A 30.000 pies por viajeros para viajeros

From Beach To Beach Along the Camí de Cavalls

Why deny it – one of the main reasons for going to Menorca, albeit not the only one, is its magnificent beaches. They come in all sizes and shapes, suited to all tastes. Some have fine white sand and crystal-clear waters; others, reddish sand, surrounded by pine forests, while still others take the form of comparatively inaccessible, secluded coves. Some are for day-tripping with the kids; others, for the more adventurous…

An alternative way of roaming this small piece of the Mediterranean to seek out its beaches is by hiking along the footpath known as the Camí de Cavalls (Horse Trail), a route that encircles the island and enables ramblers to rim Menorca from tip to toe while taking in spectacular, ever-changing views from one stretch of the coastline to the next. Along this 185-kilometre route you will come across all types of beaches, as well as pasturelands and cultivated land, beautiful, refreshing pine forests, cliffs topped by ever-vigilant lighthouses, old watchtowers, urban precincts and, more importantly, all the magic you can imagine.

The origins of the Camí de Cavalls are hazy. What we do know, however, is that some stretches of the trail were already in use in the 14th century and that the need to defend the island from pirates and possible invasions led to the construction of defensive towers at strategic points, and to the building of a road that would encircle and connect the whole island. It fell into disuse in the 20th century and marked deterioration set in. However, following the enactment of the “Camí de Cavalls Law” in the year 2000, the footpath was repaired, restored and signposted, turning it into a veritable landmark for tourists and locals alike, as from there Menorca can be enjoyed in all its splendour and scenic variety.

The best time of year to venture along the trail is in spring or autumn, when the temperatures are milder and the route is less crowded. It is best negotiated on foot, although there are many stretches which can be comfortably covered by bicycle or on horseback, a tribute to the animal that gave the trail its name. Whatever way you undertake the trip, there are a number of basic recommendations you should follow, like wearing a hat to protect against the sun, or taking sufficient food and water with you, as not all beaches and coves you encounter along the way have a beach hut where you can refuel and, when you do find them, they are likely to be closed if you’re hiking off season.

The Camí de Cavalls is divided into 20 stages. Those in the north are more difficult to negotiate as the terrain is more arid, while the southern legs are more suitable for a family outing.

Stage 1: Mahón-Es Grau
Duration: 3 h 30 min, Distance: 10 km, Difficulty: Medium

Stage 2: Es Grau-Favàritx
Duration: 3 h 30 min, Distance: 8.6 km, Difficulty: Medium

Stage 3: Favàritx-Arenal d’en Castell
Duration: 5 h, Distance: 13.6 km, Difficulty: Medium

Stage 4: Arenal d’en Castell-Cala Tirant
Duration: 4 h, Distance: 10.8 km, Difficulty: Low

Stage 5: Cala Tirant-Binimel·là
Duration: 4 h, Distance: 9.6 km, Difficulty: Medium

Stage 6: Binimel·là-Els Alocs
Duration: 5 h, Distance: 8.9 km, Difficulty: High

Stage 7: Els Alocs-Algaiarens
Duration: 4 h 30 min, Distance: 9.7 km, Difficulty: Medium

Stage 8: Algaiarens-Cala Morell
Duration: 2 h 10 min, Distance: 5.4 km, Difficulty: Medium

Stage 9: Cala Morell-Punta Nati
Duration: 3 h, Distance: 7 km, Difficulty: Low

Stage 10: Punta Nati-Ciudadela
Duration: 4 h, Distance: 10.5 km, Difficulty: Low

Stage 11: Ciudadela-Punta de Artrutx
Duration: 5 h, Distance: 13.2 km, Difficulty: Low

Stage 12: Punta de Artrutx-Cala en Turqueta
Duration: 5 h, Distance: 13.3 km, Difficulty: Medium

Stage 13: Cala en Turqueta-Cala Galdana
Duration: 2 h 30 min, Distance: 6.4 km, Difficulty: Low

Stage 14: Cala Galdana-Sant Tomàs
Duration: 4 h 30 min, Distance: 10.8 km, Difficulty: Medium

Stage 15: Sant Tomàs-Son Bou
Duration: 2 h 30 min, Distance: 6.4 km, Difficulty: Low

Stage 16: Son Bou-Cala en Porter
Duration: 3 h 30 min, Distance: 8 km, Difficulty: Medium

Stage 17: Cala en Porter-Binisafúller
Duration: 4 h 30 min, Distance: 11.8 km, Difficulty: Low

Stage 18: Binisafúller-Punta Prima
Duration: 3 h 30 min, Distance: 8.1 km, Difficulty: Low

Stage 19: Punta Prima-Cala de Sant Esteve
Duration: 2 h 40 min, Distance: 7.3 km, Difficulty: Low

Stage 20: Cala de Sant Esteve-Mahón
Duration: 2 h 20 min, Distance: 6 km, Difficulty: Low

After learning about this valuable part of Menorca’s historical and cultural heritage, all that’s left is to book your Vueling and experience it for yourself!

Text by Los Viajes de ISABELYLUIS

Images by Franco Vannini

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