The Balearic archipelago is one of the 17 autonomous regions of Spain with its own government, parliament and island councils in Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera. Also there are many small islets that belong to the Balearic Islands with the total area of more than 5,000 square kilometers and a coast line of 1,239 kliometers. The capital of the Balearic Islands is Palma de Mallorca; it is 212 kilometers from Barcelona and 140 kilometers from Valencia.
The Baleares are located at approximately the same distance from the Iberian Peninsula, the south of France and the north of Africa. Today it is one of the largest centers of tourism in the western Mediterranean, and by no means the cheapest. The main resort islands are Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera.
First of all, tourists, who are on the Balearic Islands holidays are attracted here by the magnificent beaches, which are among the most environmentally friendly beaches in Europe, the duration of the swimming season (from May to November) and a huge number of entertainment facilities (cafes, bars, discos, casinos), which make the holidays even more tempting and memorable.
The Balearic Islands feature typical Mediterranean climate with high humidity and influential temperature differences between the seasons. The average temperature in winter varies from +8 to +15 degrees Celsius, in summer - from +27 to +29 degrees Celsius. At the same time, the summer heat cannot be called unbearable: the sea breeze, called Embat here, always blows from May to September, softening the heat.
One of the most attractive features for tourists, who go on holidays to Balearics, is the amount of sunny hours: 2,442 hours or 300 days of sunshine a year (approximately 5 hours on winter days and more than 10 hours in summer). Water warms up to +25-26 degrees celsius in summer. The tourist season on the Balearic Islands starts in April and finishes in October.
Mallorca is the largest of the Balearic Islands. The capital of the island, Palma de Mallorca, has gathered architectural monuments of different styles and eras. The Cathedral and the Bellver Castle, built in the 13th century, are especially notable. The so-called Spanish town is located in the historical center. The Knight's tournament - a theatrical performance with the spirit of the Middle Ages is regularly held here in the tourist season. Another traditional entertainment of the Spanish is the bullfight. You can witness this unforgettable performance with the participation of the toreros from different provinces of Spain on the Square of the Bulls in the city center.
The main attraction of the island of Mallorca is the Drakens Caves – the incredible stalactite caves in the eastern part of the island near Porto Cristo. There is one of the largest underground lakes in the world – Martel situated here. Every hour guided tours to the accompaniment of Chopin's music are conducted to the caves. In addition to the Drakens Caves, in the east of the island there are also the Caves of Art, famous for the variety of stone formations of amazing beauty.
The island of Menorca has its capital - the city of Mahon. There are a lot of architectural monuments set close to each other, making the city look like a museum. The life of the city is concentrated in the squares of Columbus, Bastio, San Frances, Reail, Miranda and Conquest. Here you can see the magnificent palaces and historical buildings.
In addition, the old town of Ciutadella with medieval streets and palaces of aristocrats is worth visiting in Menorca during your Balearic holidays. The local Catholic Cathedral is considered to be the most monumental and beautiful construction of the island. The palaces of Olivas, Vivo, Salort, De Saura deserve attention due to their charming exteriors and interiors. A beautiful panorama of the port opens from the observation deck, located behind the building of the Municipal Council.
The third largest island of the Balearic archipelago is Ibiza. Its length is only 40 km, width - 20 km. All the cities, including the capital of the island - the city of Ibiza, are located on the coast. During the city tour the following sites are a must-see here: the archaeological museum with numerous exhibits of the Carthaginian and Phoenician epochs, the Sas-Taulas Gate - the remains of the Renaissance fortress, and the Cathedral Square with the whole cathedral complex. Castel Castle, or Almudaina, with the tower of the Vassal Oath that survived from the 18th century is the tallest building in the city. You will have a beautiful view of the port and the ancient quarter of Sa-Peña from the Dal Villa.
On Balearic holidays you can also take a boat trip along the southeastern coast of Ibiza to the nearby island of Espalamador. Traveling on a catamaran with a transparent bottom will allow you to enjoy the underwater world and its inhabitants.
And, finally, from Ibiza you can make a trip to the pearl of the Balearic Islands - the island of Formentera. Except for two small rocky capes of La Mola and Cap de Barbaria, the island is practically flat - this is a great place for a secluded holiday. The only settlement is San Frances de Fomentera, which looks more like a tourist village than a city.
The length of the coast of Mallorca is 555 km - there are 76 beaches here, 22 of which are awarded the "Blue Flag" for their arrangement and friendly environmental. All beaches are municipal and free of charge. The most popular on holidays to Balearics are Playa de Palma, Calla, Vinas, Cala Mayor, Palma Nova, as well as small cozy bays with fine sandy beaches of Cala Gran, Cala Ferrera, Cala D'Or, Cala Llonga. The lovers of pebble beaches will prefer the beach of Son-Kalju. These beaches have everything you need for relaxation: sun beds, umbrellas, showers, bars, rental of water bicycles. For lovers of a quiet family holiday, Illetas resort is recommended, where the beach is a wide picturesque bay with fine sand.
Mallorca offers versatile facilities for divers. In May-June and September-October it is the best time to dive here, the underwater world is striking in its beauty and diversity. It is good place to learn diving here as well as to perform more complex dives for the pros, while the equipment here is much cheaper than in other countries.
The beaches of Ibiza stretch for 18 km along the coast. The most famous of them are Talamanca, Figueretas, An-Bossa, Cavalet, Cala Salada, scandalously known San Salinas - the first nudist beach of the island. Today its fame is disputed by the more fashionable Playa de Canaliers. The most fashionable is Playa de la Salina with bars and restaurants for the most demanding taste.
There are quiet secluded beaches in Ibiza: Cala de Portnath is located in the north in a small bay, Cala D'Ort is a tiny beach overlooking the mountain of Es Vedra, and Bennirra is a small bay-beach where hippies like to gather. However Ibiza is an island of noisy parties in the first place, famous for its music beaches and discos right at the water's edge. The loudest are Santa Eulária des Riu, Playa den Bossa and Sant'Antonio.
The most popular beaches on the island of Menorca are Kaya Anna and Kaya Galdana in the deltas of withered rivers. Near the sandy beaches you can stay in one of small hotels. In the south of the island in Son Bou, sand dunes stretch for 3 km, while the northern coast of the island is occupied by sloping beaches and wide coves with sandy beaches. This is the most peaceful place in the Balearic Islands, chosen by those who prefer quiet and secluded Balearic Islands holidays.
Apartments comprise the half of the accommodation options of the Baleares; the rest is made by 3-4 star hotels. It is forbidden to build multi-story hotels in Menorca for several years, their maximum height should not exceed 3-4 floors. In general Menorca has avoided many troubles connected with mass tourism thanks to the Catalans, who ensure that the island does not lose its natural image.
Budget two-three star hotels, as well as guest houses are the best option for never sleeping Ibiza and its guests, who are going to party hard at night, sleep on the beach at daytime and only need a place to store their belongings.
Three-four star Mallorca hotels are equally suitable for those, who choose to go on Balearic holidays for beach recreation, rock climbing, diving and windsurfing, or simply to enjoy nature.
An option for leisure vacation without fuss can be found among the chic all-inclusive hotels of Menorca.
Formentera can be recommended to fans of peace and tranquility, as well as lovers of water sports – but the hotel infrastructure is not well-developed in this area.
Irrespective of your traveler type you can find Balearic hotels on Booked.net – all properties from 1 to 5 stars as well as holiday packages are collected in one place for your convenience.