What do you know about Ibiza, apart from that it’s got incredible beaches and is a mecca for DJs, go-go dancers, ravers and celebrities? We’ve put together 8 fascinating facts about Ibiza, the largest of the Pityusic Islands (Ibiza and Formentera), which we bet you didn’t know.
The world’s largest club
Ibiza is famous for its clubs, but did you know it’s home to the largest in the world? With a main room the size of an aircraft hangar, a 25-meter high ceiling and a swimming pool, Privilege holds 10.000 people. It was here, back in 1987 when the club was called Ku, that Freddy Mercury and Montserrat Caballé shot the legendary video for the song Barcelona, played at the 1992 Olympic Games.
Salt seasoned with history
You know the salt you see in those little pale turquoise ceramic pots everywhere? It comes from Ibiza’s Las Salinas salt flats which have been in use for over 2,700 years! Today, the Parque Natural de Ses Salines is one of Ibiza’s don’t-miss attractions.
This Pityusic island’s marina boasts the expensive moorings in Europe, more expensive even than Portofino or Capri in Italy. The Ibiza Magna marina has just 82 moorings, a dozen of which are reserved for yachts over 60 metres in length. To rent one can set you back as much as 4,000€ per day. Fun fact: for the price of a mooring in Ibiza Magna you could rent a three-bedroom flat in central Ibiza for 42 years!
A breed apart
Ibizans are genetically different from the rest of the Spanish people. According to recent scientific studies, the island’s modern-day population is descended from a small number who survived the famine caused by the Franco-Ottoman attack in the 16th century and the bubonic plague epidemic in the 17th. This explains why many of the population are blood relatives and why 21% bear one of the island-specific surnames, such as Torres or Marí.
The crème de la crème
The list of celebrities who come to hang out on Ibiza each summer is as long as your arm. From Andrea Casiraghi, eldest son of Caroline of Monaco, to American singers Katy Perry and Christina Aguilera, to footballers like Thibaut Courtois and Mauricio Pochettino, model Irina Shayk and Leonardo di Caprio.
UNESCO World Heritage
Ibiza has four UNESCO World Heritage Sites: the Phoenician settlement of Sa Caleta, the Necropolis of Puig des Molins, the Dalt Vila area in the Ibizan capital, and Posidonia oceanica.
The Phoenician settlement of Sa Caleta in the Sant Josep de sa Talaia district is the islands’ oldest urban area and was home to Ibiza’s first settlers, the Phoenicians. They were the first to use the Necropolis of Puig des Molins and it was still in use as a cemetery a century later when the Carthaginians arrived. Interestingly, in the 3,000 underground tombs that have been excavated, as well as human remains objects like armaments, coins, ceramics and religious imagery were found.
Not far from Puig des Molins lies the acropolis of Dalt Vila, that ancient city that sits high above the port and crowns the city of Ibiza. It is thought to be the best-preserved coastal fortress in the Mediterranean.
Posidonia oceanica is a marine plant which carpets the Mediterranean seabed and provides food and shelter for innumerable species of sea creatures. It generates more oxygen than a terrestrial forest and is the main cause of marine oxygenation and the sea’s transparency.
Lizards with denominación de origen
Did you know the Pityusic Islands of Ibiza and Formentera have their own species of lizard? The Ibiza Wall Lizard (Podarcis pityusensis) is endemic to these islands, with some 30 subspecies whose colouring ranges from an almost turquoise blue-green to dark brown. Ibiza’s Wall Lizards have a black line running along the spine, another down each flank, a grey tail and a belly that is milky white, yellow or even orange. You’re sure to see them basking in the sun, enjoying the great Balearic weather.
The most expensive restaurant in the world
Ibiza also boasts the most expensive restaurant in the world: Sublimotion, located in the Hard Rock Hotel Ibiza. If you’ve got 1,650€ in your wallet–which if you can afford to tie up your yacht in Ibiza Magna will be small change to you–why not treat yourself to a meal at this restaurant presided over by chef Paco Roncero. This is more than just dinner though, it’s a three-hour gastronomic and audio-visual experience that you’ll share with just 11 other diners. Obviously, on Instagram you can show the experience off to the entire world ;)
So you see, there’s a whole lot more to this island than the clichés. Have you got an Ibizan secret to share? Come and discover it (all over again)!