Menorca, the smallest out of the Balearic Islands, may constantly be overshadowed by its more popular siblings, Ibiza and Mallorca.
But that’s exactly why jetsetters who are in-the-know are aware that Menorca a much chiller yet high-quality Balearic experience. Known as “la isla tranquila,” Menorca is packed with fabulous restaurants, artistic Mediterranean culture and of course, out-of-this-world beaches. Don’t miss out on this stunning Mediterranean gem with these seven super fun must-do’s in Menorca!
Enjoy Pure Menorcan Beauty at Cala Mitjana
Cala Mitjana is one of the most famous calas (coves) in Menorca and it’s not difficult to see why. The bright, electric blue water framed by rugged cliffs provides the picture perfect Menorcan backdrop. The gentle waves and shallow waters make it a great swimming spot as well. Plus, unlike most calas, the shore has sand rather than pebbles so it’s comfortable and feels more like a beach. In the summer months it gets extremely crowded since space is limited in the curved cove. However, it’s always worth the short hike down from the parking lot and the crowds. The blinding, sparkly waters of Cala Mitjana will take your breath away and make you glad you chose Menorca as your holiday destination.
Eat Paella by the Sea at Es Pins
Urbanización Santo Tomas, s/n, 07749 Santo Tomas, Balearic Islands, Spain
There’s nothing like eating a paella next to the sea to really remind you that you’re on vacation. Es Pins is the perfect seaside paella restaurant you’re looking for. Located in the upmarket village of Santo Tomas, Es Pins is an airy al fresco restaurant where you can catch open views of Santo Tomas beach that stretch on as far as the eye can see.
Of course, seafood paella is the must-order item at Es Pins. There are various types you can order, from deshelled seafood paella, black paella with monkfish and cuttlefish and seafood fideua with thin noodles instead of rice. There are lots of stellar starters and other items on the menu other than the paella as well. You can get some of the freshest chipirones (fried cuttlefish), creamy croquetas with Mahon cheese or crunchy langostines with curry sauce.
Offering delicious paella and seafood dishes with clear blue sea views to go with it, Es Pins is the exact restaurant you’re craving on your Spanish island vacation.
Have the Best Beach Day Son Bou
Son Bou is one of the best locations for a beach day for large groups. This is because of the never-ending stretch of soft white sand which is a welcome contrast to the rocky and often-crowded calas around the island. The electric blue waters of Son Bou are clear and shallow enough which make for great swimming and chilling in the water for all ages. There are also plenty of thatch umbrellas and sun loungers for rent along the beach.
Son Bou is also a cute beach town that has plenty of shops and restaurants that you can go to for sustenance and reinforcements throughout the day, which is highly convenient.
Treat Yourself to Sizzling Meat on a Hot Plate at Es Forn de Torre Soli Nou
Urb, 07730 Torre Soli Nou, Balearic Islands, Spain
Es Forn de Torre Soli Nou is one of the most romantic and scenic restaurants on the island. The restaurant is located out in the bucolic hills of the island in the middle of rustic fields. Wooden tables are set outside in front of a pretty white chapel-looking structure. At sunset, the skies get tinted purple against the peaceful silhouettes of trees and mountains of the countryside.
The mainstay of Es Forn de Torre Soli Nou is cooking rare cuts of meat on a stone hot plate. The restaurant offers prime steaks and sirloins from locally bred cows with market specials each day. There’s nothing like taking a juicy, rare cut of sirloin and cooking it to perfection to your liking on a sizzling hot plate. Other than the mouthwatering meats, the menu also offers fresh and locally sourced salads and entrees along with lots of fabulous Spanish wines to go with it.
Jump into the Sparkling Waters of Cala en Porter
On the south coast of Menorca is the sleepy beach town of Cala en Porter, which is much more relaxed and unpretentious than Ciutadella or Santo Tomas. Cala en Porter is also the beach which is the namesake of the town and it happens to be one of the most breathtaking beaches in Menorca.
It’s hard not to be taken aback when your eyes first land on Cala en Porter. Tall, jagged cliffs stand on both sides of the brightest aquamarine waters you’ve ever seen. The yachts and boats anchored at the cala look like they’re floating because the water is so clear and glassy. The shimmering water washes up to a wide swath of soft, sandy beach. There are two paths from which you can venture down the cliffs to the rocks on the side of the cala and from there you can jump eight feet into the delicious aqua blue waters below.
The beach itself is also awesome for groups and families since there’s lots of space and sand to lounge on. Plus, the water by the shore is shallow for a good stretch so it’s perfect for kids to swim or just for floating and enjoying the scenery.
Fabulous Farm-to-Table Lunch at Quitapenas
Carretera Binibeca km2,5, 07711 Biniali, Balearic Islands, Spain
Quitapenas is a boho-chic farmhouse restaurant in the countryside which should be a mandatory stop for everyone traveling through Menorca. The restaurant is irresistibly charming, with a sunny al-fresco patio which connects to an even more whimsical indoor dining room.
Quitapenas subscribes to the 0 km philosophy of sourcing ingredients that are immediately available in the local area. Diners will be pleasantly surprised by the incredibly fresh and innovative menu that this rustic countryside restaurant has in store. Every menu item is original and appetizing that it’s hard not to order every single thing on the menu. Delectable dishes include soft shell crab burgers with chili mayo, grilled Mahon cheese with sweet potato, fresh burrata salad with watermelon and ahi tuna super bowls with brown rice, avocado, boiled egg and dashi.
Quitapenas is highly original in both its menu offerings and whimsical rustic ambience. It’s likely to become one of your favorite restaurants that you’ve tried in a while.
Party at Cova d’en Xoroi
Urbanización Cala en Porter, Carrer de sa Cova, 2, 07730 Alaior, Balearic Islands, Spain
When it comes to nightlife in Menorca, there’s no better place to party on the island than Cova d’en Xoroi. The venue itself is one of the island’s must-sees. Cova d’en Xoroi is a club that’s carved into the caves above the sea on the southern coast of Menorca. You literally get to enter and party inside of a cave facing the ocean!
La Cova is one of the most amazing spots to catch the sunset. And then at night it turns into a one-of-a-kind nightclub with an outdoor bar, lounge and dance floor that all flow into one another. On club nights, Cova d’en Xoroi is bumping with DJ’s spinning party tunes and even live music. The cover charge of 40 euros sounds steep, but it’s worth it to witness the nightlife experience like no other at the hottest club on the island.