People are back in the Soller Valley and the restaurants are busy. The beaches have the furniture and umbrellas and many are in the sea. The weather is glorious and this is what they have come here for. German is the most dominant language around these parts and the Irish passport seems to have allowed UK people, owning them, to travel. The Soller Train announced it would be back on track from 1st June 2021 and that more trams would also happen then. So, to all intents and purposes, the 2021 season has begun.
All citizens and residents in The Netherlands are allowed to enter the Spanish territory now. They must present a health control form (FCS) at the health control of their airport of arrival, as well as a negative COVID-19 test certificate. On their return all travellers have to go on a 10 days’ quarantine after returning from Spain. It is required to present a COVID-19 negative NAAT test certificate for traveling to The Netherlands.
This information is especially important to the many Dutch second home owners here who are desperate to get to their homes in the Soller Valley. This means that Dutch will be added to the languages of the area in the coming days. What used to be a pleasant experience in planning a Spanish trip has now turned into a form filling and testing experience. We salute all those who jump through all the legal hoops to spend time here.
Twenty-six of the thirty-one Hotels of Soller and the Puerto are open and all of a sudden the children are staying to school lunch again. Their parents return to work and old routines come back for a few weeks. The children won’t have too long to get used to their three course ‘menu del dia’ because in four weeks’ time they break up for the Summer 12 week break.
We have been on the map for a three-day cycle race which came through our world last week. A prestigious event and all the main companies were there supporting their teams. They flash past us and are gone in minutes, apart from the stragglers. They are enthusiastically supported by those who come out of their doors to cheer them on.
Here come the ‘Nomadlanders’ and the Soller Valley is wondering what to do with them. The sharp increase in motorhome use in Mallorca is causing those in power to do some swift assessment of the rules. For instance, did you know that there is a difference between parking and camping?
Parking for RV vehicles means being inside the vehicle (watching TV, eating, sleeping, etc.). If you are outside, setting up a table, taking out chairs, or placing jacks to stabilize the campervan, then you are camping. In Mallorca you cannot camp freely wherever you want, as it can carry a series of penalties.
When camping, the regulations of the Balearic Government apply, and the SEPRONA (if you are camping on rustic land), IBANAT (in protected areas), Coastal Demarcation (in the coastal zone), or the local police, can move you on and fine you if you are breaking regulations or camping in an unauthorized place.
The camper vans who park up at local beauty spots to watch the sunset and then stay the night are in unchartered waters. My research has told me that the following are a couple of official sites for camping:
Lluc Monastery car park: this is a very quiet car park surrounded by nature, although it is not exclusive to campervans. Nearby is the camping area, Sa Font Coberta, where you can load and drain the water from the motorhome. It also has showers and barbecues. The parking fee is 10€ per day.
Parking in Son Servera: located near the beach of Port Vell, it has 12 spaces and you can park for a maximum of 48 hours.
In addition to this, canny business people renting land from Finca owners are beginning to build a network of new sites for the RV’s. Shower blocks and electrical installations are happening as we speak. This will all be followed by new regulations and official interest.
RV’s will find it tricky to negotiate Soller streets but look out for a site near you soon.
This is the growth industry for 2021. Beware hotels and holiday rentals, the future might just be on the open road for our visitors.