The best beaches in Menorca are the main reason why the island appears on the Bucket List of so many travellers. The most popular beaches in Menorca could not be more different from each other. From the touristy beaches of Son Bou or Cala Galdana, to the secluded Trebalúger.
Of the five Balearic Islands, Menorca, also referred to as Minorca, is not as popular among tourists as the larger Mallorca and Ibiza. The name of the island is accurate only when you compare it to its larger sister, but is is not as small as implied; in fact, it has an area of nearly 700 square kilometers.
Like the rest of the Balearic Islands, Menorca is pristine and beautiful. Since 1993, the island has been designated as a biosphere reserve by the UNESCO, which means that it enjoys strong environmental protection on an international level.
Menorca is shaped almost like a rectangle, which means that it offers long coastlines and a nice diversity of beaches. Geographically speaking, there are nearly 50 beaches in Menorca, and nearly half of them are accessible to tourists.
Quite a few beaches in Menorca are called calas, which is Catalan for “cove,” but this should not be interpreted as meaning that they are all rocky; in fact, many beaches in Menorca fit the description of a sandy stretch of coastline.
Before we get into discussing which of the beaches in Menorca are considered to provide the best enjoyment for tourists, let’s review a few interesting aspects of this island. First of all, the tourist season officially starts in May and lasts through October.
The weather is fantastic throughout the year, but it is generally warmer from June to September, which is when some of the most popular beaches in Menorca tend to get crowded. You can book flights from mainland Spain at any time of the year, and they will land right at Aeroport de Menorca.
During the high tourism season, several flights are offered from major European cities. Alternative means of getting here include ferries from Barcelona or Mallorca, which are fairly popular and provide an unforgettable experience.
Seasoned tourists will tell you that the beaches in Menorca are spectacular, and this is not an understatement. In recent years, smart travelers have made Menorca their only stop in the Balearic Islands.
While both Mallorca and Ibiza have plenty of charms and attractions, the vibe in Menorca makes a more relaxed, authentic, and enjoyable experience. Some visitors feel that Menorca offers everything that Ibiza and Mallorca do, but at a smaller and more laid-back scale.
The 15 Best Beaches in Menorca
With all the above in mind, here is a rundown of the best beaches in Menorca:
1. Cala Pregonda
Of all the beaches in Menorca, Cala Pregonda is one of the most interesting. It may not be the easiest one to get to, but it is certainly worth the trip to the north coast of the island. The golden sands of this beach make it look as an alien landscape; something you would expect to find in Mars if it had an ocean.
Adding to the charm of Cala Pregonda are the unusual rocky formations that look like a miniature replica of Rio de Janeiro. This beach is highly recommended for visitors who stay in the northern city of Fornells.
2. Cala Escorxada
The southern shores of Menorca are home to beaches that will make you feel as if you were in the Caribbean, and this is certainly the case with Cala Escorxada, a small paradise of white sands and crystalline azure waters.
Like many beaches in Menorca, this one is a bit isolated because it is part of a nature preserve, and this means that you should expect to hike more than 40 minutes from the nearest parking spot. A better option is to rent mountain bikes; the trail is not technical at all, but you will need to bring locks.
An even better option is to book a Taximar tour of various south coast beaches mentioned herein, starting at Cala Galdana or Santo Tomas. Taximar is a tour service that operates rigid inflatable boats with a 10-passenger capacity, and they are perfect for getting to know the south coast of Menorca.
3. Cala Presili
Locals may refer to this remote beach as Capifort; it is located in the northern coast but it looks as if it should be situated in the south because of the fine white sand.
By virtue of being a smaller cove surrounded by hills and vegetation, Cala Presili attracts nude sunbathers, which means that it may not be the best option for families.
The closest lodging options to this beach are vacation rentals located about 20 minutes away, but you can also ride a bus leaving from Mahon to nearby Favartix in the morning.
4. Es Talaier
A few beaches in Menorca are interconnected by trails that run along the coastline; such is the case with Es Talaier, a tiny but beautiful beach that is accessible through the Cami de Cavalls. Locals and visitors who come to Menorca for adventure tourism will likely arrive here by mountain bike, and this is a common practice in the summer.
Hiking or biking Cami de Cavalls and ending up at Es Talaier is a magical experience because you can see the turquoise waters from a hill as you ride down towards the sands. This beach does not get too crowded, but it may seem that way because it is small.
Read also: Where to Stay in Menorca
5. Cala Pilar
If you want to feel the Tramuntana, the strong northerly winds that bear down on the upper coast of Menorca, Cala Pilar is a good spot. These winds will keep you cool even during the hottest days of August, but they may also pelt you with golden and reddish sands.
Similar to the aforementioned Cala Escorxada, the only way to get to this cove is by hiking 30 minutes through a very pleasant forest trail. Be sure to bring your camera; the trail offers great vistas including livestock farms where magnificent horses are raised.
The shallow and crystalline water makes this beach ideal for snorkeling, but be sure to check with the locals about the currents before going too far out.
This is a large cove and one of the most popular beaches in Menorca; it attracts locals and tourists alike, and it offers more than 600 meters of golden sands. One of the reasons Cavalleria is very popular because you can drive there from Mahon in just 30 minutes; if you are staying in Mercadal, the drive is about 10 minutes.
Once arriving at the parking lot and car drop off area, you only have to walk about 500 meters to reach the sand. This is a prime area for snorkeling, but only if the Tramuntana winds allow it. This is also one of the best surfing spots in the north coast.
7. Cala Turqueta
This is one of the prettiest beaches in Menorca; it begs to be discovered because it is a true rocky cove surrounded by tall pine trees and the most amazing turquoise waters you can find in the Balearic Islands.
What is amazing about this pristine beach is that it a lot more accessible than it looks; if you stay in the Ciutadella resort area, you can take a short taxi ride to a parking spot where you will find a small beach bar and even bathrooms.
You have probably noticed that this is the first beach mentioned herein with a nearby restroom plus a snack bar; this is par for the course in Menorca, where the vast majority of beaches are protected.
Here’s another accessible beach that is somewhat popular, but not as much as Santo Tomas, it neighbor to the east. Binigaus is not a cove; it is a long stretch of white sands and calm waters.
Many of the people who frequent this beach come over from Santo Tomas, which is a nearby beach resort. If you are traveling with children, there are a couple of country inns nearby; plus, there is a farm right next to the beach where you can see horses walking into the shallow water.
Read also: Best things to do in Menorca
9. La Vall
La Vall d’Algaiarens is a large network of coves located in the northern coast of Menorca, and they feature sugary white sands, which buck the trend of reddish sands in this part of the island. The topography of this beach keeps some of the Tramuntana winds away, thus making it one of the most popular in the north.
Something else making La Vall interesting is that it offers lifeguards, but you should not take your chances because there are strong currents from time to time.
Other nice attractions include a farm that you will see before arriving at the parking spot where the beach access trail begins; horseback tours are offered here, and this is where you can mount the famous Menorquin horses.
10. Son Saura
This is perhaps the closest you can get to a Mediterranean beach in Menorca. Son Saura is located in the south coast of the island, and it is split into two large beaches Banyuls to west and Bellavista to the east.
There are no ocean cliffs surrounding the beached, just forest meadows, and this means that visitors can enjoy full days of sun looking at azure waters. Many snorkelers come here to spot sea rays at the shallow bottom.
Plenty of locals come here to enjoy picnics on the beach, and they sometimes have to compete with tourists for spots. A word of advice for visitors arriving in July and August is to get here early to claim good spots on the sand.
11. Macarella and Macarelleta
If you have seen photographs of Menorca before coming here, chances are that they were taken at Macarella, an extremely popular beach that happens to be very photogenic, so be sure to bring your camera.
There are two ways to get here: Hiking the Ruta de los Miradores, which as its name suggests provides many dramatic vistas, for about five kilometers, or boarding a bus departing from Ciutadella a few times a day.
When you get here, you will notice a large restaurant very close to the beach, but it may be difficult to get a table because it tends to be crowded all the time. Fortunately, Macarella has a little sister beach that is just five minutes away on foot; you will not find a restaurant here, but the views are even more spectacular.
12. Mitjana and Mitjaneta
Another magnificent beach in the south coast is Mitjana, a spot where you can practice cliff diving of moderate difficulty. This is a large cove with plenty of sand; even if it gets crowded, you will always be able to find a place where to place your beach towel even if it is far from the water.
The ocean cliffs around the cove are easy to climb, and they provide nice spots for enjoying beachfront picnics under the shade of ancient trees.
Should you feel slightly adventurous, you can look to your right as you face the water and see a rocky trail that connects to Mitjaneta, which is a very small sister cove, but you may not see its little beach section at high tide.
See also: The best restaurants in Menorca
13. Cala Galdana
Up until now, we have mostly reviewed pristine beaches that will appeal to ecotourists. If you are looking for a more traditional beach resort experience like in Mallorca and Ibiza, you will love Cala Galdana, a place where you can find luxurious hotels and long-term vacation rentals right in front of the beach.
Cala Galdana is family-friendly in the sense that you do not have to worry about dangerous currents or overly windy conditions; plus, you also have all the conveniences of restaurants, bars, and shops close to the beach.
You can rent everything from beach umbrellas to chaise lounges and from kayaks to motor boats. Should you find Cala Galdana to be a little too “touristy,” you can always walk down to Cala Macarella or Cala Macarelleta, or Cala Mitjana or Cala Mitjaneta which are just minutes away.
14. Son Bou
Notice how this is not a cala at all; Son Bou is a sandy stretch of coastline that goes on for three kilometers along the south coast. The sands are fine and white. In fact Son Bou is the longest beach in Menorca.
In essence, Son Bou consists of two sections: One is a beach resort for families and the other is a more isolated section that attracts nude sunbathers.
Son Bou has everything from hotels to supermarkets; there are various tour operators that can help you book activities such as boat rides, chartered fishing trips, snorkeling, and even overnight camping at a nearby nature preserve.
This is another Menorca beach that lives in your head before you arrive; pictures of Trebaluger are often featured on websites and tourism brochures, and one of the reasons is because this is a pristine green beach complete with an estuary system.
One of the best ways to get here is to book a boat tour from nearby Cala Galdana, but you can also walk over from Cala Mitjana, an option that will give you more opportunities to take incredible pictures.
Unless you arrive by boat, and you will find that many people do, you must prepare for a 40-minute walk. One side of Trebaluger features an imposing cliff that is easy to climb; many visitors walk up to find a nice pine forest meadow that provides a refreshing shade.