When I think of summertime family vacations, I think swimsuits filled with sand and shady palm trees. My childhood summers were spent on Maui, and the one time that we deviated from Hawaii, was to go to the Caribbean and Florida.
The last few summers, we did visit a seaside resort in Cornwall. Although the beaches in England are lovely, it's not the same as a tropical beach holiday. I missed the sunshine and heat. I wanted to wear my swim suit and get a tan, not goosebumps!
I was really looking forward to our stop at Palma de Mallorca, where we had booked an excursion to La Playa de Sitges for a day at the beach.
Our first views of Palma de Mallorca. Did I mention that one of my favorite parts of cruising is going to bed and waking up in a new city? I loved rushing over to our window and discovering a completely new view.
The Explorer of the Seas docked next to The World. Many years ago, I saw a documentary on The World and I was very thrilled to see it in person. As its name implies, The World, cruises around the earth, but it's unique, because it sells apartments and has permanent residents. Imagine living on a cruise ship? Sounds like the good life to me!
Here is our obligatory cheesy port picture.
There were a ton of buses ready to whisk passengers off on their excursions.
The bus ride was very short, only about twenty minutes. I took a few snaps as we drove out of the city.
The beach was perfect.
Perfect is not an overstatement.
I've been to plenty of nice beaches and La Playa de Sitges is the nicest that I've experienced.
The sand was soft and clean. I even saw several people picking up litter; never have I seen a beach kept so clean. Seriously, it was like Disney was in charge of beach maintenance. Scratch that, Disney should contract La Playa de Sitges maintenance to clean their parks. If the beach wasn't so darn sandy, I could have eaten off of it.
The water was calm, warm, shallow, and clear. It was ideal for Zoe and Felix, who are still honing their swimming skills. We were a short walk from plenty of food choices, clean bathrooms and shops. This is a tourist's paradise.
My favorite part was the lounge chairs under palm frond umbrellas. We rented four of them for six euros each. I was happy to park myself in the shade and read, while Dan played with the kids in the ocean. Vendors frequently made rounds near the umbrellas, so it was easy to purchase drinks and snacks.
If you'd rather play than lounge, the beach had plenty of water toys to rent. Look behind Felix in the picture below and you'll see a whole water playground.
Dan and the kids rented these pedalow boats with water slides.
But mostly, it was just fun to splash around in the water. There's no photographic evidence, but I also played in the ocean with the kids, while Dan snoozed on the lounge chairs. It was a team effort with those kids, who never-ever get bored of swimming.
Dan and I have quite an impressive fridge magnet collection and we needed to add one more. Before boarding the bus back to the ship. we stopped here to find a Mallorca magnet.
I'm mentioning the store, because the owner was the icing on the cake for our wonderful stop in Mallorca. We bought a few, very inexpensive souvenirs and she let us all have a Mallorca pen as a bonus gift. I know it's something small, but it was that little touch that just made our day even better. The kids loved it.
It was very tough to get back on the ship. I could have spent our whole holiday on that beach. Truthfully, it was one of the best days of the entire holiday and it's making us look towards a beach holiday for a future summer vacation.