The big seaplane event known as Splash In returns to the calm waters of Puerto Pollensa on 20th March this year. It's a celebration of the area's hydroaviation history which dates back to around 1920 and features seaplanes old and new doing just what they're best at – taking off and 'landing' on water.
As you can imagine on an island surrounded by water, the seaplane option was an economic alternative to comparatively expensive landing strips for normal planes and the first regular service linked Mallorca and Barcelona in the 20's.
Soon after, the military recognised the advantages of hydroaviation and built a base just along the coast from Puerto Pollensa which still exists to this day.
Over the last decade or so the Mallorcan Aeronautical Foundation (photos) has held the seaplane splash in intermittently at Puerto Pollensa, some years yes and some years no. However this year they've given the event a little added impetus by renaming it after one of the grand old seaplane events of the pioneering days of air travel.
The 2020 splash in will now be called the Copa Schneider Siglo XXI after the Schneider Trophy, a competition held from 1913 for seaplanes and flying boats. Named after the French financier and flying enthusiast who promoted it, the renaming is sure to give added 'cachet' to the event.
One of the aims of the foundation is to promote more use of seaplanes in the civil aviation sector and I for one hope they succeed because there's a certain air of glamour – think Howard Hughes and his pencil line moustache – in seaplane travel, though I don't think we'll ever sea the Spruce Goose in Puerto Pollensa.