The Alfabia Gardens (Jardines de Alfabia) are a well conserved testimonial of Arabic garden art and architecture. They are situated at the street between Palma and Sóller at kilometer 17, right before the tunnel. The site consists of the ample garden and the family house, including a small museum. The gardens are considered as one of the most impressive and beautiful ones on Majorca and are a nice stopover on the way to Sóller. Since 1954 it is declared as historic-artistic complex with Arab, Italian and English influences.
The garden dates back to the Mussulman era on Majorca and was used for the cultivation of citrus and fruit trees. During the Renaissance the gardens underwent numerous transformations by noble families, in order to give them a more prosperous and wealthy air. Nowadays, the garden impresses with its indigenous and typical plants paired with fountains and water games. You will walk under blossoming pergolas, pass through almonds, jasmine and orange trees and get lost in the thicket of bamboo. Observe the old trees and lianas, which intertwine with one another and watch the birds and insects approaching the sweet and fragrant flowers.
Water is an essential element of the whole garden and is definitely the protagonist of this Hispano-Arab garden architecture. You will come across small waterfalls, fountains, ponds and water games. Beautiful water lilies float on the huge pond, which you will encounter in the center of the garden. This shady and refreshing place invites you to have a rest, take a snack at the small bar and relax in the comfortable chairs. After the romantic stroll through the gardens, this is exactly what you need in order to process the beauty and manifoldness of the garden.
At the end of the walk, you will enter the country house, constructed in the XV century, with various expansions during later decades. The Baroque facade dates back to the XVIII century. Inside the house you will find an extensive library with volumes printed during the XVI and XVIII century, a nice art collection of paintings and antique furniture still remaining from the noble families. Also climb up the stairs to the upper rooms, from where you will have a stunning view over the whole garden. When leaving the house do not rush! To your left and right you will find small stables which show the ancient process of producing olive oil. You can see a huge olive press and other tools necessary to refine the oil.
You can take the bus L-211 from Palma de Mallorca. As an alternative, you can take the rustic wooden train which runs between Palma and Sóller and get off at the Alfabia Gardens.