Started by a couple of hippies from Germany who arrived over 40 years ago, Piratabus is one of the Formentera’s oldest bars and one that still manages to retain plenty of its seventies island vibe. Originally a bus (hence the name) its now a wooden beach hut located on the sand dunes of Mitjorn. As well and cold beer and outstanding mojitos, it serves up some excellent tapas that can be gobbled down while enjoying some great music and spectacular sunsets.
Another off-the-beaten-track chiringuito, Kiosko 62 is located at the other end of Mitjorn beach and shares the friendly and super-chill mood of Piratabus. You can almost dangle your toes into the crystal-clear water while supping back a cold one at this popular and reasonably-priced beachfront bar. Don’t leave without trying their speciality – the pomada – a refreshingly simple mix of Balearic gin and cloudy lemonade.
Gecko Beach Club
Just along the beach from Kiosko 62, but a world apart is the super-swish Gecko Beach Club. Dubbed “barefoot luxury” by its owners, expect the well-heeled, the jet-set, and the occasional A-list (certain Dicaprio once dropped in) to be lounging around custom-designed loungers ordering expertly-mixed cocktails. Why not join them and splurge on a canopied day-bed and enjoy the sunset in style?
Gecko Hotel & Beach Club, Ca Mari, Playa Migjorn, 07860
With a peace sign on its roof that can be seen from the air, this quirky bar also features a resident alien mascot and galactic-themed decor. Expect a blissed-out mix of reggae, ambient, and jazz music from live DJs as well as regular – and rather bizarre – extra-terrestrial performances. Set on the dunes overlooking Mitjorn beach, it can also claim some gorgeous sunsets and rumours abound that the likes of Dylan kicked back here in the sixties.
While principally a restaurant (and a fine one at that), Chezz Gerdi is also one of the finest places on the island to sink a sundowner or two. A playfully-decorated chill-out area provides a great spot for exploring their impressive cocktail menu – the Green Tea Gin is a highlight – and if the mood takes you stay for their delicious traditional Italian-inspired cooking. To find it look out for the rooftop VW camper van just on the outskirts of Es Pujols.
Chezz Gerdi, Camí s’Abeuradeta, 40-45, 07860 Es Pujols
Overlooking Es Cavall d´En Borras beach and surrounded by dunes and pine forest, the setting of Beso Beach is certainly a huge draw. Its rustic-chic vibe provides the perfect backdrop to sitting on the terrace, sand between toes, sipping on a cocktail, and watching the sun sink into the Mediterranean. Fusing Mediterranean and Basque cooking, the food’s not bad either, and as night falls things have been known to get a little lively (for Formentera at least!).
Flipper & Chiller
Owned by famous Spanish porn star Nacho Vidal, this mixes up lipstick pink decor with Balearic whitewash and driftwood touches to striking effect. There’s a decent selection of innovative cocktails, plus the on-site restaurant offers a surprisingly long list of wines to wash down the seafood-leaning cuisine. But its the swanky rooftop terrace that steals the show, offering 360-degree panoramas over its Mitjorn beach setting and – surprise surprise – some spectacular sunset views.
Flipper & Chiller, Carretera Migjorn, km. 11, 07872 El Pilar