The people poured into the Soller Valley this weekend. Flights brought many of them and the Saturday market bought us plenty of trippers. The view from the pavement was that life is returning to ‘old normal’ with a bang.
Everyone is making their own decision around the crowds. Some are wearing masks and others are just giving up and going home. They don’t want to be in a crush at present. This has been a great week for me as I have met up on most days, with returning friends. They are all so happy to be in Mallorca doing what they normally do on holidays, in the sun, in July.
Every year holidaymakers become totally confused about the tram fares. They understand the tourist charm which might get them to make a trip costing 7 euros each to go from the Town to the Port. They are horrified to learn they have to pay this on the return as well. They often choose to return by taxi to Soller because it is cheaper.
This has all changed big time this year and there is a lot of business chatter going on behind the scenes. The bus services in Mallorca has undergone a radical change with new routes and fewer bus companies in control. For the Soller Valley this means additional buses on the Puerto Soller to Palma route and on the Puerto Soller to Fornalutx route. This, by default, means that Soller is connected to the Port by one bus or the other 38 times a day.
What this means for holiday makers is that if they are staying in town and want to go to the beach they just hop on the bus. They save the Tram for special visitor occasions. They pay on the bus with their contactless card (never money because the fare is dearer) and away they go.
The Tram has no payment card facility and is three times the price of the bus. The inevitable has happened and the Tram is considering its position. We have begged for years for a cheap visitor’s price for the tram but this has always fallen on deaf ears. This year might see a fare price revolution. Watch this space for the result of the competition.
Puerto Soller has been having a low key Covid Fiesta. Amongst the celebrations was the opening, as a gallery, a munitions storage facility. This is one of the Cingle gunpowder tunnels. Into the rocks under the Bikini Island Hotel the tunnels were dug in military years gone by. As part of the Port festivities, one of the Cingle gunpowder tunnels has changed its use to become an Art Gallery. The local artist Natalia Spitale has presented wonderful local work for this first exhibition to celebrate fiesta.
This space has been designed as a multi use facility to include exhibitions and conferences in the future. To start its life as a showcase for local art was appreciated by all.
The work has now begun on the Son Angelats Sports Centre. Another 12 rooms of space are the plan to include more classes and events. Air conditioning improvements and the place will become even busier than it is now. The early days of this place was very different. It was really tricky to sell subsidised membership or get the people in the door. It didn’t help that it opened with a roof which leaked when it rained. Basketball courts with buckets collecting the rain were a feature here.
All this is a thing of the past and repairs were made. Now the reason for the extra spaces is because it has become the sports hub of the town and everyone wants to be there. This year they even put on a Boxing Match with local people just loved. A very interesting programme of events for the winter is in the pipeline.
Do come and see us soon in the Soller Valley. Everything is open and the beach life is superb. So easy to get here with extra trains and buses plus a new car park in the Puerto Soller. Lots of improvements for all this summer plus the biggest welcome.