Red lightning Mallorca
A delightful alternative to traveling to Sóller by car or bus is to take a ride on Mallorca’s Red Lightning. You board the electric narrow-gauge train at the station at Placa Espanya in Palma. The rail link, established in 1912, transported mainly oranges to the capital until the 1960s. Today it is mainly tourists.
Slowly, the train leaves Palma and sets off on the 27-kilometer journey. Slowly the “Red Lightning” twitches through the landscape towards the mountains. It passes olive groves, almond orchards and grazing sheep. Especially beautiful is the trip at the end of January for the almond or orange blossom, when the golden valley of Sóller shines in colorful splendor. On the way to Sóller, the train passes through 13 tunnels whose length varies between 33 and 2,800 meters. The ride also crosses several bridges, including the viaduct “Cinc-Ponts” with five arches, whose openings are 8 meters high.
Through the mountains of Mallorca with the Red Lightning
The Red Lightning in Mallorca, a train specially designed for tourists, departs Palma at 10:40 and stops in the middle of the mountains at the Mirador del Pujol d en Banya for a ten-minute photo stop. After about 40 minutes you will reach Sóller. If you wish, you can take the streetcar from Sóller to Port de Sóller, 4 kilometers away, or stroll around Sóller. A nice excursion is also a hike (or by cab) through a charming landscape with many orange and lemon plantations to the small mountain villages of Fornalutx (once voted the most beautiful village in Spain) or to Biniaratx. Of course, in the high season, the trains may be overcrowded, making the trip less comfortable.
What is a train that goes from Palma to another city in Mallorca?
If you’re in Mallorca and looking for a fun, scenic and easy day trip from Palma, there’s not much better than a ride on the historic train from Palma to Soller. The train from Palma to Soller, officially called Tren de Sóller or Ferrocarril de Sóller, is one of the most famous attractions in Mallorca. It is an ancient narrow-gauge railroad that runs 27 km from the capital Palma in the south through the Serra de Tramuntana mountains north to the small town of Soller in the northwest of the island.
From there, you can either stay and explore Sóller or take the ancient streetcar for another 15-minute ride to Port de Sóller on the coast.
HISTORY OF THE TREN DE SOLLER
The area around Sóller, in the northwest of Mallorca, is a fertile agricultural region nicknamed the “Valley of Gold” for its olive oil production and orange groves. But in the 19th century, before the Tren de Sóller was built, farmers could only bring their produce to the markets in Palma by mule and donkey carts through the narrow passes of the Tramuntana mountains.
This changed in 1912, when the railroad line from Soller to Palma was opened. Now farmers could quickly and easily bring their products to market.
Today, of course, the olives and oranges are transported by road, and the train has become one of the most popular tourist attractions in Mallorca.
HOW TO GET THE TRAIN FROM PALMA TO SOLLER
The Tren de Soller departs from the Ferrocarril station at Plaza de Espana in Palma. Buy your ticket at the counter (cards are not accepted, so bring cash!) and then go to the platform where the polished wooden train is waiting for you.
Boarding the train from Palma to Sóller is like a trip back in time. The wood-paneled train cars are like something from another century (because that’s exactly what they are!) with gleaming brass and leather-covered seats. Unlike modern trains, the windows can be opened so you can stick your camera out (but be careful!) to take photos along the track.
The red flash, not fast and also not really red…
WHAT TO SEE AND DO IN SÓLLER, MALLORCA
Thanks to the wealth of orange and olive cultivation, Soller became quite rich, which is reflected in the beautiful Art Nouveau architecture of the town. The heart of Soller is the main square – Plaza de la Constitución, where you can find the magnificent church of Sant Bartomeu and the Ajuntament de Sóller (Town Hall), as well as numerous bars and cafes with outdoor seating.
Leading off from the plaza are a number of pretty pedestrian streets lined with charming souvenir stores, cafes and delis. Soller also has an art gallery, Can Prunera, with works by Kandinksy, Picasso and Warhol, the Balearic Museum of Natural Sciences (Museu Balear de Ciències Naturals) and a botanical garden.