Menorca Holidays, Balearic Islands
The Balearics, especially Majorca and Minorca, have been one of Europe's most popular sun 'n' sand holiday destinations for ages, simply because they are cheap to get to via packaged deals, less expensive than most of Europe and enjoy a superb Mediterranean climate with plenty of sun. Some of the Mediterranean's best beaches can be found in the Balearic Islands.
Mahon harbour, Menorca, Balearics
Quiet, peaceful Minorca is a terrific beach holiday destination similar to Majorca but more discreet. i.e. it is not overrun by tequila-maddened tourists or breeze-block barracks thanks to the island's resistance mass development, but Menorca does lack Majorca's majestic hills and hikes; most Menorca walks consist of coastal trails so if it's serious walks you're after, head for Majorca.
If you like ancient ruins, Minorca is a fascinating place to explore since it is home to around 1,600 prehistoric monuments and sights.
Things to do:
Mahón*** (Maó in Catalan), Minorca's capital city is located on the east coast, with one of world's largest and deepest natural harbours protected by the imposing 19thC La Mola Fortress. Other notable sights are the Mansion House and Golden Farm, the Iglesia de Santa Maria la Major and the Xoriguer Gin Distillery.
There is also the prehistoric Trepucó settlement, with the largest and best preserved taula (a T-shaped stone monument) in the Balearics 2km away form Mahon, and Talatí de Dalt settlement, 4 km away.
A taula, built by the Talayotic people between 1000 BC and 300 BC, Menorca
The historic town of Ciutadella, on Menorca's west coast, has lively waterfront cafes, delightful narrow, winding streets and a 14th century Gothic cathedral.
Naveta dels Tudons** a burial chamber built around 1500 B.C. (early Bronze Age) is considered to be Europe's oldest one-piece building.
Fornells** a handsome fishing village on the north coast, is ideal for watersports and irresistible to seafood lovers.
Macarelleta beach, Menorca
Menorca beaches are mostly untouched and tranquil, with many in hidden coves, dazzling white sand and crystal water. A marine plant indigenous to the Balearics, Posidonia Oceanica, acts as a natural water filter and is apparently responsible for the purity and clarity of the water on these islands.
Some locals claim that Minorca has over 100 beaches, which is more than Majorca and Ibiza beaches put together. Here are a few of the best:
- There are numerous nice beaches even around the capital of Mahon, such as the vast Es Grau with its rolling dunes and National Park fresh water lagoon nearby.
Cala Galdana, a classic Menorca beach and clearly one of the most popular, Spain
- Cala Mesquida is an attractive, untouched cove, popular with the locals and offering basic facilities, good parking and beach bars.
- The longest and one of the most beautiful beaches on Menorca is the 3.5km long Son Bou on the south east coast, 8 km south from Alaior. There's also an ancient Christian basilica nearby.
- Some of the best beaches are found in the south of Minorca, such as the spacious horse shoe bay of Cala Binibeca or family-friendly, soft golden sand of Els Canutells.
Beaches on the island's west coast tend to be developed as resorts, such as Son Xoriguer, which is fantastic for watersports or the wide, sandy and easy access Cala'n Bosch.
Balearic islands general information