Pretty and mid-way between vile...
"Small, tidy and not a tower block hotel in sight."
This town, directly east of Manacor at the centre of the east coast of Mallorca, is a fairly decent surprise. On the other side of Mallorca to Palma, it's about an hour and a bit drive away from the airport. This was the nearest town to the resort I stayed in for my week on the island. It was luck more than design that got me here, but after seeing the larger more touristy resorts such as Cales de Mallorca or Cala Millor (hiss, spit), I was glad we'd ended up bang in between them. Hence, mid-way between 'vile'.
A few km away at Cala Mendia (or Mandia, depending on the mood of the person spelling it), is where we stayed in the Blau Punta Reina Resort. Looking it up on the internet, we actually thought that the resort was in Porto Cristo, so ended up with a bit of a confused drive back and forth through the town before finally finding a place to park and race into the tourist info for a map and directions. Of course when I say 'park', I mean to stop the car completely illegally on a pedestrian area, shove on the emergency lights and force non-Spanish speaking Andrew off to the nearest tourist information centre while I sit sheepishly in the car wondering if I can get away with pretending I speak no Spanish whatsoever when the Police come... 'Me Foreign. Me no understand big sign of car with line through... Honest Senor'.
"Things to do in Port Cristo, hmm..."
There ain't a whole lot to do in Porto Cristo to be honest. There's a nice enough church, a pretty harbour front and even a small sandy beach, requisite sun loungers and umbrellas installed of course. A few decent enough restaurants, geared for tourists primarily overlook the harbour or if you fancy a quick bite of the fast food variety, there are anonymous tourist cafes and a Burger King.
The town might make a decent daytrip away from the crowds of the larger resorts as there aren't any of the massive tower blocks lining the sea front. A walk through the slim streets takes you through typical late 19th or early 20th century architecture, that is, fairly anonymous, nothing amazing but quaint enough.
In fairness, most people will be here for one thing and if they come on a tour bus, they might not even make it to the town itself. Las Cuevas del Drach are a series of caves containing one of the largest subterranean lakes in the world - apparently - a km or so south of Porto Cristo. These rival a number of other sets of caves along the eastern seaboard of the island including some near Arta. In fairness, you've seen one, you've pretty much seen them all from what I can tell, so if you've seen the caves nearer Arta, I'm not sure these would be worth a special trip.
The whole trip to Mallorca was a bit of a lesson in 'Don't always listen to The Guide Book' and Porto Cristo was a case in point. It gets barely a mention in RG, yet you could easily lose a day in Porto Cristo, wandering the caves, checking out the town's backstreets or taking a walk around the harbour. Decent enough beaches lie at a couple of points south, before Cales de Mallorca. Just don't expect to find anything totally extraordinary and don't expect to be the only tourist in town. We went with few expectations and found it pleasant enough, even managing to get lost and find ourselves on a rocky outcrop with a great view of the bay and harbour, yachts bobbing away. For a coastal town in this part of Mallorca, this is about as good as it gets.