Menorca: An Unspoiled Paradise

Guest post this week from some friends of ours living in Menorca! They give us ten reasons why visitors just keep coming back.

We love Menorca and couldn’t think of living and working anywhere else! It’s the second smallest and probably the least known of the 3 Spanish Balearic islands. However, for those in the know, it’s a natural unspoiled paradise and we see the same people back here year after year. Here are ten reasons why we think people become addicted to our little corner of the world.

1. Menorca is home to more beaches than its two bigger cousins Mallorca and Ibiza combined. Many of these are completely natural and only reachable on foot.

2. Its one of only 500 “biospheres” to be found in the world. That’s to say, it’s recognized as an area of outstanding natural beauty by the international ecological body Unesco.

3. The busy and bustling port of Mahon in the island’s capital is the second deepest  natural harbour in the world. The busy bars and restaurants at the water’s edge also make for a great night out.

4. After just a two hour flight from the UK, you’re in another world – a far less commercial and more relaxed atmosphere than back in the UK.

5. Menorca is really ‘Brit friendly’. This, they say, goes back to the British domination of the island over 200 years ago. You’ll still find some old ladies buying their fruit in pounds and ounces over here.

6. During the summer months, every village holds a fiesta to celebrate its patron saint’s day. These manifest themselves with dramatic displays of horsemanship right in the middle of thousands of people.

7. These insane three-day parties are fueled by the local hooch ‘Pomada’ which is lemonade mixed with the locally produced gin – yet another reminder of Menorca’s English history.

8. If archaeology is your thing, there’s nowhere better. Menorca is home to more B.C. era remains per square foot than anywhere else in Europe. Evidence from the Romans, Neolithic and Moorish occupations is everywhere.

9. Menorca is only 50km long and 20km wide, so nothing is far from anywhere!

10. The old villages of Menorca are like stepping back 100 years in time. They all retain a natural charm, pretty much unaffected by the outside world.

The whole island is now connected off road by a medieval circular horse track known as the Camì de Cavalls (Path of horses).  It forms a 120 mile loop around Menorca and shows off the island to magnificent effect. The Camì passes alongside deserted beaches, through fragrant pine forests and along deep limestone ravines.

Menorca walking holidays (link to home page) organise week-long guided holidays around Menorca, including around the Camì de Cavalls and offer a full package that includes accommodation, great food plus well informed and interesting guided walks. It’s a great way to see the island away from the crowds.

Any other Menorca Lovers out there, and if so, what do you love about the island?

Images by hugos007 (1, 2), jsogo and isbardel

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