Three Menorcan legends that your family can explore
Menorca is an island that is teeming with mystery and legend. Magical tales that will entice us to visit where they actually took place, if in fact they really did. Children will be quickly seduced by these stories of fantasy. Do you know about the excursions you can take around Menorca that include a legend that your family can enjoy?
Bini Hotels would like to suggest these three:
1. The secret of the “Cathedral” of Menorca
It is said that Menorca is replete with subterranean rivers and mysterious tunnels that trace out paths beneath the island, and that the force of their waters have carved out ravines and caves. A particular one is especially deserving of a visit. It is the largest on the island, and has hence received the nickname of “the Cathedral”.
We are speaking of the Cova des Coloms (Cave of Pigeons), known as such thanks to the common wood pigeons that took shelter there and made it their home. The island’s hunters chased them off and at present, only a few bats can be spotted inside, resting upon its walls.
The Cova des Coloms is 24 metres high, over 100 metres deep and 15 metres wide. Can you imagine such dimensions? It is truly impressive, but also beautiful is the excursion from the beach of Binigaus, from where the ascent through the ravine toward the cave is both easy and entertaining. The rocks along the path will provide sufficient instructions to arrive to the cave.
Quite nearby, we’ll also find the Na Polida cave. It is currently closed to visitation, but it was the site of the discovery of the remains of the Myotragus balearicus, a species of goat that inhabited Menorca around 5,000 years ago. It had short legs and a small hump upon its shoulders.
Back to our excursion, the tiny entrance to the Cova des Coloms makes it seem only that much larger. Once inside, have your children call out their name. The cave’s echo will repeat it back to them.
On your way back, at the end of the trail you’ll find the beach of Binigaus, in Es Migjorn Gran. A beautiful and tranquil cove where you can stretch out and rest in the sand.
2. The island that appears before Ciutadella
There is a tale that speaks of a man who sent his son off to have their farm’s plough sharpened. When he returned, he was shocked to see that the iron plough was now made of silver. Bewildered, he ordered his son to follow the grinder. From Ciutadella, he went down to Cala Blanca. There, the farmer’s son saw how an island emerged through the fog out of the waters. It was the city of Parella, the enigmatic source of many a legend.
Any excuse is valid to visit Ciutadella, with its narrow streets and arcades, the seafront promenade, the Sant Nicolau Castle, and perhaps, if we’re lucky, the city of Parella.
It is said that it was once the arm of land that joined Mallorca and Menorca, and that because it was inhabited by evil spirits, a divine power sunk it deep into the Mediterranean. However, from time to time, the seafarers got a glimpse of the lights from its tower, as it broke the surface of the sea, and the city, for just a few moments, could be observed from west coast of Menorca.
Ciutadella is a wonderful spot to spend a day with your family, visiting the quaint fish market, standing beneath the obelisk that towers over the Plaça des Born Square, said to house a treasure of golden coins, or tasting the very best of Menorcan fare down in the port.
3. The cave that looks over the sea of Menorca
The town of Alaior was quite worried. A young woman was missing and no one seemed to know where she could be. They searched and searched, but having had no luck, they began to forget about her. Until the first snowy night of the winter, when in the morning the storm had cleared, the townspeople saw footprints in the snow. And because there had been multiple burglaries over recent months, they decided to follow the tracks that just might lead them to the culprit.
And hence they arrived to the cliffs of Cala en Porter, where, in a cave, they found the girl with Xoroi, a Moor who had taken refuge there after surviving a shipwreck. They had started a family there, and upon being discovered, Xoroi decided to jump into the sea with his eldest son in his arms to avoid being captured.
Since then, the Cova d’en Xoroi has become a must-see for visitors of Menorca. This establishment is open during the day for you to explore its corridors and enjoy the breath-taking sea views from its terraces. At night, it transforms into a lively nightclub.
A beautiful natural cavern that is home to a tragic love story, while also one of the very best spots to see outstanding sunsets.
Cala en Porter also has a beach that is ideal for children and families, with a playground in the sand and coloured ducks that inhabit the stream that flows out of the ravine.
Tales of pirates and giants are common in Menorca, and remind us of times past through legend and song. An island that preserves the heritage of so many people who came to occupy it, who passed through its villages leaving their mark. So which of these three tales sparks your inner adventurer?