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The cheap Spanish town in Ibiza that has affordable 5* hotels and €2.50 beers

POMEGRANATE trees fly past and sunshine warms my skin as we zip through Santa Eulària des Riu on our way to explore Northern Ibiza.

The wind is in my hair as our nippy yellow convertible — a 1980 Moke — whips around a corner and reveals gorgeous views.

The north of Ibiza is full of nature – it’s a lot different to the nightclub scene in the south
Driving around in this Moke revealed gorgeous views

This really isn’t the Ibiza that I am used to — being immersed in nature in the north instead of nightclubs in the south.

Our driver points to fields of fennel and tells me the Arab Moors made the Balearic island the fertile garden it is today.

The fennel is used to flavour Ibiza’s signature liqueur. Sample the best of it on a visit to Fluxà market.

For €25, the distillery allows visitors to explore their botanical garden and to make a bottle of Hierbas Ibicencas, a sweet alcohol soaked in camomile, lavender, sage, rosemary, and the leaves and peel of orange and lemon.

Owner Juan Fluxa says the first shot is to settle the stomach, the second “for your health” and the third “will go to the head, if that is what you want.”

Alternatively, he says locals start the day with a fisherman’s coffee (café caleta).

It’s mostly rum and brandy but with flavours of orange peel, lemon peel, and a cinnamon stick.

Juan whips the drink together before setting the mixture alight to burn off just a little alcohol.



He’s excited to see our reaction and hands over little cupfuls with warm and sugary doughnuts. The smells and taste bring instant joy.

Daytime boozing calls for an afternoon snooze by the W Hotel’s gorgeous pool.

My eyes flicker up at the citrus-coloured canopies that contrast the whitewashed buildings.

One night at this boutique 5* hotel starts from £126pp, which may stretch the budget, but to relax beneath this chic architecture feels worth every penny.

Silky smooth

But a night in Ibiza needn’t break the bank. The North is full of great value bars, restaurants and more.

Anita’s Bar — the original “hippy bar” in San Carlos village — offers exceptional value for money with tapas and pizzas for under €10.

It is a short walk from Las Dalias, home to the legendary market that also offers free live music and DJ sets.

Events start mostly outside in the late afternoon, before moving into the historic club space — the oldest on the island — from midnight onwards.

The view of Santa Eulalia is beautiful
Sample the best fennel in a market

Not to be missed is a trip to the pretty village of Santa Gertrudis with its bars, free art gallery, stunning 18th-century church, and attractive shops.

There are no rails brimming with tourist tat. I peep into one boutique and it has the buzz of a Moroccan souk — a warren of affordable and colourful cushion covers, ceramics, and clothes.

My spoils include cowboy boots that were a bargain at €50 and I show them off while plates of boldly seasoned meats land on our table in Bar Costa.

Serrano ham, Iberico pork and Sobrasada are accompanied by manchego and crusty bread.

This place is popular for its toasted rolls and artwork on the walls and the meal is mouth watering for €5 a plate.

The price of a pint may be steep, but as I muddle through the maths I almost squeal.

A glass of Can Maymo red wine is just €3 and a bottle of beer €2.50.

“This one is on me,” I pipe up. A €20 note covers the bill with enough left for the tip.

The chilled vibe here is typical of the region that has tempted the likes of Brit chart toppers James Blunt and Calvin Harris, both of whom own homes here.

Our German guide Rika says James has been spotted taking his kids to school in a tuk-tuk, while Calvin has revived one of Ibiza’s largest organic farms, Terra Masia.

As a hiker, Rika found the region irresistible, so she settled here in the 1970s.

She says the best time to experience Ibiza’s beauty is autumn after the clubbers have gone home, when the heat has relaxed, and the water is still warm.

Sandy seabeds and rocky vegetation make the shores perfect for snorkelling.

I tiptoe into the water at Platja Pou d’es Lleo and spot Tagomago island which is known as one of the most beautiful private islands in the Mediterranean.

Neptune Grass grows in the water here which is a good sign for its quality, as the plant only survives in clean water.

My hair feels silky smooth when I wash it later at the hotel.

Back in Santa Eulària town the promenade is lit up, and a scattering of houses in the mountains glitter like stars.

The rugged, relaxed north of the island is a revelation to this party girl.

And even better, I didn’t need a week off work to recover when I came home.

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  1. Pingback: Wowcher’s 2023 Mystery holidays go on sale – with Barbados, Ibiza & Dubai from £99

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