Ibiza might make all the headlines but it is beginning to get some serious competition from its smaller neighbour Formentera. The island was once seen as Ibiza’s shy and quieter neighbour but now it is becoming known for its vibrant beach-club scene and for having some of the best beaches in the Mediterranean. So if you have never been to keen on visiting Ibiza then this might be the ideal choice.
If there is one thing you will notice about Formentera is its relaxed atmosphere. As soon as you step off the 25-minute ferry from the boisterous Ibiza, you’ll realise there is a much more friendly and chilled mood. The island itself has an interesting and patch worked history of visitor and settlers, starting from Iron Age inhabitants, then the Romans, Moors, Normans and Catalans. The island was even used by pirates from the 14th to 17th century.
The last group of people to invade the island was a slightly less cutthroat group, in the form of hippies. The hippies found the laid back island life agreed with them and a few of them still remain to this day. Now the island is largely a tourist spot, with 95 percent of the island’s 7,500 population making their living from tourism. What is surprising is that there are hardly any British tourists, the majority of them being either German or Italian. Perhaps this is because a lot of Brits can’t look past the bright and shiny lights of Ibiza and perhaps this lack of knowledge of Formentera is what makes it more of an enjoyable and relaxed spot.
The great thing about Formentera is that the government has prohibited the building of new hotels and high-rise buildings in order to preserve its natural beauty. A lot of the island is in fact national park and this makes it ideal for anyone wanting to experience some natural beauty whilst having all the perks of an island with good tourism. In fact one of the best ways to explore the island is by bike, you can hire a mountain bike and make your way all around the island from the street markets to the more scenic spots.
One of the stand out features of Formentera has to be its beaches, here you can spend an entire day enjoying the fresh sands, tan yourself in the warm sunshine and when you are too hot you can take a dip in the water to cool yourself. One of our favourite beaches is Illetes, which extends from the port of Formentera. Enviable crystal clear waters that entice you to take a dip surround the island and are ideal for water-based activities such as snorkeling.
Overall Formentera is a unique and idyllic island that offers people a perfect alternative to the busier Ibiza. If you want all the perks of island living with a chilled and welcoming atmosphere then we would definitely recommend a trip here.