One of the most popular tourist destinations in the western Mediterranean is the Balearic Islands. Where are the Balearic Islands located? This archipelago of islands in Spain can be seen in the Western Mediterranean Sea, close to the Iberian Peninsula’s eastern coast. The Balearic Island map consists of four main islands named Ibiza, Formentera, Mallorca, and Menorca. There are also other minor islands and islets. The largest of the Balearic Islands is Mallorca wherein it boasts lovely sandy beaches. The Spanish Balearic Islands are a favorite point of interest for travelers. Whether you are looking to experience a different kind of nightlife, soak under the heat of the sun, or taste the local specialties, the Balearic Islands in Spain have your desires covered.
If you enjoy island vacations you should also consider going to The Canary Islands.
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History of The Balearic Islands
Many civilizations happened on the Balearic Island, one of which is the prehistoric Tayalotic people whose necropolises and stone towers remain visible up to this day. The history of the Balearic Islands began in 526 AD. The island was ruled by the Vandals and Byzantines eight years later. The Balearic Islands, Spain, were under Moorish rule by the 10th century. It is also believed that the Balearics was first under Spanish rule in 1349, then was under British control in 1738 but was brought back to the Spanish in 1883. In 1983, the Balearic Island group became one of the 17 autonomous regions of Spain.
Several pieces of evidence of foreign influence can be found in the islands. There were discoveries of heads and figures of bulls and other animals, bronze swords, antennae swords, and single and double axes. Roman observers also documented specific customs of marriage and funerals. Since no currency was used on the islands in ancient times, women were treated far above money. Men, on the other hand, serve as mercenaries in the Roman military.
The Balearic Islands’ weather consists of a Mediterranean climate with hot, sunny summers and mild winters. The daily average temperature ranges from about 9°C (48°F) during January and February. Meanwhile, the temperature during July and August is usually 24°C (75°F).
Rainfall is more common during autumn and winter. It is not abundant and decreases gradually during spring. It rarely rains during summer. The weather in the Balearic Islands from October up to April can be windy because of the southwest and the north wind blowing.
Winter, which runs from December to February, has plenty of sunny days with occasional rain and wind. Temperature can drop to about 1°C (34°F), but frigid days are rare. The weather in the Balearic Islands from June to mid-September is hot and sunny due to the summer season. The temperature can even reach around 36°C (97°F) during July and August. Thankfully, the sea breeze gives some relief to the humidity.
The Menorca and Mallorca Balearic Islands located in the eastern part are the windiest areas because these islands are near France. The Balearic Islands, Mallorca, has continental weather wherein winter is colder, and summer is warmer than the other islands. The Balearic Island of Menorca is the rainiest. Rains can be abundant here, especially during winter. The southern part is Formentera and Ibiza Balearic Islands, where it’s less windy in the cold half-year.
If you are looking to spend beach holidays in the Balearic Islands, the best time to visit is summer from June to mid-September. You will enjoy the warm water temperature during this time. The first Atlantic disturbances may affect the islands’ waters in September, but don’t fret because September is still a good month to dip in the water and enjoy the beaches. The sea can be cold during May and June, even if these months are still sunny. Expect the air to be cool as well.
The Main Balearic Islands
Are you planning a holiday to the Balearic Islands? Know that each island has its unique character. Let’s better understand these islands to help you decide which place offers the experience you’re looking for and want.
The pearl of the Mediterranean—this is what Mallorca or Majorca Balearic Islands Spain is known for. It is comprised of wide sandy beaches and secluded rocky coves. This sophisticated city attracts millions of travelers every year because of its irresistible charm and 300 days of brilliant sunshine vibes. The Palma de Mallorca Balearic Islands, which is the capital and largest city, is also a special place of interest in its own right. This largest Balearic Island is famous for its quality local wines, olive oils, and leather goods.
Things to Do in Mallorca
Visit Mallorca’s Capital City: Palma
The Palma Balearic Islands Spain is Mallorca’s capital. The streets are dynamic yet laid-back, filled with exquisite Spanish architecture. One of the fascinating displays of architecture you’ll see here is a large Gothic Roman church called the Cathedral of Santa Maria of Palma or La Seu. Modern travelers can also walk around for high-end shopping and take a break at one of the street-side cafés.
Explore the Beaches
The Majorca Balearic Islands have several stunning beaches. One of the beaches to explore is the Cala Mesquida Beach in Northeastern Mallorca where it encompasses 300 meters of sandy shoreline and clear waters. The Cala Torta is a popular beach of choice for families. For snorkeling, paddling, or other types of water sports, head over to Cala Agulla.
Ride a Train to Sóller
Visit one of Mallorca’s ancient, picturesque towns called Sóller. Here, you can discover Spanish cottages or drop by some ice cream stores. You can join the locals to watch street performances and devour local cuisines at Plaza Constitucion. The exciting part is you get to ride a wooden tram while taking in the mountain scenery on your way.
Places to Stay in Mallorca
Suppose you are on a romantic getaway, a recommended city to stay in, Mallorca in Portocolom. This quaint small town is a peaceful tourist resort that embodies relaxation. Meanwhile, the perfect base for families is in the Bay of Alcudia. This place boasts of a gorgeous coastline with golden sandy beaches. There are plenty of accommodation choices, from five-star Balearic villas to basic lodging options. Those who want to have easy access to nightlife should stay in Magaluf. The perfect starting point for exploring nature spots is in Sóller.
The second-largest Balearic Island is Menorca. Though it is much more discreet compared to its larger neighbor, still, this island has an abundance of lovely landscapes and attractions. You will see a lot of Bronze Age stone structures and remains left by the Tayalotic people. In 1993, UNESCO declared Menorca as a biosphere reserve because there are plenty of indigenous animals, fish, plants, forests, and wetlands on the island. The Menorca Balearic Islands also underwent a series of conquest and reconquest. Mahon, the capital of Menorca, was under British rule during the 18th century. Furthermore, this island is the birthplace of the Menorcan Xoriguer Gin, which is famous throughout Spain.
Things to Do in Menorca
Enjoy the Beaches
Some of the best beaches in Balearic Islands can be spotted in Menorca. Reveal the unmatched natural beauty of Menorca by visiting the beaches of Cala Macarella and Macarelleta. If you are after tranquility, you will appreciate the untouched paradise found at Cala Turqueta. Do not forget to drop by Cala Mondragó and discover why it is a favorite beach destination among locals and tourists.
Be Amazed by Binibeca
Binibeca is a historic fishing village in the Balearic Islands Menorca. This village is known for its white finish that can be seen throughout its narrow streets. You will surely be captivated by the uniform architectural structure of the town. End your journey at the tiny pier, wherein you can appreciate breathtaking views of the entire town.
Discover Natural Wonders
Nature lovers will genuinely have a blast in the Minorca Balearic Islands, Spain. For those wanting to hike, the S’Albufera des Grau Nature Reserve on the north coast of Menorca is the ideal spot. This spot has hiking trails, a freshwater lagoon, plants, woodlands, and bird species. Level up your nature trip by climbing up Monte Toro, the highest peak in Menorca. Here you can fully cherish the glamour of this island.
Places to Stay in Menorca
Are you traveling with the whole family? Son Bou is a recommended place to stay. It has a 4-kilometer beach with a waterpark where the kids will indeed have fun. Punta Prima is also a great location as it offers a quiet coastal sanctuary. Cala Galdana, on the other hand, is the place to be for couples. Aside from a glorious beach, it also has a strip of bars, restaurants, shopping establishments, and different accommodations. Binibeca also has locally owned rental villas that offer a more romantic and relaxed time. Ciutadella is the liveliest town on Menorca, perfect for those seeking a nightlife experience.
The Ibiza Balearic Island is famous for being “the party island.” It entices the young travelers, as well as the rich and the famous. The island has been attracting visitors in search of sophisticated nightlife since the 1960s. Later on, Ibiza became more popular for being a package holiday destination wherein you can enjoy the nightlife and coastal life. Note that partying does not stop until well after dawn. But before its glamorous nightclubbing status, the Ibiza Balearic Islands Spain flourishing economy relied on the export of ceramics, glassware, salt, and agricultural products. Today, aside from its non-stop party action, the island also has peaceful countryside. This part of the Balearic Islands Ibiza features groves of figs, almonds, olives, and wooded hills.
Things to Do in Ibiza
Party All-Night Long
We could not stress this enough, but your Balearic holidays are not complete without exhausting all your energy in the bars or clubs in Ibiza. This island will not have earned the “Party Capital of the World” title if it’s not worth it. There are three major clubbing resorts on this island.
First off is the Playa d’en Bossa on Ibiza’s eastern coast. Aside from the pulsating nightlife, it is also home to the longest beach on the island. Large and small clubs are available that can match any budget. The world’s best DJs have already performed at the world-renowned Ushuaïa beach club.
On the west coast part of Ibiza is San Antonio. It is prominent for its sunset strips and is often the favorite of travelers. The bustling town center is full of bars and smaller nightclubs. If you’re willing to spend more, there are more prominent nightclubs you can visit like Es Paradis and Eden. Just be ready to give it your all until dawn.
Lastly is Ibiza Town, which is Ibiza’s capital. Aside from bars and clubs, this part of the island also has a plethora of shops and restaurants. The legendary Pacha nightclub can be seen here. Ibiza Town usually welcomes the international crowd, and some celebrities can be spotted.
Experience the adrenaline rush by cliff jumping in different rugged cliffs in Ibiza. While there are many spots wherein you can do a cliff jump, a recommended place to do this activity is in Cala Tarida. It features a white, sandy beach with calm, Mediterranean waters. The rock formations aren’t too high—perfect for both who are afraid to jump and the risk-takers.
Drop By the Market in Es Canar
One of the best markets on Ibiza Island is in Es Canar, and it is called Punta Arabi Hippy Market. If your holidays to the Balearic Islands will fall in summer, make sure to go here on a Wednesday. Taste different local specialties at the food stalls and be entertained by the live music. Also, you can bring home unique crafts, antiques, jewelry pieces, and other items made in Ibiza as a souvenir.
Places to Stay in Ibiza
For your share of nightlife adventure, any of the three major clubbing resorts mentioned would be ideal. For couples yearning for a secluded vibe, head over to Cala San Vicente. This Ibiza coastal town comprises golden sand and crystal waters with a backdrop of lush cliffs and mountains. And while Ibiza mainly attracts the youth, families are also welcome to this paradise. If you’ll be traveling with the kids, Santa Eularia des Riu is the place to be. This town on the eastern coast of the island is Ibiza’s third-largest resort. The calm seas and palm-lined promenade contribute to the peaceful atmosphere. It is a family favorite destination because it is far away from the clamor of the clubbing resorts, thus, giving a relaxing vibe.
The smallest among the Balearic Islands is Formentera. If you are looking to explore extensive, unspoiled beaches, Formentera Balearic Islands, Spain has your desires covered. It encompasses a 12-mile-long coastal landscape and natural parks. Because it’s located south of Ibiza, it became a destination for travelers who want to take a break from all the partying. There are no mega clubs here. Plus, hotels are limited. Indeed, this small, bohemian island serves as the best escape for everything.
Things to Do in Formentera
Relish Stunning Seascapes from an 18th-Century Watchtower
Part of Formentera’s line of rocky cliffs and finest beaches are old watchtowers. Part of the Balearic islanders’ defense system, they help locals be on guard against pirates in the past. Today, they serve as a one-of-a-kind beach landmark in Formentera. They also are popular among tourists wanting to take in panoramic views of this coastal paradise. There are four towers strategically located in several areas of the island.
Relax on one of the Beaches
Like the other Balearic Islands, Formentera has its line of sprawling beaches. They are best suited for those who long for tranquil Balearic Islands holidays. There are several beaches to choose from. Playa de Ses Illetes is one of the most beloved beaches in Formentera because of its chalk-white sands and calm, shallow waters. For a more secluded beach option, go to Calo des Mort. It is accessible only through a steep staircase, but its turquoise waters and overall idyllic setting make it a worthy spot. End the day by stopping at Cala Saona. It may be unsuitable for swimming and sunbathing, but there are plenty of cafes and restaurants to lounge in while watching the most breathtaking sunset views in Formentera.
Stroll Along Sant Francesc Xavier Village
Have a trip through Formentera’s history simply by exploring the quaint Sant Francesc Xavier Village. This hub serves as the capital of Formentera. It has a network of peaceful avenues and small squares with restaurants, cafes, and hotels. One of the iconic landmarks in this village is the Sant Francesc Xavier church. Aside from being a religious establishment, it also used to be a defensive fortress during piracy on the island. There are also several exhibition halls wherein you can have a glimpse of local crafts. Moreover, Sant Francesc Xavier is Formentera’s center of the fashion trade. You can drop by boutiques offering a delightful collection of jewelry, leather goods, clothing, and more.
Places to Stay in Formentera
For cheap holidays to the Balearic Islands, La Savina in Formentera is a popular choice. This part of the island offers the lowest accommodation prices. Sant Ferran de Ses Roques also has affordable lodging options. For couples on vacation in Formentera, you have two choices. Aside from boutique accommodations, Es Caló has charming restaurants and breezy vibes.
Meanwhile, Es Pujols has a more bustling element. In line with the endless beaches, you can enjoy romantic dates at restaurants or have a late-night drink at the bars. Playa de Migjorn on the south coast and Cala Saona on the west coast are popular among families.
Other Minor Balearic Islands to Visit
The Cabrera Balearic Islands is part of the administrative district of Palma de Majorca. This is a paradise for nature lovers as it has diverse fauna and flora. Moreover, Cabrera was declared a nature and bird reserve in 1991. Aside from appreciating the island’s natural beauty, this is also a perfect place to have a diving adventure. The Cova Blava is a top diving trip destination wherein divers can swim with whales, dolphins, or turtles. Most tourists usually visit Cabrera only for a day trip. If you plan to have an excursion in Cabrera, it’s recommended to stay in the neighboring Balearic Islands hotels.
One little gem in the Balearic Islands is S’Espalmador. This is a privately owned, uninhabited island but is publicly accessible. It is only a few meters away from Playa de Ses Illetes in Formentera. Activities here are limited since the island only has two homes, a lighthouse, a chapel, and a watchtower. But if you’re after isolation while relishing the pink sand beaches, then you shouldn’t miss this place. You can quickly get here via boat, ferry, or yacht charter Balearic seafaring vessel options from Formentera.
A small, uninhabited island in the Balearics is Es Vedrà. This rocky island is part of Ibiza and a few miles away from the coast of Cala d’Hort. One of its areas is filled with stones from an ancient quarry. It is also known as a magical enclave in Ibiza as it exhibits a special kind of energy that no other place can offer. A lot of people say that this part of the island is haunted. Some even profess to have sightings of UFOs here. Regardless of whether the stories are true or not, Es Vedrà remains to be one of the precious jewels of the Balearic Islands. One of the best ways to have a glimpse of this terrific place is to join a cruise Balearic Islands trip that passes by or goes up close to it.
Balearic Islands: A Prime Island Getaway
The Balearic Islands have everything you hope for in a holiday. Whether you are longing to dip in crystal seawater, be one with nature, or dance the night away with the locals and other tourists, these islands will never disappoint. The beautiful scenery of each town will leave you breathless. Book your all-inclusive holidays to the Balearic Islands to unravel why it is a favorite tourist spot.