Every month we bring to your attention a tiny part of the wonderful West Coast of Mallorca. This month, we turn the spotlight on the Alconasser area, the tiny bay tucked away at the bottom of a breathtaking drive on the coast between Deià and Soller.
My own discovery of Alconasser was suitably dramatic. Many years ago, on a hot afternoon after a long lunch at C’as Patro March, I set out to walk from Cala Deià to Llucalcari with some friends. We overshot Llucalcari spectacularly and were, to be perfectly honest, lost. Until we stumbled upon the Bens d’Avall restaurant next to Alconasser.
I have never been so pleased to see a restaurant in my life. We sat on the terrace gulping down iced drinks, eating traditional Mallorcan almond ice-cream with homemade cake and began the business of retelling our adventure until it grew more and more satisfyingly dramatic. (Truth be told, it really was somewhat scary.)
Since coming to live in Mallorca, I’ve discovered two principles that apply to life on what is mostly, but not always, la isla de la calma.
One is that you have to watch your step on this island. All that breathtaking beauty can easily lull you into a false sense of security. This applies not just to making sure you don’t step off a cliff as you traipse along, eyes feasting on some impossibly gorgeous vista. It’s also relevant for the everyday business of life on Mallorca. Mallorcans have been traders for centuries and, whatever they might say, no-one ever gets the better of them in any kind of transaction.
The other principle is that Mallorca always makes you wait for something you truly want. On countless occasions, I’ve set out to do something incredibly simple like pay a bill, only to spend hours, days and sometimes months trying to figure out how on earth to do so.
Still, the reward finally for discovering the answer is not just a surging feeling of joy but a precious insight into how life is really lived here.
This principle kind of applies to the Alconasser area. The most beautiful, unspoilt places anywhere in the world are nearly always the most secluded and the Alconasser area is no different. When you drive down from the main Deià to Soller road for the first time, it’s perfectly natural to have your heart in your mouth somewhat. But the reward at the end of the road makes it all worthwhile. The second time you do so, it’s no big deal at all. Well, maybe the third.
The advantages of the Alconasser area
Alconasser is a settlement of not more than 20 homes, which is perfect if your idea of heaven is peace and quiet. At the same time, you’re only a short drive from either Deià or Soller, with all the benefits these delightful places have to offer. Really, you have the best of both worlds.
Most homes in the Alconasser area have the kind of sea view that entices you to spend hours watching the endless drama of the ocean and the movement of the sun over the astonishing landscape.
If you love the great outdoors and chances are you do if you’re even idly contemplating spending time in the Alconasser area, this is fantastic walking country. You can connect to the pretty straightforward coastal walk from Deià to Soller that passes through farmland and ends at the beautiful ancient La Muleta Refuge and Lighthouse on the headland above Soller. From there, you follow a gently winding lane down to the port.
In summer, or indeed all year-round if wild swimming’s your thing, the water at Alconasser is wonderfully clear and perfect for snorkeling. The slipway or boat ramp enables you to get in and out of the ocean without having to clamber over the rocks.
Dining at Bens d’Avall
The Bens d’Avall restaurant I mentioned earlier is a family owned and run restaurant that has been delighting aficionados of good, traditional Mallorcan cuisine since 1971. Chef Benet Vicens from Soller and his son Jaume are dedicated to using only the best local ingredients and celebrating Balearic cuisine.
It’s well worth trying the Myotragus Menu, named for the Myotragus Balearic Cave Goat or Mallorca Mouse Goat which died out 3000 years ago. The menu includes tiberi, a legacy of the Romans, and zarzuela, the delicious Catalan take on bouillabaisse. I’m not sure if goat is on the menu.
Bens d’Avall is normally open for lunch and dinner in the long summer season and usually open for lunch throughout the year, although it’s closed at certain times.
If you decided to make your home in the Alconasser area or rent somewhere, perhaps to work on a creative project, it would be a good feeling to know that Bens d’Avall and its welcoming terrace are waiting for you. Especially after you’ve worked up a healthy appetite.
We would love to tell you more about homes and rental opportunities in the Alconasser area, some of which are not listed online. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call +34 971 636 427.