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World Travel Guide > Guides > Europe > Spain > Balearic Islands > Ibiza > Santa Eulalia beaches

About Santa Eulalia beaches

Santa Eulalia (Santa Eulària des Riu in the local Catalan tongue) was first ‘discovered’ by island artists, attracted by its picturesque setting among pine-covered hills, and has since grown into a small to medium-size, mid-rise holiday resort. Its main attractions are the two long sandy beaches, a new marina, an appealing little rambla (à la Barcelona) and a variety of decent quality places to eat, drink and shop. Unlike other Ibizan resorts, it has managed to retain a good deal of its local character and atmosphere.

Beach:

The resort offers two main beaches. The sheltered town beach, Platja Santa Eulària des Riu, has fine pale sand, shallow waters and is very safe for bathing. It is backed by cafés, restaurants and hotel developments. Separated from it by a small promontory is Platja Río de Santa Eulària beach (also known as Els Pins). Located opposite the (usually dry) river mouth, it is made up of two areas of fine white sand and small stones, separated by rocky outcrops, backed by apartments. Both beaches offer most watersports. If you wish to escape the crowds there are several undeveloped coves in the near vicinity, some of them served by boats. The naturist beach of Aigües Blanques is one of the best.

Beyond the beach:

Most watersports are available and cruises include glass-bottomed boat trips. The original town was built on a 52m (171ft) puig (high hill) west of the modern centre. Declared a site of scenic beauty by the Ministry of Culture in 1952, the Puig de Missa is host to the Ethnological Museum of Ibiza and Formentera, and the Barrau Art Museum. Atop the hill is a 16h-century church, built as part of the island’s defences against pirates. The view from here is splendid. The Easy Rider Ranch (Can Guillen, Cala Llonga, 9km/5.5 miles southwest of Santa Eulalia) take guests on hacks through the countryside. Very close by, at Roca Llisa, is Ibiza’s only golf club.

Family fun:

Go-Karts Santa Eulalia (Carretera Ibiza-Santa Eulalia, Km 6) cater to children as young as three years old, right up to adults. The island’s main water park is Aguamar at Platja d’en Bossa, 18km (11 miles) southeast of Santa Eulalia.

Exploring further:

A visit to beautiful Ibiza Town (16km/10 miles southwest), both by day and by night is a must, and the town is easily reached by bus or boat from Santa Eulalia. The Dalt Vila (High Town/Old Town) is a striking atmospheric walled ensemble including a couple of museums and the cathedral. Below, the port offers some of the best and certainly the most cosmopolitan shopping, nightlife, bars and restaurants in the Balearics.

The island is small so anywhere is within easy reach by car. Highlights in the south include the Salines (Saltpans) and the beach, as well as the Es Vedrà lookout to the southwest. A boat trip to peaceful Formentera is also highly recommended. On the north coast, the resort of Portinatx (27km/17 miles from Santa Eulalia) was one of the locations for the Rodgers and Hammerstein film, South Pacific.

The pretty little village of Sant Carles de Peralta (5km/3 miles northeast), set among beautiful orchards and pine forests, was where the first hippies settled in the 1960s and is still worth a visit, particularly on Saturdays when the Las Dalias market is on.

Splashing out:

Lovers of Indian food will enjoy the Cardamom Club (www.cardamomclub.com), both for its food and its delightful setting in a 15th-century farmhouse with a lovely terrace and tents on the lawn. For a more Spanish dining experience try the long-established El Naranjo Restaurant.