Christmas market in Plaça Major. | Archive


There are ambitions for Palma to become the Mediterranean centre for tourism attracted by Christmas markets. Sights are being set on encouraging visitors to choose Palma rather than markets in Austrian and German cities.

At a meeting last week, the president of the Afedeco retailers association, Antoni Gayà, proposed that market stalls should have designs that are in keeping with the Mediterranean - its culture and its traditions. He stressed that typical Mallorcan products should be sold and not "seedy ones" like those peddled by illegal street sellers.

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The city should have a "lively and traditional" atmosphere with emphasis on, for example, island food and drink. "What we don't want are imported products made in China."

Gayà explained that work has been done over several years to promote shopping tourism as a way of tackling tourism seasonality, referring to how cities in northern Europe have been transforming their Christmas offer. "They are changing but Palma isn't. We need to make the city attractive for people to wish to come."

The retailers now have a close ally at the town hall. The new director for trade is Antoni Fuster, a former president of Pimeco, the other main retailers association. He says that while the proposals aren't new, they are welcome. It may be too late to have specifications for improving the image of stalls in place for this Christmas, but they certainly will be for 2024 along with the necessary atmosphere and