Menorca Towns and Villages
Many of the seaside resorts have a similar appearance with many apartment complexes, hotels and beautiful beaches. Most villages retained their authentic character and have not changed much over the years.
This creates a special Menorca atmosphere in these villages that is unique to this lovely island. The two larger towns Mahon and Ciutadella de Menorca are some of the best places on the island for a city visit or for some sightseeing and shopping.
The town of Mahon, better known locally as Maó, is located in the eastern part of the island. Mahon is the second-largest city on the island after Ciutadella de Menorca. However, it is the capital of the island and due to the presence of the airport, it is also the main city of Menorca.
The city consists of large suburbs and a small historic centre. From this historic centre, you look out over the bay of Mahon and its harbour. This view is one of the main attractions of the city.
Other places of interest in the city include the Eglesia del Carme, the Plaça d'Espanya, the Teatro Principal and the La Mola de Menorca.
In September, the city celebrates the biggest festival in Menorca every year; the Fiestas de la Mare de Déu de Gràcia de Maò. During this festival, prancing horses move through the streets of the historic centre of the city, while the inhabitants try to touch the heart of the horse, a skill in its self!
Some of the locals say that Mahon is the place where mayonnaise was invented. The name mayonnaise is said to be a corruption of the name Mahonese.
Ciutadella de Menorca
Ciutadella de Menorca is the largest town/city on the island with almost 30,000+ inhabitants. It was once the capital of the island. The former capital is located in the western part of the island and is built around a natural harbour. There are quite a few nice terraces around this harbour where you can eat delicious fish and shellfish.
From this harbour, you walk via a few stairs to the historic centre of the city. Main attractions of Ciutadella de Menorca are the Plaça d'es born with the Palau Salort and the Palau de Torre-Saura.
In the middle of the square is an obelisk commemorating the victims of the Turkish invasion. Other places of interest in the city include the Castell Sant Nicolau, the Catedral de Menorca, the Iglesia del Sant Crist and the Mirador Port.
The nicest shopping street in the city is the Ses Voltes with several arcades, unique shops and supermarkets.
The historic part of the city is almost car-free, but around the centre, there are several places where you can park your car.
Es Mercadal is one of the larger towns in Menorca. The village is located centrally on the island in the shadow of Monte Toro, the highest point of the island. From Es Mercadal you can reach the top of this 358-meter high mountain via a winding road.
The historic centre has managed to maintain approximately its original character over the years. This is mainly due to the river that flows through the village during the wetter periods.
The bridges and corridors make Es Mercadal one of the most characteristic villages of the island.
The main attractions of the village are the old mill, the Center Artesenal de Menorca and the Eglesia Sant Marti. In the car-free centre of the village, you will find some nice terraces that are filled with locals and tourists all day long.
Son Bou is one of the most popular tourist resorts in Menorca. The seaside resort is located in the municipality of Aliaor, about twenty kilometres from the island's airport. This short transfer makes Son Bou a popular destination in Menorca.
Son Bou's most popular attraction, however, is its three-kilometre-long sandy beach. It has the longest sandy beach on the island. At the end of the beach are the remains of the basilica, Basilica de Son Bou.
The grounds of the basilica are not open to the public, but you can walk around it and get a good idea of what the basilica must have looked like in the past.
In Son Bou itself, you can find quite a few villas, hotels and resorts that are filled with tourists in the summer months as it is very popular.
Cala en Bosch
The seaside resort of Cala en Bosch is built around an old fishing port that today is used almost exclusively for sailing yachts and other pleasure craft. Around this harbour, you can find restaurants and bars that are almost all aimed at tourists.
These mostly stay in the hotels and resorts that are within walking distance of the harbour.
One of the main attractions of Cala en Bosch is the Aqua rock water park and the accompanying go-kart track. The other main attractions of Cala en Bosch are the beaches.
These beaches are quite busy in the summer months, making it sometimes difficult to find a place.
This is the most beautiful and important nature reserve of Menorca. From the village, you can take various walks through the nature reserve. In Es Grau itself, there are some restaurants and bars and some companies that specialize in ecotourism.
For example, you can take a kayak trip from Es Grau along the nature reserve.
A striking number of holiday homes can be found in the village itself. These are not all the same as in other seaside resorts on the island, but they are all unique homes, which means that Es Grau has managed to retain its appearance as an idyllic village.
Fornells is one of the most northern places in Menorca. It was originally a fishing village, but in recent years tourism has gradually taken over the village. You can roughly separate Can Fornells into two parts, Fornells and Platges de Fornells. The parts are several kilometers apart.
Fornells is mainly known for its harbour, the many seafood restaurants in the centre, and the Torture Tower. In addition to the many apartment complexes and holiday homes, this village also has some parts where the local population lives.
Platges de Fornells is a different story. Here you will only find luxury holiday homes and bungalows that have a magnificent view over the various bays in the region. There is a small sandy beach, a supermarket and a water park.
The waters around Platges de Fornells belong to a protected nature reserve. You can only dive or fish here with a special permit. You can snorkel here. There is a chance that you will encounter small sharks.
The area surrounding Fornells is known for its excellent water sports facilities. You can go surfing, sailing, kayaking, fishing and diving.
Punta Prima is a small seaside town in the southeastern part of Menorca. The village is mainly known for its sandy beach. However, the sandy beaches at Punta Prima are somewhat polluted by the large amounts of seaweed that are in the water here.
A small boulevard with several restaurants and bars runs along the beach. There is a large free car park not far from the beach.
The best thing about Punta Prima is the view of the island of Illa de l'Aire. The Faro de Isla del Aire is located on this island.
The town of Alaior is one of the larger towns on the island. In total, almost 10,000 people live there.
The most striking building of Alaior is the Santa Eulalia. This impressive church is visible when you drive along the highway along with the city and is for many tourists the reason why they visit the town.
The centre of Alaior is compact with a few shops, mini supermarkets and restaurants. Striking are the small bakery shops where you can buy homemade sweets and ice creams.
Within the boundaries of the municipality of Alaior is one of the most important archaeological sites of Menorca, the Torre d'en Galmes. In the vicinity of Alaior, there are also quite a few farms where the famous Mahon cheese is made.
The village and municipality of Sant Lluis can be found in the southeastern part of Menorca.
The historic centre of the village has a striking square street pattern. Because of this street pattern, the village does not seem cosy.
However, the terraces of the various restaurants and bars make the centre cosy.
The main attractions of the village are the museum located in the historic mill, the old church and the town hall.
The old fishing village of Binibequer Vell is one of the few seaside resorts in Menorca that has retained its authentic character. The streets of the village look more like a labyrinth with small corridors, stairs, tunnels and passages everywhere.
This historic part of the village is not big, but it is big enough to wander around for half an hour.
There are several nice restaurants and shops around the historic centre. Beautiful beaches can be found in the seaside resorts around Binibequer Vell.
In the village itself, there is only an old bay where the fishing boats used to arrive; at least that's what they want to tell the tourists.
In reality, the village was only built-in 1972. As an example for this village, they have been inspired by several old photos of villages in the area and in other parts of Spain.
A large part of the old village is currently a hotel and each cottage is a room or apartment. There is a small selection of mini supermarkets for anyone staying in a villa.
Cala'n Porter is one of the most popular tourist resorts in the south of Menorca. The resort has a beautiful beach that is sheltered in a bay.
At the beach, you will find some beach bars and bars. In the village itself, there are several larger restaurants. These are typical tourist restaurants where the level sometimes leaves something to be desired.
Looking for Menorca Nightlife? The bar and club with the best view of the island of Cova d'en Xoroi can also be found in Cala'n Porter. It is one of the few clubs on the island and because of the dress code in the evenings, they try to keep it a bit more exclusive.
Cala'n Blanes is a typical seaside resort in the western part of Menorca.
There are several large apartment complexes and hotels here with the associated shopping streets and entertainment venues. Several smaller beaches are fully equipped.
You can often easily reach your beach from your hotel or apartment via several stairs.