Located in the eastern part of the island, Manacor is the second largest city on Mallorca and the hometown of the famous tennis player Rafael Nadal. The name Manacor is a formation of Catalan words and means ‘hand to heart’, which is also represented in their city emblem. It is not a typical tourist hot spot – hotel infrastructure in the city is scarce and the next beaches are about 10 kilometers away. However, Manacor is visited by many day tourists who love to spend some money on shopping, as the city is known for its pearl manufactures.
The first pearl manufacture was founded in 1902 and soon also furniture factories contributed to the city’s main economic income. The best known pearl manufacture is ‘Majórica’, followed by ‘Orquídea’. Known far beyond the island, the pearl manufacture elaborates artificial pearls in a complex process. However, these pearls are not to be compared to conventional artificial and cheap plastic pearls. An essence of fish scales is systematically applied on a synthetic core, which in the end resembles the structure of a real pearl. For this reason these artificial pearls have almost the same price as real, natural pearls. In order to learn more about the process, a visit and guided tour through the manufacture is possible. Afterwards, the factory displays their pearls and jewellery inside their large shop.
Apart from the pearl manufactures, Manacor also offers many furniture and ceramic showrooms. Oleander wood is an often used material on Mallorca and Manacor’s souvenir shops display a variety of oleander wood products. The variety ranges from wooden spoons over salad servers and cutting boards to boxes and even stools. A further sight is the museum inside the ‘Torre dels Enagistes’ about archeology and ethnology. The building is an old manor from the 14th century and the entrance to the exhibition is for free.
Furthermore, Manacor’s city centre has an old town, where especially the church Nostra Senyora dels Dolors is worth a visit. In fact, its bell tower is the highest building on Mallorca with 80 meters. The small squares in the city centre invite for a coffee and many small shops give a relaxed shopping atmosphere. Manacor is close to many nice beaches. Outstanding are the beaches Cala Varques, Cala Mesquida and Cala Torta. Close by is also the cave Cuevas de Drach in Portocristo. The countryside and surroundings of the city are covered with windmills, which make for the typical view on this part of the island. In the neighbourhood you will also find many archeological sites about the Talaoit era on Mallorca (for example s’Hospitalet Vell).
You can take the train which goes directly from Palma to Manacor. Alternatively, you can go car over the highway Ma-15.