Category: Train

Category: Train

Tranvía de Sóller

The Tranvía de Sóller is one of the most well-known tourist attractions in Mallorca. It is a tram nicknamed ‘red lightning’; which connects the beautiful town of Sóller with the Port de Sóller district.

We’re not sure why the tram is referred to as ‘red lightning’, it is neither red nor very fast. The trams are orange in colour with wooden framed windows, open-sided wagons and wooden benches. The tramline opened in 1913 and some of the railcars and carriages used today date back to this period of time.

The journey from Sóller to the port takes around 15 minutes and passes through Plaza de la Constitución; which is the main square in Sóller and is a very popular meeting place for both locals and tourists. The tram passes cafes and bars with outside seating areas and you are so close to the tables, it is possible to see what people are eating and drinking.

From the square, Tranvía de Sóller passes by numerous orange groves and the old port facilities before reaching its destination.

The history of the Tranvía de Sóller is closely linked to that of the Tren de Sóller (the railway line that has connected Sóller with the island's capital Palma de Mallorca since 1912 with the tramline opening in 1913 as an extension of the route.

From the beginning, the rail cars were powered by electricity and initially, they served the dual function of transporting both people and goods. Freshly caught seafood was transported one way with coal and ammunition being transported in the other direction to resupply the former submarine and naval base at Port de Sóller.

The energy supply was provided by a separate power station located at the Sóller railway station.

Port de Sóller is a very pretty coastal village located in a large and protected horseshoe bay separated from the rest of Mallorca by the Tramuntana mountain range.

For further information about the tram, please visit the official website.

Plaza de la Constitución

Plaza de la Constitución (Constitution Square) is the main square in Sóller and is a very popular meeting place for both locals and tourists.

Constitution Square is one of the most scenic main squares in the Balearic islands and is surrounded by modernist buildings and dominated by the Church of Sant Bartomeu, which dates from the 16th Century. The square was built in 1813 and was once used as a bullring with the balconies of the fringing town houses rented out to spectators.

Sant Bartomeu Church was famously renovated in 1904 by a disciple of Antoni Gaudi named Joan Rubió who gave the largely baroque church a beautiful new modernist façade.

Plaza de la Constitución is Sóller’s social hub and is lined with tapas bars, cafes and bars. The Tranvía De Sóller (tram) which travels from Sóller to the port passes directly through the square at regular intervals; which just adds even more charm to this already picturesque main square.

Tourists arriving in Sóller from Palma on the Tren De Sóller (a vintage wooden narrow-gauge train) amass at Plaza de la Constitución to enjoy the atmosphere and partake of refreshments. At times, it can be difficult to find a free seat at one of the many cafes and bars.

Even if you are only on the island for a short time, the narrow-gauge, Tren de Sóller journey from Palma to Sóller should be close to the top on your things-to-do list. One of the most rewarding excursions on the island, the vintage train to Sóller is a very popular attraction with a journey time of around 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Sometimes known as the Orange Express, the wooden train was originally introduced to transport oranges and lemons from the Sóller valley to the capital, replacing a stagecoach service, which crossed the high mountains via the Sóller pass on a steep, narrow dirt track, which was exhausting and tediously slow.

Tren de Sóller

Even if you are only on the island for a short time, the narrow-gauge, Tren de Sóller journey from Palma to Sóller should be close to the top on your things-to-do list. One of the most rewarding excursions on the island, the vintage train to Sóller is a very popular attraction with a journey time of around 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Sometimes known as the Orange Express, the wooden train was originally introduced to transport oranges and lemons from the Sóller valley to the capital, replacing a stagecoach service, which crossed the high mountains via the Sóller pass on a steep, narrow dirt track, which was exhausting and tediously slow.

Funded by profits of the citrus fruit trade, the Tren de Sóller has trundled along the winding 27.3km route to Sóller since 1912.

Departing from its own station in Palma, Plaça de l’Estació, the train only has one stop at Bunyola before it arrives at its final destination, the quaint Art Deco station in Sóller; which is housed in an early-17th-century mansion.

This is a train trip that will transport you back in time, you will hear a cacophony of hoots, whistles, rattles and hisses as the narrow-gauge train with its mahogany panels and brass fittings initially rolls through the streets of Palma.

Within 20 minutes, you will be enjoying the countryside dotted with olive trees and a view of the mountains in the distance. Just 30 minutes after leaving Palma, you will arrive at Bunyola, a traditional town located on the spurs of the Serra de Tramuntana. The train station at Bunyola is picturesque constructed from blond-stone and combined with traditional green shutters, definitely a chance to take some memorable photos of your trip.

From Bunyola the journey becomes super-scenic as it crosses the 496m high Serra de Alfàbia mountain range via a series of 13 tunnels, bridges and viaducts.

Things to look out for on the journey are the Túnel Major (Main tunnel); which is just short of 3km long and took three years to carve out of the rock and Mirador Pujol de’n Banya, an incredible lookout point with views stretching out over the Sóller valley. These are followed by the “cinc-ponts” viaduct which has five arches with spans 8 metres high and a great many bends and the “cinc-ponts” tunnel with its 180 degree bend.

When you arrive at Sóller and you’ve had a chance to explore, we highly recommend that you take the old tram; which regularly trundles down to Port de Sóller. Combined train and tram tickets can be purchased and this is the best option financially. A combined train and tram ticket for the entire journey from Palma to Port de Sóller and back to Palma is €32.

Please note:

The Tren de Sóller does not leave Palma from Plaça Espanya but rather from its own separate building to the left-hand-side of the main train station. Just look out for a sign that reads ‘Ferrocarril de Sóller’ above the entrance and you will find it easily.

When you purchase your tickets, you must inform them which time you will be taking the return train, so some advance planning about your itinerary for the day is required.

For a great day out which includes a trip on the train, we recommend – Mallorca in One Day Sightseeing Tour with Boat Ride and Vintage Train

The website for Ferrocarril de Sóller is very informative and provides a detailed history about the train and its route, you’ll also find a timetable there with a list of up-to-date prices – trendesoller.com