Formentera ...... the Magic of the Island a personal perspective as seen by John Astbury

Formentera has a distinctive outline dominated by the wild and imposing Cap de Barbaria in the south west, the majestic cultivated plateau of La Mola in the east, the long peninsula of Es Trocadores reaching towards S’Espalmador and Ibiza to the north and the rugged, but beautiful, western ‘Ponent’ coast, encompassing the lovely inlet of Cala Saona.

This dramatic coastline encompasses majestic cliffs rising out of the sea which has forged deep caves in their base whilst protective lighthouses stand guard above.

The long, white sandy beaches are speckled with welcoming chiringitos (beach bars) offering refreshing drinks and delicious tapas.

Quiet coves give shelter to the fishing boats nestling on their slipways. The warm waters of the Mediterranean envelop Formentera and invite you to swim or snorkel during the sun-drenched days of your holiday. Inland, the landscape is a patchwork of fertile fields divided by dry stone walls and interspersed with pine woods and vineyards.

A web of country lanes covers the island, leading past windmills, sheep and goats sheltering in the shade of spreading fig trees, ancient watch towers or white fincas with slate roofs, their walls blanketed in the magic colours of flaming bougainvillea.

And always, wherever you venture, the sea is always close by, offering its sweet breath of ozone to mix with the heady scent of pine, rosemary and wild thyme which abounds in the countryside to produce the characteristic and delightful aromas of Formentera.

The wonderful colours of Formentera are an awesome reflection of the natural beauty that is displayed in the countryside, on the sea and in the skies above. An endless range of blue, turquoise and green hues emanate from the warm sea with its white fringed waves lapping the soft, pink, coral-encrusted golden sand. The deep blue of the sky by day gives way to flaming red sunsets followed by night skies studded with silver stars.

To experience a sunset from the Mirador restaurant on the winding road up to La Mola with the spectacular view of the island below, when the blazing sun sinks into the blue sea beyond the mythical rock of Es Vedra at the tip of Ibiza, is a unique spectacle matched only by witnessing its re-emergence the following morning out of the deep waters beyond La Mola, as the halo of spinning light from the Faro is slowly overwhelmed by the bright sunlight of the new day.