A bit calmer and more relaxed, Santanyi is one of Mallorca’s more traditional hotspots. Surrounded by stunning nature and not far from some of the island’s best beaches this picturesque town located in the south of the island invites you to experience the authentic Mallorca. Great restaurants and cafés, shops and many things to do, we provide you with the best tips for a trip to this quiet, charming village.
Originally called Santi Agnini, the ‘holy lamb’ or ‘lamb of God’, by Christian conquerors, Santanyi has been long known for its agriculture and extensive trade of building stone. In the past the town, like many other places in Mallorca, had to resist pirate attacks from the sea. Therefore the locals built high walls surrounding the city to protect it at the peak of the danger. You can still admire the fortified wall and the Porta Murada gate today. At the nearby Cala Llonga there are still the remains of a fort built during the 18th century to repel pirates. You will find more forts and defense towers in the area and along the coast near Santanyi.
Today, next to the locals that enjoy their town, many creatives and international artists live in Santanyi attracted by its vibes, light and tranquility. There are also lots of Germans living or spending their holidays in this area. They come to enjoy the sunny days, rural surroundings and quiet town.
Events in Santanyí
On January 17th Santanyi’s animals are blessed during the Sant Antoni festivities, a typical Mallorcan tradition. The night before the town’s citizens celebrate with bonfires. The traditional festivities of Sant Jaume take place on July 25th. The town celebrates the day the first stone of the current parish church was laid. An exciting agricultural, craft and industrial Santanyi Fair is held on the third Saturday in October. It’s a great opportunity to visit the town off season.
Santanyi’s market, one of Mallorca’s most beautiful markets, takes place on the Plaza Mayor every Wednesday and Saturday morning. You will find fruit and vegetables, Mallorcan products such as cheese and sobrasada, souvenirs and clothes there. Sip a café con leche at one of the nearby cafés, stroll through the town and take home some treasures from the market.
The small and quiet town offers some smaller galleries and workshops that art fans will love. Here you can find a special art piece to take home. One of the more well-known galleries is Galería Sailer, which is located on the main road in a 17th century townhouse. Discover textile treasures and other timeless art pieces here. The owner’s, an Austrian couple’s, collection includes pre-Columbian textiles, antique kilims, more contemporary paintings, as well as unique sculptures and glass objects from around the world.
There are numerous great places to indulge in good food, have a coffee or enjoy a glass of exquisite wine in Santanyi. You will find a variety of restaurants and cafés around the main square in the heart of the town that are well worth a visit.
In a narrow alley you will find the cosy Sa Botiga café that serves great breakfast and coffee both inside and outside. They also have a great lunch menu with pasta, salads and nice options for vegetarians. Don’t miss their art exhibition space on the upper floor.
Food Juice Passion
This café offers tasty and healthy juices, smoothies, poke bowls and light, plant-based ‘high vibe’ food. They also organise fun pop ups in collaboration with the Mimar Lifestyle concept store in Santanyi.
Marc Vidal, cook and owner of Es Coc, loves his job. You can see that, and above all you can taste it in all his dishes. With artistic talent he creates typical Mallorcan cuisine without losing its connection with tradition. We recommend the tasting menu and, on pre-order, paella with lobster. Those who don’t like fish, will enjoy the lamb shoulder, duck breast or entrecote in wine sauce.
Enjoy the best of Mediterranean cuisine at this top restaurant in Santanyi. Es Cantonet serves elegant and exquisite dishes prepared with the best and freshest seasonal ingredients such as gourmet lamb, fish and tapas in a beautifully restored old building. Indulge in fine dining on the romantic patio or inside in a warm, feel-good atmosphere.
The East26 Restaurant is located in a multifunctional lifestyle centre that is dedicated to creative living. The centre unites a real estate office, a photography and art showroom, an interior design and design office and the restaurant. There you can have delicious Mediterranean and Asian dishes such as poke bowls, ayuverdic curry and beetroot risotto. You should also try their tasty desserts like espresso pants cottage with black sesame ice cream.
Well known for its fantastic live music the Bar Sa Cova is a popular night meeting point in Santanyi among locals and expats, artists and musicians. Great tapas and drinks, a vibrant and warm atmosphere and a fun crowd will make your night at this bar unforgettable.
When you stroll through the pretty town of Santanyi you will stop every few metres to enter a shop that offers Mallorcan products and food, home decor, unique clothes or souvenirs. One of our favourite shops in the village is Mimar Lifestyle, a beautiful concept store that sells bohemian beachstyle interior, fashion and other unique pieces.
Where to stay in Santanyi
Between smaller, intimate boutique hotels in town and resort hotels in Cala Santanyi there are a few great places to spend the night that stand out.
S’Hotelet de Santanyi
The charming yet stylish boutique hotel S’Hotelet de Santanyi is perfectly located in the heart of the town. Its bright, thoughtfully designed rooms as well as its friendly, highly professional staff offer comfort, harmony and a tranquil space to unwind.
With their exceptional decorating style and passion for quality materials and details, the architect and designer couple Oehm turned typical Mallorcan townhouses in Santanyi into luxurious but authentic holiday homes. Staying at Living Houses is a must for architecture and design lovers or romantics.
You want to rejuvenate, relax and re-energise? The Cal Reiet holistic retreat hotel will spoil you with yoga lessons, organic food and fantastic spa facilities. Located a bit out of town a tranquil, relaxing stay at this wellness and health sanctuary is guaranteed!
Beaches around Santanyi
The beautiful town of Santanyi is close to numerous stunning, fjord-like beaches and coves that are waiting to be explored!
Just a few kilometres from the town you will find Cala Santanyi. This sandy beach with turquoise water is surrounded by pine and palm trees. This area is a bit more touristy and busier than the village but equally beautiful. It is also a fantastic place for families and holiday-makers who seek relaxation.
About 10 km from Santanyi you will find the stunning Cala Llombards. This dreamy cove is rather small but surrounded by steep cliffs and pine trees which give it a romantic touch. The crystal-clear water and white golden sand will make you forget the rest of the world. It’s also a great snorkelling spot and a nice place to visit with children since the sand is soft and the water shallow.
Cala Figuera, not far from Santanyi, doesn’t offer a great beach but a picturesque harbour that mass tourism doesn’t seem to have affected too much. The traditional fisher boats and small houses you find there will give you an authentic feel of this Mediterranean island.
Photos by Pernilla Danielsson