Antique Train

From the center of Palma to Sóller by veteran train. Welcome aboard the Ferrocarril de Sóller!

Take a ride on a traditional narrow-gauge railway, through spectacular landscapes across Mallorca.

excursion with antique train in mallorca
About

The antique train between Palma and Sóller

On April 16, 1912, the railway line between Palma and Sóller opened as a result of the increasing export of oranges and citrus fruits from Port de Sóller. The following year, in 1913, the tram between Sóller town and Port de Sóller was inaugurated.

The train runs from Placa d’Espanya in the center of Palma 5 times daily. The departure at 10:40 is called the ‘tourist ride’, which sometimes stops along the way to make room for photography of the beautiful landscapes.

Mahogany panels, brass fittings and the whistling are all some of the impressions you encounter when you get into the old train carriages, and head out of Palma and on towards the adventurous landscapes of the Tramuntana mountains via the winding narrow tracks.

The history of the railway

At the beginning of the 20th century, industry boomed so much in Sóller that there was a genuine need to expand the infrastructure that could ensure that Sóller would no longer be isolated. There was a need to be able to transport people, goods and materials that could strengthen the development of Sóller. The huge ridges, especially the Alfabia mountain around Bunyola, prevented passengers and goods from being transported to / from the port of Palma and the rest of the island, which at that time was already connected via a railway network.

Before the opening of the railway, it was necessary to cross the mountain pass of Coll de Sóller, via the steep and narrow gravel roads that were hard for the mules. Actually, many of the old inns from the time that gave animals and riders a resting place and provisions are still located along the road to Sóller, however, several have been converted into restaurants.

In 1893, a local councilor and businessman from Sóller, Jerónimo Estades, proposed that a rail link between Sóller and Palma, which would pass through Valldemossa and Deia, could be established and financed. This project did not come to fruition due to the high cost involved.

In 1903, the businessman Juan Morell took up the project again, this time without including Valldemossa and Deià. His project was to dig a tunnel under the mountains where Coll de Sóller ran. The idea was initially voted down, but a year later, in 1904, Jerómino Estades came on the scene again. He paid the engineer Pedro Garau to carry out the necessary investigations into whether the project would be possible to carry out. On 15 November, the studies were presented to Sóller’s municipal council, after which the project was approved.

The construction of the railway was left to Luis Bovio, who bought a small 020T steam locomotive from The Falcon Engine & Car Works Ltd., in Loughborough, which he named Maria-Luisa after his daughters. Work began on June 3, 1907, starting simultaneously in Palma and Soller. After one year of work, the workers from the Palma side of the Alfabia mountain reached the great challenge.

It took a full three years to dig the tunnel at 2856 meters. On August 19, 1911, Maria-Luisa reached the viewpoint Mirador de ’s Pujol de’n Banya.

Maria-Luisa was given the honor of driving the unofficial inauguration of the line, on October 7, 1911, in which it pulled a wagon carrying Jerónimo Estades, Pedro Garau and Prime Minister Antonio Maura on board.

The official inauguration of Ferrocarril de Sóller took place on 16 April 1912, when locomotive 1 ‘Sóller’ and locomotive 2 ‘Palma’ pulled the wagons away from Palma, but locomotive 3 ‘Bunyola’ was waiting in Sóller.

The over 100 year old train carriages are still in use to this day, which makes the train ride a very special and authentic experience.

The tram between Sóller and Port de Sóller

On October 4, 1913, Mallorca’s first electric tram was inaugurated, the connection between the town of Sóller and Port de Sóller.

ride in the antique tram in soller mallorca is a tourist attraction
The old tram leaving from the promenade in Port de Sóller

Construction of the tram began immediately after the inauguration of the train connection between Palma and Sóller. The project was designed and managed by Pedro Garau, who laid the 4868 meter railway tracks. One of the details of the work that is worth highlighting is the metal bridge that crosses the Torrent Major river, created by the former La Maquinista Terrestre in Marítima from Barcelona.

Originally, the tram was supplied with power from an electrical installation at the Sóller station. The plant was powered by a 65-horsepower engine, which had a Siemens-Schuckert alternator that provided a 600-volt power charge.

The tram was designed to transport passengers, but goods were also transported. Fresh fish was transported in a special thermal wagon, and coal was brought to the former submarine base in Port de Sóller. Torpedoes and mines were also transported from the Gaubet weapons depot.

The three trams, 1,2 and 3, are the originals from 1912, just like the carriages.

Where

Get directions to train station in Palma and Sóller

Palma is the capital of Mallorca and seat of the Balearic government. Palma was founded during the occupation of the Roman empire, about 123 BC, and later developed by the Moors and Catalans. Palma has several times been awarded best place in the world to live; it is a city of great diversity, cultural heritage and commercial activity, making it an attractive city to a broad audience. Palma is one of the best places in Spain to go shopping, all the new arrivals from other Mediterranean capitals arrive here before other places in the world, plus, there are hundreds of local specialty boutiques.

The rich history of Palma has left an incredible amount of landmarks and points of interest to discover i.e. the Arabian baths, the cathedral, the Bellver castle, the Almudaina palace etc., as well as hundreds of other unique constructions perfect for sightseeing in the city.

Discover Palma

Mallorca's Top sightseeing attractions

Palma Cathedral

la seu gothic cathedral in palma mallorca on the balearic islands in spain

Palma cathedral La Seu is an amazing sight, both from the inside and outside. Palma cathedral is one of the biggest in Europe, and great artists like Gaudi have worked on the amazing temple. There are guided tours and you can even visit the rooftop terraces offering magical views.

Learn about Palma cathedral La Seu

The Antique Train

excursion with antique train in mallorca

The antique train is a great attraction for young and adults. The ride takes you through some of the most beautiful areas of the Tramuntana, passing through orange plantations, olive groves and green valleys. The authentic feeling of the old marhogany cars bumping along the rails completes the experience.

Enjoy a ride in the antique train

Castell de Bellver

beautiful gothic bellver castle in palma mallorca spain

Castell de Bellver is a unique castle, due to its round shape and splendid location on a hilltop above Palma's bay. Much of Mallorca's most dramatic times are linked to the Bellver castle, and you will also find Palma's historical museum here. It's a great attraction for all ages.

Visit the Bellver castle

Cuevas del Drach

cuevas del drach or dragon caves is a major tourist attraction in mallorca located in the holiday resort of porto cristo

Cuevas del Drach (Dragon Caves) is a great attraction to visit for all ages. Inside the stalagmite and stalactite caves in Porto Cristo, you will meet a true wonder of nature, along with the biggest underground lake in Europe on which an orchester will play a beautiful live concert on before you can enjoy a short ride.

Visit Cuevas del Drach

Santuari de Lluc

santuari de lluc monastery and major tourist attraction in mallorca

Santuari de Lluc is a monastery situated deep in the highest areas of the Tramuntana, in divine natural surroundings. Lluc is a great attraction for everyone, you can discover the ethnological museum, enjoy a concert by the famous child choir, visit the botanical gardens and see the holy Madonna.

Visit Santuari de Lluc

La Granja

two women wearing traditional mallorcan outfits at la granja esporles ethnological museum in mallorca

A visit to the ethnological museum of La Granja in the mountain village of Esporles takes you on an interesting journey back in time to discover how life in mallorca was for the wealthy landowners and their servants. La Granja is a museum suitable for all ages, there is plenty to see and do here for young and adults.

Visit La Granja

Sa Dragonera

sa dragonera island and nature park with much balearic wildlife

Sa Dragonera is an island and protected nature reserve just off the coast of Sant Elm, Andratx. Sa Dragonera is home to indigenious lizards that are very human-friendly, and has become a trademark of Mallorca. About on the beautiful island, you can walk along multiple trails to some of the most amazing vantage points and find ancient watchtowers from the time of pirates.

Visit Sa Dragonera island

Almudaina Palace

the almudaina palace in palma mallorca is a major tourist attraction

The royal Almudaina Palace is closely linked to multiple epochs in the history of Mallorca. The ancient palace was built as the seat for the Moorish governor back in the 10th century, and was the first building in the city of Palma as we know it today. Inside you will discover an impressive collection of ancient artifacts and artworks, along with the authentic surroundings of the palace that is now used by the royalties of Spain when visiting the island.

Visit the Almudaina Palace

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