This trip has been a long time coming… not because it was delayed by 2 years thanks to Covid (although there was that), but because despite being a lover of dance music since my mid-teens, I’ve never been to Ibiza before! The White Island… so famous for its nightlife and clubbing culture, the spiritual home of dance music, I don’t know why I’ve never been before. But here we are… finally…
As we head for the airport at 5am there’s a mixture of excitement and trepidation… 3 days partying in Ibiza… are we too old for this now? Are we going to survive??
The open question of a 6am pint in the airport is at least soon answered as we arrive to see huge queues for security, and even our fast-track passes don’t help as the fast-track queue is just as big as the normal one! So the first drink will have to wait until we’re on the plane instead…
We arrive just after lunchtime and after meeting up with more friends in the airport who came in on different flights, we jump in taxis and head to the opposite side of the island and Sant Antoni where we’re staying.
Being a little older and (possibly) a little wiser, we’ve opted to stay in a villa to allow us to chill around the pool by day, giving us plenty of recovery time between the parties (although the number of crates of Top Beer we get from the local supermarket may suggest otherwise).
The villa is spot on though… we’re about a 10-minute drive out of central Sant Antoni close to a small strip of bars and restaurants, although with it being early in the season not many have fully opened yet and we do fall foul of siesta time trying to find somewhere for food on the first afternoon! We eventually go to Restaurant Minimal and have pretty good burgers and pizzas, and a good laugh with the Northern Irish owner. Another good food place close to the villa is the more local feeling Aljovic… more local feeling, as at 9am it’s full of Spanish drinking red wine and brandy!
We’ve come on Thursday of the first opening party weekend so it’s quite quiet everywhere, so we head to Playa d’en Bossa with not many places open yet. The first bar we end up in is a terrible choice… a very generic feeling cheap shots bar you can find on any strip anywhere in Europe!
But the night gets better in a really cool bar called Baloo, which is a kind of jungle / beach / tiki bar theme with an upmarket cocktail bar feel, and playing some great music! Followed by going to Octan, more of an underground club than super club. It’s good and some of the other guys love it in there… but the music is a bit deep techno for me and being an underground club, we could be back home in the UK!
This week has been the annual International Music Summit and we have tickets for the closing party on Friday night. It’s a great line-up of DJ sets and looks to be in a great location in Dalt Vila… on Baluard de Santa Llúcia, an historic 2,500-year-old former fort and UNESCO World Heritage Site.
We have a few drinks and a brief look around the Old Town before making the climb up to the castle walls and enter the party… and this is more like the Ibiza I imagined!
The stage is set up at one end of a huge square with a bar at the other end, high to our left is the castle, and all around are incredible views out to sea and to the mountains in the distance. And the music is amazing… WHAT A NIGHT!!!
The 7 hours pass in a flash and before we know it, we’re heading back down the hill to try and find a taxi, with talk of going to Amnesia. It’s the opening night of the super club and the tickets are sold out online, but it’s got to be worth trying on the door anyway…
The queue for taxis is huge though and now the sun has gone and we’ve stopped dancing, it’s absolutely freezing! So by the time we eventually get a taxi to take us after over an hour of waiting (note, face masks are still required in taxis and public transport and many will refuse to take you!), our enthusiasm for trying Amnesia has faded and we just head back to the villa instead.
The next day we take a boat trip from Sant Antoni to the South West of the island… it’s planned as an hour trip out, have a stop for swimming, and then head back to Sant Antoni Bay for the famous sunset at Café Mambo. Only it’s pretty cold out at sea so none of us fancy the swim, and the clouds descend on the way back to block the sunset! Still, we have a good time anyway!
Pacha is Ibiza’s original super club and one of the most iconic clubs in the World, named in the top 20 best clubs for the last 15 years by DJ Magazine!
It’s a taxi back to the opposite side of the island and as we get out and all meet back up, the club looks amazing from the outside! We go inside and the entrance goes into a small courtyard area, followed by entering the club past the famous cherries into a very swanky and posh looking club… I’m not sure what I was expecting, but not this!
It’s really cool though, and after getting some drinks (€60 for 3 gins and tonics!!) we go and explore and hit the dancefloor… and it’s another great night!!
Ibiza has definitely lived up to its reputation and we’ve had an incredible time… the White Isle captured our souls, and talks of an annual trip start as we head home…
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