This bustling town laid the foundations for factories and paved the way for industrial revolution here in Mallorca.
Tucked away, just off the MA13, one can spot the outskirts of Inca. As the third largest town here on the island, Inca has played a pivotal role in Mallorca’s industrial development. Famed for its fabulous leather products, which are available island wide, Inca has well and truly planted itself on the map as one of Mallorca’s hot spots.
Getting There #
One of the greatest things about Inca is its accessibility. Whether you choose to travel by rail or road, you can guarantee your journey will only take around half an hour from Palma city centre. Apart from its direct motorway connection, Inca’s railway operates a regular service, and the A32 bus that runs from Palma to Port de Pollença also makes regular stops. Although not the most eye catching or elegant of destinations in Mallorca, Inca is enclosed by rolling hills and craggy mountains, allowing for some fabulous cycle trails too!
This particular town is steeped in eclectic and interesting history. The earliest inhabitants were of Islamic descent and are rumoured to have settled in the town long before the arrival of the Romans. Very little can be found from this period, although the remains of certain systems that were installed to help manage the flow of water in the town (almost like small viaducts) are still present today.
Developing as a community, Inca began making a name for itself as a producer of fine wine. Many bodegas and vineyards were set up throughout the town, and its outskirts, and wine was supplied across the island. Sadly, a devastating blow struck the town during the 19th century as a plague of phylloxera destroyed this blossoming industry.
Despite facing devastation, the people of Inca chose to adapt their skills, and focus on their production of leather goods. The art of tanning and preparing the hides into some of the finest bags, shoes, coats and purses has taken years to perfect - and production is still booming today! You only need to meander through the streets for a few moments to see why Inca is often referred to as ‘The City of Leather’- if its top quality, individual products that you want, then Inca won’t disappoint!
To learn more, check out our article on Mallorca Shoes.
Local Sights #
Inca is an interesting town, in the sense that it really does look quite dull and unattractive; especially when its neighbouring towns of Lloseta and Selva possess so much beauty, it’s a little like two Cinderellas with one ugly sister! However, there is some stunning architecture on display, notably the impressive Church of Santa Maria Maggiore. This baroque style building, dating back to the 18th century, towers over the square and stands proudly at the heart of the town. The juxtaposition of such intricate architecture against modern housing has an endearing charm all of its own.
There are a few Baroque style buildings that adorn the streets of Inca, mainly other convents or churches- all beautiful in their own right, but not quite as exquisite as the Church of Santa Maria.
Unlike many of the popular towns here in a Mallorca, Inca doesn’t boast to have a beautiful beach or hill side location, so it really does rely on its compelling history of crafts to entice the visitors. One of the most popular attractions here is the leather museum. Open every day, and all year round, this large museum is home to some of the finest leather products on the island. From affordable to ‘HOW MUCH?!’ these hand crafted goods are undeniably beautiful. The museum explains and demonstrates every element of the leather crafting process, and is a must when visiting Inca! Entry is free, and how much you spend is up to you…
Food & Drink #
Inca is bursting at the seams with great places to eat and drink, but if it’s traditional food at affordable prices that tickles your fancy, then Restaurante Canyamel will tick all of your boxes! Located just outside of the town centre, this well-established restaurant has been serving up some of Mallorca’s finest dishes for a number of years. Open 6 days a week from 1-4pm, Restaurante Canyamel serves only at lunchtime, and is incredibly popular with locals and tourists alike. Booking is advisable, as by 2pm there will be queues trailing all the way down the street! At just €11 per person for the menú del día (including a drink) this really is one of Mallorca’s most affordable eateries.
16 Calle Jaime, Inca 07300
Tel: 971 50 75 72
Although everyone enjoys a buffet, we also can’t deny that many of us like to sample a few of the finer things in life… perhaps a little local cuisine that comes with a slightly larger price tag - yet delivers a taste sensation that is hard to forget. If you’re reading this thinking that all sounds great, then Santi Taura is a must on your visit to Inca!
Santi Taura is a family run restaurant that is tucked away in the sleepy village of Lloseta, just a short 10 minute drive from the centre of Inca. Each day a ‘surprise’ set menu is offered - customers pay €42 per person and are treated to 6 stunning dishes, consisting of the best local products that are available each season. The service is intimate and personal, and although the setting is not as glamorous or elaborate as other restaurants on the island, the food is simply the star of the show! An average evening meal for 2 people (including alcohol and soft drinks) will set you back around €130 - and although not so affordable for a regular trip out, it certainly makes for a fabulous dining experience (once in a while)!
48 Calle Juan Carlos, Lloseta 07360
Tel: 656 73 82 14
Shopping and Markets #
Inca is one of just a few towns here on the island that benefits from both an indoor and an outdoor market. Every Thursday the streets are illuminated with rows and rows of fresh fruit and vegetable stalls, hand crafted products (leather of course) and more pastries than you could dare to dream about! This market is a huge tourist attraction during the summer months, and many tour operators offer a shuttle bus service into the centre of the town, so that all holiday makers can enjoy this fine display of Mallorquin produce!
If you fancy a more contemporary shopping experience - or maybe you simply prefer purses to potatoes, then the indoor market has something for you! A variety of boutiques and independent clothing stores, you can guarantee you’ll find some unique and interesting items!
Fiestas & Annual Highlights #
One of the largest celebrations in Inca is the Dijous Bo fiesta. Taking place on the 15th November, this autumn fair is a fun filled day for the entire family! Translating (from Catalan) as ‘Good Thursday’, this spectacular day can see up to 200,000 people lining the streets of Inca, partaking in fairground games, food, drink and dancing. It really is a sight to behold! Although the main celebrations are held on the Thursday, for days before and after (its Spain, we love to party!) local competitions and games are held throughout the town! Residents from all over the island travel to celebrate Dijous Bo - why don’t you join them!
Living in Inca #
Residing in Inca is remarkably affordable, which may seem surprising considering the size of the town. However, in this case, Inca’s inland location benefits buyers, as prices are significantly reduced in comparison to its coastal cousins (Alcudia) and Can Picafort
Property mainly consists of apartment style living, unless you choose to look further afield in Selva and Lloset, where fincas are the property of choice. Purchasing in Inca will cost you around €185-200.000, and this price would secure you a three-bed, two-bathroom apartment. As mentioned before, Inca is not the most attractive of towns, and this is reflected in the architecture of the properties where many buildings are comprised of simple, yet spacious, apartments. Although the outside of the property may not be as endearing as rustic finca, its practicality, central location and spacious interior means that you certainly get your money’s worth!
Rental prices are also affordable, for a similar property (three bedrooms, two bathrooms) you can expect to pay somewhere in the region of €550-700 per month (excluding bills). In comparison to other large towns, and especially those with such fabulous transport systems, Inca makes big town living very affordable!
Charm factor #
Combining city living with rural prices - Inca might not exactly be beautiful, but it has everything you need, and more.
By Zoé Holmes
22 July, 2021