visit, even if you're not interested in the paintings themselves. The Art Nouveau façade, the staircase, the wall paintings and glassware are incredibly beautiful (canprunera.com). We also recommend the natural history museum and botanical gardens (Museo de Ciencias Naturales y Jardin Botanico), located on the Southern outskirts of Sóller. It houses a wonderful array of flora of the Balearic and Canary Islands. In the ethnological museum of the city (Museu del Casal de Cultura), a mansion built in the 18th century in the Calle Sa Mar, you'll find antiques and relics, such as traditional furnishings, clothing, tools and instruments from the old town of Sóller. Shopping fans will find quite a few souvenir and delicacy shops in Sóller. A weekly market with regional products is organized every Saturday from 8 am till 1 pm, right in front of the big market hall. The hall itself houses the indoor market, which is open from Monday to Saturday, from 9 am until 1 pm.

Lemons on lemon tree

Nature and Sports

Sóller offers unique experiences especially for nature lovers and hikers, thanks to its romantic location, embedded among orange and lemon groves, sheltered by the highest mountains of Mallorca, the Puig de l' Ofre (1091 m) and the Puig Major (1445 meters), and reflected in the crystal clear waters of the nearby sea. Many options are available, especially for hikers, from simple walks along the coast to tours deep into the Tramuntana mountains. The trails are well maintained and clearly marked. Those who prefer guided hikes on local hiking trails should contact Tramuntana Tours (tramuntanatours.com). Both regular cycling and mountain biking are extremely popular methods of exploring the mountains around Sóller. The streets of Sóller offer great challenges for cycling enthusiasts: winding roads, steep climbs and descents. Bicycles can be rented locally.

Winding road in the Tramuntana mountains

How Can You Reach Sóller

For a day trip from Palma to Sóller, it's better to take the train than to go by car. The train journey is a delight, and goes through wonderful picturesque landscapes. The train has character and is an attraction in itself. Built in 1912, the railway between Palma de Mallorca and Sóller is still equipped with its historic railway carriages. The "Orange Express" was used to transport the harvested oranges to Palma earlier on the fastest route. The well-developed road MA-11 runs almost parallel to the railway line and passes through a toll tunnel (the toll is about 5 €). The alternative to the toll tunnel is to drive on the winding old road through the pass Coll de Sóller, which takes about 20 minutes longer, but offers a beautiful view.

City of Sóller

A Tip from Mallorca.org

More than 40 delicious varieties of ice cream and sorbets are on sale in the ice cream parlor Sa Fabrica de Gelats in Sóller, Plaça del Mercat. Not an easy choice!
gelatsoller.com

information

Population: 8,690

Tourist Information

Sóller
Oficina Municipal de Turismo Sóller
Plaça Espanya 15
07100 Sóller
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oitsoller@a-soller.es
+34 971 638008
+34 971 638009