martes, 2 de septiembre de 2014

My Ibiza 2014 alternative guide

Much has been said about Ibiza. Actually you either love it or hate it.
There is no perfect place in the world, but for me if there is one near perfection is Ibiza.

Sun and beautiful light, a nice and rough country side, small beaches that are almost empty even in the middle of the summer, beautiful people to talk to of all ages, best clubs in the world to dance to the ultimate music whether underground, house or funky, small countryhotels to retire after a party ... Crystal clear water if you know where to go.

I lived there 17 years, and even though I love Cologne, Ibiza surprise me everytime I visit it.
Here is my experiencethis year and some tips for your next trip there.

It is very important to find a nice place to be and relax. Specially if you party a few days, the last thing you want to do is go to a normal hotel room. Sure they are cheaper, but to many people can be annoying and you won´t find relax going to the swimming pool. I have two recomendations for you.

Cas Catalá is a new hotel in Santa Eulalia. Only 15 minutes drive to Ibiza, 10 minutes drive to Las Dalias hippy market, 20 minutes to the north part of the island where some of the most beautiful beaches and not so crowded coves are.
Mathew and Lulu will take care of you as part of the family. Believe me. Prices are not so high as you might expect, and you will surely be safe from some of those highly uneducated people that you find in resorts.
Pool terrace at Cas Catalá

Montymar is a small appartment complex near Santa Eulalia. On top of the hill. If you are with a few friends, this is one great place to be. No loud parties allowed of course. The secret is to relax so you can save energy to do other things. In the middle of the pine forest the air is clean and the sound of the nature can make you go into trance. You can grab also some Yoga classes there. Achim speaks Spanish, German and English. All appartments are beautiful. Prices still below what you expect.
Fish pool at Montymar

Ibiza is not so small. At least not for walking. But renting a car for a whole week can be your nightmare and considerably costly, specially if you park in the wrong place, because the tow truck will come and besides a fine, you will have to pay extra money for the tow service. Time ago I remember one night that I had to go 3 times to the police station to pay and get my car. About 500 euros. You don´t want to spend your money so silly.
In fact, the island is so big that even a week is too short to see all.
My tip: Get into Electric bike riding. Their motor will get you at an average speed of 17 km/h without much effort, you can park anywhere and not 2 kms away from your destination, saves you money in gasoline, keeps you fit, and you will see the island with different eyes and at a different speed. I actually brought my own electric bike, but you can rent one in Bicihippyibiza. Various models to choose from. Range is about 50 km depending headwind or hilly roads, but the charger is small enough to pack it in your bag, and most restaurants will let you charge the battery if you drink a coffee or a beer there.

Famous or cool?
You don´t fancy the beach music in some bars? Some of the new places with great sound are too expensive.
Try Destino Pacha. Joan Ribas and other top dj´s go there to dj just for you. A hammock for 20 € and a minimum of 50 € consumption will be charged to you. You won´t spend less in any other beach and the place is fantastic and the sound system one the best in the island.
Joan Ribas, one of the best dj´s of all time

Babylon Beach in Santa Eulalia. Love is the right word to describe it. Beautiful but simple, interesting menu, music is great. The staff is a great team ready to make you happy. Vaughan, has always done great things in Ibiza, and this beach restaurant is a beauty. Not to miss their breakfast or live music.

Emergency beach. 
Few tourist know the rocky beach at Los Molinos. I call it an emergency beach in case you are in the middle of Ibiza city and need to refresh yourself without having to drive to any other place. Normally crystal clear water and a nice view of Formentera. Great place to do snorkling too. Since it is a rocky place you won´t find kids playing around nor have to worry about people trying to steal your things while sunbathing or swimming.
To go there take Ignacio Wallis street, go straight ahead uphill when you find Plaza Vara del Rey, go under a tunnel and keep going down hill this time until you find the place just under the old castle.
Los Molinos water

El Puerto / The Old Harbour
Many people visit the small streets of the old harbour in Ibiza. Hundreds of stores and small bars to visit and refresh while shopping.
My favorite street is the Carrer den Mig, where you will find the Swami bar.  Best Mojitos in town and great and friendly staff. Just by it lives Roberto with whom you can have a chat at anytime. Remember to bring your best mood. Alternative place in the middle of the maelstrom. Some surprice musicians and dj´s go there and I had the pleasure to dj there for their guests.
Alma from Swami and Gearge Saxo
Roberto and I with a couple of friends

There are many more places to go, many more things to do, many fancy and famous restaurants discos, markets and beaches like Las Dalias hippy market, Blue Marlin, Es Cavallet or Aguas Blancas beaches, Pacha, Cafe del Mar. Do all those things, but this is my guide for 2014 that surely will work during 2015. 

Don´t let other comments about Ibiza bring you down. Ibiza is still alternative, underground and beautiful. Grab a ticket and enjoy it.

And let´s not be hipocrite. Sure some places are full of bars that are almost the same, trying to catch tourist. And big clubs where not always the music is what you expect, but hey, best thing to do is join the party once you are there.