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  • Writer's pictureLeslie

Your Guide to Traveling to the Balearic Island of Formentera, Spain with Kids

Formentera Blue Bar with Kids Travel with Children
The view from the dock at Blue Bar on Formentera, Spain

If you’ve always dreamed of traveling to Ibiza, but it doesn’t fit your current vibe (clubbing and kids rarely mix), its island neighbor, Formentera, could be your perfect solution! (Although, a number of friends have mentioned Ibiza does have a mellow, family-friendly side that just isn’t as talked-about.)

My sister went to the small Balearic island of Formentera a few years ago, and raved about its laid-back beaches and bohemian aesthetic, and so we had to see for ourselves. We were lucky enough to get her recommendations (did I mention she's a master at travel planning and always has the best recs?). Here are a few of our trip takeaways: 

1. Playa de Ses Illetes is one of the most beautiful beaches I’ve ever been to. The water is so turquoise blue (the shade that doesn’t even look real) and the sand is so powdery white. It’s heaven. The beach is in a nature park out on a peninsula, and we didn't rent a car for our trip, so we had a cab drop us off and pick us up. If you want to avoid the crowds, be sure to go early so you can have a relaxed experience. Also, the water is shallow and calm (at least during the summer months!), which makes it a perfect beach for little kids.

Playa Ses Illetes with kids traveling to Formentera with kids
The gorgeous blue water at Ses Illetes

2. There are so many cute beach kiosks that serve up delicious food! One of our favorites was Kiosko Pirata at Ses Illetes (we had lunch there after spending a few hours at the beach). Also, what kid doesn’t love a pirate theme? And the food and service was impressive, considering its sandy location.

3. My sister told us about this beachside restaurant called Blue Bar that was right on the water (aka gorgeous views), and it was just wacky enough for my kids to love — not only is it “blue” themed… but also “alien” themed. Ok! Plus, they have a little beachside dance floor that all the kids took over for a mini disco. Pro tip: I would go early in the evening like we did before it turns into a full on bar/party scene.

4. The island has a reputation as the “most sustainable island” of the Balearics, and you can get around by bike! We took a ferry to the island (then a cab to our hotel), and tried to walk as much as we could (to beach restaurants and the like). I think next time we would look into a bike with a trailer set-up.

Formentera beach with kids
An evening stroll to one of the beachside kiosk restaurants on Formentera

5. Be sure to enjoy your days by the beach. Casual beach days are the way to go here. While you could visit some of the charming villages or even go horseback riding, part of the island's appeal is kicking back and soaking up the relaxed atmosphere (and sun).

How we got there: We flew into Mallorca (see my My Mallorca guide here), spent some time there, and eventually made our way by ferry to Formentera. However, it was a lot to do both islands (the ferry between the two takes about 3.5 hours if you get the fast one and requires a ferry change in Ibiza). Instead, I would recommend flying into Ibiza, spending a night or two there (and checking out its UNESCO World Heritage fortified old town, Dalt Vila), and then taking a short ferry over to Formentera — which is only 40 minutes).

Where we stayed: We stayed at the Insotel Hotel Formentera Playa. We enjoyed it, but I don't know if I would fully recommend it. (The pools were nice, but the hotel could have used some updating, and our family isn't really into all-inclusives... and there weren't many options if you wanted to go a la carte). That said, our kids loved the little playground on site, and they enjoyed a number of the kids activities at the Insi Club.

Formentera hotel traveling with kids
Our daughter, taking a stroll around our hotel on Formentera

Do you hope to go to Formentera one day? Or have you been to some of the most popular Balearic islands like Mallorca and Ibiza, but want a little something different? Drop me your thoughts in the comments. And be sure to check out my @bigworld_littletravelers reel below on Instagram, so you can see our Formentera trip in real life.


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