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Minorca

Minorca

Menorca was named after the Spanish word 'menor' which means smaller. As the name already suggests Menorca is smaller than its neigbouring islands. While the majority of holidaymakers flock to the more publicity-prone islands of Mallorca and Ibiza, Menorca attracts those who want the best of the Balearics, but without the crowds. The stunning coves with white sand beaches are enough of a draw by themselves, but the historic remains of the Brisith occupation, the countryside and tranquillity of this quieter isle all add to its charm.

Just 48 kilometres long and 20 kilometres wide, Menorca, the most eastern of Spain’s Balearic Islands, manages to pack in over 100 beaches along its coastline – more than Ibiza and Mallorca combined. Consequently, unfurling a towel and soaking up the rays are the most prevalent thoughts of the thousands of holidaymakers who touch down at Mahón Airport during the six-month season. Menorca is a perfect place to go snorkelling and discover hidden caves. Get spectacular views of the stunning coastline and explore the island's marvelous nature by either hiking on Monte Toro, its highest peak, or a going on a horseback excursion. The reward is a breathtaking view and on a clear day you can see all the way to Mallorca.

However, Menorca has a lot more to offer than just sandy beaches, amazing landscape and coastline. Take a stroll to historic cities to see the architectural heritage of the British occupation or the medieval era. Fort Marlborough with its gloomy tunnels, La Mola or Cathedral Ciudadella, a beautiful church with lovely stonework and stained glass windows, the possibilities to delve into local history are endless. On top of that, you can sample one of the best legacies of the British ruling: locally distilled gin.

Many immediately head east, through the flower-freckled meadowland of the interior, to the resort of Cala en Forcat, Cala en Bosch and Cala Galdana. Most only return west when it is time to trundle up the airplane steps, having never visited the capital, Mao, which is a shame. Not only does it have the second deepest natural harbour in the world (after Pearl Harbour), it also boasts a colourful and turbulent history due to the many seaborne conflicts between the Spanish, British and French to gain control of this strategically positioned naval base.

With so many coves to choose from you are spoilt for choice. Some are only accessible by private road where a small toll is often charged during the summer months.

The island’s signature dish is (unsurprisingly) seafood – caldereta de llagosta, or lobster stew, to be precise. Also, look out for pork with apples or plums and dozens of variations of oliaigues, or garlic soup. Unless you are of a robust constitution, do not be tempted by a Minorcan breakfast – neat gin!

Coffee ‘time outs’ are obligatory in the Minorcan culture. Thankfully, there are plenty of venues to satisfy the craving, many with spectacular ocean views.

A word of advice: do not come to Minorca if you are a nocturnal neon-seeker with a penchant for high decibels. That is not to say the lights go out at bed time. Maó, Ciutadella and most resort areas have a profusion of bars and a handful of clubs – just do not expect A-list DJ’s and dancing till breakfast.

For sheer diversity of shops, you should head for Maó or Ciutadella. In Maó, the area around Carrer Ses Moreres and Carrer Nou are home to the high-street labels. For stores of more individual character you’ll need to stroll down Moll de Ponent in the port area.

Ciutadella’s ground zero for shopaholics is Ses Voltes and its numerous offshoots, where you will find plenty of opportunities to replenish your wardrobe.

Talking of which, you cannot visit the island and not buy a pair of avarques – Minorcan leather sandals soled with old car tires. To purchase at the point of origin, try S’Avarca de Menorca on Carrer Angel, Maó. Not only does it have the widest choice, it is also the oldest factory on the island.

Xoriguer Gin and the famous Minorcan cheese should also be on the shopping list. Try the Xoriguer Distillery on Anden de Poniente in Maó for the former, La Bodega on Carrer Santissim in Ciutadella for the best wedge of cheese.

Lovers of bric-a-brac have numerous artisan markets to choose from including Es Migjorn Gran on Tuesday evening, Maó on Friday evening and Ciutadella on Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings.

 

This hotel lies in the holiday district of Ciudadela, within a few minutes' walk of the tourist centre, where guests will discover a selection of shopping and entertainment venues. The nearest beach as well as links to the public transport network lie..
This small complex consists of 12 apartments in the Spanish style grouped around a rectangular swimming pool with sun terrace and loungers. The apartments have fully-equipped kitchenettes and guests can find provisions in the local markets and stores...
The welcoming complex was completely renovated in 2004 and consists of 2 floors with a total 54 apartments. Facilities include a pretty pool and garden complex- a reception desk with hire safes- a TV room- a souvenir shop- a café- a cosy bar and..
Menorca Sur Villas provide a relaxing home away from home in the pretty resort of Son Bou in Menorca. Resting in a residential area surrounded by lovely gardens close to the Torre Soli Nature Reserve, all of the apartments are clean and bright with fully..
The Nure Cel Blau Hotel boasts a convenient location with modern amenities in every guestroom and superb service. The guestrooms are equipped with shower- microwave- kitchenette. The hotel offers outdoor pool with children's pool and kids club. Located..
Completely renovated in 2002- this complex comprises a total of 12 accommodation units and guests are offered access to a wonderful pool and garden complex- a foyer with a reception desk and a bicycle storage facility.Each of the tastefully decorated..
Located on the north of the island, from Pergolas apartments, you are a walking distance from the beach of Son Parc. From the balcony or terrace guests are able to enjoy fantastic views. Each of the apartments features a lounge area, 2 separate bedrooms..
Since 1955 the apartments has been run by the owner's family. It has 8 apartments of 1 and 2 bedrooms that offers like an ideal place to enjoy an unforgettable holiday- where you will be able to enjoy relaxing on the beach- the nature that surrounds this..
Situated in an appealing location in the Cala Blanca area, the Playa Blanca Apartments are well placed for family holidays in Menorca. The complex is located less than five miles from the town of Ciutadella and is conveniently situated for all local amenities...
The Apartments Playa Blanca are located in Cala Blanca, east of Menorca and at only 4 Km from Ciutadella, form a tourist complex which is situated in a typical Mediterranean coastal environment. Due to its situation and tranquility it is ideal to enjoy..
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