What is it?
This itinerary is a circular route which starts in the historic town of Sóller, where the path to the village of Fornalutx, one of the most iconic places in the Sierra de Tramuntana, begins. The route runs over an old cobbled bridle path which used to be the means of communication between Sóller and the valley of the orange groves. The route also passes by some points of particular visual and cultural interest, such as La Capelleta, a modernist shrine built in 1917, and the little village of Binibassí, which has houses dating back to the 16th Century.
The ease of this route makes it ideal for all the family.
It is approximately 7.5 kilometres long and climbs 368 metres. It takes around 3 hours to complete the route.
Location and contact:
Start point: Plaça de la Constitució, Sóller
+34 608 552 800 (www.visitsoller.com)
+34 971 630 200 (www.ajsoller.net)
Available public transport
|Monday to Friday|
The start point is the Plaça de la Constitució:
- If you go to Sóller by bus, get off at the TIB bus stop in the Carrer del Cetre, go along the same street towards the town centre, turn right into Gran Via and when you get to the end turn left and carry on until you get to the Plaça de la Constitució.
- If you go to Sóller by train, all you need to do is go down Carrer del Born until you get to the Plaça de la Constitució.
From this point in the town, go down Carrer de la Lluna and then turn left into Carrer de la Victòria de l'Onze de Maig and Avinguda d'Astúries. When you reach the football ground, take the street between it and the gulley until you reach the Can Rave bridge, where you need to turn left. After about 50 metres turn right, following the signs to Fornalutx. A few metres further on we get to the turn off to the left that climbs to La Capelleta. The climbing, cobbled bridle path ends at the shrine to Saint Maria de l'Olivar. There are olive groves on the way and we cross the old cart track several times. It is interesting to note that during the 14th and 15th Centuries these olive groves were one of the largest sources of income for the district.
The shrine to Saint Maria de l'Olivar started out as a small chapel that was built in 1917 on the initiative of monsignor Pere-Lluc Ripoll i Moragues. In 1943 work began on an extension. The church is in the shape of a Greek cross with a dome over semi-circular arches. The nave is presided over by the image of Mare de Déu de l'Olivar (Our Lady of the Olives). La Capelleta is at the back of the convent. This is built from irregular-shaped stones and inside (closed) it reproduces the cave at Lourdes, with an image of Our Lady and Saint Bernadette. Just next to it there is a water cistern with the image of an angel.
In the surrounding area, you can also see the Olivar des Fenàs chapel and the convent which has been lived in by the Canonesses Regular of Saint Augustine since 1980.
The route carries on either by going down the same path as we came on or by the Costa d'en Flassada. If we choose the Costa, we need to cross the main road between Sóller and Lluc and then go up until we reach a fork in the paths, where the one going up goes to the Ses Barques viewing point and the one going down goes to the Ses Marjades part of Sóller via the Costa d'en Flassada. We will take the descending path.
After the walk down, we go towards Fornalutx on the GR 221 dry stone route. A small stretch of the walk is over tarmac until a fork is reached, which bends sharply, where we must turn to the left and follow a cobbled path. This path goes through orange and olive groves and takes us to the little village of Binibassí, which marks the boundary between the districts of Sóller and Fornalutx.
Binibassí is a group of houses built in the 16th Century. The defence tower and the houses on the Binibassí estate ("possessió") are highlights. There are three signposts in the village showing the way to Sóller, Fornalutx and Biniaraix. The latter is worth a visit if you want to extend the walk, as it is an old Arab farmstead that belonged to Count Hug d'Empúries when Majorca was divided up after the Christian conquest in 1229.
To continue the route, we must follow the path that goes to Fornalutx. The landscape is peppered with 15th and 16th Century water mills. Little by little the climb begins, with the views becoming more spectacular as we progress, until we reach Fornalutx cemetery. The village, which gained independence from Sóller in the 19th Century, is undeniably interesting from a visual and architectural point of view. It was founded in the conquest and was previously a small Arab farmstead, as shown by the village centre streets. It was declared a protected historic site in 1972. The defence tower, in Can Arbona, which was built in the 17th Century is noteworthy along with the Cas Pollencí, Can Rejó, Casa d'Amunt and Can Bisbal houses. A visit to the parish church, built after the Catalan conquest, is a must. The roofs are particularly interesting as the tiles are painted with geometric, plant, animal and religious designs and representations of everyday life. These drawings can also be seen on more than 50 buildings in Sóller.
To go back to where we started, take the Ma-2120 road from Fornalutx to Sóller for 500 metres. When we reach a crossroads, take the turn off to the right following the sign "A Sóller a peu per Binibassí" (Sóller on foot via Binibassí). At the end of the road turn left, and follow the path that leads to the pretty village of Binibassí. Further on we get to Sóller exactly where we turned off to La Capelleta before. Just retrace your steps on the same road as before to reach the Plaça de la Constitució.