At the most northerly point of the Balearic Islands remains the peacefully and wonderful Menorca, with its untouched caves and megalithic monuments. It is the perfect destination to enjoy with your family because of the multiple activities you can practice there in nature. Also, the culture and traditions haven’t been so exposed to mass tourism and inhabitants still conserve their fest and gastronomy. This season comes to discover Menorca, the essence of the Mediterranean Sea.
A little bit of culture…
Menorca(also called Minorca) has been influenced by several cultures from prehistoric times. The earliest culture on Minorca came from the Mediterranean cultures, including Greek Minoans of ancient Crete, the Carthaginians, and the Romans. Its capital, Mahon has the second deepest natural harbor in the world: 5 km long and up to 900 meters wide. This fact added to the geographical situation makes from the island a strategic point for trade in the Mediterranean Sea and has suffered multiple invasions along the centuries. In October 1993, Minorca was designated by UNESCO as a biosphere reserve.
Minorca is especially well known for its traditional summer fiestas, which intrigue many visitors. The “Festes de Sant Joan” is held actually in Ciutadella. During three days local people celebrate with parades, bonfires, horses dressed up for the occasion with ribbons and rosettes riding along the streets and closes with a firework display.
Food and drink…
It is not surprising that the wide number of varieties of Menorca food and drink are complex blend of the influences left by the many invaders and occupiers over thousands of years, from the Romans and Arabs to the French and British. Seafood has a special relevance here and the island also has a long history of cattle farming. May be the favourite seafood dish of locals and visitors is the “caldereta de llagosta”, a delicious and succulent lobster stew served on fine slices of toast.
The island also lays claim to the discovery of mayonnaise, first produced in Mao in the mid 18th century by a French chef.
The presence of so many British sailors in Menorca ports also had a lasting influence which is seen in the Minorcan’s taste for gin, which during local festes honoring towns’ patron saints is mixed with bitter lemon to make a golden liquid known as a Pomada. Also famous is Mahon cheese, a cheese typical of the island.
Sweet dishes are well known with delicious small cakes made with almonds or toasted nougat and the very popular and traditional ensaimadas, a delicious circular soft pastry cake covered in icing sugar which melts in the mouth.
Despite of the small size of its territory, there are more than 80 beaches in Menorca, each with its own distinct character and with enough variety to satisfy the most ardent beach fanatic. Most are completely undeveloped and have an idyllic setting in pretty small rocky coves backed by woodlands or high cliffs.
If you still want to see wild beaches closes than you ever though, come to discover Menorca, the essence of the Mediterranean Sea.
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