- Menorca All inclusive holidays
Tranquil, laid back and authentically Balearic, Menorca (or ‘Minorca’, as it is also called) is one of the most popular of the Balearic Islands. Its rugged coastline and unspoilt beauty attracts a relaxed crowd, who are primarily interested in easing into slow island life, rather than partying until dawn. The harmonious landscape offers a wide network of cycling roads, complete with rolling countryside and quiet country lanes which bend through picturesque villages.
When you holiday in Menorca, you are never far from a hidden gem: the harbour at Maó (also known as ‘Port Mahón’), is one of the largest natural harbours in the world and is the largest natural harbour in the Mediterranean: it stretches five kilometres long and is 30 metres deep. It was strategically important during the capture of Maó-Mahón in 1287 as well as during the erection of the Kingdom of Majorca. Yachts and cruise ships from all over the world moor at its docks and it is an ideal spot for excursions and tourism.
Stonehenge-esque stone monuments known as Taulas (meaning table in Catalan) can be found all over the island, and are mysterious and enigmatic reminders of Menorca’s prehistoric past: they were built by the Talaiotic Culture between 1000 BC and 300 BC and are believed to have been built for astronomical purposes, as well as for ancient healing.
The island’s military past is well documented with the many fortresses that occupy the land, such as La Mola, Fort Marlborough, and St Philip’s Castle. And if clambering over battlements makes you thirsty, why not drop in at the Xorguier Gin Distillery? It’s been here since the 18th century and still produces the island’s distinctively aromatic gin.
Shoe-lovers can centre themselves at the hub of the shoemaking industry in Ferreries, where Jaime Mascaró, one of Spain’s top shoe designers, has a factory shop with several impressive outlets.
There are plenty of museums dotted across the island documenting the history of Menorca, including the intriguing Menorcan Cheese Museum. Built at the end of the 17th century, the cheese factory can be found one kilometre away from Ferreries in an old Franciscan convent. When you visit, you even get to sample the numerous cheeses that the factory produces!
Visit the Museo de Menorca for a more traditional peek into Menorca’s past: it is brimming with ethnological, artistic and industrial material that dates as far back as the 19th century.
Menorca is famous for its many lighthouses, with seven clustering along the shoreline to protect passing shipping. One of the most dramatic is at Favaritx on the north-east corner of the island, surrounded by a rugged landscape that is easily accessible.
For a great panoramic view of the island, head for El Toro, which is the tallest hill of the island of Menorca. Reaching 342 metres (1,222 feet), the mountain’s summit can be accessed by car or on foot.
Back at the coastline, there are dozens of caves and inlets to discover. A popular tourist attraction is the Cova d’en Xoroi, named after an unknown man (‘Xoroi’) who sought refuge in the cave. Once sundown comes, the cave lights up as a nightclub, and is accompanied by ambient music and breath-taking sea views.
Menorca was declared a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in 1993, thanks to its diverse Mediterranean landscape and various species of animals and plants found exclusively on the island. For a close-up look at nature, the S’Albufera des Grau Nature Park hosts the perfect coastal wetland habitat for hundreds of birds and animals and is an official Special Bird Protection Area (ZEPA).
West of Ciutadella, one of the two primary cities in the island, is the Castell de Sant Nicolau. This stout 17th century watchtower offers sweeping views over the waters to Majorca and southwards along the coast. Ciutadella has remained the island’s religious centre for centuries, which has provided numerous historical and artistic buildings to the city’s streets.
A tranquil spot for some sunbathing is the bay of Cala Macarella; a horseshoe-shaped virgin beach on the southwestern side of Menorca, where pure white sand meets impeccable blue waters. Pine trees and holm oaks shelter the bay, so you can even sunbathe during wintertime.
All inclusive Menorca holidays are not all about pumping clubs and dancing until dawn. Entertainment here is laid back and relaxed, with a hefty topping of Balearic authenticity. However, that doesn’t mean that Menorcans hold back when it comes to fiesta season: almost every weekend during the summer you will find a fiesta going on in one of the island’s villages, with the celebrations starting off in Ciutadella and finishing in Mahón.
Menorca is famous for its equestrian tradition, dating back to the days when landowners needed horses to defend the island from invaders. The special Menorcan breed is powerful, with a glossy black mane; they even have their own form of dressage, with a special manoeuvre known as the ‘bot’. Horse fairs are held throughout the summer months and you can even see the ‘bot’ in action at the annual dressage competitions which take place all over the island.
Opera Week takes place every year at the Teatre Principal de Maó (also known as the ‘Teatro Principal de Mahón’). Situated in the capital city, The Principal, as it is known informally, is one of the oldest opera houses in Spain and hosts a long list of high-culture performances, such as elaborate plays and film screenings from all over the world.
Holidays in Menorca are ideal for runners and cyclers alike, with plenty of cycling routes and numerous ultramarathons taking place across the island. For active holiday seekers, the Trail Menorca and Trekking Costa races are sensational events to take part in during spring, or try the Extreme Ma Menorca triathlon which takes place every September.
Many Menorcans wind down with a few drinks after a long day, but not in your typical bar or restaurant. Asere, a prolific salsa club by the port of Ciutadella is a popular spot for tourists who enjoy dancing; or pop along to the Club Akelarre Jazz club which showcases live jazz concerts.
Why choose an all-inclusive holiday to Menorca
All inclusive holidays to Menorca are perfect for families looking to spend a bit of quality time together. As well as snorkelling in crystal clear water, your family can head inland on cycling adventures, hop on a horse for a trek through some of the island’s most beautiful countryside, and delve deep into Menorca’s famous hidden caves.
The Camí de Cavalls is a medieval bridle path that is easy to amble around on foot, bike, and horseback, or drive along and see nature up close with the Jeep Safari archaeological adventure. The Los Delfine Aquacenter water park on the western tip of Menorca is a firm favourite amongst youngsters: the Aquacenter also includes go karting, beautiful gardens, a play area and eateries abound, so there’s plenty to do for both adults and kids. Like cheap all-inclusive holidays to Menorca? Check out our other amazing deals for Menorca holidays!