Have you heard about the Balearic Islands and want to know more about visiting them on your holiday? Chances are, you have finally figured out that you can run out of places to have a holiday. If you think that the only thing the Balearic Islands are famous for is Ibiza, think again.
There are four islands in this geographic grouping and each one is popping with uncanny facts. Below, there are 10 little known anecdotes about the Balearic Islands that will convince you to go there if you’ve got fed up with Holidays in Benidorm and want something different!
1. Another European Union bailout country
About 80% of the economy of the Balearic Islands revolves around the tourism industry. Sadly, like many other EU nations, the government of Spain requested a bailout to help with their struggling economy. Despite this, their financial situation is better than most and this should not distress travellers.
2. A hint of the British Empire
During the 18th century, the British Empire covered a lot of territory and the island of Minorca was one of them. From 1708 to 1757, British ships rested in the ports of this island. To see this part of their history, visit the Port of Mahon. In addition to great cheese and British architecture, the Port of Mahon has influence as the world’s second-deepest port.
3. Distinct Jewish ancestry
Recently, the island of Mallorca made the news due to affirmed claims that most of the island had Jewish heritage. DNA testing proved that the Chuetas were a small group of Jews that were forced to convert to Catholicism 600 years ago.
4. Monkeys go to retire in the Balearic Islands
After looking at pictures of the Balearic Islands, you might feel that you want to retire there permanently. Interestingly, Holland recently rescued a group of monkeys from a contraception testing laboratory. When deciding their fate, the Balearic Islands came into play. Now, there are 12 crab eating monkeys on one of the four Balearic Islands.
5. Foodie alerts
Naturally, many people will go to the Balearic Islands to attend a party or rave on Ibiza. While they are there, travellers have a chance to drink the local Palo and Hierbas carob liquors. However, one of the great things about the Balearic Islands is going to Majorca for the food. You cannot leave the islands without trying the dark red colored peppery pork pate called sobrasada or the ensaimada pumpkin jam cake. Foodies are also attracted to the ancient olive trees that produce some of the most acclaimed oils in the world.
6. An underrated European honeymoon spot
Do you want to enjoy a secluded Mediterranean Island without all of the silly ravers? If you are looking for peace and quiet, the Balearic Islands delights with Formentera. There you will be able to lay on the warm white sand beaches all day and a few tame parties at night. This is definitely one of the most underrated honeymoon spots in Europe.
7. The island for stretching your legs
After partying, swimming and going out on a boat for fishing, you can still include one more physical activity in a trip to the Balearic Islands. For a little bit of hiking, stick with the main island of Mallorca and wander through its mountain areas.
8. European pre history at its best
If you are interested in anthropology, you will not want to miss relics of ancient Phoenician culture and Megaliths found on the island of Menorca. It has romantic coves that open onto the beaches surrounded by evergreen oak groves. Near the center of the island is the 1500 BC Torre d’en Gaumés that has the Talaiotic monuments.
9. Travel on the island is a breeze
When people think of travelling to the Balearic Islands, they assume that they will arriving at one of the four islands and stay put. Instead, there are a network of ferries that take you from the mainland and another set of ferries for interconnecting you (and your car) to the other islands. If you decide to travel by air, it takes less than two hours to fly into the Balearic Islands from Paris or London. Nevertheless, be sure to book your tickets carefully since their “high season” is between July and October.
10. Bird watching is a Balearic Islands specialty
There are over 80 different species of birds on all four of the Balearic Islands and each has their exclusive species. Majorca is the leader of the birding spots and there are tour guides to assist you in finding the best areas. Top birds to watch for include the Common Firecrest songbird, the Egyptian Vulture, and the Thick-Billed Red Bunting.