Cala de San Vicente, from an untouched territory to top tourist attraction
Those from Ibiza call it Cala Sant Vicent or, simply, Sa Cala. The cala de San Vicente, which measures some 400 metres long and 30 metres wide, is one of the top destinations for enjoying the sun and the beach in Ibiza. Located in the north of the Balearic island, next to the small village of Sant Vicent de Sa Cala and just 10 minutes by car from the village of San Carlos, a distinguishing feature of the cala de San Vicente is that it always has the silhouette of the islet of Tagomago on the horizon. This is an incredible bay with crystal-clear waters that can also be reached from the nearby village of San Juan (Sant Joan). It’s also not too far from Portinatx.
- Cala de San Vicente, a secluded corner of Ibiza
- The cove of “Sant Vicent” offers beautiful views of the Mediterranean
In front of the beach of San Vicente, there is a lovely promenade lined with restaurants, cafés, hotels, ice-cream parlours, shops, and supermarkets. It’s a very pleasant walk. Some of them serve fresh fish and rice dishes that can be enjoyed with a view of the Mediterranean. In fact, this cove was one of the first in the north of the island to develop an extensive tourist infrastructure. And although many hotel establishments were set up in the area, the beach still has a lot of charm, as its natural landscape remains intact and in some areas the pine trees go right down to the seashore.
Cala de San Vicente, a secluded corner of Ibiza
Until the 1930s, the cala de San Vicente was cut off from the rest of the island, as there was no road to be able to access it. This territory, which is now one of the most popular destinations in the north of Ibiza, could only be reached by sea. It’s even said that this area of Ibiza was uninhabited until the 18th century, possibly because there are many cliffs covered with junipers and pine trees in the surrounding area that were difficult to negotiate. Nowadays, however, the beach has a family atmosphere, it’s not too crowded and its natural setting, flanked by lush pine forests, is truly stunning.
On both sides of the cove, you can still see some embarcadores, or traditional fishermen’s huts. These allow us to imagine how life was in the mid-20th century, when the beach was untouched land and the people of the area didn’t make a living from tourism, but from fishing and agriculture.
The cove of “Sant Vicent” offers beautiful views of the Mediterranean
To reach this elegant beach today, whether you come from the town of San Carlos or from the neighbouring town of Sant Joan, you have to walk along a path that offers spectacular views of the Mediterranean. From Sant Joan there’s a winding road that leads to the cala de San Vicente, after 8 kilometres. From San Carlos, past S’Aigua Blanca, there’s another road that runs along the coast and also leads to the same place after 7 kilometres.
Many scuba diving and snorkelling lovers seek out this beach to practise these sports, as the seabed of the cove of San Vicente has shallow rocks and a lot of underwater fauna. Also, being surrounded by mountains, it’s very sheltered from strong winds, which makes this space an ideal spot to enjoy swimming and sunbathing.
The cala de San Vicente, located 30 kilometres from the city of Ibiza, has all kinds of amenities, from sun lounger and parasol rental, to showers, and wooden access walkways. It also has a lifeguard service and offers access for people with reduced mobility.
Leisure plans in the area
There are also many things to do around the beach, from discovering the architectural and historical heritage of the towns of Sant Vicent de Sa Cala and Sant Joan, to enjoying the traditional cuisine of Ibiza. You can also practise water sports, such as sailing, canoeing or banana boating, and if you so wish, you can book the services of the sailing and jet ski school next to the beach.
Two good times to get to know the cove of San Vicente are during the patron saint’s festivities of Sant Vicent de Sa Cala, which take place on 5 April, and during the summer festivities Payesa del Pou des Baladre, which take place on 8 August.
A ride on the tourist train
La cala de San Vicente is one of the stops on a tourist train that departs from Portinatx and takes about three hours. It runs through Cala Xarraca and stops at the village of San Juan, where you can see a small 18th-century church. It continues through the village of San Vicente until it reaches the cala de San Vicente and returns to Portinatx, passing by the cala de Can Marçà and the secluded beach of Cala Benirrás. Please note: the train only runs from May to October.
An area with fantastic beaches
The cala of San Vicente is just one good example of the fantastic beaches scattered around the island of Ibiza. So, if you liked this beach and would like to explore and discover similar coves in the area, we invite you to head over to other equally interesting and beautiful settings. This is the case, for example, with Cala Xarraca, an attractive cove overflowing with nature on the way to Portinatx. There’s also Es Canaret, a secluded and idyllic beach located very close to Cala Xarraca, or Cala d’en Serra (internal link), an unspoilt beach with beach huts and a lovely beach bar.
Another highly recommended destination is Port de Sant Miquel, a natural sea port with a fairly large beach where young and old alike can enjoy crystal-clear waters in a dreamlike setting.