Sunday, 1 February 2009
[TR] Kayaking Virgins hit Mallorca
We were all in the pub looking through my latest kayaking photographs from Mallorca taken the week before, when to my surprise 2 of my non boating friends, the girliest girls you could ever imagine decided they wanted to go kayaking. Whether it was sunshine, the beers on the beach or just a good excuse to get away, I don’t know but they were adamant they wanted to go. So that same evening I gave the outfitters in Mallorca a ring, then went online and booked some flights with bmi baby £48.00 return including taxes.
Two weeks later and we were there. We had a couple of days on the beach topping up our tans and enjoying the nightlife, before Pete from Tramuntana Pursuits (the outfitters) came and met us. He picked us up from the hotel and drove us to Illetas, a small sandy bay on the south side of Mallorca.
First, we all helped to get the boats off the minibus, well except for Suzie who was worried about breaking one of her newly manicured nails and knowing how much they cost, we couldn’t blame her.
We laid the boats on the sand with all the other kit and Pete gave us a run down on what everything was and what it did. The boats were virtually brand new and even though the buoyancy aides were not very flattering, they were a lovely colour of blue.
One by one Pete got us into our boats and ran through the basic strokes and safety instructions. Then off we went, 2 kayak virgins, Pete and me trailing behind trying to take some photographs. The hangovers we had gained through a wild night in Magaluf, the night before soon disappeared as we paddled out towards Cala Falco. The weather was stunning, so warm and not a cloud in the sky. We took things easy at first as Pete subtly taught us some basic skills. So it was a good few hours before we reached Cala Falco, where we stopped for a rest and a well deserved drink. In the distance we saw the Fast Cat which goes out bound for Barcelona. Pete told us how he once managed to ride the surf behind it for 500 meters. It sounds amazing fun and a great adrenalin buzz but I’d be too scared to even think about doing it myself.
It was nearly midday when we set off again for the short journey to Porta Velles. On the way we came across a fantastic cave. We all paddled into it one by one, stunned by the incredible turquoise water which shone beneath us. We spent a good ten minutes exploring and taking photographs inside. As we left the cave the heat suddenly hit us and I was totally dazzled by the sun. At this point I realized I’d left my sunglasses in the minibus which was back in Illetas. Slightly annoying but at least I wouldn’t end up with the ‘Panda Eye’ tan which I ended up with the last time I was kayaking here.
We paddled on to the pretty cove of Porta Velles where we stopped for lunch. In the cliffs are huge caverns dating from Roman times, enlarged over the centuries by lots of different people. Boats make the short excursion from the pier at Magaluf to here, so it’s not always that peaceful. We all stripped off and topped up our tans and indulged in a few small glasses of beer. Just as the heat was getting unbearable Pete appeared with Snorkels and flippers for us all. What an excellent surprise for the day, I couldn’t wait to get into the crystal clear water. Suzie had forgotten to pack her waterproof mascara so decided to have a ‘head out of the water’ swim instead. Clair and I saw some amazing fish, Pete told us the names but I can’t remember them now. Some looked liked miniature sharks with black tails and blue stripes and they were ever so tame.
Our time there seemed to fly by and it was soon mid afternoon and Pete said we had better make our way back to Illetas.
We all got back into our boats and headed off back along the coast. In the distance we could see Magaluf. The wide sandy beach was a solid block of bronzed bodies. We had spent a night in Magaluf amongst the crowds of drunken Brits. There were vast bars and discos and café’s offering full English breakfasts at 3am, with widescreen televised football playing 24 hours a day. During the day this place is tourism overkill with some of the trashiest shops imaginable but by night it’s PARTY PARTY PARTY.
We soon left Magaluf in the distance and were surrounded by beautiful yachts in what seemed to be a millionaires playground. We certainly caught the attention of a couple of passing yachts and Suzie and I were invited on board for some champagne but we declined and carried on our journey.
We finally arrived back in Illetas after having the most enjoyable time. We were all really tired but had huge smiles as we recounted the day’s events. We all gave Pete a huge hug and thanked him for an amazing day as he dropped us back at the hotel. The girls have definitely got the sea kayaking bug now but whether that will last when they try a day out off the Welsh coast, battling huge swells and freezing water I have my doubts. So I guess we’ll just have to go back to sunny old Mallorca again, I think I like that idea.
Outfitters: http://www.tramuntana-pursuits.com/ or telephone 0034 971 404 222