This bay offers a real taste of paradise – island insiders have been raving about Cala d’en Serra, located to the east of Portinatx, for years now. The tiny, craggy bay is rather difficult to reach, which means that it has not been monopolised by the masses.
The sandy beach is small, with a wonderful view of the rugged cliffs and the location is ideal for snorkelling. If you opt out of taking a dive, you only have yourself to blame. You won’t find any pedalos or jetskis here, because Claudia, the owner of the one and only beach bar, wants to keep things the way they are. She likes her peace and quiet. Her beach bar offers snacks and drinks. The atmosphere is relaxed and cosy and many holidaymakers choose to return here year after year.
Just in case you’re visiting Cala d’en Serra for the first time, the ugly ruins of the building overlooking the bay have been crumbling away for almost 35 years. No one knows what’s going to happen but many plans have been put forward – some of which involve tearing the old walls down, others suggest putting up new ones – but to date, neither has happened.
How to get there:
They do say that it’s often worthwhile to go the extra mile – and this is especially true when trying to avoid the holiday crowds. It is actually impossible, but the extra mile can often deter the worst elements of modern tourism leaving you with at least a bit of class on the beach.
Living in Santa Eulària we find ourselves spoilt for choice in the beach department, having a dozen to choose from within five kilometers of home and since the main reason for going to the beach is to get out of the hot and into the wet, traveling miles in holiday traffic seems counter productive.
However, there are exceptions to every rule, so when I’m feeling particularly pleased with myself and worthy of reward I make a day of it. Once in a while it is nice to get away from it all and remind oneself just how lucky we are to live in this island paradise. On days like this I tend towards the rugged north coast, and often to Cala d’en Serra.
When the day is mine and time is not an issue I take the circuitous route cross country through the Morna Valley and along the magnificent coastal road to Cala San Vicente, with its picture postcard views over Aguas Blancas and Es Figueral, then Cala San Vicente itself.
A left turn over the mountain to San Juan follows with the ascent offering spectacular views of the northern coastline and your passengers cooing with delight as they take in the views. Taking the first right turn as you enter San Juan takes you over another range of hills with yet more spectacular views out to the sea beyond the Portinatx lighthouse – so don’t forget the camera!
At the bottom of the descent Cala d’en Serra is signposted off to the right, but your adventure is far from over yet! Lots of sensible people park their cars where the tarmac runs out at the top of the cliff overlooking the pretty bay.
Unfortunately, the first time I found the beach I met a group of heavily perspiring ‘sensible’ car owners as they returned to their vehicles at the top of the hill – and curiosity got the better of me…
To call this route of descent a ‘camino’ would be generous, and an insult to the many other miles of self-respecting camino. This one is more of a roller coaster than a route, but in the summer months I suppose it keeps the ‘riff-raff’ out?
If you’ve found a parking spot after your adventure the last few yards down to the beach will seem like child’s play. There – we’ve finally reached the beach and already had more than a day’s worth of adventure?
The beach is quite small, some 45 metres long by 20 metres wide, and is flanked by boat-houses to the left. It is terraced into two levels the upper of which is served by a chiringuito without a name run by Claudia who, when pressed, calls it ‘Cala d’en Serra.
The food is good, particularly the ‘patatas ibicencas’ served with alioli, and the drink refreshing enough to take your mind off the return leg of your journey home. Being horse-shoe shaped the bay is sheltered which makes it nice for swimming and particularly snorkeling, as there are so many cliffs surrounding the water’s edge.
Incorporating snorkeling into your day gives you the best of both worlds – a bird’s eye view of the island on your way here and a fish-eye view of the world upon arrival?
You’ll sleep well tonight?
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