Balearic Islands trip research via Twitter

I’m still in Los Angeles, a break between travels, as I write this. But I’ve been thinking about the places I’d like to head to next. A writer acquaintance living in Minorca, got me thinking about heading there, to the Balearic Islands of which Minorca’s a part.

I don’t normally do much research into a place before I go. I like to discover as I go. But this time I’m using  more “social media” and see what kind of relationships I can form before I go anywhere.

In this post, I shall share all good or interesting information that I find on Twitter. Why? Because I’m curious as to what can be found using Twitter as a research tool. Using TweetDeck as my Twitter client, I created several columns, each its own hashtag search.

One is a search for #Mallorca as it’s the largest island in this group of islands. Mostly there are mentions of people’s holidays and photos of them enjoying themselves. There was also a ballgame. But I’m looking for the stuff that will help me travel there, get to know the place and the people. Here’s what I discovered from it so far, going back 10 hours:

  • The Mallorca webcam — (@mallorcawebcam)
    [It’s in Spanish so this is the result of Google Translate:] This webcam is a window from which you can observe what happens in Palma de Mallorca and its port or bay. You can see if it’s sunny, if it rains, if it is cloudy or if it is daytime or getting dark. On this terrace, you can also enjoy the arrival of the ships to port in Palma. The most splendid Mediterranean cruise ships adjust their routes in order to make a visit to our paradise island of Mallorca. [Added Nov 2, 2013]
    Oh!… while you’re on this page, watch the 24 hour time lapse of this area, hosted on Vimeo.
  • And that led to many other webcams in the area: [Added Nov 2, 2013]
  • Someone posted a link to a Travel + Leisure article that appeared on Yahoo! Travel: Twitter-themed beach hotel opens in Mallorca, Spain. [Added Nov 2, 2013]
  • Someone posted that he went from Palma de Mallorca to Leeds on Ryan Air. OK, that tells me one potential airline I can fly. [Added Nov 2, 2013]
  • Someone posted a link to “The caves de Artá in Mallorca,” which I’d not yet heard of. He says the one he’d showed someone was 22m high and that it’s a magnificent cave system. This was a great find. Not that I wouldn’t find it in every guidebook as well. From the name, I’d hoped they were caves full of cave paintings, but they’re not; they are natural caverns.
  • Someone posted: “try to get a slot for Mont Tremblant at Mallorca 70.3 then back there in Sep to try for a Kona 15 slot…” I don’t know what that means or if it has a significance. Maybe he was flying from Canada to Mallorca.
  • There are also various mentions of hotels. That could be an alternative to searching hotel sites.
  • A car company posted an ariel photo of some of Mallorca’s twisting roads, asking “What car would you most like to take around these roads? Caterham R500 Superlight?” Now I know it’s hills or mountains, and that walking may be a challenge if I need to go over those roads, and that it will have beautiful hiking.

Another search is for #Balearic Islands. There is less for this so I am going back a few days worth of posts.

  • Posts about hotels by the hotels.
  • Posts about property for sale
  • A link to a so-called list of Historical Sights for Sightseeing, but it’s really an apartment rental web page.
  • Posts by a diving company, so now I know there is SCUBA diving, if I didn’t know that already.
  • Storm reports such as “6cm of rain in 30 minutes. Storms and flash# floods in Balearic Islands, Spain” and “Weather warning Balearic Islands – North winds 22-27 kn” from October 31. The day before someone wrote: “As you see here, it´s been raining hard in the Balearic islands today. Seems summer is definitely over…” and “satellite photo shows large area of thunderstorm clouds over the Balearic Islands (NASA/GSFC).”
  • A post that says “Balearic Islands dive & film the seabed Cabrera Park” tells me there’s diving, of course.
  • Al Jazeera English @AJEnglish posts that schools in the Balearic Islands must introduce a trilingual system and that people aren’t happy about that. That’s culturally relevant and good to known.
  • Marina de Bonaire @MarinadeBonaire posts that there are moorings available. Maybe that’s not a surprise given the weather there. But helpful may be the hashtags used in that post which are #Majorca #Balearic #Islands #Mediterranean #Sailing & #Yatching

And one for #Sailing, which hasn’t helped with the Mediterranean yet.

I’ll keep checking in on TweetDeck to see what else I can find.

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