Couples Holiday Guide
rich in photographs and interactive maps
rich in photographs and interactive maps
While many older guides and tour operators extoll the virtues of Menorca for families with children it is also an island for couples and those travelling without beach rats too!
Attractions for Adults and Couples in photos guide to see what you can expect.
Often addresses here and in guide books, leaflets will be listed as Ferreries-Galdana km 5 .The roads have Kilometer marker signs on the side and are the best guide to where a location is. So the previous address is along the road from Ferreries direction of Galdana around the 5 Kilometer marker .
Internet access, fixed and using WiFi hotspots , continues to spread across Menorca. More and more bars and cafes in towns and in resorts will offer some type of access - either coin operated terminals or paid / free Wifi. If you are staying in a hotel most 3 stars and above will have some Internet access usually around the reception bar area.
The law requires free WiFi to be password protected so if it is advertised you will probably need to get the password (often posted up behind the bar )
It is good manners to buy a drink while using free WiFi in Cafe Bars.WiFi and Internet on Menorca
If you love beautiful landscapes, dream of remote natural sandy beaches, love to dine well and sip drinks under dreamy stars then read on. And while Menorca is no 'Clubbers paradise', there are still plenty of places where you can dance the night away, none more spectacular so than Covas den Xoroi set in natural caves 25m above the bay in Cala en Porter with well known guest DJs from UK and Ibiza. Most of the dance clubs can be found in the harbour areas with smaller music and "chill out" bars in the side streets of of Mahon and Ciutadella as well as in Es Castell. There is a water taxi between Mahons' and Es Castells' attractive harbours that is an especially delightful way ' to arrive' on summer evenings.
Tiping In restaurants, taxis etc. it is usual to leave 5-10% if you were happy with the service. A tip in spanish is called "propina" .
Fancy staying somewhere special to celebrate that birthday or just a romantic treat?
Consider a rural Hotel full of charm, or something chic in the city? individuality and a truly special memories place guaranteed!
Around the city centres and harbour areas of Ciutadela, Mahon, Fornells and Es Castell there are a wide variety of cafe bars to suit varying ages, tastes and styles, from simple traditional to sophisticated modern. Best to wander along and pick out a place on sight and impulse. A few ideas below:-
A favourite meeting place on the Mahon harbour front. Lovingly fitted out with nostaligic and Jugendstil accessories, this place has a great atmosphere where you can spend many hours whiling away the night.
An inviting Cafe Bar & Restaurant (live music venue) on two levels . Often missed by the visitor, it is on the beautiful Plaza del Principe. Streetlevel is an attractive chic city cafe area serving breakfast, lunch and dinner ( Menu del Dia available ) while down stairs is an atmospheric arched stone ceilings vault with bar and stage for live music ( Fridays and Saturdays until 04:00)
Along the harbour sides of Es Castell ( Moll de Cales Fonts and Moll d'en Pons) often set in former fishermans caves are a great choice of Cafe bars with varying ,but always relaxed styles. Particulalry below Club nautic at the Cales fonts harbour entrance and down under Hotel Hamilton ( Moll d'en Pons ).
Bar terrace at the Hotel del Almirante. A very british and nostalgic hotel located in a an old english gentlemans house - Lord Collingwood. A good stopping off place before moving off into Mahon.
The best shopping is outside of the beach resorts in the island's towns and cities. Note the Siesta always happens(outside of beach resorts) so shops will be closing from 1/1.30 pm until 5/5.30pm.
Ciutadella is particulalrly delightful for window shopping, clothes and fashionable items as there are lots in the old pedestrian town,but DO wander the sidestreets where often the best are to be found. Mahon(mao)'s shops are little more dispersed. Again the side streets of the old centre hold many a surprise.
Clothes Shopping Photo Guide
You will not find any anonymous shopping centres as such - Island is too small,no need for them. Menorca Shopping.
Handicraft markets have dress accessories, hand made craft and Jewellery and nearly always are in the evenings.
|Ciutadella (Pl Es Born)||38||09:00-14:00||09:00-14:00|
|Mahon( Mao ) Pl. Esplanada||87||09:00-14:00||09:00-14:00|
|Es Castell(Placa Espanya)||20||09:00-14:00||09:00-14:00|
|Sant Lluis(Placa de sa Creu)||6||09:00-14:00||09:00-14:00|
|Ferreries(Placa Espanya)||16||09:00-14:00||Farmers Markets am|
|Cala en Porter||15||19:00-23:00||19:00-23:00|
|Alaior(Calle Comerç and Avda. Pare Huguet)||22||09:00-14:00|
|Es Migjorn Gran (Plaza de la Iglesia)||6||09:00-14:00|
|Handicraft Markets June to September|
|Ciutadella ( Baixada Cappalonch)||16||19:00-24:00||19:00-24:00||19:00-24:00||19:00-24:00||19:00-24:00||19:00-24:00||19:00-24:00|
|Mahon(Mao) Placa Baixamar||12||19:00-21:00||19:00-21:00||19:00-21:00||19:00-21:00||19:00-21:00||19:00-21:00||19:00-21:00|
|Es Castell (Mirador Cales Fonts)||15||19:00-24:00||19:00-24:00||19:00-24:00||19:00-24:00||19:00-24:00||19:00-24:00||19:00-24:00|
A full list of places of interest ( museums, sights ) to visit and see can be found
You can get a plane hop (Iberia(Air Nostrum ), Air Berlin) from Mahon to Majorca, Palma to go and get back in the same day. So you can take in Palma town shopping and culture for a more "up tempo" scene. Alternatively there is a fast catamaran ferry ( 1hour ) to North East Majorca( Alcudia ) from Ciutadella port for foot and car passengers. NOTE for ferry You will need to book a cheap hotel for the overnight stay though.
The horse holds a special place in the hearts of the islanders. The Island native race is a magnificent, beautiful animal. You can enjoy the island scenery from on top of and behind (in a carriage) a horse. Ride through enchanting woods, gallop along the beach. Riders of all levels are catered for.
The island boasts a good network of signed routes, on and mainly off road routes. Mostly requiring off road capable bicyles eg Mountain bikes. In the larger resorts and cities where space allows there are now dedicated 'green lane' cycle ways.
A village straight out of the picture books, traditional menorcan architecture, with lots of bougainvillea draped over the old white washed houses. Best to leave the car at the entrance roads and just wander respectfully or as part of a cycle tour. Home to highly regarded restaurants for food lovers (Sa Pedrera des Pujol, Sa Parereta d'en Doro, Pan y Vino ). From behind the unmissable watchtower you can wander down to the coast at Cala Torret.
If you are mobile, this little village ( 2km from west Mahon ) is a stop off point along attractive, stone walled country lanes to and from the coast. A residential village, many of the former farmhouses have been turned into homes and holiday homes. A little supermarket, plus two tiny atmospheric (open evenings only) restaurants. Es Nit in 300 year old farmhouse (international) and Sa Vinya (Menorcan) . A third larger restaurant, Halliseys has recently opened up here relocating fom the Son Parc Golf Club. All offer a very different experience to any beach resort restaurants for something more special. There are walks into the nearby attractive countryside.
Cami de Cavalls, ('path of the horse') is a rough track medieval coastal path that originally followed much of the entire Menorcan coastline. The path encircling the island is now open to the public and can be freely used by hikers, cyclists and horse riders. The 184 kilometres of path is divided into 20 sections, each of which is now clearly signposted and fitted with an information panel giving details of that particular stretch. Parts of the Cami de Cavalls are open for horses ( see sign below). Other sections are accessible for walkers and mountain bikes. Originally created by occupying nations for the purpose of keeping an eye on the coastal defences as a horseback supply route.
It is a great way to see the coastline - 'natural' so take care at the cliff edges.
This recently completed attraction is still in its early stages of tourist development so you will need to plan any multi-day walks carefully as accommodation is restricted to holiday resorts facilities which may or may not be open outside of may-october
The various signs below indicate that a section of the Cami de Cavalls is under your feet or in that direction
Two long routes east and westward starting st Cala Galdana ( so you can stock up on last minute water,food for trip) along the recently opened and signposted original Cami de Cavalls. These original paths will take you along stunning coastlines where you can visit several of the islands most attractive Virgin Beaches. Bus no. 51 Mahon-Cala Galdana , Bus no. 52 Ciutadella-Cala Galdana and No. 53 From Ferreries.
Westward to Cala Turqueta 4.3 Km one way ( approx 3 hours return with stopping to enjoy views - terrain easy ) also passing Cala Macarella virgin beach. Startpoint in Galdana is signposted at steps next to Hotel Audax,ewestern end of resort.
Eastward to Santo Tomas 4.4 Km one way ( approx 4.5 hours return with stopping to enjoy views - terrain medium ) more up/down and also passing Cala Mitjana, Tebaluger, Escoxada . I.e te crem del creme of south coast virgin beaches. Startpoint in Galdana is along Avinguida de la Punta ( 3rd Left turn ).
Menorca Holiday Tip You could also have a friend drop off/pick up at either end as Turqueta/Santo Tomas is accessible by car.
Monte Torro is the highest point on the island the name most likely coming from the Arabic, al-tor, meaning highest mountain. Though not a mountain it is worth a visit if you have a hire car for the stunning views ( particularly in spring when you can see over the length of the island) There is a pleasant Bar Restaurant Sa Posado del Toro at the top with inside seating and an open terrace with views to the south. Monte Toro is signposted from Es Mercadal in the dead centre of the island along the ME-1. El Toro in Catalan or Monte Toro in Spanish has viewing areas to take in the views to the north and west. Can also be walked along the good access road as is 'only' 350 meters high.
Due to its political symbolism the castle was destroyed and abandoned by the re-occupying Kings of Aragon, but it remains one of the island most attractive walks with great views at the summit.
Built circa 1230 a castle contructed by the Moorish occupiers (the name is based on the Arabic name "Sen Agaiz") for defence sitting on top of the island's better vantage points on the island. Reached by a 45 min. climb up an ancient path which is in places was an old Roman road ( over two thousand years old ) - the views from the top are superb.
Like many ancient sites Santa Agueda has sprung many rich legends and myths including buried biblical treasures.
Travel the ME-1 between Ferrerias and Ciutadella. Take the turn for Els Alocs and continue 1.5 km until you reach an abandoned building on right ( see photo ). This marks the start of the path to the top of the hill.
Wealthy landowners built their places in Ciutadella and Mahon. While some are still privately owned today several are to view with multi-language guided tours
If you enjoy your food and wine pleasures in life there are a few places you might like to visit to learn more about the subject and endulge in a bit of tasting.
Set in the grounds of a old country house Hort Sant Patrici, producing wine, hand made cheese and a small output of extra virgin olive oil all available to sample and buy in on the on site shop along with other enjoyable food delights. Enjoy a stroll around the sculpture garden. Open to the public Mon. to Sat. 0900-13:30 hrs. and 16:30-20:00 hrs. For further information tel. 971 373 702. 1.2km from Ferreries www.santpatrici.com
A dairy farm making authentic Queso Mahon ( menorca's famous cheese) . Open to the public Summer 1.04-30.09 Mon. to Sat. 0900-1400 hrs. and 1600-2000 hrs. Winter 1.10-30.04 Mon. to Sat. 0900-1400 hrs. Closed Sundays. www.subaida.com
For an authentic experience try a local wine which is on the rise in recent years. Look out for following labels Sa Forana, Malvasia, Ferrer de Muntpalau,Binifadet,Hort,Rubi del Mediterraneo and Favaritx.
These wines can be bought locally in supermarkets, specialist wine shops and at Vin De Menorca who also offer a delivery service to house or boat. Located on Mahon poligno Cami de Ses Vinyes, 118, 07703 Mahon
There are now around 10 or so vineyards across the island, some of which offer tours and tastings making an enjoyable morning or afternoon out.
Just outside Sant Lluis, a short walk along from some idylic looking old farmhouses producing red,white and rose wines. Stroll around the vineyards, free guided tour and wine tasting, shop and relaxing Terrace-Bar. daily 10:00-20:00 (22:00 in July and August ) Ses barraques, 07710 Sant Lluis.
Available at the excellent restaurant Ca n'Aguedet in Es Mercadal
A deep Tempranillo and Merlot red wine. Carrer de les Quatre Boques, 1 Poligon Industrial la Trotxa 07710 Alaior.
Cugullonet Nou, Cami de Sa Forana, 07712 Sant Climent - www.saforana.com
Produces a special wine in limited quantities 'Malvasia' a dry white wine. Malavasia is a classic Mediterranean white grape variety dating back more than 2000 years. - www.vinyasacudia.com
Grape varieties :Cabernet Sauvignon, Tempranillo, Merlot and Syrah for the reds and Macabeo and Chardonnay for the white varieties.
Produces a special wine in limited quantities 'Malvasia' a dry white wine. Malavasia is a classic Mediterranean white grape variety dating back more than 2000 years. - www.vinyasacudia.com
Along the coast, taking in virgin beaches and swimming in picturesque bays. Either aboard boats or under sail in more indulgent ways.
If your own motor yacht is in dry dock or you're not rich enough to charter a Fairline or Sunseeker then an increasingly popular way to see the island is to charter or join a group on a 'rib'. These are safe rigid hulled sporty boats, lots of fun and can take you close into the coast line.
All though Menorca is well known for it's relaxing style and quiet places, there is a growing number of activities for those who can't just sit still by the pool or on the beach. Karting Jet Ski,Jeep Safari
Son Parc offers the island's only 18 hole golf course set in wooded countryside complete with putting green and (floodlit) driving range. There are also tennis courts available for hire (raquets and balls can be hired at golf shop ) and Bar-Restaurant Es Bruc GOLF with outside terrace overlooking the course . Tee times can be booked in advance as can the tennis courts.
There are several artificial greens at S'Algar where both novices and the experienced players are welcome. Woods can be hired.
An indoor entertainment centre with modern ten pin bowling lanes as its main attraction located in the resort centre. Features childrens soft indoor playground, Bar and Cafe with electronic games and several pool and air hockey tables. They offer combo tickets with drinks etc .
Stage music events from time to time - see locally for details
Open all year from 4 or 7 pm , depending on time of year, 'till early morning.
With so many beaches, that are not just a few square feet of imported sand you'll easily find a spot away from the 'beach rats'. Take in our Virgin beach guide- It's really is a sin to visit the island and not spend at last some time on one of these magical beaches. At Es Grau you can even get the fisherman to ferry you across to a small Island beach.
Visit the beaches after five, thats when the locals will be arriving, enjoy a picnic and watch the sun set.
Hire a Sea Kayak in Fornells and explore some of the remote beaches on the far side of the bay.
At Es Grau a local will ferry you out to the local uninhabited island of Illa Den Colom to while away the day on the two idylic sandy beaches there. Don't forget a water bottle and some food. There are regular pickups though out the day until sunset, but make an arranged time! A real robinson crusoe adventure. In addition options for fishing and group charter www.solmaspaz.com
Are not held for the benefits of tourists, so are genuine and much loved by the islanders. Each town has its own but will be ceremenonial and visual - with Riders showing off their horsemanship skills.
During Fiesta season there is a special "jaleo bus" to take revelers to and from the Fiestas at night. Look out for timetables at bus stops and published in local guides.
You can choose between authentic hideaways sipping drinks at one the island's country house hotel bars, a waterside restaurant and bar. Listen to music or dance into the sunrise at one of the islands' clubs.
Menorca is always described in comparison to it's Balearic neighbours as 'quiet'. That's true but it doesn't mean there's not plenty of good (and lively) places for the young and not so young to go out in the evenings. The biggest concentraton of the best nightlife is located in the harbour areas of the Menorca's two cities - Ciutadella and Mahon aswell as the side streets and Cales Fons/Moll den Pons harbour areas of Es Castell. The better places are not just for the tourists but open all year round for islanders. As such things start late, often after midnight. Don't be surprised if you turn up earlier and the places seem quieter and emptier than you expected. But then again, maybe that's what you prefer.
Small scale Casino, with bar & dining set in a great location where the serious yachts are anchored.
Offering Roulette,Poker and Blackjack tables. Smart dress only, ID required (proof of over 18 ). Just follow harbour around to where the big motor Yachts are moored and you are in the right place.
Next door is Pizza restaurant Romani-which does good affordable pizzas in very pleasant surroundings. Also Cafe Oh La la- great place for early morning breakfasts ( opens 6am ) as the sun is rising over the harbours
Moll de Levant 287 Tel. 971 36 49 62
Yes that's right. Take a trip out to S'Albufera park , or a remote spot on the north coast on a clear night and you will be treated to a display to take your breath away. With no street lighting and the night sky shielded from any streetlights and city light overspill you'll see just how many stars there are out there. The distant stars normally invisible due to 'light pollution' are visible-its simply stunning! You'll need a hire car as taxi drivers wont drop off/pick up.
Yes, there are dance and chill out clubs on this little island and some in suprising locations too! In Ciutadella there are several at the head of the harbour area ( Pla de Sant Joan ), so you can easily move between them as you please- many have outside rooftop terraces to enjoy starlight summer nights. And in the old city there are chilled out cafe bars in gardens and former wine cellars. Mahon's clubs and venues gather around the harbour and in the old town. There are also the popular island jazz venues.
For most clubs go late, midnight and onwards!
Located in huge spectacular natural caves some 25m above the sea at the entrance to Cala en Porter bay for a magical club venue for sunsets and sunrises!
A double bonus. Undoubtedly the most dramatic nightspot on the island. Set high, literally in the rocks, above the sea it's an atmospheric Cafe-bar with fantastic sea views by day. From 19:00 the music is soothing ambient sounds to watch the sunsets by and after 23:00-dawn a disco with one of the most original locations and atmospheres with famous guest DJs. During July and August they have themed nights. Follw them on Twitter for latest infos.
Opening times: 11:30 'til dawn. Daily May to October and weekends outside of these months. There is a entrance charge during the day which includes a voucher for a drink-It's well worth it.
Night bus transport by Cova Bus. Arrival at Cova d'en Xoroi aprox. 11:45 pm and departure from Cova d'en Xoroi at 05:00 am
Sometimes they offer special promotions( check website,flyers and posters in bars) enabling free entrance to the night club if you visit the caves earlier in the day.
There are formal and informal annual sponsored music events mostly in Mahon and Ciutadella (see weekly what's on sheet from Tourist Offices ). Menorca is not a marketing machine so you will need keep an eye open as you pass inviting bars for live music events as they come up.
During summer outside in the old Cloister courtyard-see local notices for that month at entrance to Mao Market or website for what's on (website in Spanish but easy to see what is on offer ) . 7pm - 3 am often with BBQ.
Located on the harbour front the of Mao (Mahon), Akelarre has been offering live jazz concerts for more than ten years and is one of the most popular live music venues in the city. Great Jazz and Blues with Live Music and DJs. Also a very nice place to have drinks, tapas, particularly in the courtyard at the back. Muelle de Poniente 41-43 07701 Mao (Mahon).
A popular place in Ciutadella where you drink slushy Pomadas ( gin and lemonade). Jazzbah is a live music venue and club, playing funky jazz beats, house and rare grooves. As well as the main room (with a stage), there is a chill-out room and an outside terrace where you can cool off. Plaça de Sant Joan 3,07760 Ciutadella.
Not suprising for a small island that water sports are all on the coasts.
An increasingly popular activity and a great way to see the beautiful coastline up close is from a kayak. Sea Kayaks can be hired from the beach to explore your resorts waters , at specialist centres close to interesting coves or you can be part of a small guided tour starting at various points along the coast. There will be single, double and three seaters with life jackets provided.
The waters of Menorca are a real holiday memory. They are amazingly clear so even with just a simple snorkel you will see lots, not murky haze. And because the water is in such good condition you'll see lots of fish too. Often the beaches will have shallow sandy bottoms fringed with rocks.
The island is a haven for divers not only due to these conditions but especially due to the many underwater caves cut out of the soft rock particularly on the south coast.
Cales Coves Snorkelling Tip
Cales Coves, well known for its caves cut into the limestome rocks is also a great place for snorkel fans. With three very attractive bays to explore, sandy bottoms interchange with rocks. It was the original harbour used by the Romans. Access to Cales Coves is via a 1.5km long unsurfaced track from Son Vitamina (ME-12) which is passable with care by car or best on Mountain bike. ( access keeps it quiet and seculded! ) .
If you love windsurfing or want to try windsurfing then head for Fornells bay. Sat on the north coast where the wind is favourable the bay is like a large salt water lake making it ideal for all things with sails. Plus the water is lovely and warm if you fall off!
It can happen, but as it's a very sunny place there is not too much built indoors.
Son Bou Centre and at Oci Max in Mahon