So why will you really enjoy your family visit to the Museum of Menorca?
This is a building that breathes history both inside and out. There’s an impressive cloister area with arches and plenty of fascinating content relating to the island’s past, plus a room for children with games and brainteasers. The Museum of Menorca is a space for learning and having fun. A visit to it is bound to result in great memories to share as a family.
Your children will love the Museum of Menorca. Just follow the marked itinerary to wander from the island’s ancient history to the most current day, with the backup of interactive elements and a range of interesting activities.
How did people live in Menorca 4000 years ago?
You probably already know that taulas are prehistoric monuments which are unique to the island. But do you know about the rituals celebrated around them? At the Museum, you will see ceramic glasses and the remains of amphorae that were found in the taula enclosures and are assumed to have been offerings made by ancient settlers in Menorca to their gods.
The houses were built around patios in the larger settlements, with a kitchen, storeroom, larder and workshop where utensils were made with clay... There are examples of how people cared for their hair, the adornments they wore, what they ate… You’ll find everything the archaeologists have found in these prehistoric settlements at the Museum along with all the explanatory details.
Were the Romans already making sobrassada in Menorca?
Phoenicians, Greeks and Romans came to Menorca by boat. They transported animals, food, metals and other merchandise which they traded throughout the Mediterranean. The Romans occupied some of the prehistoric settlements during their time on island. It was they who introduced some of the new techniques for conserving food, such as cured meats and smoked goods. Would they have shown the Menorcans how to make sobrassada? ;)
Menorca was also attacked by Turkish pirates. Have you already visited the Es Born obelisk in Ciutadella? Or, more recently and from the 19th century, did you know that there were places where they made small silver pouches, mostly in Mahón and Alayor, and which became a type of jewel to flaunt on grand occasions?
Your family is sure to have lots of questions, with nearly all the answers available on the Museum’s explanatory panels. The children can enjoy doing the puzzle of the great sailing ships that arrived from Rome, or discover how Latin is the basis of many words that we normally use.
Playing with Menorcan history
Once you’ve seen all the different rooms and Museum exhibits and enjoyed the interactive tables where you play at finding places that you already know in Menorca, it ¡s time for what the kids have been waiting for.
There’s a room which has been especially adapted for them, where a young archaeologist invites them to take part in an adventure by hiding in a prehistoric cave or dressing up just like the Menorcans from whatever historic period they fancy the most.
During the British occupation of Menorca in the 18th century, some Menorcans were corsairs. Pirates? No, they were granted permission by King George III of England to attack and sack enemy vessels found crossing the Mediterranean. This was known as “having a Letter of Marque”. With the help of a pack of cards, your children can capture a boat laden with wool near Mahón Harbour, struggling against the wind and waves. Are you going to help them with this adventure?
How to prepare your family for a visit to the Museum
Located in Mahón and with views of the sea from outside, the 17th century building which is now the Museum of Menorca was originally a convent and later a social and educational centre. Concerts and cultural events are held in the cloisters and it is an unbeatable setting.
You can request a guided visit on the Museum’s website or just go around on your own. If you choose the latter and have small children, it’s better to combine the tour of the exhibition rooms with a visit to the special area for kids. Remember that they generally can’t manage more than one hour of the same activity.
Please run through the basic rules with them beforehand: no shouting, no running in the corridors, etc. so that they don’t bother the other visitors.
The Museum of Menorca organizes several workshops and activities, with many of them especially for children. Check it out before so that your children can meet other boys and girls – they will have a great time.
Do you know how much fun it can be for children visiting a museum? It helps them to develop their expressive and creative abilities. They love listening to stories about what they see there; ask them what they’re most interested in and in that way you can enjoy the discoveries they make as a family. What period of Menorcan history do your children prefer? Which one did you like the most?