Pol·lèntia

Top choice in Alcúdia

Ranging over a sizeable (but walkable) area, the fascinating ruins of the Roman town of Pol·lèntia lie just outside Alcúdia's walls. Founded around 70 BCE, it was Rome's principal city in Mallorca and is the most important archaeological site on the island. Pol·lèntia reached its apogee in the 1st and 2nd centuries CE and covered up to 20 hectares – its sheer geographical spread (most of it not excavated) suggest it was a city of some scale and substance.

In the northwest corner of the site is the Sa Portella residential area – with the foundations, broken pillars and remains of the walls of domus (houses) separated by two streets. The best-preserved of the houses is the Casa dels Dos Tresors (House of the Two Treasures), a typical Roman house, centred on an atrium, which stood from the 1st to the 5th centuries CE. The 14.4cm bronze head of a young girl was found in the Casa del Cap de Bronze (House of the Bronze Head) nearby. A short stroll away are the remnants of the Forum, which boasted three temples and rows of tabernae (shops). Finally, you can walk another few hundred metres to reach the fascinating 1st-century-CE Teatre Romà (Roman Theatre), which seems to be returning into the rock from which it was hewn. The semi-circular orchestra at the front and the cavea (where spectators were seated) still survive. It wasn't until the late 19th century that the remains were identified as being a theatre. The theatre alone, with a diameter of 75m and a former capacity of around 1000 spectators, is worth the entrance fee.

Visitors are free to wander among the ruins.