The Balearic Islands are a popular holiday destination in the Mediterranean Sea. Part of Spain, the main islands are Majorca, Minorca, Ibiza, Formentera, and Cabrera.
Whether you are looking for a relaxing spot to spend a chilled out and peaceful vacation or whether you are looking for a full octane party central, the Balearic Islands offer the lot. They boast great beaches, stunning countryside, vibrant resort areas, and charming traditional villages. Head out of the main tourist hotspots and it is still possible to experience a bit of the local culture and charms.
Which island should you choose? This handy overview should help you to decide:
Majorca, also spelt Mallorca, is the biggest island in the group. It has a great infrastructure for visitors and plenty of places to eat, drink, sleep, and have fun. It is popular for its sandy beaches, sunny climate, wildlife-rich mountainous areas, and lively party resorts. There are quieter spots though if you don’t want to spend your nights hitting up the bars and discos – head inland to enjoy peaceful nature. Palma de Mallorca is the island’s capital. Magaluf is the island’s party zone, and if you’re after a quieter time the small villages of Deia, Pollenca, Esporles, Valldemossa, and Fornalutx are ideal. Binssalem is great for culture and history lovers. Numerous tour operators offer trips around the main destinations so you can experience a bit of everything that Majorca has in store. Enjoy hiking, biking, climbing, swimming, beach-bumming, nature, boat trips, sangria, and tempting Mediterranean cuisine.
Also spelt Menorca, this is the second biggest island in the Balearics. It offers a quiet stay with los of stunning nature and scenery. Whilst you fill find a good choice of places to eat and drink, Minorca certainly isn’t a party destination. It would suit those looking to relax on beautiful un-crowded beaches and who want to spend long days enjoying the landscapes. The main cities and towns are Mahon (the island’s capital), historic Ciudadela, and Alaior, which is an ideal eestination for cheese lovers! Fornells is a charming fishing village, and there are heaps of other delightful villages to explore. There are several interesting ancient monuments, such as those at Trepuco, Torre d’en Galmes, Torralba d’en Salord, and Naveta d’es Tudons, as well as a number of old castles, lighthouses, and forts in various states of preservation. You certainly won’t be short of sightseeing opportunities on Minorca! Combine active days of discovery and outdoor adventures with days soaking up the sun on the splendid beaches and enjoy relaxed and chilled out evenings.
The true party island of the Balearics, people come from far and wide to experience the pumping club scene. Perhaps best known for its plethora of bars and clubs with international DJs, Ibiza attracts a lively crowd. The beaches are pretty, perfect for sleeping off the night before! San Antonio and Ibiza Town are veritable hives of activity. It may come as a surprise though to hear that Ibiza also has some beautiful quieter areas and places that are perfect for discovering the island’s history and nature. Wander the interesting and atmospheric streets of Ibiza Town’s old town area, browse the wide array of goods on sale at the different markets, see the unusual Es Vedra island rock, visit the pretty and hidden cove of Atlantis, find a serene speck of beach away from the crowds, and explore the caves at Cova de Can Marcia. And then get your glad rags on and get set to dance the night away!
The smallest island in the group, Formentera is a great day trip from other islands. If you choose to stay here be prepared for a much more low-key vibe than other islands. The main reason to stay here is the gorgeous pristine beaches. Explore the countryside and go snorkelling in the clear waters.
Cabrera is best visited as part of a tour. It is a stunning island and it has had a long military presence.