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Attractions and Amenities
The tiny hamlet of Orient is part of the municipal district of Bunyola, which is situated on the southern slopes of the Sierra de Tramuntana Mountain ranges, approximately 14km or 9 miles north west of the capital Palma. The few travel guides that mention Orient, often refer to the village as being "small and secluded", however, perhaps many donít actually realise just how small it really is. The local council estimate the resident population of Orient to be just 33 people, making it possibly one of the smallest villages on the island.
As you would expect Orient, and the surrounding area of Bunyola, doesn't as yet feature in any of the major tour operators brochures, and since public transport here from the Son Sant Joan airport just isn't really a practical option, anyone considering a holiday here must make provision to either collect a hire car from the airport, or make the transfer into the town by one of the many taxis that will be waiting outside the arrivals hall.
For those visitors who do prefer to make the short trip by car, in preference to a taxi transfer, the main C711 road will take you as far north as Buyola, before continuing through the Sierra de Tramuntana mountains on its way to Soller. From the centre of Bunyola, you'll then need to take the narrow PM210 for the final few miles into Orient. This road passes through what is considered by many, to be one of the most beautiful areas of Majorca, although from experience I sincerely doubt if the driver of the car will fully appreciate it at the time.
The first recognisable landmark that you will see on approaching the village, will be the local Church of Sant Jordi, which although isnít really that impressive, some parts do date back to the early 18th Century, and in keeping with the traditional way of life here, is a working church that does tend to form the heart of the local community.
If you haven't hired a car for the duration of your stay here in Orient, you could end up being very isolated from the rest of civilisation. The nearest town of any size is Bunyola, which is a 6km walk away along the valley. However, once you've arrived in Bunyola, the Tren de Soller is then a very convenient way of either getting to the capital Palma, or travelling north through the Sierra de Tramuntana into Soller. The train makes a stop in Bunyola several times each day, and both tourists and locals alike have been making this journey now for the past 90 years in the vintage brass and mahogany carriages that are a trademark of this train, whilst admiring the breathtaking scenery enroute.
All thing considered, the village of Orient appears to have remained almost untouched by the outside world for decades, and if all youíve ever seen of Majorca is the high rise tourist developments along the south coast of the island, you may be somewhat surprised to discover that places such as this still exist in the 21st Century.
So who would find a holiday here appealing? Certainly not children or young teens, who would be hopelessly bored within 15 minutes of arriving in the village, however, middle aged couples or those in search of solitude, and a little peace and quiet, may find Orient a real hidden gem.
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