Every year the Moors and Christians day takes place in May and yet it owes little to historical accuracy. The origin of the current fiesta is the restoration of the Turkish domination over the Mediterranean sea in the late fifteenth century, beginning with its series of invasions in the western Mediterranean from Africa.
Charles V of Habsburg attempted to beat the pirates along with Aragon, Castilla and the Balearic Islands but he failed.
In the mid-sixteenth century nowhere on the coastline was safe from a pirate sacking, something that the then inhabitants of Alcudia, Andratx, Pollença and Sóller would have confirmed. The watchtowers dotted around the island bear witness to those pirates threats.
The Sollerics celebrate every May victory in a battle that took place in 1561. The way that it was won is not quite certain but everyone taking part wants to play the role of the Moors as they have the colourful costumes, faces painted black and they get to chase women and sail boats.
The beginning of the fiesta is announced at 3 o’clock, and the Moors sail out to sea, then return immediately to invade. On the beach, the Christians are waiting for them, and they fill their mixed powder guns and shoot constantly in the air.
Majorcan women remain outside at first and sing their songs of war. The victory against the Moors in Soller is attributed to the brave women of the town because, when the men seemed to be losing, it is the women who attacked.
As a spectator it is best if you watch the event with a sense of humor or join in the action….
Find travelling by train boring? Then you should take a trip on the train that departs from Plaza de España daily heading to Sóller. During your journey you may enjoy the abundance of flowers and orange groves enroute.
You will also pass through thirteen tunnels before finally arriving at the last stop: Sóller.
Since 1912 this train has been making the trip to Soller and back. Called “Red Lightning” the train needs one hour to cover the 27 kilometres to Sóller. Obviously not a fast ride it allows the passengers to appreciate the scenery through which they pass. It travels through some of the most beautiful landscapes of Mallorca, vistas are often framed between orange groves and lemon trees.
The final station is Sóller, where at one time the loading of oranges for transport to Palma was daily since from the turn of the 20th century the benefits of vitamin C were known. Demand for oranges was extremely high and for that reason the Mallorcans eagerly jumped into the orange export business.
On the 16th of April 1912 the train departed for the first time, like then as now, it’s art nouveau station. Since that initial trip it has not changed very much, only now the Red Lightning transports tourists instead of oranges.
Once a day the train makes a special stop for ten minutes at a platform overlooking the Sóller valley giving the passengers time to take pictures of an unforgettable view.
Sóller is an attractive and beguiling town in the northwest of Mallorca. Situated 3 km from the coast and it’s own port, it sits in a bowl shaped valley lush with olive trees and orange groves for which it is famous!
The valley and the mountains that surround it, the Serra de Tramuntana are a popular destination for those that enjoy sport anhd particularly when combined with natural surroundings. It also suits those that simply wish to chill and relax in the silence that the 13,000 residents of Sóller enjoy everyday.
There is the famous wooden electric train that connects Palma centre with Sóller which dates from 1912 and which today is preserved in its original state and condition.
A walk through the town of Sóller is a fascinating experience. There are houses which originated in the 14th century and numerous old buildings that have been wonderfully reformed. Especially outstanding is the parish church of San Bartolomé on the Plaza de la Constitucion. Also impressive is the bank of Ca’n Prunera on Carrer de sa Lluna and many of the buildings on the Gran Vía are worthy of note.
Fet a Soller – delicatessen from Majorca
Fresh oranges – best olive oil – delicious almonds – precious wine
Intense taste – pure nature
Mallorca, fresh to your table
Simply ordering unter
Or visiting one of the shops in Soller.
Fornalutx has the magic of a small mountain village and the charm of well-preserved antiquity. It has a reputation for being one of the architectural relics of the Majorcan people and it has won several awards.
The village is situated in a valley that goes as far as the nearby village of Sóller, the reason for its impressive views.
One of the peculiarities of this village are its painted tiles. This was a tradition that began in the 17th century on Mallorca and it is in Fornalutx where this kind of art was most popular.
More than a thousand years ago, Fornalutx was Islamic farmland. Nowadays, it resists the passing of the years in the best possible way. Its inhabitants are conscious to take care of the paved streets and the flight of limestone steps. If you walk along its streets you will see carefully decorated front doors and cultivated plants that make this village a little treasure in the middle of the Sierra de Tramuntana – the Tramuntana mountain range.
Deià is a picturesque town located in the middle of the Sierra de Tramuntana
– The Tramuntana mountain range.
It is one of those awesome towns that will impress you greatly.
Its stone-made streets and Mediterranean, mountain views make it a privileged location for many people. This small mountain town has been the home of many artists, painters and writers in search of the quiet that those Majorcan towns offer. Robert Graves is a typical example, one of the 20th century living-British writers, whose remains are buried in the island.
Apart from its mountain views to the sea, Cala Deià is a gorgeous little fishermen village.
The port of Sóller is a small natural port that over the last few years has become a large marina. It is one of the favourite places in the north coast of Mallorca for sailors as there are plenty of restaurants and shops.
Do not forget its small beach, where you can go for a swim.
The port is located five kilometres from the town of Sóller, you can get there by its famous local tram. It’s only a short journey but it will, without a doubt, leave you with memories that last a lifetime.