Mahon has been the capital of Menorca for almost three hundred years, changed by the British from Ciudadella, who recognised the importance of its deep harbour. It has one of the largest natural harbours in the world being five kilometres long and one kilometre wide. Its depth, of up to thirty metres, is another great asset. Mahon became a strategic Mediterranean stronghold and was held by the British for over one hundred years until it was returned to Spanish rule in the nineteenth century. It is a large town with a vibrant atmosphere where you can enjoy many hours of sightseeing. There are some wonderful historic buildings, churches and museums. A Mahon holiday offers a wide range of accommodation, a large number of restaurants and bars, retailers to satisfy most shoppers and a lively nightlife.
Why Go To Mahon?
A Mahon holiday has much to offer visitors. The town itself is a great tourist attraction and it is also a good base from which to explore the rest of the island. There are reliable bus services to other areas and boat excursions from the port.
Who Is Mahon Popular With?
A Mahon holiday has wide ranging popularity with the exception of families with young children who generally travel to the island to enjoy the sand and the sea. Mahon makes an excellent city break for those who wish to combine sightseeing in the town with relaxation on a beach. There are a number of beaches, including Cala Pedera, in the vicinity.
When To Go To Mahon
The holiday season in Mahon begins in April and lasts until late October with temperatures ranging from the twenties to the mid thirties.
Mahon - The Place
Mahon, Menorca’s modern capital, lies in the east of the island close to the airport of the same name. It is a charming town, its buildings spreading up the hill from the port, displaying a mix of architecture that reflects the island’s history. There are examples of fine Georgian architecture from the years when the British ruled the land. Mahon’s large harbour is a busy and interesting place by both day and night. It is very popular in the evenings when the lights from the restaurants, bars and cafes reflect in the dappled water.
Mahon’s holiday accommodation provides for all budgets from five star hotels to self-catering apartments and studios, and there are restaurants catering for even the most pernickety of tastes. Those who enjoy a little holiday retail therapy will not be disappointed as the narrow streets and the quaint squares are filled with shops of every description. Mahon’s nightlife is varied and has something for everyone from lively music bars to romantic restaurants.
Mahon was once a walled town but now only the Arc de San Roche, one of the gates into the town, remains. There are several old buildings that should be included on your sightseeing list. These include the Town Hall, restored in the late eighteenth century, and the Church of St. Mary in Constitution Square with its wonderful organ. Recitals are given here daily. The gin distillery is another favourite with tourists, probably in the hope of receiving free samples at the end of the tour.
A Mahon holiday offers days of interesting sightseeing opportunities both in the town and to other resorts around the island.
Mahon nightlife has something for everyone from romantic venues to lively music bars and clubs. One such popular bar, the Nou de Copes, looks like a cave and is built into the walls of the harbour. Even though this is the capital, not many venues remain open after two in the morning.
Mahon has many excellent shopping opportunities in its charming squares and in its maze of narrow streets, many of which are pedestrianised. There is a comprehensive array of designer boutiques and specialist shops selling a wide variety of goods. The market is housed in a restored convent dating from the seventeen fifties and is well worth a visit. Popular purchases include leather goods, pottery, embroidered linens and jewellery.
Mahon has such a large number of restaurants that they surely cater for all tastes. There are fast food outlets alongside traditional fish restaurants and those serving international cuisine. There are also many tapas bars which are an ideal way of trying local food. Tapas are a medley of small bite-sized portions of traditional cuisine. They are also good at filling the sometimes long gap between lunch and dinner which is served fairly late on the island. The local wines are very palatable and inexpensive. Children, held in great affection by the Spanish, are always given a warm welcome and their tastes and portion sizes are generally accommodated.