Plenty of traffic seen on the Mallorcan roads. | R.L.


Yes, it is time for a serious debate about the future of Mallorca and the Balearics in general with regard to the future of tourism and how best to reach a sustainable balance between mass tourism and protecting the well-being of the local population. However, finger pointing and playing the blame game is not the answer.

A large proportion of Mallorcan society has got very rich and comfortable over the decades as a direct and indirect result of tourism, so now it’s time to shut up shop?

On Monday, I travelled from Porto Cristo to Palma. It took us an hour to reach the Palma junction to either join the Via de Cintura into Palma along the seafront or branch off to the airport. From there it took 40 minutes to painstakingly drive to the Paseo Mallorca in the centre of Palma and this was at midday, not peak rush hour.

So, as we endured the gridlock, I played spot the hire-car sticker. Yes, there were a few but by no means anywhere near enough to claim that traffic congestion is caused by tourists in rental vehicles. What was most surprising was the vast number of local vehicles with a lone driver. Mallorca may be a world leader in tourism, but when it comes to social awareness it has a lot to learn.