Lucy Symons visits Can Marti and finds it a peaceful spot, just perfect for a self-catering escape in quiet, rural, north Ibiza.
In a nutshell:
A beautiful, authentic and organic farmhouse in a quiet and idyllic spot in the unspoilt north of the island.
Rooms: 2 suites and 3 doubles
Price: Self-catering from €215/night
Meals: Onsite shop (organic groceries); restaurants close by in St Joan/Portinatx village
Open: year round
Facilities: Babies and Children welcome; Yoga; Good for Birdwatching; Beaches nearby
Good for Green: Walkers & Cyclists Welcome; Natural Swimming Pool; Owners grow & sell own organic fruit & vegetables in permaculture garden; Get there by bus (owners will pick up from nearby St Joan/Portinatx village)
Lucy's Review of Can Marti:
The Setting: In the North of the Island of Ibiza, just inland from the port town of Portitxol you will find the family run agriturismo: Can Marti. This tiny oasis is a ten-minute walk from the nearest village, Sant Joan and located in the very heart of the Área Natural de Es Amunts, yet close to the fabulous beaches notched into the rugged coast line in tiny bays covered with white sands. Ibiza has a reputation as a scantily clad party town, with the garish parade of dance clubs and bars of St Antonio haunting most lasting impressions, but don’t be put off! The rest of the island is a terrific place – tiny villages and rich agricultural land. The island’s salt plains (Las Salinas) assured the island of independence and self-sustaining industry long before the mad parties started in the 70’s. It is a perfect place for a family holiday, as long as you stay away from strip with its hen parties and stag dos.
The Rooms: The original farmhouse and surrounding out buildings at Can Marti have been thoughtfully converted in to five separate self-catering apartments each with their own style. Sleeping from 2 people in the studio, Algarrobo, to five people comfortably accommodated in the slightly more remote loft apartment Granado, each place is totally self-contained and has a private outside area, as well as use of the shared space in the farmland surrounding.
The Food: A great deal of what is available for sale in the on-site honesty shop is grown on the land itself – the farm is largely self-sufficient, so you can find pretty much everything you need here as the family raises its own livestock as well as growing organic fruit, vegetables and crops all year round for sale to their punters and also many outside restaurants, including lemons, grapes, strawberries, beans, tomatoes, potatoes, saffron, almonds, olives and carrots. They have their own vineyards and herbs are available in the cleverly designed permaculture garden for you to pick as you need them, although the saffron is highly prized and rather heavily guarded. Figs and almonds also grown in abundance and you can find homemade jams and marmalades for sale. On the shelves of the shop you’ll also find free range eggs from the resident chickens (who have their own dedicated yurt to live in!) as well as legumes, cereals, organic wines and an assortment of fair trade products. Including chocolate. You really could live quite happily on what you can find in the shop or pick yourself, but the local town of St Joan also has a weekly market (Sunday) and several good restaurants and bars.
Activities: Enjoy a dip in the stunning natural pool - it was the first in Ibiza. If you yearn to explore the coast, there are some gorgeous beaches within a few minutes drive. Yoga and pilates are taught locally, you can hire horses, go kayaking, do some diving and there is local museum if you crave some culture. Visit the Punic tombs and see the ceramics found in the nearby cave of Es Cuieram, which was one of the Carthaginians' most important places of worship. Local operator 'Walking Ibiza' has regular guided walking tours (Wednesday and Friday) of the lesser known corners of the Island and can include you in a group of mostly international residents, although everyone is welcome (43 walkers when I went in mid April). They will show you places you wouldn’t necessarily find on your own, explaining about native flora and fauna as you stroll. The endlessly fascinating Sheila can even be talked in to giving your group a private guided tour and prevailed upon to provide a delicious picnic for you to devour at the end of your trek.
The Green: As well as growing their own food, the farm is run on the principle of permaculture, reflecting their dedication to finding a responsible way to interact with the environment and protect nature. Sustainable on all levels, they generate their own solar energy through photovoltaic cells and solar panels, which produce more than 50% of the electricity and 85% of the hot water consumed in the agroturismo. (and strangely discouraged by the Spanish government – undaunted, the family have successfully managed this feat). They have also installed a complex, natural system of wastewater treatment. It includes various mechanisms and a series of ponds with aquatic plants that filter the water and allow reuse for trees irrigation. In addition rainwater is collected in a traditional cistern and used to water the orchards and other crops. Tom explained that the old ways are possibly the best ways when it comes to living symbiotically at Can Marti.
Getting to Can Marti the low carbon way: It's possible to reach Can Marti by public transport from the UK. See our guide to London to Ibiza by train and ferry. Once you've arrive in Ibiza, hop on the 400 bus to Sant Joan/Portinatx and the owners are happy to collect guests in the village. During your stay at Can Marti, you can use the local buses (nb. there are no trains on the island at all).
Top Tip: Grab yourself a bottle of Tom’s organic and homegrown and pressed olive oil – quite the most delicious thing you will ever dunk your bread in.
Verdict: Can Marti is perfect for an escape. In such a tranquil place you can’t quite believe you are in Ibiza if your impression of Ibiza is a really busy, noisy place – come here and see a completely alternative side to the island. When I stayed the wifi was a bit patchy, but maybe this is a message to switch everything off and just be in the moment – pick some figs, commune with the ducks, geese and donkeys and relax by the pool, watching the dragonflies swoop across the glassy surface to the song sung by the native frogs.
Email Tom: firstname.lastname@example.org or call him on: +34 971 33 35 00.
Mention 'Green Traveller' when you book and receive a bottle of Tom's excellent olive oil during your stay!