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by Gary Hardy




You will find a variety of some of the most beautiful, unspoilt beaches in the whole of the Mediterranean here on the island of Ibiza. Most of them are readily accessible, either on foot, by car and bike or by public transport. Some lie in small protected bays; the more remote ones you can visit by boat, which operate regular ferry services from a number of landing points around the island.

In time we will have a special section dedicated to itemise every beach on the island by giving precise details with pictures of exact locations, the size, facilities and activities that are available on each of the beaches around this unique island.

However, this will obviously require a great deal of time and labour so for now it's my initial intention to simply list the names of the beaches and their whereabouts as we start to travel anticlockwise around the island of Ibiza.

Las Salinas is found at the southern tip coastline of Ibiza. This is a very long, wide sandy beach and the number one meeting place during the day where you will be able to mix with all the fashionable party people who hang out here throughout the height of the summer season.

Es Cavallet has a sweeping sandy beach which is known as the nude bathing venue of the island and a popular rendezvous for the third gender.

Playa d'en Bossa is the longest and probably the most popular beach on the southern side of the island. This is within walking distance from Ibiza town.

Talamanca is on the head-land that shelters the north-east side of the Bay of Ibiza town and because of its proximity to the city this small sandy beach tends to become over-crowded during the summer months.

Cala Llonga is about eight miles up the coastline north of Ibiza town and within two or three miles of Santa Eulálía. This is certainly one of the loveliest bays on the island. The deep but narrow sandy bay is flanked by high wooded hills running out on either side to the sea for a quarter of a mile in distance.

Playa De Santa Eulálía is found at the front of the town and within the huge Bay of Santa Eulálía.

Playa des Niu Blau is a small sandy beach that is set between Santa Eulálía and Cala Pada.

Cala Pada is a small, tranquil sandy beach which is set in a small cove.

Playa de S'Argamassa is a region of the coast line that has areas of natural sand but is also combined with rocky sections.

Playas de Can Martina is a small cove with shallow water and has a sandy sea bottom.

Playa Es Caña is a small and very popular sandy beach for families and is situated in the town of the same name which is about three miles north of Santa Eulálía.

Cala Nova is a cove with a spacious sandy beach but there are strong under water currants which can present danger for a weak swimmer.

Cala Leña is a cove with steep pine clad cliffs which surround a lovely sandy beach and the sea here is idea for snorkelling.

Cala Mastella is a narrow inlet that has two separate coves. The first is a small sandy beach and the second is an enchanting bay which houses one of the islands most famous fish restaurant. This special place is surely one of the hidden gems of Ibiza.

Cala Boix is a dark sandy coloured beach with a very fine typical style restaurant where fresh fish is a speciality.

Pou d'es Lleó has a small sandy beach but it's a very special place for sea views and again there is an excellent fish restaurant that's available close at hand.

Aigua Blanca is a mixture of being a small sandy and rocky beach that is set amongst a tranquil environment.

Playa D'es Figueral is a one of the most beautiful sandy beaches in the north-east of the island and is ideal for all types of water sports.

Cala San Vicente is a family holiday type of sandy beach that's situated in a beautiful bay and caters for the two or three hotels at the top of the north-east of the island.

Portinatx is an extremely popular beach destination for thousands of holidaymakers who flock here to the island each summer because it has crystal clear water, spectacular sea views and a mixture of both sandy and rocky areas next to the sea.

Cala Xuclar is a small beach set in a cove which has huts for the fisherman of Ibiza.

Cala Xarraca has two small sandy beach set in a large bay that is a perfect place for all types of water sports.

Playa Benirras is a lovely sandy beach which is set in a sheltered bay with high sounding hills that are covered with pine trees.

Puerto de San Miquel is an average size sandy beach which is set in a beautiful bay with two large two hotels perch on the hill overlooking the beach.

Cala Salada is a small sandy beach set in a deep cove where fishermen still have their boathouses.

Cala Grassio is a dual bay and both have small water frontages but with sand recedes a long way back up the narrow beaches that are surrounded by rocks and pine tree.

Port d'es Torrent is a sandy beach which lies at the back of a small sheltered cove with high rocky coast on the south side of the bay of San Antonio.

Cala Bassa has a wide sandy beach with sand dunes and pine trees surrounding and this is a very popular beach for the younger type of tourist who spend their holidays in San Antonio.

Cala Conta is on the south-western corner of the bay of San Antonio. This is an exceptional stretch of beaches with crystal clear water and panoramic views of the rock Es Vedra.

Cala Tarida is a truly most magnificent sandy beach which is definitely worthwhile a visit if only for the spectacular sea views and especially the technicolor sunsets.

Cala Moli is a small sandy beach with translucent water which is set in an isolated cove on the west side of the island.

Cala Vadella is a sandy beach set in a deep sheltered bay which is popular for a night or two stop over for the many private sailing vessels that petrol the Mediterranean.

Cala Carbo is an isolated, sandy beach set in a small rocky cove with crystal-clear water.

Cala d'Hort is a sandy beach with a unique close-up view of the spiritual rock isle Es Vedra, which is within swimming distance from the seashore.

Cala Jondal is a long stretch of beach which is set in a huge wide-open bay and is surrounded by pine clad hills.

This has now brought us full circumference of the island and amongst all these beautiful beaches my personal favourite has always been Cala Tarida. I first came to Ibiza in the mid-1970's and during this period the only way you could possibly get down to Cala Tarida was by sea in a boat, by foot, on horseback or on a motor bike because there simply wasn't a road to drive a car.

Cala Tarida got its name from the pirates during the period of 1235 when King Jaime 1 and William of Portugal were on their way back across the Atlantic from their Spanish conquest after looting the Aztecs in South America.

On departing to the New World they set off in their huge battle ship which weren't built to carry cargo but could only take men, canon, shot and provisions for them to stay alive at sea. Therefore, when they wanted to return to Europe and had all this bullion and gold to bring back with them they had to build a wooden type of barge which they filled with their spoils of war and towed it behind their ships.

Cala Tarida during this period in history was a harbour and home for the famous Corsairs, who were in those days the notorious skull and cross bones pirates of the Mediterranean. As the Spanish Armada were bringing their fleet home towing these huge barges the Corsairs used to set sail at night and go about cutting the ropes that were towing these barges full of goodies and bring them back here to their base at Cala Tarida.

The reason why this magnificent beach got its name was simply because the barges that the Spanish built to transport their gold was called a tarida.

Closing time: I read yesterday in a newspaper the obituary of Glenn Hughes, the biker in the Village People, who had a top of the charts hit number one with YMCA back in 1978. Glenn Hughes was born in 1949 and before joining the Village People had worked as a toll collector at the Brooklyn Tunnel. Hughes joined the group after answering an advert for "singers with moustaches". Hughes was the most preposterous of the group, clad from head to foot in black leather gear, his jacket worn open to the navel to reveal a hairy chest covered in chains. After several hits he left the group in 1995 but, at his own request, was buried in his leather biker's outfit.

Gary Hardy