Mallorca Public Transport

It's not difficult to travel around Mallorca using only public transport. The fares on the various services are pretty reasonable, trains and buses are clean, reliable, and run to time, and most services provide for bulky items like baby carriages, bicycles, and luggage. To make things easier, there's an integrated fare system so you can use all the linked transport modes (train, bus, metro and even bicycles) seamlessly. Unfortunately, this is only available through the somewhat restrictive intermodal card, perhaps more suited to residents than most visitors.  However, if you plan to travel around a lot, it's worth looking into as the available fares are discounted and you could take advantage of the bicycle loan service (Mo-Te-Bé), available at the Intermodal station in Palma.  Don't confuse these bright red bikes with the blue, white & green ones belonging to the BiciPalma service, use of which was originally restricted to registered citizens of Palma, but is being made available to visitors in 2012.

Although there are plans for extensions to Alcúdia and Cala Ratjada, the present mainline train services in Mallorca operate between Palma and Manacor via Inca, the leather city, with a branch line to Sa Pobla.  Conversion to electrical power was completed in 2011, with a consequent introduction of brand new rolling stock. For routes and timetables, see this page on the CTM website.  Note that there are separate timetables for working days (Feiners) and for weekends/public holidays (Dissabtes, diumenges i festius).

The bus network around Mallorca is extensive, and there's a separate service for Palma (see below).  For ease of reference, the routes are divided into 5 zones and bus services are numbered according to the zone and the route within that zone.  It's not as complicated as it may sound - start here on the CTM website, then click on the route you're interested in to find maps and timetables.

The new Metro train service in Palma de Mallorca runs for just over 7 kilometres between the Intermodal station at the Plaça d'Espanya to the campus of the University. It's handy for staff and students at the University, but of little interest to travellers. However, the route and the downloadable timetable are available here.

As mentioned above, the bus services in greater Palma de Mallorca are operated separately from the integrated island wide bus and train services; however, many of these city services stop at or close to the hub at Plaça d'Espanya, so linking is pretty easy.  It's worth mentioning that there are no return fares, and single tickets are valid once only, with unlimited stops on the service you board. (The standard fare is 1.25 Euros per journey). Discount cards for 10 journeys (8 Euros) can be bought at tobacco shops and the EMT offices.  All the information you need can be found on the EMT website.  For seeing the sights while getting around, the Palma Sightseeing Bus service is a hop on/off service which passes most of Palma's landmarks.

Originally created to transport oranges from the Sóller valley to the port of Palma de Mallorca for export, the vintage train to Sóller is now hugely popular with island visitors. Impressively, the train has run every day without interruption since 1912 and the old rolling stock is still maintained using traditional methods. The 27 kilometre route passes through beautiful, varied countryside, and conquers the towering mountain range by way of 13 tunnels, a five arch viaduct, several bridges, and a lot of bends!  Largely unspoilt, Sóller itself is well worth a visit, but you can also continue down the remaining 5 kilometres to the beautiful port, by way of a vintage tram, which is only one year younger than the train service. Get fares, timetables and more from the Ferrocarril de Sóller website.

While some of the public bicycle services available in Mallorca are restricted in one way or another (see above), there is one service that visitors to can make use of, provided they have a car (hired or borrowed).  The service is called Aparca y Pasea and it's based in many of the car parks operated by the Palma municipality.  Simply park your car, fill in a form, leave your car keys and your parking ticket as a deposit, and off you go!  Click the link for the full details of how to swop your car for a bike in Palma de Mallorca.