Menorca

Menorca: The perfect last day itinerary!

We had a whole day to kill on our last day of our trip to Menorca.  The villa we were staying in chucked us out at the early hour of 10am…ok it’s not that early, but when your flight doesn’t leave until 21:15pm, it feels a bit unreasonable, haha!

So, what were we going to do with ourselves for the day?!

The villa company had left us a note to say that we could use one of the hotels in the resort, either to spend the day by the pool there, or to just leave our luggage.  Whilst it was tempting to spend the last day soaking up every last ounce of sunshine we could, the hotel did not look great…and I had other ideas!

I had planned a little itinerary for us, which would take in some ancient ruins, some lovely views and beaches and a nice spot of lunch. Nothing too strenuous, but enough to fill the day and get our fill of culture!

We would also hop our way towards the airport in a leisurely fashion along the coast (not that it is far!), making it back there in good time to fill up the tank and return the car (thank goodness – hire cars are my nemesis!!).

So, after quite an early start (this was supposed to be a holiday after all!) and packing our final bits away, I had one last cup of tea sitting on the side of the pool watching the sun rise.

Then it was time to clear up the villa, take the rubbish out and load up the car.  The very kind car hire people had upgraded us – hmm, really happy about that!  I can’t say that I love driving in other cars, or countries!  Anyway, the upshot of having a bigger car meant all of our luggage could fit in the boot and we didn’t have to try to shove it into the backseat, like we have done in the past!

After dropping off our rubbish and recycling (always doing our bit!), off we headed, leaving Son Bou behind us and headed towards Torre d’en Galmes, which is located about 10 minutes out of the resort.

Torre d’en Galmes

Torre d’en Galmes is an ancient Talayotic settlement, and is the largest talayotic site in Menorca, and I believe in the whole of the Balearic Islands.

We hit the visitor centre first, so we parked up alongside a few other cars and headed into the centre.  It was a small building, but it was packed full of information about this ancient, prehistoric site.

We had a look around, trying to take in the information presented in front of us.  Luckily we had also been to the National Museum a few days beforehand, so we had gained an insight into the history of the island, along with specific insights into this settlement.

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The site of Torre d’en Galmes covering approx 66,000 square metres.

And am I glad that we had!  It really enhanced our visit to have that knowledge and helped me visualise what it was that I was looking at.

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This is more than just a pile of stones!  It’s a Talaiot, dating from between 1000-700 B.C.!

It was my partner who really wanted to visit this site…but I’m so glad we did!!  Torre d’en Galmes is fascinating…and old!!  I can’t get my head round that something so old is still standing (sort of!).

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One of the many remains of private dwellings that can be found at the Torre d’en Galmes site – to the left is the entrance, which leads into a central courtyard area. Rooms lead off this, which you can see directly ahead and to the right.  The tall pillars would have held a roof of sorts which would have covered the dwelling in a horseshoe shape – brilliant stuff!!
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The equivalent of the cooker in one of the private dwellings!

I hadn’t realised that the site was set on a hill, so the views from it were wonderful… and I guess necessary in the times when the site was inhabited, so they could see any enemies coming for them from afar!

As we reached the highest peak I glanced around and was surprised to see the town of Alaoir in the distance on one side, and the glorious Mediterranean sea spreading out in front of us and the resort of Cala n Porter in the other direction.

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The town of Alaoir as seen from the Torre d’en Galmes site.
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And in the other direction! Views out to sea (honestly there was!)

I loved wandering around the site, it was so interesting to see how people lived all those years ago.

However, after spending a good couple of hours taking it all in, it was time to head off and to our next stop…which was Cala n Porter!

Cala n Porter

I love Cala n Porter! It has one of the most beautiful beaches, small, but gorgeous, with clear blue water.  We parked up and wandered into the centre of the resort.  This is the place where my memories of holidays come flooding back, special family holidays spent there.

We had a little nose around to see what had changed, as we hadn’t been there for a while and took in the fabulous view across the cove.

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Cala n Porter bay – as beautiful as ever!
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Cala n Porter beach – the perfect peaceful place for a spot of relaxation!

It was then definitely time for a break, so we stopped for lunch at Sa Paissa which is a restaurant that sits in the main square.

As I sat waiting for my food arrived, I glanced up and noticed a hill in the distance… the same hill from where we had just come!  How had I never known that it existed?!! I had been to that restaurant a few times before and never knew that it was there. I ate my lunch taking in the sights and enjoying a bit of downtime.

Once we’d had our fill, it was time to return to the car and hop down the coast a bit further to Cales Coves.

Cales Coves

This is a place that I had visited many years ago when I was a kid, but I don’t remember it.  My partner had already been there, as he walked from Cala n Porter once, when we’d visited the resort. I unfortunately couldn’t join him that time as I had injured my foot, so I was left lazing back at the villa as he went out to explore…and wishing I could have gone with him!

It had been somewhere that I had wanted to see for a while and this was the opportunity!

We followed the signs and drove down a rough single track road until we came to a car park..of sorts.  I drove in, over the massive potholes and found a space.

We then carried on down the track on foot… it was a lot further than I had expected!  Although in reality it was probably only about a 15/20 minute walk, but I was starting to wonder where on earth we were going!!

Eventually, we rounded a corner and I caught a glimpse of a beach…hmmmm…this was definitely NOT what I was expecting!  The ‘beach’ was very small, muddy, covered in seaweed and not inviting at all.

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My first glimpse of Cales Coves through the undergrowth!

We had passed people coming up from the beach with towels slung over their shoulders and I just couldn’t believe that people would make a special effort to come here!  There are so many other nicer spots on the island!

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The view on arrival at Cales Coves!

We emerged from the bush into the bay and I had a good look around me. The small bay opened up as it went further out and on either side large cliffs loomed over it. As I scanned these cliffs my eyes picked out the caves that were dotted everywhere in the rocks.

This was what I had come to see!  Burial caves!

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Cales Coves necropolis

Everywhere in the cliffs you will see these prehistoric caves, which had once been used to house the dead.  Fascinating stuff! It is possible to scramble up to some of them and have a nose in if you want to.

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Burial caves
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This one caught my eye – an ornate doorway into the rock!

We scouted down one side of the bay, climbing up and over rocks, until we rounded the corner and bam!!  Now I could see why people were making the effort to come here!!

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Cales Coves – the colour of that water!

Gorgeous clear blue water greeted us, a few yachts bobbed around and a group of kayakers were calmly paddling around.

There were a few groups of people sunning themselves on the rocks, some splashing around in the water with their snorkelling gear on and some, like us, just taking in the views.

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Relaxing at Cales Coves

It was beautiful and it was difficult to drag myself away… all I wanted to do was dive into that clear water!

But we had a plane to catch, so drag myself away I did.  We made our way back over the rocks and up to the car.

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I felt like I was in the tropics at some points along this track!

To be honest, we were both pretty exhausted by that point.  I was just recovering from a cold and my partner was in the full throes of one.

Homeward Bound!

We climbed back in the car and off we trundled back to the airport. After a few failed attempts (honestly, every time I say I’m never hiring a car again!) we managed to get petrol and dump the car back with the car hire company.

Despite the colds and the car (!), I loved our last day. I felt like we managed to make the most of our time, without rushing manically around.

I love the history that Menorca holds and it’s always a joy to discover a few new things about a place that is familiar to you.

13 thoughts on “Menorca: The perfect last day itinerary!”

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