For anyone owning a property or thinking about buying a house in the north of Mallorca, Christmas is one of the most magical times of year to spend on the island. Mallorca is rich with colourful festivities which take place throughout the twelve days of Christmas.
One of the most spectacular—and unusual for those who come from northern European countries—is that which welcomes the arrival of the Three Kings. Taking place on the evening of January 5, the processions of the Three Kings is a tradition that takes place throughout Spain to commemorate the three wise men who brought gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh to the baby Jesus.
While the largest event will be the Cavalcada dels Reis Mags in Palma, where men dressed as Melchior, Balthazar and Gaspar ride through the streets on camels with their five-hundred strong cavalcade giving out over 5,000 kg of sweets, many other towns and villages will also be celebrating around the island.
In the days leading up to the celebrations, children write letters to the three kings asking for presents. Typically, they then leave their shoes out or under the Christmas tree, at the same time as laying out something to eat for the travel-weary kings. The following morning, on the day of Epiphany, the 12th day of Christmas, they find presents (or coal, depending on their luck) near their shoes.
Two of the best places to enjoy the spectacle in the north of the island are in Puerto Alcudia and Puerto Pollensa. In Puerto Alcudia, the Kings arrive by boat at the old pier at 6.15pm. The parade travels through the town, stopping at the church for the adoration, and then continuing to Alcudia town. When they arrive at the Porta des Moll in Plaça Carles (the market square) there is a further adoration at the church and the kings then wave from the town hall balcony before delivering presents house by house.
Meanwhile, in Puerto Pollensa, on the evening of January 5, children and their families gather on the promenade overlooking the bay and look out along the windy road that leads down from Formentor for the first sign of lights. A fleet of at least 20 cars with their hazard lights on eventually appear as they drive slowly into the port tooting their horns and throwing sweets out of the windows. Behind them is a cavalcade of brightly coloured floats also distributing sweets, followed by Three Kings who head to the main church square where they hand out small presents to the children.
There are two further arrivals by sea to be enjoyed in the Bay of Alcudia. In Can Picafort, the procession is accompanied by an escort of llauts, typical Mallorcan fishing boats, while another group of kings arrive by boat at around 6pm in Son Serra de Marina.