Ibiza's Resorts Reviewed

Lively Ibiza - What are the Best Party & Clubbing Resorts?

In this article, we review Ibiza's three main resorts - we'll try to give you a flavour of each one, we hope this helps when choosing your next summer holiday.

Holiday Beach

Ibiza's Top 3 Party Resorts Reviewed.

The holiday resorts in Ibiza come in many shapes and sizes, some are sophisticated and buzzing with dance-til-dawn superclubs, and others are relaxed and family-flavoured, with chilled-out beaches, picture-postcard blue seas, shimmering sunsets and secret sandy coves.

To compare the UK's top tour operators - check out our review Top 4 UK Package Holiday Providers.

This article highlights three of our favourite 'Young & Lively' party resorts - read on to discover more.

1. San Antonio - for young & lively party peeps

San Antonio town (or Sant Antoni de Portmany) is the second largest and one of the liveliest resorts on the island. San Antonio is exciting, vibrant and great for shopping, beach-bar-hopping and all-night partying - it's also a good base for a bit of cultural sightseeing, especially in nearby Ibiza Town (just 20 mins away by car). San Antonio is ideally located and sits on a beautiful stretch of western shoreline, renowned for spectacular sunsets and relaxing beaches - the resort is also recognised as a gateway for young international pleasure-seekers and serious party-goers.

There are two sides to the San Antonio Bay area, with this stretch of coast offering the best of both worlds. There's a good choice of relaxing family beaches, family hotels and self catering apartments dotted around the bay's coastline, with the quieter southern part of the bay offering quality accommodation - suitable for both families and couples. The island's lively Party Capital is ideally located in the centre of the resort. San Antonio town is located to the north of the bay and first started life as a small fishing village - now San Antonio Town has a thriving club scene, which has become a mecca for top DJs and superclubs.

San Antonio's Beaches: Close to San Antonio Town (and south of the Bay) is a string of tranquil sandy coves to enjoy. Within 5-8 miles of the resort centre, there are several good alternative beaches, such as Cala Bassa and Cala Conta, which can easily be reached by car, bus and all-day ferry services from the Marina. These alternative beaches are ideal for relaxing, swimming and sunbathing, with plenty of bars and waterfront restaurants nearby.

The main beach in San Antonio town is the lively (500-metre long) Platja de S’Arenal - which runs parallel to the beautiful tree-lined promenade central to the resort. The beach has a laid-back and lively feel and is generally uncrowded - perfect for relaxation and recuperation. However, mid-summer can get busy, especially near the beach bars. Many people tend to spend the whole day at S'Arenal, with its views of the Bay, plenty of inviting loungers, numerous water sports options and a young, fun-loving crowd enjoying the many beach bars and restaurants that line the promenade.

San Antonio's nightlife is centred around the West End and Sunset Strip. The West End is one long strip of lively bars, restaurants and shops. Sunset Strip is located on the seafront on the west side of town and is bustling with chill-out clubs, restaurants and café bars, it's a great place to chill with a few drinks, enjoy a meal and watch the sunset. The famous Sunset Cafes are perfect for pre-club hangouts and include big names such as Café Savannah, Cafe del Mar (Ibiza's most famous cocktail sunset café), Cafe Mambo (ambient beats) and Kanya Beach Bar. These iconic bars and cafes are where you'll find the island's top DJs playing chill-out vibes before moving to the clubs. For further information on Ibiza, check out the Holiday4 Ibiza Restort Guide.

2. Playa d'en Bossa - grown up partying

Known as a Balearic party paradise, Playa d'en Bossa is a purpose-built resort set beside a long curve of beautiful southern shoreline - there are many reasons to holiday in Platja d'en Bossa - here are just a few.

  • The resort is a good all-rounder with a grown-up party vibe and sophisticated nightlife. It's also home to some of the world's most iconic clubs, including the world-famous open-air venue Ushuaïa and the elegant Hï Ibiza, with cutting-edge electronic dance music, featuring star DJs & VIP hospitality.
  • Playa d'en Bossa is located just a 10-minute drive from the many delights of Ibiza Town.
  • On average, the summer sun shines (ten hours a day) on Playa d'en Bossa beach (the island's prettiest, widest and longest). The 3km long beach is lined with legendary bars, clubs, restaurants and hotels. The resort is also the starting point for several exciting cruise parties.

Playa d'en Bossa Beach: The beach at Playa d'en Beach is one of our favourites and is possibly the island's best. The beach is lively with lots of chill-out space and plenty of sunbeds and parasols to hire, you'll also find boutique-style beach clubs, with their Balinese beach beds and cocktail services to enjoy. The beach is made up of fine pale sands that shelve gently into warm and calm Medditteranian seas, making the beach safe for youngsters when monitored by lifeguards. The beach is great for long relaxing barefoot walks, or if you fancy, there's an excellent choice of water-sport facilities available, including stand-up paddle boards, kayaks, scuba diving and jet ski hire.

Out & About: Playa d'en Bossa may be the most popular party resort in Ibiza; however, you can also take advantage of local and lovely scenic coastal walks (with the countryside inland being equally impressive). Top Tip: Take a relaxing stroll to the unspoilt village of Sant Jordi (San Jorge), less than a mile away, with its white-washed houses and beautiful 15th-century church.

If hiring a car, drive to Las Salinas (6 miles), where you'll find the unique Salt Pans and Natural Park near Sann Jose. Also, check out Las Salinas Beach, one of the loveliest on the island. If you're a bit of a foodie - try some simple local specialities, such as Paella de Mariscos a (tasty seafood paella), or perhaps Sofrito payés or Sofrit Pagès (meat sausage and bacon, fried in a spicy sauce).

Top Tips: Two of the Island's most iconic clubs - Eden and Es Paradis, are located opposite S’Arenal Beach in San Antonio. S’Arenal is also home to the legendary Ibiza Rocks - the official pre-party destination for super clubs, such as Amnesia (the meeting point for dedicated clubbers - from all over the world).

  • Watch out for pickpocketing on the approach to San Antonio's main beach and the strip. S’Arenal Beach is regularly cleaned by resort authorities; however during mid-summer, the beach is busy 24 hrs a day - so expect a few messy bits.
  • If you've enjoyed a night partying and fancy a quieter pace, jump on one of many ferries or take a water taxi to the smaller beaches around San Antonio Bay, good nearby beaches include Playa Xinxo (Cala de Bou), Playa Pinet, Es Pouet beach, Cala Bassa, and Port D'es Torrent beach located at the far end of the bay.
  • Visit IBIZA ROCKS in San Antonio - the most popular beachside bar/restaurant during the daytime and a popular pre-club venue at night. Ibiza Rocks is set in the grounds of a hotel and has a permanent stage set for pool parties.
  • The best way to discover the beautiful island of Ibiza is to hire a car, especially if you fancy checking out the beach and nightlife of neighbouring resorts, plus the island's many ideal snorkelling coves and/or cycle routes.
Ibiza Party

3. Ibiza Town - lively and pleasantly sophisticated

The cosmopolitan port city of Ibiza Town is located south of the island. The city has a charming blend of quaint cobbled streets, ancient buildings and vibrant nightlife - it's also renowned for its well-preserved heritage, diverse shopping, glitzy cocktail bars, plus world-beating superclubs and restaurants.

Ibiza Town is divided into 3 main areas.
(1). The vibrant harbour and Old Town - including the fortified citadel Dalt Vila. Directly below the Dalt Vila (in the shadow of its great walls) is the well-preserved and lively old fishing district - named Barrio de la Marina.
(2). The New Town - this area includes the city's main artery, the Avenue Vara de Rey, which also doubles as the main shopping district. The New Town is home to modern Barcelona-inspired tapas venues, stylish fashion boutiques and the Hard Rock Cafe. The neighbouring Plaza del Parque, is a good spot for people-watching, especially from the trendy cafes and quality restaurants that line the plaza.
(3). Next, it's the ultra-trendy and hip part of town, the Marina Botafoch. The Marina sits across from the old town and its lively harbour.

The Old Town: The Old Town is known as Dalt Vila (meaning “high town”) and is a treasure trove of rich history. This part of town is full of beautiful historic buildings, intriguing ruins, spectacular views, plus hip bars and tasty eateries. The Dalt Vila is a joy to discover, with its quaint and narrow cobbled streets that wind upwards past ancient whitewashed buildings, along Renaissance-era fortifications and ancient elevated walls.

As you climb higher the views over the city grow more stunning with each step, and at the very top, you'll find the city's 14th-century Gothic cathedral Catedral de Santa María. At the top, you'll also find the Castillo de Eivissa (Ibiza Castle), historically the seat of Ibiza's government and includes original battlements and canons. This area is also home to the Museu d’Art Contemporani d’Eivissa (the Contemporary Art Museum of Ibiza), displaying major internationally renowned artists. The museum is located in a beautifully renovated and recently extended former military building, that dates back to the 1700s.

The reward for reaching the top is the stunning panoramic views from the cathedral square, which includes the city and its beautiful coastline - to the east, you can see the trendy party resort of Playa d'en Bossa. On your way back, stop off at one of many bars or cafes near the steps of the Dalt Vila, such as S'Escalinata Bar (renowned for its cocktails and tapas) or Can d'en Parra on the Placa de Vila (for amazing paella and a cold beer), or the Croissant Show for a quick snack and great coffee.

Top Tips:
(1) The climb to the top of Dalt Vila can be steep and slippy in places, so wear grippy footwear. (2) The climb can get extremely hot mid-summer, so the best time to visit is early evening when temperatures drop and the streets are less busy. (3) If there are cruise ships in the harbour, the Dalt Vila can get super busy, so perhaps visit later when less crowded.

The Harbour & Port: Just a 2-minute walk from the centre of the Old Town is the busy port district (located at the foot of Dalt Vila). The port and promenade areas are buzzing with music bars and restaurants, both areas offer popular pre-club venues and remain colourful beacons attracting many of the island's flamboyant partygoers. (The harbour area is regarded as the main 'early evening hang-out' - to help kick start the night).

Top Tip: The old fisherman quarters is where you'll find chic boutiques, trendy restaurants and LGBT-friendly bars, particularly around the Calle de la Virgen (the street of the Virgin), located halfway between the port and the Dalt Vila's steep cobbled lanes.

The Marina: On the other side of the harbour across from the Old Town lies three stylish (super-yacht-sized) marinas. The upmarket Marina area is home to the island's finest restaurants and stylish party bars, often frequented by the rich and famous. This trendy part of Ibiza Town is home to a new exclusive shopping area, with trendy, up-market boutiques from top international fashion designers and retailers (great for a bit of luxury window-shopping).

The Marina has become a premier destination for the super-rich and offers an excellent choice of restaurants, exclusive bars, plus cabaret and pre-club party venues. Top Tip: The Marina is a great place to relax and chill, especially in one of many cafes overlooking the moorings (ideal for a bit of celebrity spotting).

The Marina is also home to the famous Pacha Nightclub and the exclusive Lío Ibiza cabaret bar and restaurant. Top Tip: Check out the Marina at night - when the sun sets the party lights are turned up, and the Marina transforms into a floating catwalk full of glitz and glamour.

Shopping: If you're into shopping, you won't be disappointed. Ibiza Town is full of high-end fashion stores, big chains, small specialist boutiques, plus interesting souvenirs and works of art shops (there is also an unusually large selection of fashionable shoe stores). The main areas for shopping include south of Av.de Bartolomeu Rosello and Vara de Rey, near the Eivissa Harbour. Other popular shopping locations include the La Marina district and the old town (Dalt Vila).

Ibiza Old Town

My Favourite Ibiza Party Resort.

All three of Ibiza's main party resorts offer great holiday party experiences, and all three have become international melting pots for dedicated music lovers and party jet setters. However, each of the above resorts has their quirky differences (along with their own) individual holiday vibe.

I'm not overly keen on staying in a hotel next to an overly active and crowded beach, if the beach is a reasonable walk or even a short bus ride away, that's fine. After partying I prefer to explore the local area, culture and history, so for me, I choose the lively and historical Ibiza Town as my favourite Ibiza destination. Ibiza Town provides the buzz, cafe culture, restaurants and interests that'll keep me occupied after I'm all partied out.

The popular resort of Playa d'en Bossa comes a very close second, it's not far from Ibiza Town, slightly easier to get around and provides a greater choice of hotel accommodation and is perhaps a bit more upmarket. So, if you enjoy long barefoot beach walks, beautiful coastal scenery and the distant sound of ambient beats drifting on the breeze, then Playa d'en Bossa is the place to be. To summarize, any of the above party resorts is virtually guaranteed to provide the lively holiday you're looking for, but for me, Ibiza Town offers just that little bit extra.

As an alternative to beautiful Ibiza, check out our Top 10 Mallorca West Coast Resorts or our review on Mallorca's lively East Coast Resorts.

Travel safe and enjoy the party!

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