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Insiders tips, the north - San Carlos

This week’s beach-surfing expedition takes us by the gorgeous northern beaches of Aguas Blancas, Es Figueral and Cala San Vicente. A true taste of paradise.

The Ibiza beaches around San Carlos are divine. Imagine a world of crystal clear waters, sunshine bathed serenity and stunningly dramatic coastlines and you're getting the idea. It's a million metaphorical miles away from the hustle and bustle of Ibiza's larger resorts such as Playa d'en Bossa, San Antonio or Ibiza Town. It is, however, close enough to Santa Eulalia to be within easy reach of a huge variety of restaurants, bars and shops, should you fancy a dip into the local cultural scene.

Setting off from the village of San Carlos, we headed first for Aguas Blancas. This nudist beach, very popular with locals is without a doubt the most Bohemian of the three. Just follow the road behind Anitas Bar to the left, and look out for the left-turn towards Aguas Blancas after a couple of kilometres. Then you'll see the camino (path) to Aguas Blancas on the right. Beware. It's a fairly long, steep walk down the mountain after you've parked, which of course is the easy bit. The walk back is not for the faint-hearted it has to be said, nor for anyone with serious mobility issues.

Aguas Blancas

Surrounded by imposing looking red cliffs, it's a hot-spot for hippies who visit the beach to smear themselves in the rich, red earth from which the cliffs are made. They say it does wonders for the skin. So, dear reader, do not be alarmed if you encounter a fair few naked people smeared in mud meandering around this particular beach. It's normal!

Aguas Blancas, oriented to the east, is famous for its spectacular sunrise. You'll find early risers on this Ibiza beach, catching the not-too-scorching early morning rays of high summer and enjoying an early breakfast in one of the two cool beach bars lining the sand. The hippy fraternity usually frequent the much-loved chiringuito at the south end of the beach. It's charmingly rustic and serves mainly ‘bocadillos' (baguette sandwiches) and grilled meat, in particular ‘choripan,' a kind of South American sausage served with bread. Mmm! It's always packed, so mornings are the best time to get one of their ramshackle, coconut-umbrella shaded tables.

Next on the list was Es Figueral. After 12 years on the island, I confess this was the first time i'd ever visited this gem of an Ibiza beach. Shame on me.

Es Figueral

Just a few minutes drive from Aguas Blancas, Es Figueral is not unlike its more Bohemian neighbour in term of stunning scenery. The sea and surrounding cliffs are equally as imposing, but the ambience is totally different. Here you will find several, all-inclusive hotels and a much more resort-like atmosphere, with many more visitors than locals and many more facilities, shops and bars. It's also much more accessible to visitors with limited mobility - we were delighted to note for example, the public bathrooms with disabled access. Parking was easy too, with a couple of large car-parks and lots of parking bays.

We were excited to finally visit the new Las Dalias, right on the beach in Es Figueral. Diving in for a quick look around, we were impressed with the building which is spacious and airy with great views from the beautiful terrace. The blueberry mojito. by the way, is to die for.

This Ibiza beach was full of couples and younger families and the nearby hotels were packed. There was a really laid-back, holiday vibe and we could easily have stayed there all day. Waving goodbye to the super friendly staff at Las Dalias and taking away a fresh-from-the-oven ‘baklava,' (a delicious, Arabic-style sweet pastry) we set off for our final destination of the day, Cala San Vicente.

Heading back to the San Carlos road, we took a right towards San Vicente just before we hit the village again. Oh my. The drive to the beach alone, following the twisting country lane through the fragrant, Ibiza mountains was itself astonishingly beautiful. Driving slowly and carefully (some of the bends are treacherous) we hit Cala San Vicente in less than 10 minutes.

Cala San Vicente

As you come down the mountain into the village, just take a right at the mini-roundabout at the bottom to find a tonne of free parking. And prepare to be blown away, dear reader. Can the sea really be so vibrantly blue?

I'm not sure what causes the sea to be such an incredible colour around Cala San Vicente. Honestly ladies and gentlemen, it has to be seen to be believed. It almost looks like someone has somehow, cunningly, installed bright blue lights beneath the surface of the sea, so stunningly azure it is. You really can't help but grin with happiness that you've found yourself surrounded by such amazing beauty.

The vibe is chilled and the umbrellas and sunbeds are reasonably priced at €4 each. This Ibiza beach was populated with an international crowd, lots of young people, families and couples too. In fact, it was a very mixed crowd enjoying the blissful Balearic Sea and the incredible beauty it surrounds at this most sublimely lovely corner of the island.

There are a few, well established hotels lining the beach and plenty of bars, restaurants and facilities. The beach itself is very accessible to visitors with disabilities and what's more, one of our favourite Ibiza holiday villas is very close nearby, just check this gorgeous pad for x 10.

As if that wasn't enough, This Ibiza beach is also home to both Hidden Bar and On the Beach. Two of our favourite dining spots in the north. Hidden Bar makes the BEST cocktails on the island and On the Beach serve up a fabulous organic burger. It's worth the trip to San Vicente just for that, dear reader.

And voila! Another stunning day of Ibiza beach surfing. Every new corner presents a new and ever-lovelier vision of awesomeness, we hope you'll follow in our footsteps and see it for yourself. You'll need a vehicle to visit this little lot ladies and gents, so as always, simply rent a car, scooter or a bike, go boldly forth and explore incredible, incomparable Ibiza.

WORDS | Jane Charilaou

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