Spain • Balearic Islands

From: Balearic Islands

See also: IbizaMallorca

The beautiful island of Minorca has a more relaxed feel than its neighbouring Mallorca and is one of the most peaceful of the Balearic Islands. The coastline is one of the many highlights of the island with tranquil beaches and tucked away coves to be found all around the island for those wishing to do a little exploring.

Minorca also has a rich history with several architectural gems scattered around the island, especially around the capital Mahon. There are also plenty of activities to keep the restless happy from swimming and scuba diving in some of the most stunning waters around to horseback riding the Camí de Cavalls, mountain biking the rolling hills and rugged coastline to no end of shopping and dining experiences.

Minorca has a Mediterranean climate which often averages 70 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit during the summer and milder temperatures during the winter which often average between 50 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit, which can drop into the 40's at night.

The months of May and October are often very pleasant with May warming up nicely to around 65 to 70 degrees and October temperatures easing from the sizzling mid 80's that often occur within June, July, August and September to into the 70's. The wettest months are usually October and November with December, January, February and March also prone to several days of rain. Also be prepared for very strong winds over the winter months which are known as tramuntana winds, which can bring changeable weather.

Travel Guide
Minorca can be reached by plane from both mainland Spain and from international airports directly to Minorca Airport (MAH) which is located a few miles outside Mahon. The island can also be reached by boat from neighbouring island Mallorca with ferry crossings from Alcudia to Minorca's Ciutadella as well as from mainland Spain such as from Valencia or Barcelona to Mahon and Ciutadella.

Once on the island there are plenty of car hire companies as well as taxis and busses which run at regular intervals to many areas as well as between Ciutadella and Mao.

Minorca has a wide variety of markets taking place within many of the towns during the week as well as plenty of shops where you'll find a wide selection of goods.

Minorca is well known for its leather goods especially in the shoe and sandal department along with no end of clothes shops available offering a wide and colourful array of goods.

There are markets held regularly throughout Minorca with one of the most well known being Mercat de Ferreries market in Mahon which is held every Saturday and has plenty of traditional arts and crafts as well as jewellery, clothing and fresh fruit, especially olives.

Minorca's cuisine is fresh and varied with seafood dishes an obvious favourite due to the islands abundant marine life. There are plenty of cafes and restaurants around Mao and especially the harbour, many of which offer both outside and inside dining experiences and a great opportunity to watch the harbour and all its goings on.

The island is also known for its cattle farming and subsequently there are plenty of flavoursome meat dishes as well as dairy products that are in a class of their own. The islands cheeses have their own distinct Minorcan flavour and are definitely worth tasting. Minorca also lays claim to Mayonnaise which according to legend was in fact first produced within the city of Mao and subsequently named after it by a French chef.

Wine production on the island is also increasing with great success and the long tradition of gin and liqueurs on Minorca remains strong with the Xoriguer Gin Distillery open to the public for tasting sessions and buying.

Minorca Sites And Attractions
In 1993 Minorca was declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve which has enabled it to retain and protect many of its most precious areas: