The first human settlements in the area of Calvià came from navigators from the Orient who lived in natural caverns and caves. Up todate 56 archaeological deposits from the pretalayotic and talayotic periods, which serve to show the footprints of these first settlers
Antique History (3500 BC - 900 AD)
Of its Roman Age, which lasted from the year 123 BC. until the IV century, no important remains exist. There are only a very limited amount of archaeological testimonies, of which the most outstanding is the remains of a Roman villa in the area of Santa Ponsa known as Sa Mesquida. When the Byzantine general Flavius Belisarius ordered the conquest of our archipelago in the year 534, this marked the end of the period Vandal of which there are not many traces left of this period of history.
The Middle Ages (IV - XV)
During the period of Musulman occupation it formed part of the administrative section of Juz'd Ahwaz al-Madina and, in the conquest by the Catalonians, the zone played an important role. In the case of Santa Ponça, a coastal nucleus which at the moment is part of the municipality of Calvià, in the year 1229, the troops from Catalonia and from Aragon captained by the King Jaume I the conquerer, landed in Majorca and in this way changed the destiny of the island. Tradition claims that the stone which is conserved in the chapel of the sacred stone 'capilla de la Pedra Santa' in this touristic area, served as the altar for the celebration of the first Mass in honour of the King's squadron. After the conquest, the nucleus of Calvià was created, at the beginning only a settlement with very few homes but that became a village in the year 1285.
From the Renaissance to the Age of Enlightenment (XVI - XVIII)
Agriculture was the only occupation of the people. In spite of its long coastline, the population spent most of their time with their backs to the sea trying to get crops out of land that was dry and not very fertile. In the XVIII century, an obstinate drought and a poor cereal harvest in the lands of this municipality caused a long period of famine. During the XVIII century Calvià suffered the consequences of this long drought, with famine and illnesses that isolated the population. The result of this was that many of its inhabitants immigrated during the XIX century, mainly to Cuba, France and Argentina.
The Modern Age (XVIII - XX)
Petty tyrany from the one-man owners of the large estates on the labour force deeply affected the lands belonging to the municipality of Calvià throughout the second half of the XIX century and beginnings of the XX century. In the middle of the XX, as from the 1960 decade, Calvià experimented the development of tourism, which motivated an accelerated growth in the building and leisure industry. The effort of the town to slow down this disproportionate growth was eventually rewarded when they were given the European award for Urban Sustainability in the year 1997.
Calvià is to be found on the occidental side of the island of Mallorca, next to the Sierra de Tramontana. The land that can be put to good use is very limited, geographically speaking, as it is a peninsular with various humid zones both to the east and to the west (salty earth of of Magalluf, of Palmanova and that of Santa Ponsa) which in a way are the cause of a narrowing similar to an isthmus which closes to the north.
The Town Hall is situated in the entrance of the village. It was inaugurated in the year 1989 and was a project by the architects Rafael Balaguer and Jaime Vidal, who united modern elements of construction popular with tradicional Majorcan ones, such as the roof tiles, the 'marés' a whitish type of large brick, or the local stone, all very practical and of a modern vanguard design.
Places of interest
Calvià has the parish church of San Juan Bautista which was erected in the year 1248 in honour of Saint John the Baptist. This beautiful church consists of one central nave, with five chapels with an arch that are dedicated to distinct saints.
To see some interesting facts about its demography and others such as its population please, click here.
The Instituto Municipal de Educación y Bibliotecas de Calvià (IMEB) is a local organism of an adminustrative character and which offers various services. Its mission is to conduct and manage directly all to do with materials in education and libraries.
The motorway autovía Ma-1 o Autovía of Poniente (Autovia de Ponent in Catalan) is the most important route of communication that unites different urban areas with Palma de Mallorca and Andratx. This main motorway runs through the municipality and divides it into two very different zones. The northern part is rural and agricultural and the southern part touristic and urban. The distance by road from the town of Calvià to the centre of Palma is about 20 km.
Sports and Entertainment
The three municipal departments catering in this area are, Sa Societat, the Sala Palmanova and the Casal de Peguera. These form part of the Asociación de Teatros y Auditorios Públicos de les Illes Balears (ATAPIB) and of the Circuito de Artes Escénicas del Consell de Mallorca.
The locality welcomes every year at the winning post the latest cycling races, which last a day, with trophies for profesional cyclists known as the Challenge Vuelta a Mallorca, which in the month of February inaugurates the cycling season in Spain, it is known as Trofeo Calvià.
Amongst the variety of services offered by the Área Municipal de Deportes, there are nine sports installations, five profesional golf courses, and five ports with sports activities. The most important sport entity of the municipality is the C. D. Calviá, which was founded before the Civil War, although it was as from 1950 when the football team was formed. In the month of December the marathon is celebrated, organized by the Asociación Deportiva de Atletismo de Calvià (ADA Calvià).
For the practice of this sport in particular, the municipality of Calvià has five excellent installations: Golf Santa Ponsa I, Golf Santa Ponsa II, Golf Santa Ponsa III, Real Golf de Bendinat and Club de Golf de Poniente.
These festivities are in honour of Saint Anthony and Saint Sebastian which are celebrated on the 17th for Antonio Abad and the 20th of January for Saint Sebastian. An enormous bonfire is lit next to the church, and a rag doll is burnt which represents a devil; smaller bonfires are lit in the surrounding areas where the people roast the typical Majorcan food, similar in form to sausages, called butifarrones and sobrasada. There is evidence that this tradition has been celebrated since the year 1524, year in which the plague did not affect the village, apparently thanks to Saint Sebastian.
The 24th of June a festival is celebrated in honour of Saint John the Baptist, the patron saint of the municipality. In the village, respect is paid to the elderly, with a Mass and the performance of folkloric dances. Then the older people of the village are invited to a glass of almond ice-cream with ensaimada. This celebration has been going on since the decade of the 1950.
Calvià is the municipality of Mallorca that most change and development has been seen in its streets since the touristic boom commenced in the middle of the last century. Calvià has changed from being an area whose economic activity was based on activities relationed to the land and livestock, to a concentration of activities all to do with tourism. Calvià has changed from being a place unknown to the world to being a place that is much loved and internationally famous. The inversion and economic development is obvious to the eye and predictable in every nook and cranny of its eighteen localities.