Located right in central Ibiza is the gorgeous village of Santa Gertrudis, the island’s culinary capital and its quaint town square. Santa Gertrudis has both a well-settled and international feel, making it an easy place to feel at home. Many of its stores are owned by Dutch creatives and the world-class restaurants cater to vegans, red-meat lovers, the culinary curious and omnivores. There’s also wine tasting to be enjoyed with SOMM or at the original Ibizan vineyard, Ibizkus. There are plenty of luxury Ibizan apartments to rent in the village, or seek refuge in accommodation just outside the village in the nearby hills.
Santa Gertrudis is surrounded by the island’s lush countryside. Agrotourism in Ibiza is growing in popularity and it’s common now to find organic produce on menus and market shelves. Exquisitely restored fincas and farmhouses now house restaurants or have been converted into luxury villas for you to enjoy. One thing is for sure, whether it’s the food of the farmyards, getting a taste for central island life is easy.
The San Juan Road in Ibiza’s centre has become known as the island’s restaurant road. Drive along it and you’ll pass the temple of Bambuddha, and the entrances to Nagai, A Mi Manera and Balafia. Closer to Port de Sant Miquel you’ll find the famous Aubergine, which is on most visitor’s wish.
Just a short drive from Santa Gertrudis, La Paloma is run by an Israeli-Italian family. The Mediterranean menu, with hints of Middle Eastern and even North African flavours honours both of their heritages. Some of the produce comes from the organic garden they nurture on site.
For the red-blooded, you can find the Ibizan restaurant Can Pilot by following the smoky aroma of charred meat; they prepare all kinds of cuts. Similarly the Restaurante Cami de Balafia, on the San Juan Road, is a meat lover’s paradise. They’re specialty is grilling on hot coals – the lamb chops are famously good – and all the mains are served with a simple tomato salad and chips.
Luckily for the vegans, Wild Beets in Santa Gertrudis village creates raw and vegan dishes that rival any health cafe in the world. The plant-based menu, chic interior and incredible presentation makes it a very photogenic meal, and the extensive dessert menu arrives at the table like edible art. Can Guimo towards the north of the island also serves incredible vegan options and colourful juices if you’re after something fresh.
Just behind Wild Beets is the ultra-trendy SOMM wine shop, where knowledgeable sommeliers will point you in the direction of a fantastic bottle for any occasion. SOMM also hosts tastings and supplies many of the island’s best restaurants. A great place to stop if you’re wanting to enjoy a crisp glass of something special at home in your villa.
Café Macao in Santa Gertrudis specialises in Italian food, and Bar Costa in the central town square is a well-known island institution, serving bocadillos (sandwiches) and drinks. Check out the curated art selection on the walls inside.
Aubergine Ibiza, possibly one of the island’s best-known restaurants, prepares dishes made with ingredients sourced from the Ibizan countryside. Their farm-to-table creations are infused with authentic Spanish flavours and influences from Middle Eastern cuisine. It’s a truly refined culinary experience, and you can even arrive by yacht.
Bambuddha opens its doors for the summer season and is a noteworthy MediterrAsian concept restaurant. Multiple courses come exquisitely plated while you sip on something from their lush cocktail list. They also have the signature Ibizan DJs with dinner. Almost next door is Nagai, a sushi-fusion restaurant with a creative take on Japanese food.
After something simple? The building that is now Ses Escoles used to be a primary school. The menu centres around their in-house olive oil, which you can of course take home with you. You’ll find sharing platters, grilled meats and fresh market produce from the island.
With an older sister restaurant on Formentera, at A Mi Manera you can dine under the glow of fairy lights in the leafy garden. They serve Mediterranean food with antipasti, tapas, and Italian pasta dishes. The main courses are mostly cooked on the grill. The vegetable patch that supplies the restaurant is at the bottom of the garden. You can wander down there with your glass of wine and admire the green fingers of the staff.
In another garden enclosed by stone walls is the oasis of the Las Dos Lunas. The tables at this traditional Mediterranean restaurant sit under bougainvillaea branches and this restaurant also grows ingredients in their own garden. They also have a wood-fired oven where they bake their breads daily.
Towards Port de Sant Miguel you’ll find La Luna Nell’ Orto. The setting is charming, the service is great and people often find themselves there more than once in a trip.
In and around the centre of Ibiza there are plenty of hiking trails and mountain bike routes. Increasing numbers of yoga studios and creative ventures are opening on the island as it leans into its reputation as a wellness destination. You can also visit the farms and vineyards that keep the island’s restaurants well stocked.
Visiting the Terra Masia organic farm is like stumbling into Ibiza’s Garden of Eden.
On their expansive property they grow biodynamic veggies, fruit and herbs as well as delicate edible flowers and free-range eggs. You can stock your kitchen and pick up boxes of organic fruit and veg at the Terra Masia shop, as well as enjoy the rural atmosphere of the place while the animals graze. Kids can even hunt for chicken eggs and feed the sheep and pigs. Terra Masia also serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, served with organic wines and made with ingredients they grow and in the summer they do pop-up farm-to-table dinners with a line-up of guest chefs.
Want to taste the nectar of the island? Ibizkus Wines is Ibiza’s best-known winery and hosts formal wine tastings with their five Ibizkus wines, three of which are their famous Ibizan rosés.
You can choose to enjoy the wines paired with Spanish meats and cheeses, or table snacks like olives and almonds.
The quirky interior concept store Sluiz Ibiza is just beyond Santa Gertrudis centre. It looks very eccentric from the outside – multicoloured life-sized cows hang from the trees – and, you’ll see when you get inside, Sluiz is certainly not shy of bold colours. Their fun, inhouse fashion label is a collection of bold, printed and patterned materials. Sluiz also hosts live music and food stalls.
Spend a whole day or more in Santa Gertrudis, one of Ibiza’s loveliest villages. Situated in the very centre of the island, this village is easy to access from Ibiza Town and Santa Eulalia, and is also just a quick trip away from some of the island’s best beaches.
The main plaza is a delightful white-washed square, built around an 18th century church. As well as its famed bars and restaurants, Santa Gertrudis plays host to a number of fashion boutiques, craft stores and interior design spaces. Staying here really makes you feel part of an established and warm community as it lulls you with some traditional village life.
The family-run eatery Numero 74 L’Atelier in Santa Gertrudis offers creative workshops, which they’ll bring to your villa in cool airstream campers should you want a private ceramic, macrame or book-binding class.