Things to do in Menorca
Just about every tourist brochure cliché comes true when we travel to the beaches of Menorca, with its unspoiled sands and glistening turquoise waters. While the peak season runs from May to October, the island has quietly encouraged sustainable tourism all year round. The gentle landscapes lend themselves to visitors who enjoy walking, riding, cycling and exploration of hundreds of stone monuments, pitted across the countryside and coves from thousands of years ago.
It takes around an hour to get from one end of the island to the other, so everything is within perfect driving distance, and we’ve provided just a few places and events you can experience during your stay. Don’t forget to book your easyCar car rental in Menorca before you depart to make the most of competitive prices and for ease of collection when you arrive.
Xoriguer Gin Distillery
For the majority of the 18th century, the British ruled Menorca and were kind enough to introduce the custom of distilling (and drinking) gin. Xoriguer stands on Mahon’s scenic harbour as the only remaining traditional distillery, with enormous copper stills that date back further than 100 years, arguably giving it the distinct taste it’s known for.
Conveniently located only 15 minutes drive from Menorca Airport, why not toast your holiday upon arrival? For something a little unique, you can also try the specialty herbal varieties of gin on offer; just make sure you have a designated driver!
Ciutadella and Sant Bartomeu Festivals
Ciutadella is a summer music festival during August, offering classical concerts in the Church of El Socorro and at numerous other venues. The festival situated around 45 minutes drive from the airport with ample free parking throughout the area. From soloists to entire orchestras, and young musicians to well-known artists, there is a tremendous amount on offer for appreciative ears to enjoy.
For the authentic experience of Menorca, Sant Bartomeu festival in Ferreries, which is only 25 minutes inland from the airport, celebrates the island’s foundation in the 16th century. The festival runs from 23rd -24th August and features dancing horses, costumes and clusters of candles.
Elegant nativity scenes are also seen throughout the island during December, with handmade figures and decorations for sale in street markets and on display in various municipal buildings and churches, a tradition dating all the way back to the 13th-century.
Witness the beauty of Máo and enjoy a historic tour of this port from a catamaran. Trips last up to an hour, and point out fascinating landmarks that have shaped Menorca to become the place it is today. When you’ve had your fill of the city you can gaze down at the wonderful underwater views through the glass-bottom of the boat. Commentaries are offered in a variety of languages, while you sail past Lazaretto Quarantine Island, La Mola Fortress, the Isla del Rey British Military Hospital, Fort Malborough and the Sant Felip Castle.
Cami de Cavalls
This coastal route covers 125 miles around the edge of the island, offering a wonderful cross-section of the true diversity of Menorca’s landscape. Most people will walk, ride or cycle along sections of the path, perhaps covering the entire track over the period of a week.
Alternatively, why not see the whole thing in a day? It is possible to make the drive around the island a day trip, with the occasional stop-off to wander through Menorca’s lush pine forests or virgin beaches, as well as taking advantage of the numerous photography points along the way from clifftops.
Driving around the coastline will allow you the chance to experience the whole island while still being able to visit the various other places during your stay.
Where to eat and go out
Menorca invented mayonnaise. Stop and think about that for a second. While this is an incredible achievement, perhaps you would appreciate a slightly healthier food option?
As well as the artisan cheeses made on the island, Café Balear, a waterside restaurant in Ciutdella, takes full advantage of the island’s other speciality: fish. Locally caught produce is used to lure many a tourist and local into its net for repeated visits, with their signature dish of Caldereta de Longosta (lobster in a rich stock). Cap Roig, situated upon a cliff top just north of Mahon with incredible views of the rocky coast, is the only restaurant that can compete with Café Balear’s clam dishes.
During the summer months, there is regular live music and entertainment that extends long into the early hours of the morning. Stylish cocktail bars and music venues, playing tunes from eras you didn’t know existed, are around every corner, often featuring specialist performers from the mainland. Akelarre Jazz Club in Mao Harbour dates back 100 years and treats its customers to infamous cocktails and live music, with Zouck and Assukar nearby for a more pub-like experience, blended with a curious mixture of club and salsa music.
Our favourite, however, has to be Cova d’en Xoroi at Cala’n Porter, just 15 minutes from the airport along the southwest coast of the island. This spectacular bar is set within natural caves just 25 metres above sea level, treating its guests to ambient music infused with the sound of gentle breaking waves. By night, the caves are transformed into a very popular nightclub with live performances and dance music through the night.
So what are you waiting for? Hire a car in Menorca today to unlock all the island has to offer.