WHERE IN THE WORLD: PALMA DE MAJORCA, SPAIN

Travel notes from the tour zone with George Fontana

The Cathedral of Santa Maria of Palma (Le Seu) dominates Palma’s skyline. A Gothic Roman structure built on the site of a pre-existing Arab mosque, Le Seu sits atop the former citadel of the Roman city overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. Its high vaulted ceilings, flying buttresses and unusual three nave configuration mark it as unmistakably Gothic. The Royal Palace La Almudaina stands opposite the Cathedral. A former Arabian fort, it is now the official summer residence of the Spanish Royal family.

Narrow, winding alleyways lined with shops and cafes surround the Cathedral Plaza. The Parc de la Mar borders one of the largest marina areas in the Mediterranean. Once a modest fishing village, Palma has long been the summer playground for Europe’s smart set. On a hill with splendid views, Castillo Bellver overlooks the city and the Bay of Palma. As with most Spanish cities, the Moorish influence is obvious in its architecture and culture.