Are you planning a trip to Palma de Mallorca? Take the opportunity to visit Palma's cathedral, one of the city's architectural jewels!
Palma's cathedral, also known as the Seu, stands facing the Mediterranean and seems to watch over the city. Besides discovering the monument itself, you can visit the adjoining museum and enjoy a breathtaking view of the city from the terraces. A visit not to be missed under any circumstances!
What to see, what to do, prices and timetables: follow the guide to visit the Cathedral of Palma!
Also to be read: The 12 must-do things to do in Palma de Mallorca
History of Palma Cathedral
A visit to Palma Cathedral is a plunge into local history. Construction of the building began in 1229 and was completed in 1630, so it took 400 years to erect this splendid building in blond sandstone. It was King James I who undertook the construction of the cathedral, in place of a mosque from the Moorish period, which he had previously had demolished. The location was not chosen at random: overlooking the Mediterranean Sea, Palma's cathedral is visible from the entire bay.
Over the years, collapses and an earthquake damaged the structure, necessitating renovations and reconstruction. Antonio Gaudi, the brilliant architect responsible for the Sagrada Familia crypt and the Parc Guëll, among other things, was commissioned to reconfigure the cathedral's choir at the beginning of the 20th century. It was then classified as a national historic monument in 1931.
Dedicated to the Virgin Mary, Palma Cathedral as it stands today reveals Catalan Gothic architecture, a blend of modern and contemporary styles. The Cathedral of La Seu is the largest religious building on the island of Mallorca and the second largest in Spain, after the Cathedral of Seville.
Visiting the cathedral of Palma is therefore contemplating several centuries of history, and a grandiose architecture!
What to see and what to do in Palma Cathedral?
When you pass through the doors to visit Palma Cathedral, you will be immediately struck by its imposing proportions and the height under the nave: almost 44 metres. Inside, you will discover 19 chapels and 8 bays and a crowd of works of art and statues. The museum and the terraces complete the visit.
Photograph the works of art
Amateur photographers and contemplatives will be charmed by the delicate light that illuminates Palma's cathedral through the 83 stained glass windows and 7 rosettes. The one known as the great rose window has a diameter of 11.55 m and its ribs form the symbol of the risen Christ, a six-pointed cross. It consists of 1,236 pieces of glass and is worth a look. For your information (the cathedral is closed on these days, so you won't be able to observe the phenomenon with your eyes), a poetic show is held on November 11th and February 2nd. A ray of sunshine from the main rose window reflects it on the opposite wall.
While visiting Palma's cathedral, you can also see a contemporary art fresco by Miquel Barceló between 2001 and 2006. Its modern style, unusual in a religious building, can be surprising and has caused controversy among the locals.
In Santisimo's chapel, you will discover a superb 300 m2 ceramic, which depicts the parable of the multiplication of loaves and fishes.
Admire the religious and royal statues
If you go through the Mirador door to the Royal Chapel, you will discover the statues of Saint Peter and Saint Paul, as well as a copy of a Virgin, all three made by Guillem Sagrera. You will also admire the canopy above the altar and the wall of ceramics, which were designed by Gaudi. In the Chapel of the Holy Trinity, the finely worked tombs of Kings James II and James III await you. 33 paintings are also to be discovered on the walls of the chapels.
Push the museum doors
Your entrance ticket also gives you access to the Diocesan Museum, which adjoins Palma Cathedral and has three exhibition halls. It presents thehistory of the Christian religion in Mallorca, as well as a host of Gothic works. The most outstanding is undoubtedly the painting of Saint George Slaying a Dragon, painted by Pere Nisart. In the different rooms you can see a colossal monstrance, a diptych of wood and silver, an altarpiece, reliquaries and the arm of Saint Sebastian, donated by the Dean of Rhodes. Stranger, a naturalized crocodile is also presented. According to the legend, it is the animal that terrorized the inhabitants in the 17th century.
A view from the terraces
Finally, don't leave the cathedral of Palma without a detour to its sublime terraces! The terraces can be reached via a 215-step spiral staircase. A somewhat dizzying ascent, but really worth the detour. Once you reach the terraces, which are 48 metres high, you will discover the districts and monuments of Palma from a different angle. The port, the Maritime Park, the Palau March, the Llotja and the Almudaina are all there before your eyes.
How do I get to Palma Cathedral?
There are several options for visiting Palma Cathedral, depending on where you are in the city. It is located in Plaza de la Almoina.
- You can take bus no. 1 from the airport to the Catedral de Mallorca stop. A taxi will also take you to your destination for between 12 and 20 euros during the day.
- Buses 102, 104, 107 and 111 also serve the cathedral. From the Catedral station, it will take you about ten minutes to get to the monument.
By metro or train
To come to the Cathedral by metro, take the M2 line. The T3 train makes the trip to the monument.
If you come to visit Palma Cathedral in a rental car, the Saba Plaza de San Antonio public car park is nearby. A short walk of about 15 minutes separates you from the arrival.
By horse-drawn carriage
This is an atypical means of transport! Yes, you can indeed opt for the horse-drawn carriage that will drop you off in front of Palma Cathedral.
Palma Cathedral timetables and fares
You can visit Palma Cathedral all year round, except on Sundays and certain public holidays. The opening hours vary according to the season and it is open from Monday to Friday:
- 2 November to 31 March: 10 am - 3.15 pm;
- April 1 to May 31: 10:00 a.m. - 5:15 p.m.;
- June 1 to September 30: 10:00 a.m. - 6:15 p.m;
- b>Saturday: all year round from 10 am to 2:15 pm.
Please note: Palma Cathedral is closed on 1, 6 and 20 January, 18, 19 and 22 April, 15 August, 1 November, 8, 25, 26 and 31 December. The Diocesan Museum is also closed on these dates and on 1 March, 1 May, 24 June, 12 October and 6 December.
- Entrance ticket for the cathedral and the museum: 12 €.
- Thread cutter ticket: 8.50€.
- Free for children under 10 years old.
Please note: Guided tours are reserved for residents of the Balearic Islands.