Banys Arabs (Arab Baths), Palma
Baths in Palma
Mallorca’s history is a tapestry woven by various civilizations, with the Romans, Byzantines, and Arabs taking turns settling on the island before the arrival of the Catalans. During the Arab era, Mallorca was known as Medina Mayurqa, and the locals had a penchant for bathing. To fulfill this desire, they ingeniously repurposed materials left behind by the Romans and Byzantines, fashioning their baths, known as hammams, by incorporating old column fragments and capitals. Thus, a bathhouse emerged from these recycled elements.
The craftsmanship of the Arab builders was impressive, as evidenced by the longevity of these baths, which are now more than a millennium old. While one might not guarantee the state of the plumbing, the building materials have stood the test of time, albeit perhaps showing some signs of wear. Among the surviving elements, the hot room and warm room of the Arab Baths still stand proudly, although the cold room has succumbed to the ravages of time.
The hot room, a square chamber, boasts a remarkable design featuring 12 columns and a domed ceiling adorned with a barrel vault. To ensure comfort and ventilation, the room includes 24 carefully placed holes, while the dome incorporates five openings to welcome both light and fresh air. Adjacent to the baths lies a charming, well-maintained garden, graced by a jasmine-covered archway and an array of subtropical trees and plants, making it an ideal spot for a leisurely afternoon.
These historic Arab Baths are conveniently located just a short stroll away from the Palma Cathedral, offering easy access for visitors. They welcome guests from 9 am to 6 pm during the winter months and extend their hours until 7:30 pm from April through November, providing ample opportunities to explore this fascinating piece of Mallorca’s history.
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Visiting Banys Arabs (Arab Baths), Palma
From April to November, opening hours are from 9:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
From December to March, opening hours are from 9:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.