The Best Ice Cream in Palma & Mallorca

Where can you find the best ice cream in Palma? There are plenty of ice cream shops. Picking the best ice cream shop in Mallorca isn’t easy and is very subjective, like everything in life. But we’ll give it a try. We’ll also share some quirky stories about how the first handmade ice cream on Mallorca made its way from the mountains to the table.

best ice cream in palma

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In this post, we focus on ice cream shops in Mallorca that make their own ice cream and have a lot of history and tradition. Our criteria are as follows:

  • They offer unique ice cream
  • The ice cream is made traditionally
  • And it tastes good

Since circumstances can change quickly and we can’t try every ice cream everywhere (although we’re very commited), feel free to share your current experiences in the comments below.

A Look Back: Ice Cream in Mallorca 100 Years Ago

Mallorca has always been hot in the summer. Even in the past, people knew that the best way to beat the heat was with something cool. But before electricity and freezers, this was a bit more challenging. However, that didn’t mean there was no ice cream. It was just a bit more complicated.

Wait, ice cream in Mallorca without freezers? It wasn’t so unusual back then for the Tramuntana Mountains to get heavy snowfall, leading to a business with the cold commodity, first mentioned in writing in 1564. There were about 40 cases de neu (snow houses) in the mountains. Today, you can discover the ruins of some of these on hikes.

As soon as it started snowing, the nevaters (snow collectors) would head to small stone houses and shovel the snow into the snow houses. They would pack each layer by stomping on it before adding another layer on top. To make it easier to remove the ice blocks later, each layer was separated by reeds.

Das beste Eis in Palma

To make it easier to transport the ice blocks to the city, the “nevaters” built the dry stone path Camí de Ses Voltes d’en Galileu. They would then haul carts full of ice blocks down into the valley, where eager buyers awaited. The ice blocks were initially used for medical purposes and later for making ice cream.

This traditional craft persisted until the early 20th century when the first ice factory was established in Inca. This factory could produce ice more cheaply and year-round. By that time, an ice cream tradition had already taken root among the city’s upper class.

In the mansions of the city, they started making their own almond ice cream early on. To this day, it remains the most typical ice cream flavor on the island. In restaurants, it is served with the almond cake gató. In the past, it was also served with a piece of ensaïmada or quarto de patata, a Mallorcan sponge cake. The poorer folks had to make do with less. There were no ice cream parlors until tourism arrived, but an ice cart that delivered ice blocks to the nobles also sold ice mixed with fruit juices on the street. This so-called “worker’s sorbet” was mixed with milk, lemon, and cinnamon.

The Best Ice Cream in Palma de Mallorca

In the island’s capital, there are many ice cream parlors. Finding the best ice cream in Palma is quite a task and could take a lifetime. Our testing is ongoing, mainly during the summer.

Alongside traditional ice cream parlors in Palma de Mallorca, franchise businesses have also set up shop. These franchises coexist with the traditional establishments but don’t have as many stories to tell.

Ca’n Joan De S’Aigo

Ca’n Joan De S’Aigo is a traditional café over 100 years old, with two locations in the heart of Palma’s old town. It stands out with its baroque interior and Mallorcan ambiance. Besides ice cream, it also offers delicious Mallorcan specialties like Ensaïmada and Cuartos, a sponge cake.

Joan was a man from Palma who would shovel ice into huts in the Tramuntana mountains during winter to sell ice to the people of Palma in the summer. He mixed the meltwater with fruit juices during transport, creating what is likely the first version of the ice cream we know today.

Ca'n Joan de's Aigo

The original location is at Calle Sans, 10, and is part of our scavenger hunt through Palma. Joan’s very first ice cream shop was opened at another location as early as 1700. The interior of today’s café dates back to that time.

Two additional branches can be found at Carrer Baró de Santa Maria del Sepulcre, 5 and Carrer Sindicat, 74 near the Avenidas.

Santa Clara Convent

Are there any other nuns in the world who make their own ice cream? The Poor Clares at the Santa Clara Convent in Palma’s old town are the top destination for traditional pastries and sweets. They have taken a vow of silence, and during their quiet time, they came up with the brilliant idea to sell homemade ice cream in the summer. And it’s been a hit.

The convent is also part of our scavenger hunt through Palma. If you do the tour in the summer, you can take an ice cream break there.

Gelateria Ca’n Miquel

This ice cream parlor in Mallorca was founded in 1979 and was originally located on Avenida Jaume III. Back then, as now, it was a bustling promenade and the best place to serve ice cream to passersby. Unfortunately, the indoor space was much too small, which is why the business moved to its current location at Carrer Montcades, 9.

Here, there is not only more space for visitors but also for many flavors of ice cream. Over 90 different flavors are made here, including very experimental ones like shrimp cream, Trampó, basil, and rosemary. In addition to ice cream, there are also sorbets and hot chocolate.

Gelats Paco

This ice cream parlor with various locations in Palma is a family business that has been operating for three generations. The lactose-free ice cream flavors are particularly popular. This company also operates two branches in Palma. One is located at Carrer Benet Pons i Fàbregues, 18. The second is at Carrer Blanquerna, 10.

The ice cream can be ordered in a cone, in a cup, or as a half-liter portion. The menu includes gluten-free varieties and more than 50 flavors. Particularly noteworthy are the pudding ice cream, the one with ensaïmada flavor, or cream cheese with orange.

Iceberg

This franchise business in Palma was recommended to us by one of our readers. Iceberg does not produce its own ice cream flavors but distributes, among others, the famous mint-orange ice cream from Sóller. The great location at La Llonja is an additional plus point.

The Best Ice Cream Parlor in Mallorca

Now, let’s leave the island’s capital and search for the best ice cream parlor across the entire island. Here too, there are several establishments that have made a name for themselves island-wide, if not internationally.

Heladeria Colonial in Colonia Sant Jordi

This ice cream parlor in Mallorca is our favorite in the south of the island. The Colonial is the first artisanal ice cream manufacturer in Mallorca to receive an organic certification and has been in operation since 1948. Unlike the ice cream parlors in Palma, the Colonial is not open year-round but takes a short winter break outside the summer months.

In summer, it can get quite crowded. Located near the beach, the establishment offers vegan options in addition to regular flavors. The most fun is the diet ice cream. So, really, nobody is left out here.

Helados Garrido in Alcúdia

The owners of this ice cream parlor in Mallorca are not native Mallorcans, but they have been involved in ice cream making for over 40 years. Their ice cream parlor is located in a prime location on the Paseo Marítimo of the port of Alcúdia.

What stands out here are primarily the names of the ice cream flavors. The most famous is the Spaghetti ice cream. Another branch can be found in the center of Alcúdia, in close proximity to the city gate Porta de Moll.

Gelats de Sóller

Every child’s dream: an ice cream factory. The famous ice cream is exported from Sóller across the entire island and even abroad. A must-try: the award-winning orange ice cream with mint flavor.

ice cream in Sóller

Sóller is known for oranges, so it’s no surprise that the local ice cream is made from them. The company was founded not too long ago by a German. All ice cream flavors bear the label “Fet a Sóller” – made in Sóller.

Gelats Valls in Pollença

This ice cream factory in Pollença has been producing its own ice cream since 1929. It’s especially known for using typical Mallorcan ingredients like almonds, figs, and lemons.

Heladeria Milano in Santa Ponça

As the name suggests, this ice cream parlor in Santa Ponça isn’t Mallorcan, but Italian. The ice cream is just as delicious, and the atmosphere is very welcoming.

Heladeria San Remo in Can Picafort

This ice cream parlor in Can Picafort is located right on the waterfront. One of its specialties is an ice cream that tastes like ensaïmada.

Gelateria Ca’n Nero in Andratx

In Andratx, you can also enjoy delicious ice cream. This centrally located ice cream parlor on Mallorca has been making its own flavors since 1980, all from 100% natural, local, and high-quality ingredients.

Gelats Jop, Campos

In recent years, there has been an increasing effort to bring local brands into supermarkets and hotels. That’s why it’s quite possible that during your stay on the island, you’ve already had the Jop ice cream brand in hand.

The ice cream factory in Campos was founded in 1947 and is the only major Mallorcan manufacturer of ice cream on the island. The range is very extensive. There is no standalone ice cream parlor, but you can find the ice cream in various sizes at every supermarket on the island.

If you know more than we do, or if there’s an ice cream parlor you think should definitely be included in this overview, please let us know!

Artisanal Ice Cream

An artisanal ice cream parlor typically refers to one that produces ice cream using traditional methods and high-quality ingredients. The label helados artesanos indicates that the ice cream is handmade with care and attention to detail. One way to distinguish artisanal ice cream is by its melting rate; the less air it contains, the slower it melts.

Good ice cream is characterized by its smooth texture and minimal air bubbles, resulting in a denser consistency that melts more slowly. However, this can vary somewhat during the hot summer months.

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