The Balearic Islands (in Catalan Illes Balears) are an autonomous community of Spain, composed of two groups of islands and numerous islets located in the Mediterranean Sea: the Gimnesias, including Mallorca, Menorca, Cabrera and nearby islets such as Dragonera, Conejera and Aire Island; and the Pitiusas Islands, that include: Ibiza, Formentera and the islets that surround them, such as Espalmador and Espardell.
Balearic comes from a Greek word “ballein” that, according some researchers, it means to throw stones, probably referring to an army of ancient age that threw stones with the slings.
The Balearic Islands enjoy a Mediterranean climate, with mild temperatures almost throughout the year, and this greatly contributes to the tourist activity.
Catalan is the language of the Balearic Islands, but Castilian is also official. In the tourist areas they speak English and German for the tourists from the countries where these languages are spoken.

fauna baleares

In the Balearic Islands there are more than 45 protected natural areas between Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera, places of outstanding beauty such as the Dalt Vila neighborhood, the necropolis of Puig des Molins and the Sa Caleta deposit.
For sports lovers, the islands offer various water sports activities but also golf.
For those who love shopping, there is local crafts and glass, jewellery, ceramics, leather, silver items. Manacor, in Mallorca, for example is famous for the cultivated pearls, while Marratxí, is known as “the land of clay” for its specialization in this type of art.

Art

In the islands there are some traces of prehistoric and Gothic art (St. Mary’s Cathedral of Palma de Mallorca, Lonja and Bellver castillo).
Roman colonization is still in the Alcudia theater. From the Muslim era is the palace of Almudaina, as well as in Majorca there are different villages that have preserved the appearance of that time, such as Fornalutx.

cattedrale baleari

Gastronomy

The gastronomy of the Balearic Islands is rich and varied, with some differences between Mallorquina and Menorquina cuisine. One of the most typical ingredients is pork meat, which they use to prepare the famous sobrasada (sausage with meat, bacon and paprika), then there is also the camaiot, butifarra and xolís. And of course, being an island, you also eat good fish. As for the cakes: the ensaimada is the most known, whose name comes from the lard that is used for its preparation; pastel de greixonera, crespells and many others.

Festivals and folk traditions

Among the popular festivals of the Balearic Islands, there is “ensortilles” of San Joan de Ciutadella, riding horse to thread a ring with the tip of a spear. The traditional dances are the Bolero Balearic and the jota, with their variants, copeos and maitexes.

ibiza baleari

Balearic Islands:

Ibiza

Ibiza is one of the favorite destinations for tourists from all over the world, for its beaches with turquoise and transparent water and nightlife.
Among the most beautiful beaches of the island there are: Cala Boix, Cala Lonja, Cala Llonga, Cala Martina, Cala Mestella, Cala Codolar, Cala Jondal, Cala de Sant Vicent.
But there are so many other activities that can be done in Ibiza: visiting UNESCO World Heritage sites (the Acropolis of Dalt Vila, the cathedral, the Phoenician-Punic necropolis Pluig des Molins), practicing sports, making shopping or relaxing enjoying the sea view.

Formentera

The island of Formentera is also known for its transparent water beaches and white fine sand. These are protected beaches but still accessible to tourists.
There are also important historical sites on the island: Sant Francesc Xavier, Sant Ferran de Ses Roques and El Pilar de la Mola; then squares, streets, defense towers and lighthouses. Religious festivals are also an attraction of the island: Sant Jaume’s celebrations (in Sant Francesc) and the Carmen celebrations in La Savina and Es Pujols. Music is also a good reason for visiting the island, for its Formentera Jazz Festival.
If you are interested in art, there are exhibitions where you can find collections of local artists and foreigners: the Antoni Tur center “Gabrielet”, the Formentera Ethnographic collection and the La Caixa center.

playa mallorca baleares

Mallorca

Mallorca, like the rest of the islands, is known for its pleasant climate and for its stunning white sand beaches and turquoise waters. In the north, you can windsurfing in windy season.
If you are interested in art and culture, there are museums across the island, and monuments of great historical importance such as the Castillo de Bellver and the Cathedral. The famous painter Joan Miró lived a great part of his life on this island, which also served as a source of inspiration for his works.

Menorca

The island of Menorca has been declared a biosphere reserve by UNESCO for the diversity animals and plants’ species present exclusively in the island, some of which are in danger of extinction. In addition, it is a land rich in gastronomic culture, due to the fact that local restaurants offer high-quality products capable of satisfying any palate.

Cabrera

Cabrera Island is part of the Cabrera Archipelago Maritime-Terrestrial National Park. The beauty of this land lies in its beaches and shores, so there are several boat excursions to visit the most hidden and beautiful coves and corners of the island.