Ibizaaa! Our nine day journey through Spain definitely included this small island off the southeastern coast, made famous by EDM and of course, Mike Posner. You can see my Barcelona guide and general Spain info, but this post is dedicated to all things Ibiza: where to stay, what to do, and of course, where to eat!
First things first, you definitely need to rent a car to get around the island. Taxi drivers in Spain are crazy (pack some dramamine!).
There are two main tourist cities on the island: Ibiza Town (south side) and San Antoni (north side). The airport and a few random things are in the center of the island, but the distance from north to south is around 30 minutes, so easily traveled by car.
Where to Stay
We read a lot of information about Ibiza prior to our trip, and most of it said that we should stay on the north side of the island in San Antoni because that's where the young people stay! (read: that's where the poor college students stay. aka not us.) Upon arrival, we quickly discovered that all of the nice areas and beach clubs that we wanted to explore were on the south side! So there's that. Stay on the south side in Ibiza Town. We stayed at the quirty and cute Cubanito, with sister property, Paradiso, and we loved them, but if we visited again, we would definitely look at hotels in Ibiza Town.
Where to Go
Old Town Ibiza is the cutest (photo below)! Be ready for walking or rent a Vespa! We parked our car at the entrance of old town and walked around from there. There's modern Ibiza Town and then "old town" above it with all of the cobblestone streets and winding pathways you could wish for. We had a great time exploring Old Town during the day, but I think it really comes alive at night! All of the shops are open, and restaurants line the streets and are packed for the dinner crowd!
We learned in Barcelona not to ask for dining recommendations and instead relied on google maps online reviews, and we were not disappointed! Some of our favorite meals in Spain were in Ibiza! La Dispensa is a little gem in Old Town and we loved it! Of course we ordered a pitcher of sangria to start, then tried some of their pasta dishes. We loved everything! Different regions of Spain serve their bread different ways- with tomato, with garlic aioli, or with olive oil. Ibiza is ALL about the garlic aioli, and we were into it!
We had terrible luck with our first beach club experience, but we powered through! We visited Cotton Beach Club but there happened to be a wedding going on there that night, so we couldn't get in! This area of the island was a little more secluded and we had taken a taxi so we were stranded! We walked to the next beach club next door and they were having a wedding too! We decided that we looked great, so we could crash ;) We snapped a few photos, then researched a nearby restaurant. Turns out, Chandler and I are more into fine dining experiences than casual tapas, so our eating budget had to increase a little bit.
After wedding crashing, we found S'Espartar and knew that we were in for a treat! Our photos were all terrible from that meal, but we had a traditional seafood paella dish, along with plenty of sangria, bread and garlic aioli, annnd dessert. Everything was delicious, and this restaurant was a great example of a traditional Spanish dining experience. One of the nice things about Spain is that they never rush you to leave after your meal...all of our nice dinners were a few hours long!
One of our favorite days was when we drove to Ibiza and spent the afternoon at Beachouse Ibiza. We had our FAVORITE meal of the entire trip here - whole sea bass! We blew our budget for sure, but it was worth it! We just hosted a Spain dinner party and recreated this meal for our friends- that's how much we loved it!
After lunch, we hit the beach! These daybeds at the beach club were 500 euros to rent for the day, but we ended up just claiming one and by that point it was late afternoon so we didn't pay for it. WIN! Of course we ordered a pitcher of cava sangria (one of my favorites that we had in all of Spain!) This day was easily my favorite in Ibiza and maybe even our whole trip; the moral of the story: sometimes you have to splurge ;) Worth every penny and would do it again.
Once we figured out that we should focus on nicer restaurants (lol), we researched a few and had the best experience at Finca La Plaza! There is a small town (SMALL) in the middle of the island called Santa Gertrudis; it basically consists of one small plaza and that's where the restaurant is. The patio space is amazing...twinkle lights, all the vibes. We got smart and when we couldn't make up our mind about what to order, we started ordered main courses as our appetizers (the ravioli below) so we could try more dishes! haha Besides being picture-perfect, this place had excellent sangria, and of course, garlic aioli!
Of course you can't visit Ibiza without visiting one of their famous nightclubs. We visited Pacha and stayed out late one night, so we could have the true Ibiza experience! We didn't take any pills ;)
There are definitely a few things that we didn't get to do while we were in Ibiza, but overall, we had a great experience once we figured out where we should be!