Seeing as I seem to bang on a lot about how much I love Menorca (see here), I thought it was about time I wrote a post on what to do in Menorca.
Menorca is the kind of island you can spend as little or as much time in as you want. I have ranged from a two night trip, to spending a whole week there.
How to get to Menorca
Before getting down to ‘what to do in Menorca’ you need to get there. During the peak summer season there are multiple flights from most U.K airports. It is so easy to find a convenient flight to Mahon, the capital, at a time and from a location that suits you. Jet2, Thomas Cook and Easy Jet all fly to the island.
In the winter, off season, there aren’t actually any direct flights. You would have to transit it through Barcelona.
How to get around
By far the easiest way to explore the island is to drive, and it is almost imperative that you hire a car. I would recommend Don Cars. They aren’t the cheapest, but are still fairly priced. A lot of hire cars on the island involves getting a bus out to the car, but Don Cars are based at the airport. They are so easy and flexible. And probably shouldn’t say this, but aren’t overly concerned by the odd tiny bump or scrap.
Where to stay
I’m afraid I can’t offer too much help here, as my family have a holiday home on the island – so accommodation is actually a no brainer for me. Let me know if you are looking for a great villa!
What I would say is look at the area you want to stay in. Our house is located in the Binisafua area, and I’m probably biased but I think it’s the best place to be! It’s only a 10-15 minute drive from the airport. Which is great when you are running late for a flight and the keys get locked in the car. Yes. That happened.
This side of the island is home to a lot of beaches, lovely little towns, easy access into Mahón for some night life and very accessible.
The other thing I would mention, is consider the style of accommodation you’re after. Personally for me, Menorca is about relaxing and unwinding. So I would not be looking for a hotel with a busy pool. I would always prefer private with a large group of friends. I do know there are hotels with private plunge pool areas – which is always a great option.
One area I would recommend to avoid is Son Bau, what to do in Menorca (or not). Very touristy and lacking a lot of the Spanish charm.
What to do in Menorca
Menorca is home to over 100 beaches, all with their own beauty. So you are very spoilt for choice. And an obvious first choice for suggestions on what to do in Menorca.
The closest beach to us is Binisafua. This is just a little cove, so great if you are local but perhaps not a destination.
However, just down the road is Binibequer Vell which has the blue azure water. There is also a bar there, so perfect for a sundowner.
There is also Biniparratx in this area, which is accessed through a windy, steep and slightly crumbling path. When you reach the beach it is quite small, and full of locals. There are also lots of Bronze Age caves in the cliffs around the bay.
Another great favourite of mine is Cala Mitijana. One of the most beautiful beaches on the island and popular with the locals. It is a 20 minute walk though the pine forest to get there, but it is worth it. Be warned though, it does get busy.
Over on the north of the island are the beaches Cala Pregonda, Cala Cavallería and Cala del Pilar. These beaches have reddish sand, so look very different. They are also a bit of a walk from where you park your car.
Cami de Cavalls
The active part of a what to do in Menorca guide! All around the outside of the island is the Cami de Cavalls. This ancient path spans 116 all around the island. A fascinating history – the path was developed in 1330 when King James II told all settlers they had to have an armed horse to prepare themselves for attack. Today it provides some of the most beautiful walks across the island.
It can be walked as one long hike. Or divided up into much more manageable bit sized chunks! Find out more about the sections here.
If you fancy something a little more action packed, there is lots of water activities to be found in Menorca. The hub for this is found over on the north side of the island, based Fornells.
If you fancy sailing, I would recommend hiring a boat from Wind Fornells. You can hire a sailing boat either on your own. Or if you are a beginner or in need of a refreshing, you can also book lessons.
There are also windsurfs and paddle boards that can be hired.
Towns in Menorca
Despite being famed for its beaches Menorca does have some lovely towns to explore, and it would be remiss of me to miss this out in a what to do in Menorca post. First – the capital of the island, Mahon. I have been to Mahon a few times, but it was only this year when I actually look a day to explore it properly.
There are plenty of things to see and do in Mahon. First of all, start off in the old city centre. Beautiful old buildings, a maze of streets, tiny looking shops and lots of cafes. If you have a bit more time the Museum of Menorca is also located in this part of the town.
Make sure you check out the Xoriguer gin shop in the centre of town. This location gin is made on the island and delicious. In the shop you have the opportunity to sample many different types of the liquors the company make.
Mahon also boasts a beautiful harbour area, home to some of the most stunning boats. Great fun to walk along, and appreciate all the boats I will never ever own. This part of the town is also home to some delicious restaurants for dinner.
When down at the harbour you can catch a glass bottom boat, such as Don Joan tours. Not only can you see some of the sights, you learn about the history of the old natural harbour in Europe. They also boast underwater viewing ports, so you can see what is going on below the surface.
Es Castell is the perfect evening town for me. Most of the main restaurants are all the way along the port, so perfect for the most amazing dinner views.
I have actually only visited this town in the evening, although I have heard there are good breakfasts to be found!
One of the other little delights are the shops along the port. They are all carved out of the rock face and are open late. What a great way to end an evening – by browsing all the clothes, bags and of course traditional Menorcan sandals for sale.
Over on the north side of the island is the village of Fornells. This attractive, white washed fishing village is arranged overlooking the harbour. It is quiet, and laidback, so the perfect place for a long lunch. Follow this by browsing the shops.
Where to eat in Menorca
Any ‘what to do in Menorca guide’ has to include a list of the best places to eat.
Vell Parrander, Es Castell – Serving Menorcan tapas, delicious steak and also good cheap Verdejo wine. Located at the end of the harbour, which means you get a lovely walk all the way along.
Es Llounget, Mahon – Good for a light lunch in Mahon. A Spanish bakery which sells lots of bite size pastries. Also very cheap.
Sa Musclera, Binibiquer – Basic food, but done well. It is traditional Spanish tapas and nothing unusual, but just really good. Plus they do the best Sobresada I have found on the island. And I have had a lot. For those not in the know, Sobresada is local cured sausage, served on toast with honey. Quite an obsession of mine.
Club Nautico, Binibiquer – Out on the other side of town, but with amazing views of sunset over the rocks. Really really good food, especially the salads.
Can Bernat, Calan Porter – Firstly, beautiful views over the hillside. Again sunset goals. But this restaurant is a break from the typical tapas and serves amazing steaks and lamb chops.
Restaurante Binimela – Saving the best until last. My favourite place on the island for food. Head down the dirt track, bumping you way to the most delicious paella you will ever find. This is a big thing for me, as I don’t actually eat fish, but I adore this place. Not only is the food good, but the setting under the shade of trees in the gentle breeze overlooking Menorcan scenery is heaven.
Final mention on the food – there are some great local produce on the island you need to try. I have already mentioned the local gin. But also make sure you try the local cheese and also pescador, a sparkling white wine.
Hope you enjoyed the guide on what to do in Menorca, I have a lot of love for this island so let me know if you have any questions!
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