One of the many attractions of our island capital Palma has to be the prevalence of splendid patios (courtyards). A pity though, that most courtyards are closed to the public, almost always. Sometimes a glimpse onto the splendour is possible through an iron gate, but more often than not the patio doors are firmly shut, locked and unattainable for us mere mortals.
There is one exception to this rule. Every year, at the occasion of Corpus Cristi in May/June, some of the patios are cleaned up, willingly opened and nicely presented for the preying eyes of those who are interested in Palma’s architecture and some of its history.
Now, there is an exception to this exception. That’s really good news. For the first time ever, I think, some Palma courtyards are opened specially during some weeks in the Autumn as well. Yippee! I’m not sure who we have to thank for with this welcome initiative, but let’s assume that someone somewhere up there in the Govern de les Illes Balears deserves a kiss on the cheek.
This is how it works:
Of some 150 courtyards in Palma, some 70 participate in this current event. Three different routes are on offer, at different periods. Currently, Route No. 1 is available. Professional guides show some 20 patios in the Ciutat Alta area, near and around the Cathedral, from now until October 27th. Four tours are available daily in six different languages: Castellano, Catalan, English, German, French and Italian. Admission is 5 € (4 € for residents). From October 29 to November 6th, Route No. 2 will be on offer, also in Ciutat Alta, but in the Sant Francesc and Monti-sion area. Same conditions apply. And from November 10th to November 21st, Route No. 3 will be on offer, in the Ciutat Baixa district, that’s between the Teatre Principal and Via Roma and between Passeig des Born and La Lotja. Again, same price and same language options. In case you should want to partake in all three guided tours, a discount is available. Tours start from the usual office in Carrer de Sant Domingo. Telephone 971.720.720.
The photo was taken in Palma de Mallorca, Baleares, Spain. The date: October 16th, 2009. The time was 18:02:15.