I caught the bus from the centre of Palma. The road to Lluc winds up through a landscape of terraced allotments and wooded slopes, to a height of 500 metres above sea level. Here the austere, honey-coloured Sanctuary with its delicate pink rooftiles dominates a natural basin surrounded by majestic peaks.
The imposing exterior is softened by the lush greenery of the valley, the whispering elm trees and the ancient oaks. Lluc exudes an atmosphere of deep spirituality. The rocks and the trees, the hidden groves and caves, the old pilgrim path and the splashing of springs touch deep wells of longing in the modern visitor.
On entering its doorways I was met by wide, light corridors, reminiscent of a Renaissance palace. Here you will find the general office where you can, if you wish, book your bed for the night. You may be allocated a room in the hostelry which forms part of the inner courtyard, or perhaps the old converted stables will be your resting place. My room was within the monastery itself, a simple space consisting of a desk, a bed, a bathroom, cool tiled floors and the simplicity that the monastic life encourages.