Menorca is the second-largest in the Balearic Islands, an archipelago in the Mediterranean belonging to Spain. It is far less-known than the larger island Mallorca, and is designated as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, similarly to some of the Canary Islands, due to its natural richness and unspoiled environment. The island is a lot more tranquil and quiet than Ibiza or Mallorca, but no less beautiful. Some impressive beaches are very close to the island's capital, Maó-Mahon, and these are Es Grau and Platja de Punta Prima; however other beautiful spots include Arenal d'en Castell, Cala Blanca, Es Castell, Cala'n Blanes or Playa de Fornells which are all worth a visit. From here, you can simply enjoy the beach and sunbathe, or undertake sea activities, such as scuba diving and snorkelling. Local festivals are also not to be missed, with the Festes de San Joan held at the end of June every year being, arguably, the island's most important. The island's main airport is the Mahon Airport, from which many domestic and international flights are operated, to destinations including: Amsterdam, Barcelona, London, Brussels, Madrid, Valencia, Manchester and Bratislava. Travellers wanting to go to popular resorts such as Binibeca, Cala Galdana, Cala'n Porter and Santo Tomas must fly into Mahon Airport. If you're searching for a cheap flight to Mahon from London (or any city), you can use our online flight comparison tool to book the flight option you prefer. There are many direct flights to Menorca on offer from UK airports, however if you would like to fly from Southend, for example, your flight will have a connection in Majorca-Palma.
Once you land at the airport, you can reach the Mahon city centre by bus or taxi. The official tourism portal of the Balearic Islands provides plenty of information (through its website http://www.illesbalears.es/ing/minorca/home.jsp) about Menorca, so you can plan your visit, get an idea of things to do and see, and where to stay. It is definitely worth considering visiting some of the smaller towns surrounding Mahon too, such as Cala Canutells, S'Algar, Son Bou, Ciudadela or Cala Santandria. The island, alongside the Balearic archipelago, has been subjected to British domination during the 18th century and some elements are still visible, such as the sash windows around the city. A great speciality from Menorca is Menorcan Gin (Gin Xoriguer), due to the many junipers growing on the island. Food specialties include caldereta de langosta (a lobster stew), Menorcan cheese, panades (Easter-period pastries) and rubiols (a sort of sweet panades). Menorca, as beautiful as it is, is only one of the Balearic Islands. If you have the chance, you should also visit Mallorca, Ibiza or Formentera, all of which are linked by ferries.