On the road through Mallorca: the Sa Calobra road


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The processions of tourists do not take away an iota of charm to the road of Sa Calobra, qualified as one of the most beautiful, spectacular, dangerous and demanding of Spain … and the world You have to try it!

The MA-2141 road, on the island of Mallorca, It only has 14 kilometers of travel, but it is 14 kilometers devilish, full of sharp and linked curves, on precipices cut to the peak, by a narrow road, without a central line, with few 'quitamiedos' and with traffic of cyclists, cars and buses. A stimulating experience in a spectacular landscape.

Getting to Sa Calobra (La Culebra), a small town and cove in the Sierra de Tramuntana, on the northwest coast of the island of Mallorca, is not easy, it tests the hands and nerves of the most experienced drivers. But the effort deserve the sorrow.

La carretera de Sa Calobra se esconde en la sierra de Tramuntana

The road of Sa Calobra is hidden in the Tramuntana mountains © Getty Images


Encased among the cuts of the mountains, with rocky walls up to 200 meters high and with spectacular turquoise waters, it is a postcard cove where you can enjoy wonderful sunsets.

That is why it appears in the excursions of all tour operators by land, but also by sea, to prevent customers from getting dizzy. The result is that in the summer months it is so crowded that you wonder if the photos you have seen in the brochures or on the Internet have been retouched with Photoshop to eliminate humans.

La cala del pequeño pueblo de Sa Calobra

The cove of the small town of Sa Calobra © Getty Images

The MA-2141 starts from the MA-10 road, which crosses the entire mountain range from Andratx to Pollensa, in the town of Escorca, 38 km from Sóller and at the foot of Puig Major, the highest point in the Balearic Islands (about 1, 500 meters ) and the Puig de Massanella.

It ends in a paid parking on the beach of Cala Tuent, but before arriving there is a deviation to access the cove of Sa Calobra, which gives its name to the road. In the last kilometers it is called 'Carrer Port de Sa Calobra' and is one-way.

The cove has been formed over thousands of years and although the sand is rather stony it is one of the few beaches in the Tramuntana Mountains.

La carretera de Sa Calobra se esconde en la sierra de Tramuntana

The road of Sa Calobra is hidden in the Tramuntana mountains © Getty Images


The road unfolds between two ravines, the Morro de Sa Vaca and the Morro de Ses Fel-les, in 14 kilometers of vertigo descent that allow to save the around 800 meters of unevenness.

Curves linked to right and left, 12 of 180 degrees in horseshoe and one that has its own name, as in a circuit, that of the Tie Knot (Nus de Sa Corbata), a complete 360 ​​degree turn in which the road passes under itself with a small bridge. At this point there is a viewpoint from which you can see in perspective the curves that we have overcome or that we still have to draw.


The design of this road madness, which is curled in the landscape stones, was the work of the engineer Antonio Parietti, also responsible for the road that leads to Cape Formentor, northeast of the island.

It was built in 1932, only with the strength of man, without machinery and without any tunnel, which makes it even more spectacular. The chronicles tell that for its construction they moved more than 30, 000 cubic meters of stones. It covers the 800 meters of slope with slopes in some sections of 7% and with others surprisingly narrow, encased between the rock walls.

Un cartel indica la dirección a Sa Calobra

A sign indicates the direction to Sa Calobra © Getty Images

From Sa Calobra you can access the nearby mouth of the Torrente de Pareis, which runs through a deep canyon for three kilometers. To reach the point where it merges with the sea there is a narrow walkway of about 300 meters with a tunnel carved into the rock. This torrent has been a National Monument since 2003.

The Mallorcan Sierra de Tramuntana has been a focus of tourist attraction since the 19th century. Archduke Luis Salvador de Habsburg was the first hippie in northern Europe who bought possessions in the Tramuntana and invited his cousin Elizabeth of Austria, Sissi, to visit him . Both were ahead of the masses of Germans who now populate the island of Mallorca.

The musician Frédéric Chopin and his partner, the writer George Sand, spent a winter in Mallorca in 1838 and stayed in Valldemossa. That year the weather was terrible, maybe like this, but it was very prolific for both authors. The British writer Robert Graves, author of Yo, Claudio lived intermittently in Deià from 1929 until his death in 1985.

And the Argentine writer Julio Cortázar thought he saw the green ray of a sunset, of which Julio Verne spoke, when he visited the Tramuntana.

The American actor Michael Douglas acquired in 1989 a spectacular mansion near Valldemossa, S'Estaca. There he spent the summer with his wife at the time, Diandra, and then with Catherine Zeta-Jones.

Las curvas de la carretera de Sa Calobra

The curves of the Sa Calobra road © Getty Images

To serve the illustrious visitors of the 21st century, the Mallorcan Sierra is dotted with elegant hotels such as Es Molí, which occupies a stately 17th-century house, or Belmond La Residencia, with an art gallery and spa.


Carme Riera's latest novel, The Last Words, is a story about Archduke Luis Salvador written as a fictional manuscript where he talks about his life in Mallorca and his participation in the turbulent politics of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Lea Vélez set in 1835 an investigation of murder carried out by the woman of the coroner of Mallorca in La Cirjana de Palma . In Mallorca there is also part of the novel Blitz by David Trueba.

La carretera de Sa Calobra está reservada para los más atrevidos

The Sa Calobra road is reserved for the most daring © Getty Images