» Absolute sincerity is the way to orginality. « – Charles Baudelaire.
To be sincere should be the easiest thing in the world. Because you don’t have to pretend anything or imitate someone; you can just be yourself. But instead, it is one of the hardest things. Because somehow it takes so much courage to live your on life and to be confident about how you look, what you do and say. Without claiming that I always manage to show that courage– I think it is courage that is worth having. Because this way, we won’t just become originals but also probably the happiest we can possibly be.
If I had to describe Palma’s La Lonja quarter in just one word, I’d choose authentic. The restaurants, bars and entire streets effortlessly create the sincerity and authenticity which Charles Baudelaire is talking about. Whether you just walk by the restaurants or really enter one of the Tapas bars (which by the way you really should): Everything seems to be so disguised and unimpressed by Palma’s rise to a more and more popular holiday destination and the crowds of tourists which walk through the streets every day. It didn’t lose any of its historic flair.
The large part of the streets here are pedestrian streets so that you’re able to promenade, stop and walk on just as you want to. You only meet a few scooterists which seem to not take the ban on motorized traffic very seriously. The streets are – as I am used to by now – narrow and winding and at least during the first days they appear to be a little maze-like. Once you’ve found a nice place, the best thing to do is to mark it on a map right away. Because aside the main street, the Calle d’Apuntadores, the quarter is very inviting for getting lost and not finding a place again. I guess that is the disadvantage of the similarity of all streets, with their old houses, paved floors and colorful blinds.
The mentioned Calle d’Apuntadores is a street which you shouldn’t miss when visiting the La Lonja quarter. On the other hand it is pretty much impossible to miss this street. The Calle d’Apuntadores starts right at the Paseo del Born and that is the one alley which almost every visitor of Palma takes a walk on. On the Paseo del Born there is not only the tourist office, there are also luxurious apartments, glamorous cafes and shops like Hugo Boss. Once in a while the alley is even the setting for photoshoots.
When you then turn to the Calle d’Apuntadores, you’ll find a different Palma. Everything is a little smaller and narrower; most of the restaurants don’t offer seats for as many people. From the outside they look less imposing, especially the tapas bars for which you often have to walk down stairs at first. The Spanish tapas cuisine is probably a matter of taste but it did meet mine to a hundred percent. To try little portions of many dishes is absolutely perfect for people like me who have a hard time making decisions.
The bars of the La Lonja quarter are pretty much busy on every day of the week. Tourists sit –in the truest sense of the word – next to Majorcans. Everyone who has been to a tapas bar before knows that there usually is only very little space between the tables. It’s crowded, cozy and sometimes a little louder. My recommendation for everyone who wants to visit one of Palma’s tapas bar on the next trip is the Bar Dìa. It offers a big tasty variety and absolutely fair prices.
A few months ago, Palma was chosen as the best place to live in the world by The Sunday Times. Because it has beaches and an incredibly beautiful old town and an entire island which can be discovered very easily starting at the island’s capital. Personally I cannot say whether Palma really is the best place to live or not and I kind of doubt that anyone is able to render an objective judgement on that. But I am able to say that Palma is a really nice place to live. Because of the reasons mentioned by The Sunday Times but also because of its effortlessness, its diversity and this authenticity which can be especially found in the streets of the La Lonja quarter.
Text: Jessica Hanack