A day trip to Port de Sóller on the Palma Soller train, Mallorca

The antique Palma Soller train is a great day trip from Palma to Soller in Mallorca
The antique Tren de Sóller goes from Palma to Soller, Mallorca

If you’re in Mallorca and looking for a fun, picturesque and easy day trip from Palma, it doesn’t get much better than riding the historic train from Palma to Soller.

The Palma Soller train, officially called the Tren de Sóller or the Ferrocarril de Sóller (Soller railway), is one of the most famous attractions in Mallorca. It’s an antique narrow-gauge railway that runs 27 km from the capital city, Palma, in the south, due north through the Serra de Tramuntana mountain range to the small town of Soller on the northwest side of the island.

From there, you can either stay and explore Sóller, or take the antique tram another 15 minutes’ ride to Port de Sóller, on the coast.

I visited Mallorca in November for a city break in Palma. But with time to spare, I wanted to explore some of the island’s other highlights, and riding the Palma-Soller train was top of my list.

So I grabbed a couple of friends and went for a day trip.

Palma to Soller train Pinterest pin
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History of the Palma-Soller train

The area around Sóller in the northwest of Mallorca is a fertile farming region, nicknamed the ‘Valley of Gold’ for its olive oil production and orange groves. But in the 19th century before the Tren de Sóller was built, the only way the farmers could get their produce from their farms to the markets of Palma was by mule and donkey carts through the narrow passes of the Tramuntana mountains.

Riding the train to Soller from Palma, the route passes through farmland as it heads to the mountains
Riding the train to Soller from Palma, the route passes through farmland as it heads to the mountains

That changed in 1912, when the Soller to Palma railway opened. Now the farmers were quickly and easily able to get their produce to market.

Today, of course, the olives and oranges are transported by road, and the train has become one of Mallorca’s most popular tourist attractions.

Tren de Sóller: some facts and figures

  • Age: 112 years
  • Distance: 27 km / 16.7 miles
  • Track width: 914 mm (an English yard)
  • Vertical climb: 199 metres
  • One-way journey time: about an hour
  • Number of tunnels: 13
  • Length of longest tunnel: 2,900 metres
Riding the Palma to Soller train makes for a lovely day trip from Palma
Riding the Palma to Soller train makes for a lovely day trip from Palma

How far is Soller from Palma?

As the crow flies, the distance between Sóller and Palma de Mallorca is about 23 kilometers (14 miles). If you’re driving or taking the bus between Sóller and Palma de Mallorca, the road is about 29 kilometers (18 miles). This route takes about 36 minutes.

If you want to take the Palma to Soller train (which I assume is why you’re here!) the distance is 27 km (16.7 miles) and the train tales about an hour, with a brief stop in Bunyola.

How to get from Palma to Soller by train

The Tren de Soller departs from the Ferrocarril Railway Station at the Plaza de Espana in Palma. Buy your ticket at the ticket window (they don’t accept cards so bring cash!) and then head out onto the platform, where the polished wooden train will be waiting.

Boarding the Palma Sóller train is like stepping back in time. The wood-panelled carriages are like something from another century (because that’s exactly what they are!) with gleaming brass and leather-upholstered seats. Unlike modern trains, the windows can be opened, meaning you can stick your camera out (but be careful!) to take pictures along the route.

Tourists travelling on the Palma-Soller train and looking out of the windows
Enjoying the views from the wooden train

It takes about an hour to rattle the 27 km from Palma to Soller, passing through 13 tunnels varying in length from 30 to 2,900 metres (close the windows, the tunnels are very dark and noisy!), over a 52-metre-long viaduct, and rising a vertical height of nearly 200 metres.

Along the way you’ll pass by pretty villages, plenty of olive and orange groves, and some stunning mountain scenery.

Read more: Pollensa Mallorca: A Charming Day Trip From Palma

Gorgeous views of Soller as the Palma Soller train descends towards the town
Gorgeous views of Soller as the Palma Soller train descends towards the town

As you approach Soller some of the trains make a stop at Bunyola so you can disembark and take pictures of the glorious view before descending some impressive hairpin bends into the town itself.

Once you arrive at Soller station you can grab a coffee from the platform cafe, or just take the steps down to the street and turn right towards the town centre. Here you can either get the next tram to Port de Sóller, or stay for a while, explore the town, and head to the port a bit later.

Soller railway station, Mallorca
Soller railway station, Mallorca

What to see and do in Sóller, Mallorca

Thanks to the wealth of its orange and olive farming industry, Soller became quite rich, and this shows in the beautiful Art Nouveau architecture you can see around the town. The heart of Soller is the main square – the Plaza de la Constitución, where you’ll find the magnificent Sant Bartomeu church and the Ajuntament de Sóller (Town Hall), as well as numerous bars and cafes with outside seating.

Sant Bartomeu church and the Town Hall, Sóller
Sant Bartomeu church and the Town Hall, Sóller

Running away from the Plaza are a few cute pedestrian streets with some charming gift shops, cafes and delis. Soller also has an art gallery, Can Prunera, featuring works by Kandinksy, Picasso and Warhol, the Balearic Museum of Natural Sciences (Museu Balear de Ciències Naturals) and a botanical garden.

On Saturdays there’s also a market selling local products and crafts, and if you’re there in March there’s also an orange festival to celebrate the orange harvest.

Soller has charming pedestrian shopping streets
Soller has charming pedestrian shopping streets – and hopefully it won’t rain when you’re there!

The tram from Soller to Port de Soller

The tram departs from a stop just outside the railway station; there is another stop close to the main square too. It’s very similar in style to the train: a charming piece of early 20th century engineering complete with gleaming brass and polished wood. It rumbles its way from the centre of Soller town to the port, on the hour every hour throughout the day, taking about 15 minutes.

I think it’s better to go straight to Port de Soller first, have lunch there and then see Sóller on the way back, but of course you could have lunch in Soller and then get the tram to the port afterwards. It’s completely your choice.

Riding the tram to Port de Soller
Riding the tram to Port de Soller

What to see and do in Port Sóller

Port de Soller is an extremely picturesque harbour town with a pretty marina full of small boats, and a charming promenade lined with shops and cafes.

As the tram makes its way round the waterfront you’ll be able to enjoy the view of the horseshoe-shaped harbour surrounded by the peaks of the Tramuntana mountains before getting off in the town centre.

The very pretty harbour at Port de Soller, Mallorca
The very pretty harbour at Port de Soller, Mallorca

You can then have lunch at one of the relaxed harbourside cafes before exploring the rest of the town.

A wander along to the far end of the port takes you to a set of steps leading up the hill. At the top you’ll find two viewpoints very close together: one looking out over the harbour, the other, at Plaça de Santa Catarina, looking northwest out over the sea towards Spain.

Here you will also find the Museu de la Mar – the Museum of the Sea or maritime museum, which is housed in a former monastery and details the port’s maritime history.

During the summer, if you have time or want to stay an extra day, there are hiking trails you can follow, or boat trips from the harbour. It’s also only a 45-minute-walk back to Soller if you’d rather do that than catch the tram back – but I don’t think it’d be possible to do all of this in a day, so this is probably only something to consider if you plan to stay overnight in Sóller or Port de Sóller.

Boats moored in the marina at Port de Sóller
Boats moored in the marina at Port de Sóller

A day trip from Palma to Port de Soller: suggested itinerary

The train leaves Palma at 10.30 am and takes an hour to get to Soller. When you arrive at 11.30, walk out of the station and turn right to head down the hill into the town centre.

You could have a wander and get lunch in Soller, but my recommendation would be to have a quick look round and maybe grab a coffee, before getting the 12 pm tram down to Port de Soller (Puerto Sóller).  

Catching the return tram in Port de Soller
Catching the return tram in Port de Soller

You can then have lunch by the harbour where there are loads of restaurants and cafes to choose from. I had an extremely nice sandwich and chips at Bar Albatros, which was possibly a bit overpriced but the food was good and so was the location!

Harbourside lunch after getting the train to Port de Soller
My harbourside lunch in Port de Soller

After lunch, you can explore Port de Soller for an hour or so before getting the 2.30 pm tram back to Soller.

Then you have a bit more time to explore Soller’s cute pedestrian streets, shops and cafes, before getting the return train at 5 pm, bringing you back to central Palma around 6 pm.

Escaping from the rain with tea and cake in a cute cafe in Soller
Escaping from the rain with tea and cake in a cute cafe in Soller

There isn’t an enormous amount do to in either place which is why you can easily manage both in a day trip from Palma. For me that was quite enough to get a feel for the place, take some photos, enjoy the scenery, and see another part of Mallorca apart from Palma.

You need to pay attention to timings and not get too distracted because there are a limited number of trains and trams and missing the last one of either would be a bit of a pain, but if you stick to this schedule it works perfectly.

Port de Soller is really chilled and lovely, especially in the sunshine!
Port de Soller is really chilled and lovely, especially in the sunshine!

Timetable for the train from Palma to Soller

There’s only one Palma-Soller train a day, which leaves at 10.30 am. The return train back from Soller to Palma is at 5 pm – so that gives you about five hours to explore the village of Soller and the Port.

(If you happen to be already in Soller you can also do this journey in the opposite direction, leaving from Soller to Palma at 09.00, and returning from Palma to Soller at 18.00).

Note that the train does not run at all between mid-December and the end of January as it is closed for maintenance.

Here is the Palma to Soller Train timetable (correct at time of writing). Times can and do change, especially between winter and summer, so it’s worth checking before you travel.

The Ferrocarril de Soller Train timetable
Another photo of the Palma to Soller vintage train
Another photo of the Palma to Soller vintage train

Soller to Puerto Sóller tram timetable

Trams depart from Soller to the port every hour between 8 am and 7 pm.

The same tram goes back the other way on the half hour, so 8.30 am to 7.30 pm.

The journey time is about 15 minutes. There’s a reduced service in the winter so if you’re there between October and March it’s best to double check this.

Here is the Soller tram schedule (correct at time of writing):

Mallorca vintage tram timetable
The Soller to Port de Soller tram timetable
The Soller to Port de Soller tram timetable

How much is the Palma train to Soller?

  • A one-way ticket from Palma to Soller (or vice versa) costs €20.
  • If you want to get the train both ways, a return journey costs €28.
  • A one-way ticket on the tram from Soller to Port de Soller costs €9, making the cost of a single ticket all the way from Palma to Port de Soller €29.
  • A combination return ticket on both train and tram costs €35.

Important note: the ticket widow does not accept cards (but there is a branch of Santander with a cashpoint about two minutes’ walk away if you need cash).

Another option is to go there on the train and then get the bus back from Port de Soller to Palma (the number 204 bus is quicker than the train, taking just 35 minutes, and costing €2 – €4).

We ended up opting for the combination return because it seemed simplest.

A side street and the tram lines in Soller
A side street and the tram lines in Soller

Is the train from Palma to Soller worth it?

I really enjoyed my day trip to Soller on the Mallorca vintage train. While it is much more expensive than the bus, it was a fun way to travel and we saw some lovely scenery on the way.

Despite the arrival of the rain, it was a really interesting day out and a great way to see a bit more of the island, especially if you don’t have a car.

However, my favourite part of the trip was actually spending time in Soller and Port de Soller, so if you’re trying to save money (and time!), I’d recommend getting the bus instead, and using the money you’ve saved to treat yourself to a slap-up lunch by the waterfront in Port de Soller.

I enjoyed my day trip to Soller from Palma!
I enjoyed my day trip to Soller from Palma!

Where to stay in Soller and Port de Soller

If do decide to stay the night in Soller or Port de Soller, here are some good options for places to stay.

BUDGET: Hostel Sóller: This trendy hostel offers a lively atmosphere with simply furnished dorms and private rooms. It has a patio, a bar, and a guest kitchen. Perfect for social travelers looking for a comfortable and affordable stay.

MIDRANGE: Can Moragues de Sóller: This charming bed and breakfast is located in a restored 17th-century townhouse in the heart of Sóller. It offers comfortable rooms, a lovely garden, and a delicious breakfast. Great for a relaxing and authentic Mallorcan experience.

LUXURY: Jumeirah Port Soller Hotel & Spa: This luxurious hotel is located on the beachfront in Port de Sóller. It offers stunning sea views, spacious and elegant rooms, a world-class spa, and several restaurants. Ideal for a pampered and unforgettable stay.

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My favourite travel tools and brands

To help you organise your trip, here’s a short list of some of the brands and tools I use over and over again when I’m planning my travels. You can see more on my Travel Resources page.

  • A huge range of hotels to choose from, often with free cancellation. If you book hotels regularly you can earn discounts. I’m on Genius Level 3 which gets me 20% off!
  • Expedia: Another great place to find hotels and Expedia also sell flights, car hire, and loads more all in one place.
  • Skyscanner: The only place I ever go to search for flights and compare prices.
  • Flight Centre: Booking a more complicated route? Let Flight Centre organise it for you (and deal with the drama when something goes wrong).
  • Priority Pass: I love having access to 1,400+ airport lounges when I fly, allowing me to enjoy my time at the airport. With my link you get 30% off a standard membership or 20% off standard plus.
  • Airalo: Say goodbye to ridiculous mobile roaming charges. Did you know you can now buy an e-SIM, install it in your phone before you leave home, and then use data abroad at local prices? Game changer.
  • TourRadar: If you prefer group travel and organised tours, TourRadar has a huge range of fantastic tours from respected operators. They’re very helpful and have 4.5 stars on TrustPilot.
  • Viator: Part of the TripAdvisor brand, Viator is another great place to search for group adventures and day trips.
  • GetYourGuide: A great place to find local tours and day trips in your destination.
  • Wex Photo Video: The UK’s best camera gear store. Quote my name – Bella Falk – to get £20 off your first purchase.
  • Ellis Brigham: Looking for good quality backpacks, travel clothes and other gear? Ellis Brigham is where I buy almost all of mine.
  • Part of the family and the world’s largest online car rental service, with 24/7 customer service.
  • World Nomads Travel Insurance: I never ever travel without travel insurance and nor should you!

Read more Mallorca posts!

Or if you’re looking for inspiration, why not try some of my other Europe posts?

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