How To Not Be a Chav in Ibiza

Ibiza is:

a) Full of druggy wreckheads and chav central?
b) A mecca for music lovers?
c) A beautiful, relaxing place?
d) The best party island in the world?
e) All of the above?

I’ve been to Ibiza four times: at 18, 22, 24 and 25. Each time I’ve wanted to cry on the way home, generally from a mixture of exhaustion and confusion, but mostly because I genuinely think Ibiza is one of the best places in the world.

It’s the atmosphere there that does it. Everyone who goes is there for a good time. They love the beaches, the blue waters, the amazing super clubs, the cool hippy markets, the day time beach parties, the boat parties and just the any reason parties. Ibiza attracts the coolest people with the warmest and most caring hedonistic attitudes to each other, but there are always a few people who end up in Ibiza when they should have gone to Kavos or Malia, or Magaluf. These people are known as chavs.

Ibiza is one of the best places in the world

Avoid the West End

These ‘chavs’ have usually watched a few too many episodes of Ibiza Uncovered. They head out to Ibiza looking for cheap booze, girls/boys, and love to flash their bits to anyone who gets a camera out. You can usually find them on a street corner having puked up on themselves from sunstroke at around 2am when you’re heading out. Thankfully, most of them have been herded up  in what’s called ‘the West End’.

As a fresh-faced 18 year old in Ibiza I didn’t know what I was doing and sadly I spent quite a bit of time here that year a bit confused as to what all the fuss about Ibiza was for. It’s where the garage clubs are, the karaoke bars, the pole dancing places and the football fans falling out of the Irish bars – you can normally see a few teenagers suckling on fish bowls out in the sun by day too.

How to Not be a Chav in Ibiza

Get out of San Antonio

I have actually stayed here on three out of my four trips, but when I go again Ibiza Town is the only area for me. San Antonio is where you’ll find the legendary bars – Cafe Del Mar, Cafe Mambo etc – but Ibiza Town has the coolest vibe, more culture and the best super clubs.

San Antonio is also by the beach so of course this is where the beach parties are at and the boat parties go from, but all I’m saying is to make sure you don’t just stay here. There’s a lot more to the island.

Steer clear of Eden, Evissa and Es Paradis

My worst memory of my four holidays to Ibiza is Eden. Please, please don’t go here. People were practically having sex in the foam and there was so much of it that when my friend slipped over she went under it. I had to use all my strength to pull her out coughing and spluttering, just before we left.

These three clubs are all together in the east of San Antonio. There’s no real reason to go there anyway unless you want to be launched into the sky on one of those slingshot things – whyyyy?

Drinking in Ibiza Town

Be nice to people

I know I probably sound like a judgmental b*%&$ in this article, but I’m only trying to help. When the chavs are ready to go home they’ll be starting to fight and shouting out football anthems in the street to play up because they’re tired, you know the sort. When they’re all tucked up in bed it’s time for the true Ibiza spirit to come out and at the beach parties and in the cool clubs like Amnesia and Privilege people are actually really nice to each other so you should be too.

Go to DC10

DC10 is without a doubt the best club in Ibiza. It’s the worker’s club so it’s only the insiders and the real music fans that know about it. It’s smaller than Space, Privilege and Amnesia and has an amazing outdoor space so you can party under the sun. It’s under the airport flight path and so when planes go over everyone goes mental. They have an amazing soundsystem and the inside is air conditioned to the max so you can cool down on the plush sofas. Ticket and drink prices are cheaper than the other clubs too – make sure you go for the Monday day party.

My brother bought me a flight for my 25th birthday and we went for the DC10 closing party in October. It. Was. Incredible.

The coolest club in Ibiza DC10

Top tips for Ibiza

Watch the sun come up outside Café Mambo. Ok, bit of a cliché, but for good reason. When I watched it last they timed it to Requiem for a Dream perfectly. We sat drinking red wine out of a carton and watched the sun go down for over an hour, it was amazing.

Explore the island. As I’ve said don’t just stick to San Antonio, go to Ibiza Town, go to Atlantis and hire a car to explore the rest of the island too. I’d love to make the most of the yoga retreats one day too…

Ibiza is soooo expensive. The clubs need to make their money back on drink because so many people are on drugs. Think, £10 for a bottle of water and £12 for a proper drink. Club prices vary from around £25 and up. If you hire a car and have a Des then there is a big car park culture where everyone drinks at their cars before, during and after, which can save a lot of cash.

Don’t go scuba diving. Bit of a random one, but one year it was a friend’s birthday and we decided to have a few drinks and go for a dive. I’m sure my eyes were bleeding by the end of it. I don’t remember actually seeing a fish: there was so much sun tan lotion pollution in the water nothing could’ve survived in there. Including us. Worst place for scuba diving ever, lots of fun though!

Go with someone who’s been before. If possible. Ibiza is one crazy place and to eat at the best places, go for the best boat parties and know the tricks of the island when it comes to the clubs and parties it helps to have a guide. I’m free this summer: #justsaying.

How to not be a chav in Ibiza

There’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that the Spanish island of Ibiza is still one of the top clubbing destinations in Europe and probably the wider world. Ever since the 1960s, party-goers have been flocking to its sun-drenched shores in the summer months, crowding the clubs and bars of Ibiza Town and watching the sunsets at Café del Mar.

Recent years, however, have seen Ibiza holidays through operators such as Thomson concentrate more on what else the island has to offer. Ibiza has managed to reinvent itself as a family holiday island, as well as attracting the more culturally-minded visitor. This has been more successful than you may think, as the island’s forested, rocky landscape, lesser-known beaches and old-world atmosphere have always been there for those who knew where to find them.

There are sights to be seen everywhere you look, providing you steer clear of the evening mayhem around resorts such as northern San Antonio and the lower portion of the capital Ibiza Town. The Medieval city of Dalt Vila, which still stands worlds apart from the thronging harbour, has seen ancient Romans, Phoenicians and Moors come and go, way before the tourist scene kicked in. Along with the island’s underwater marvels, it’s now part of a UNESCO World Heritage site and the towering cathedral, twisting alleyways and still-sturdy walls make it easy to see why.

Natural wonders are in plentiful supply in the north of the island too; dramatic caves at Cova d’es Culleram, Ses Fontanelles  and Can Marca are all located a short distance away from the bustling beaches at San Antonio but offer glimpses of prehistoric artwork, religious artefacts and unmissable cliff views. Take a boat ride out to the uninhabited outcrop Es Vedra to see the place said to have inspired legends from the sirens of Homer to the lost city of Atlantis. If you’re into hiking, the inland pine forests and coastal trails should keep you happy for weeks, passing watchtowers and climbing crags in the north and dipping into valleys in the south.

Scenery in Ibiza

Of course, when you leave behind your party shoes and really explore Ibiza, you’re most likely to find the highly-sought secret beaches. Western Cala Tarida may have its share of hotels due to the perfect white sands here, but there are also rugged coves usually only populated by locals. Even the smaller resort towns here such as Cala Vadella are popular with families for good reason; shallow, impossibly blue waters dotted with sail boats and oozing the calm atmosphere you’d never have associated with Ibiza before coming. Just a quick drive out of Ibiza Town will also get you to the secluded paradise of S’Estanyol, with its pebbled shore and underwater caverns.

There are literally hundreds of ways you can escape the typical Ibiza holidays. Tour quiet inland villages such as San Rafael and San José with their white-washed farmhouses and laid-back style to see how locals really live here, taste authentic Balearic cuisine at places such as Bar Costa in Santa Gertrudis, one of the island’s oldest bars, pick up bargains from the covered stalls which line the old streets in Ibiza Town or visit the proudly-named “hippy” market in San Juan, Las Dalias.

However you find it, there’s a unique Ibiza experience for anyone willing to club a little less, be a little more adventurous and get up a little earlier.


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  1. by Chrystal McKay on April 29, 2012  12:46 pm Reply

    I only recently learned what a Chav is. It is such a distinctly British word and I heard it a few times before realizing that I actually had NO IDEA what the joke was. I had it explained to me like the sad un-savvy slanger that I am. haha. On another note - I've never even considered Ibiza as a destination I'd want to visit because of the reputation it has; Chav's everywhere. So now I might give it a chance if I'm ever in the region.

    • by Vicky on April 29, 2012  5:18 pm Reply

      Ah, Ibiza is amazing! You need to go, definitely. As long as you stay out of the chavvy West End you'll be fine. That's the bit they always show on the TV programmes and is what gives Ibiza a bad name. It's such a beautiful island and big on peace and yoga too!

  2. by Arianwen on April 29, 2012  4:28 pm Reply

    Nice informative post Vicky! I agree with Chrystal. I always avoided Ibiza because I'd grouped it together with the usual chav destinations. After an 18 to 30 holiday in Gran Canaria on leaving school, I decided to put those days behind me! But you might have just convinced me to check it out sometime. One question though: are there any karaoke bars in the nice end of town?

    • by Vicky on April 29, 2012  5:20 pm Reply

      Thanks Ari :) Yeah, when I went when I was 18 it was like one of those 18-30 holidays, eugh. It's easy to get the wrong impression of Ibiza, especially if you go on a package holiday there. Haha to karaoke – didn't know you were a singer?! We'll have to hit up Lucky Voice one day. There might be a bar in Ibiza Town, but I'm not sure. Possible gap in the market?

  3. by Simon on August 28, 2012  9:08 am Reply

    Yes! I do like Ibiza but top tips there. DC10 got shut down as soon as we arrived. We walked in went to the bar and then the police came in and shut it down for drugs on the premises. People were running around throwing drugs on the floor...

    I say a top tip is to avoid the clubs they are promoting on the beach. The neon raves, foam parties, pimps and hoes parties...etc etc chavs flock to these...Might as well go to malaga or kos if u follow suit.

    We were in san antonio as someone arranged it...horrible little place. Once we escaped it was amazing.. I think Pacha deserves a mention...Maybe popular but a brilliant night and venue and the chavs steer clear for some reason...

    • by Dayal Hurkoo on May 3, 2019  12:05 am Reply

      Yes pacha is were I had my best night when I went to ibiza my mates never fancied it ( Think they went to the west end) but i had a fantastic night and remember it was full of Spanish people.

  4. by Simon on September 25, 2012  5:55 am Reply

    I loved my time in Ibiza - and while there was a lot of chavs there it's not as bad as Tenerife! I'll never go back there again.

    • by Vicky on September 28, 2012  1:34 pm Reply

      Ah yeah I think Tenerife is well-known as a chav capital. Was there not even any nice bits?

  5. by Alan on August 7, 2013  10:01 pm Reply

    Totally agree about your posts, I've been 3 times and the west end is shocking, I'd think twice before going to amnesia aswell, always far to busy thanks to it being over sold, the steroid wearing vest bunch from the west end seem to have taken over cream on a Thursday so I'd deffo avoid that the most.

  6. by giorgio on April 19, 2016  10:28 am Reply

    Love the title of this article. I am going tomorrow (off season) so hopefully I won't bump into any crazy chav :))

    • by Vicky on April 20, 2016  8:15 pm Reply

      Haha, stay away from the West End!

  7. by Rocco on March 10, 2017  7:53 am Reply

    The whole island needs to sink into the med...

    • by Vicky on March 15, 2017  6:30 pm Reply

      Yikes. You're not a fan then?!

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