Plan your trip
Iberia flies from Joburg to Ibiza (via Madrid) for around R12 000 return (iberia.com). It’s cheaper during the week, with lowest fares often on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. The low-cost Aquabus between Ibiza Town and Formentera is R232 one way, R450 return (R300 if same day). aquabusferryboats.com
NEED TO KNOW
South Africans need a Schengen visa to visit Spain. It costs R964 (sa.blsspainvisa.com). The island gets busy in the peak summer season, July and August, but the weather stays balmy well into October. To cut costs, look for Groupon specials in Ibiza and Formentera (groupon.es).
I would avoid Es Pujols, the island’s bling side, on the north coast. Cut costs by staying in self-catering accommodation. Vivienda Bohemia, overlooking the Estany des Peix near Sant Francesc Xavier, is a typical old island house sleeping four. Around R2 400 per night. airbnb.com
Residence Can Confort has five budget studios, sleeping two each, 250 metres from the sea near Playa de Migjorn. R1 083 per night. airbnb.com
Fonda Pepe in Sant Ferran is known for its traditional paella, served in pans for two. My grilled calamari with garlic aïoli and bread cost R260. Find it on Facebook.
Café del Lago
is five minutes’ walk from the ferry stop in La Savina. It’s glamorous and pricey, with a terrace next to the Estany des Peix, and serves fresh juices, pizzas, cocktails and fine seafood dishes. cafedellago.es
Visit Formentera Guitars. It’s open from 10am until 9.30pm, with a break for siesta, of course. Ekki (pictured right, inset) offers a make-your-own-guitar course (next up: 27 December to 14 January, R37 300 for three weeks all-inclusive). The guitar festival (entry free) is in September. formentera-guitars.com
Listen to live music. Ekki recommends going to SaPanxa in Sant Ferran, a performance venue, bar and raw-food restaurant. For what’s on, see sapanxa.com (it’s in Spanish but you’ll get the gist).
Enjoy the blue, blue sea. Charter the yacht Gran Blau for a day to visit the best beaches, go snorkelling and enjoy sunset. R1 550 pp (minimum four people, maximum eight). formenteradesdelmar.com
You may get better prices by shopping around at the port. Explore the island. Bicycle rental is around R105 (plus R150 deposit) and scooters about R460. Or see it on horseback, going through the less-travelled landscapes on a guided outing. From R775 pp. rutasesboixet.com Visit the La Mola Hippie Market. It’s been going since the 1960s, and runs on Sundays and Wednesdays, 4pm to 10pm, May to October. Stock up on the local goat’s cheese and honey.