Visit the Drach Caves in Mallorca: tickets, prices, timetables

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Carlos Laforet Coll
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Summary
  • History of the Drach Caves in Mallorca
  • What to see and do at the Drach Caves?
  • How to get to the Drach Caves in Mallorca?
  • - From Porto Cristo
  • - From another city in Mallorca
  • Timetables & Prices of the Drach Caves in Mallorca
  • - Online rates
  • - Prices at the Counter
  • Frequently Asked Questions

Are you spending your holidays in the Balearic Islands? During your stay in the archipelago, take the time to visit the Drach Caves in Mallorca!

Located on the east coast of Mallorca, in the Balearic Islands in Spain, the Caves of the Drach are one of the main tourist attractions of the island. Comprising four caves and Lake Martel, one of the largest underground lakes in Europe, they charm visitors with the large number of rock formations that make up the caves and the special features of the visit, which you will discover in this article.


Go to the town of Porto Cristo, in the municipality of Manacor, to admire the sculptural beauty of this timeless place. Visiting the Caves of the Drach will be a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of your holiday in the Balearic Islands. Here is everything you need to know about one of the region's must-see places.

Also to be read: 12 things to do in Mallorca, the largest of the Balearic Islands

History of the Drach Caves in Mallorca

The Caves of the Drach were already known in the Middle Ages: in 1338 the very first written mention of the site was made in a message from Rover de Rovenach, then governor of the island, to the mayor of Manacor. In 1632, the book History of Mallorca's Reign of Dometo mentions the name Drach for the first time.


We know that in the 18th and 19th centuries, the caves were regularly visited. In 1880, the cartographer and speleologist M. F. Will drew a map of the area for the first time. Fifteen years later, sponsored by the Archduke of Austria Louis-Salvador of Hasbourg-Lorraine, the explorer Edouard-Alfred Martel discovered the last cavities of the Grottes du Drach, and more particularly the immense underground lake that today bears his name.

It was between 1922 and 1935 that the caves were fitted out for visits. During the construction work, new accesses were opened, paths were designed and stairs were built to access the depths of the caves. In particular, the electric lighting was designed by engineer M. Buigas, who, in addition to illuminating the caves with brilliance, conceived the spectacle of the sunrise over the lake, which visitors can still admire today. As early as 1935, the visit included the Lake Martel Concert.

But where do the Grottes du Drach come from? Formed from carbonate rocks that are between 11 and 5.3 million years old, the caves date from the Upper Miocene. The climate of the Mediterranean was warmer then. Rocks composed of limestone dissolve easily by the action of water, leading to the formation of cavities: the halls and the lake of the Grottes du Drach are formed. Stalactites cover the ceiling, leading to the creation of stalagmites, and sometimes the two join to create columns. The most spectacular formations are built over the years. It is this colossal work of nature that visitors can admire today.

What to see and do at the Drach Caves?

The visit to the Grottes du Drach takes one hour and extends over 1,200 metres, giving visitors access to the Louis Salvador Grotto, the White Grotto, the Black Grotto and the French Grotto. It includes a real classical music concert and a boat ride on Lake Martel - 170 metres long and between 4 and 12 metres deep. Visitors also watch the sunrise show on the lake, designed in 1935.


The entrance leads to the last cave to have been discovered in 1896: the Louis-Salvador cave. From the very beginning of the visit, the atmosphere is marked by the humidity of the room. The descent then begins, reaching 25 metres below the surface at the deepest point. At the bottom of the stairs, visitors will be able to marvel at the Diana Baths and their turquoise water, which give the place a fairy-tale atmosphere. Then comes the small lake and curious formations, such as Le Drapeau or a rocky web coloured by different minerals. Here, the ceiling is lined with several thousand stalactites, which grow a centimetre each year.

Visitors then arrive in another room and can admire the Ruined Castle and the Snowy Mount (whose colour is due to the calcium carbonate present in the rock).

The Lake Martel Concert is then given in an amphitheatre close to the lake. A quartet (two violins, a cello and a harmonium) makes the hall vibrate for 10 minutes. At the end of the concert, visitors can decide to cross the lake by boat - be careful, however, there are few boats, the first arrivals are served, or else take the bridge. They then arrive at the Grotte des Français, characterized by its freshness.

The visit is coming to an end: the ascent to the surface allows you to appreciate the height of the caves, as well as many spectacular formations, before leading to the exit.

How do I get to the Drach Caves in Majorca?


From Porto Cristo

The Caves of the Drach are located in Porto Cristo, on the east coast of Mallorca. From the city centre, you can walk to the caves in about 20 minutes, or take the bus. The following lines serve the nearby Coves Drac stop: 412, 416, 441, 447, 448 and 454.

From another city in Mallorca

To get to Porto Cristo from Palma de Mallorca, there are several options:

  • The bus: the line 412 makes a direct journey from Palma to Porto Cristo. The journey takes about an hour and a quarter. The bus runs every four hours, every day of the week and will cost you between 8 and 12€ ;
  • Carpooling: you will find many carpools between Palma and Porto Cristo. This is the most economical solution: prices are usually around 5€ ;
  • Taxi: count about 50€;
  • Car: if you have a car, it will take you about 50 minutes to get to Porto Cristo.

Timetables & Prices of the Drach Caves in Mallorca

SCHEDULE

To visit the Drach Caves, you must visit the site at fixed times; the doors then open to let a limited number of visitors in for an hour. We advise you to book your tickets in advance.

  • From November 1 to March 10: the gates open at 10:45 a.m., 12:00 noon, 2:00 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.
  • March 11 to October 31: Doors open at 10:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m., 3:00 p.m., 4:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.
  • Closed from 25 December to 1 January.

Tip: arrive 10 to 15 minutes before the indicated time at the cave door, which is 200 metres from the ticket office. ATMs are open daily from 9 a.m. onwards.

RATES

Online ticket prices are slightly lower.

Online rates

  • Adult (from 13 years old): 15 €.
  • Children (3-12 years old) : 8 €.
  • Baby (under 3 years old): Free of charge

Prices at the Counter

  • Adult (from 13 years old): 16 €.
  • Children (3-12 years old) : 9 €.
  • Baby (under 3 years old): Free of charge
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