Walking the Coastal Trails of Menorca
There's a sense of peace and tranquillity on beautiful Menorca, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve and home to the greatest concentration of prehistoric sites anywhere in Western Europe. More sparsely populated than any other Balearic island and only a fifth of the size of Mallorca, it has more beaches than Mallorca and Ibiza combined! The island has been claimed in turn by many armies, all desperate to control the capital Mahon, set on the Mediterranean's most perfect natural harbour.
This self-guided walking holiday combines a wonderfully varied itinerary that takes in many of these ancient sites, exploring stunning coastal scenery dotted with narrow rocky inlets and magnificent beaches. Castles, fortresses and watchtowers line the coast, linked by the Cami de Cavalls, the paths originally used by the soldiers. These now allow walkers to explore the coastline with its idyllic sandy beaches, hidden coves and bays with dazzling aquamarine seas. With the freedom a hire car affords, you really can explore this entire beautiful island at your own pace.
Your base is an elegantly converted C17 Spanish finca, the Morvedra Nou Hotel near Ciutadella, the island's former capital in the south west. It's run by Victoria Bendito, the granddaughter of the original farm owner. The tastefully decorated rooms all have garden terraces and are located within the converted stables. The lovely pool terrace is a perfect place for relaxation with panoramic views over pretty fields all the way to the sea.
Walks on this holiday are mostly coastal trails. Many surfaces are loose stone with some sandy paths. Inland sections are on easy country tracks and farm trails. Walking boots essential.
Read more about this holiday on the travel blog.
Day 1 - Arrive in Ciutadella
On arrival in Mahon, pick up your hire car and drive (1 hour) to the hotel in time for a relaxing swim before dinner.
Day 2 - Santa Galdana Bays Walk 12km/7.5mi/4hr
Starting in Santa Galdana and winding along coastal paths dotted with pink orchids and gladioli, this walk takes you over three breezy headlands which dip down to pine fringed beaches before arriving at Cala Turqueta, named as such for its shimmering turquoise water. after a picnic in the shade, return to Santa Galdana to end your walk, or stroll via the country lanes back to the hotel, before getting a taxi back to collect the car.
Day 3 - North Coast Trail 11km/7mi/4hr
The dramatic red and purple rocks of the north stand in real contrast to the bays of the south. From a poppy-strewn headland, the Cami de Cavalls lead along a series of beautiful lonely windswept beaches, before a farm track loops back inland through a host of golden asphodels. on the way back, perhaps stop for a drink at Fornells, a chic village with a pretty port, or drive up Monte Toro (357m) for panoramic views of the entire island!
Day 4 - Punta Prima to Sant Esteve 11km/7mi/3.5hr
You can taste the sea salt in the air along this stunning coastal path leading to Torre d'Alcaufar, a restored lookout tower. Perhaps enjoy lunch in Alcaufar, before the Cami de Cavalls leads you past fig trees and fortified farmhouses to the fortress of Sant Esteve, set on a tiny harbour. Continue on to a local cafe where they will call you a taxi to return to your car. Relax with a swim in the hotel pool before dinner.
Day 5 - Ciutadella or Mahon Walks
The cities at either end of Menorca make fascinating days out, and we provide walking notes for both. Mahon's natural harbour is big enough to shelter an entire fleet of ships and forms the backdrop to some impressive Georgian English architecture. In Ciutadella, the plazas, fountains, palm trees, cobbled alleys and Spanish Palaces are steeped in history. Perhaps treat yourself to a seafood lunch looking out over the attractive harbour.
Day 6 - Caves and Coast Walk 9km/6mi/3hr
From the golden sand beaches of Sant Tomas on the south coast, a path lined with white cistus and yellow crown daisies leads between lush terraces to the Cueva des Coloms, a gigantic limestone cave, perfect for a cooling picnic in the shade. From the top of the valley a pine scented track leads you back down to the beach for a swim. On returning to the hotel, relax on your terrace with a cold drink and take in the beautiful sunset.
Day 7 - Son Xoriguer 13km/8mi/3.5hr
Today's route takes you back down to the south coast and across low creamy rocks covered in bright yellow seapoppy, wild thyme and pink cistus. Lunch by the sea in Son Xoriguer, there are masses of swimming options along the way, then head back via the enchanting former capital, Ciutadella.
Day 8 - Leave Ciutadella
Where you stay
This single-centre holiday is based at the following hotel. If you'd like to extend your stay here, or upgrade your room, just let us know at the time of booking. You can call our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 to discuss accommodation options.
Morvedra Nou Hotel, Ciutadella (4 Acorn)
Located 7km from Ciutadella in the south west corner of the island, the Morvedra Nou is a beautifully converted traditional farmhouse 'finca'.
The landscaped gardens are stunning in springtime, and the pristine bedrooms are located in the converted stables.
Decoration of the rooms in the converted stables use the wooden beams and exposed stone walls, giving the rooms a rustic appearance in keeping with the country views around the hotel. Each room also has a terrace that is perfect for relaxing outside. All rooms have a bath with a shower over it.
Further details on the hotel website, and independent reviews on Trip Advisor.
Tour-only prices exclude flights but include a Europcar Group B air-conditioned hire car which you collect from/return to Mahon airport.
Please call our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange connecting flights.
Everyone who goes on a Headwater holiday will be emailed a link to our post-holiday questionnaire where they can give us an honest assessment of all aspects of their holiday - everything from how quickly we answer the phone to how clean the hotels were - plus, of course, an overall rating and comments about their holiday.
Any feedback collected is posted straight to our website - totally unedited. So, for the real tales, twists and turns of our holidays, look no further than the reviews from our previous travellers.
Reviewed by Mis Riley on 04/07/2016
Despite one of us not being able to walk very far we still had a lovely time. The hotel was in a lovely place and was a most relaxing place to stay.
Reviewed by Mrs Winter on 13/06/2016
We thoroughly enjoyed this holiday in Menorca. The weather was extremely hot all week so we often shortened the walks which is easy to do as many of them are linear walks. Although most of the walks are coastal there is plenty of variety. The hotel is absolutely lovely, in such a peaceful location with beautiful gardens. We had a very warm welcome on arrival and the service throughout the week was consistently good. All the staff were helpful and polite and nothing was too much trouble. Our accommodation, the gardens and all public areas were kept spotlessly clean and the food was good and plentiful.
Reviewed by Mr Emerson on 07/06/2016
1/ Never give up the Morvedra Nou; one of the most relaxing and enjoyable hotels we have stayed at. We had a junoir suite with a patio overlooking the pool - the best in the house. 2/ I know this was only a grade 1, but any experienced walker could have done a lot more. We spent some spare time on the beach. Would not be so good at high season, would be too hot and crowded. 3/ 'Would you take another holiday with Headwater?' - I think we have done them all. at least at grades we can manage now. I am well in the 80-90 bracket - not in your age scale! - but I think we started with Heaswater in 1998. I have all the notes and paperwork in boxes in the attic. 4/ I was worried about French Air Traffic Control industrial action, but we were notaffected.
Dear Mr Emerson, Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire. Please be assured we value all of the feedback we receive and use this to help us continue to improve and develop our holidays for future customers. It is lovely to see you continue to enjoy your walking holidays with us; we value you as a loyal customer dearly and look forward to welcoming you on your next holiday in the future. Yours sincerely, Lisa
Reviewed by Mrs Fuller on 02/06/2016
Beautiful Island and walks. Morvedra Nou is a lovely small hotel. The staff are extremely friendly and helpful. The breakfasts were very good, continental style with plenty of choice. The evening meals were a bit hit and miss unfortunately. You are given the menu in the morning and there is a choice of two of each of the courses. Choose wisely!
Reviewed by Mr Eamer on 30/05/2016
Peaceful location, excellent coastal and inland walking away from the crowds
Reviewed by Mrs Thornton on 26/05/2016
The Morvedra Nou was the kind of friendly, family run, quality hotel that we always hope we'll find but all too rarely do. The rooms may be compact for some people but we were very comfortable, especially given the spacious private terrace. The food was good, fresh and well presented. We were very happy with the choice of two dishes each day, though would have liked the chance to try the cheese for which the island is famous - either as an alternative to dessert or as an extra small course. But we would thoroughly recommend the hotel and the programme of walks, which were all surprisingly different, considering this is a small island. It was our first trip to Menorca and we found the holiday perfect for those who like an active morning and lazy afternoon!
Reviewed by Mr Higginson on 25/05/2016
The holiday notes for Coastal trails of Minorca were pretty accurate. Overall we found the island delightful and at this time of year absolutely stunning with all the wild flowers in full bloom. Very easy to get around and not too crowded. We also were blessed with the weather which was in the low 20 C range
Reviewed by Mr McKerchar on 03/11/2015
Hotel absolutely first rate - fantastic tranquil location; we were very well looked after; food was simple but good. Menorca delightfully quiet when we visited (October) but weather perfect for walking. Walks were straightforward if perhaps a trifle short. We skipped the town walks and added two other walks of our own that I would recommend 1. Santa Galdana to Saint Thomas via GR 223, returning along coastal path - just be aware that to leave Cala Trebaluger you need to use a cave passage. 2. Cala Tuqueta to Plagues de Son Saura (out & return via coastal path - we did not find the green route marked on the map but we did not spend much time looking).
Reviewed by Mrs Ross on 12/10/2015
Beautiful location of hotel - truly rural. Lovely swimming pool area. The lounge and bar area were comfy and inviting. Our room (junior suite) was very good.The walks were varied and all enjoyable. Wildlife was abundant. October was a great time to go as the crowds had gone and we had excellent weather.
Reviewed by Mrs Broad on 21/09/2015
Menorca is a lovely island, incredibly pretty and very easy to get around. The Morvedra Nou hotel is in a perfect setting if you want peace and quiet. The gardens and pool area are so relaxing, the bird song is the only thing you'll hear! Unfortunately, we were unable to upgrade at the time of booking, to one of the larger rooms, and although our room was spotlessly clean and had a sunny patio, we did find it on the small side. Not a big deal as we were out walking most days. The walks were excellent, sometimes really off the beaten track, great wildlife and fabulous scenery, quite a few 'wow' moments as we came round a headland or walked through the gorge to the caves. Our only gripe, was the food. Breakfast was fine, plenty of choice but dinner was very hit and miss. There was no comparison to the food photos on the hotel website, and the portion sizes and combinations were very strange. Sometimes the starters were far too big, and the main course would be just a large piece of meat/fish with one small potato if you were lucky (no veg). There was only one evening out of ten, that we both enjoyed the whole meal, which was so disappointing. Honestly, neither of us are fussy eaters, but we have never left so much food on our plates, and not once did anyone ask us about it.
Reviewed by Mrs Preshaw on 15/06/2015
Another good Headwater holiday. We loved the island, the walking and swimming in the sea, but should have gone in May, June was a bit too hot for us and we were surprised how busy the beaches were. It was different getting a car at the airport and driving ourselves to the hotel and, once we had learned how to negotiate the narrow roads to and from the hotel, we loved having the opportunity to explore more of the island and plan our own sightseeing each day in addition to the walks. The hotel is a gem and being able to return to this tranquil country retreat each day and relax on your own terrace or swim in the pool before going for dinner made the holiday for us. The accommodation, food and service were all excellent. There was so much choice for breakfast including local cakes and pastries and in the evenings we enjoyed a good selection of Menorcan dishes served by friendly, attentive and helpful staff.
Reviewed by Mrs Ramsell on 08/06/2015
Interesting and active. Enjoyment of meals could be improved by more choices on the menu(at least three including salads). If necessary in a smallish establishment these could be pre-booked in the morning. HW selection of hotels is VERY GOOD and we always enjoy their slightly off beat locations and warm atmosphere. We know that other HW guests will be like -minded people we can engage in friendly conversation and exchange anecdotes about each walk with in the evenings.
Reviewed by Mr Gingell on 31/05/2015
A most enjoyable week spent on a delightful, unspoilt island with comfortable accommodation and varied and interesting walking opportunities. Driving on the smaller roads in Menorca can be challenging at times, particularly the fairly long stretch between Ciutadella and the hotel which is narrow, winding and lined with unforgiving limestone walls - make sure you insure your hire car excess! Ciutadella is a delightful town to explore and the Menorcan people are charming and very helpful to visitors.
Reviewed by Mr Sutherland on 29/05/2015
Excellent accommodation and staff. Food variable from excellent (breakfast mainly) to indescribably bad for some meals/courses in the evening. English translations of menus were unhelpful. ('Meat Soup' turned out to be a bowl of pasta shells in a chicken stock. Marinated fish was a mystery). Wines excellent. Walks were great.
Dear Mr & Mrs Sutherland, Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday feedback. We were pleased to see that you had an enjoyable holiday overall. Although, we are sorry to see that you did not enjoy the meals at dinner. Ordinarily, this hotel receives good feedback in this area, however, we realise that we cannot allow our standards to slip, and therefore we will monitor the feedback we receive for the meals to ensure we are delivering the high standards our customers have come to expect. Thank you for highlighting this feedback to us. We would like to thank you for traveling with Headwater and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future. Yours sincerely, Headwater customer service
Reviewed by Mr Plumb on 25/05/2015
Although we had to look after ourselves the notes and guidance we were given were excellent. Sensible notes about our airport arrival, car hire, hotel, and walks told us everything we needed to know.
Reviewed by Mr Mottram on 11/05/2015
Very friendly and helpful staff at the Hotel who took an interest on what we did each day. Delightful scenery, good weather and interesting walks at thee right level of difficulty.
Reviewed by Ms Stewart on 22/09/2014
Wonderful hotel in a beautiful, tranquil setting, with friendly, helpful staff. Close to some of the best beaches on the island.
Reviewed by Mr Ball on 20/06/2014
A lovely hotel (small and family-run) in a beautiful landscape. All food locally sourced as much as possible. We chose to pay extra for a better room, more spacious and with private terrace and a beautiful view, that was well worthwhile. I don't think we would have been happy in standard accommodation.
Reviewed by Mr Smith on 17/06/2014
A very good hotel on a lovely Island which provided an excellent base for a walking holiday on routes which were varied and not too 'testing'
Reviewed by Mrs White on 15/06/2014
We loved the island, the walks and the hotel. The staff were all very friendly and helpful, just a little disappointed with the food at dinner: usually it was fine and occasionally good. Had our best meal on the way home at Meson Galicia in Es Mercadal near the car park with excellent views of mount Torro.
Reviewed by Ms Hurst on 28/05/2014
Menorca is a really beautiful island and relatively unspoilt. May was ideal weather for walking and it was very quiet. The best walking by the sea that we have ever done. A week was not long enough so we will return1
Reviewed by Mr Turton on 25/05/2014
The hotel is in an excellent rural location. Menorca in May is ideal for walking. It's not cheap but is good value if you can afford it.
Reviewed by Mrs Langleben on 12/05/2014
We are seasoned Headwater clients and have been more than happy with all the holidays we have taken with the company.
Reviewed by Dr Jones on 17/11/2013
A good holiday as usual. Hotel lovely, excellent breakfast but evening meals rather unusual and could be improved. Delightful staff, very nice rooms, good local wines. Walking directions good except for one when the map was not accurate and made for a very long walk back to our car along a very busy road. I can provide details on request.
Reviewed by Mr Price on 10/10/2013
Great holiday,due to very good accommodation and beautiful island
Reviewed by Mr Higdon on 02/10/2013
Overall a good holiday, Menorca is unspoilt and spotlessly clean. The walks a very well marked, just follow the Cami De Cavalls marker posts which are everywhere. In hindsight, we probably should have gone at a different time of year (we went end Sept) as the temperature got to 30 deg on most days, and as the walking was mainly costal there was not much shade. We also felt a bit overdressed walking across “nudist” beaches in our walking boots, back packs and sun hats! The hotel is very nice, with friendly and helpful staff. The only drawback is that there is not a communal bar where you can meet fellow guests for a pre dinner drink so there is not much of a social atmosphere. You just sit down, eat and go! A shame as the hotel has so much to offer. Our recommendation would be to go out of season, when the temperature is lower, the beaches empty and the scenery greener.
Reviewed by Mrs Fox on 01/10/2013
Menorca is a beautiful island and the Hotel Movedra Nou is a delightful rural hotel and sanctuary away from the commercialisation of many of the coastal villages and small towns. The food was excellent and true Menorcan country cooking involving many different types of fish and numerous vegetables. This Headwater holiday was different to our previous ones as we were provided with a car at Mahon airport for our use during the week. This had the impact of helping us to see more of the island and walk in more distant places although the negative point was that walks either involved a 'there and back' walk, or we needed to catch an expensive taxi to get back to our starting point. The maps provided were poor although by day 4 we were bequeathed an excellent map by a fellow Headwater traveller which improved things considerably. [Map now passed on yet again] This map 'Menorca Tour and Trail - Super Durable by David and Ros Brawn' is available on Amazon today at £8.99. I would recommend that Headwater send their customers this map as it gives a much better mapping of the coastal path that the walks are covering. The walking was a little tricky as the 'coastal trail' was often bumpy and rocky making it difficult to get any rhythm into our walking. Some of the walks need reviewing as they are out of date to current local developments. Several of the walks ended in very commercial areas which was disappointing after walking beautiful coastal routes. The Menorcan trail was popular and busy - we often shared it with other walkers, joggers mountain bikers and horse riders. Several walks involved some beach walking which involved picking your way through sunbathers! Summary, great hotel and food - considerable daily driving miles - walking limited on rocky paths - maps need improvement.
Reviewed by Ms Smith on 29/09/2013
Would you please update this website to remove the spelling errors - it's very annoying! (Note use of too instead of to and during is incorrectly spelled)
Reviewed by Mr Davey on 24/06/2013
Menorca is ideal for walking with a diverse landscape and the whole island being relatively low- lying. The landscape is interesting, the coastal paths are really lovely and you are never more than 3 hours from a watering-hole! People are friendly. Driving on the island is very easy. Headwaters walking itinery was well-planned and descriptions excellent, even going so far as the tell you which cafe's will order a taxi for you. Coastal walking is particularly lovely as you have a light breeze coming in from the sea and plenty of opportunities for a cooling dip or paddle. Inland, there are castles and ancient monuments to explore. Hotel Morvedra Nou is a perfect base, being quiet and luxurious, an ideal spot to relax after a day (or a morning) walking
Reviewed by Mrs Dawe on 19/06/2013
Not your fault but one of the landowners appears to have gated off one of the walks. When I get a spare moment, I'll write to you about it. Overall a superb holiday.
Reviewed by Mrs Molyneux-Carte on 11/06/2013
Dinner at the hotel Morvedra Nou was generally not good. Fish was the best option. However the staff were delightful and made up for the cooking somewhat. Breakfast was good but if we should go again we would probably prefer to go B&B and take our chances with the A La Carte menu. We did not try A La Carte this time as we felt the standard of the half board dinner was poor and didn't bode well for the A La Carte. However some other guests tried it and said it was reasonable. It would be a bit of a trek to go elsewhere for dinner so some improvement is needed. In spite of this we would happily go again.
Reviewed by Mr Bryant on 21/05/2013
Holiday was exactly as described, accommodation, food, service all very good. Headwater staff were excellent when required.
Reviewed by Mrs White on 14/05/2013
Menora is a beatiful island and as it had rained the week before our arrival (beginning May) the wild flowers were fantastic. If you're a birdwatcher there is also a lot to see (and hear) - spent a great half hour one evening after dinner watching a Barn Owl coming and going between the trees and the hotel grounds. Morvedra Nou Hotel is a delightful, converted farmhouse, very peaceful location. Victoria and all her team made us feel really welcome and couldn't have been more helpful. The daily dinner menu was a great way to sample Menorcan cuisine.
Reviewed by Mrs Reeves on 24/09/2012
Lovely hotel in rural part of Minorca away from busy resorts on coast. Walking not particularly strenuous except in the heat!
Reviewed by Mr Sadler on 19/05/2012
Great walks with time left over to explore the lovely island. Enjoyed the hotel and its location.
Reviewed by Mr Mason on 19/05/2012
Excellent holiday. Some improvement required for walking route notes and driving instructions. A little vague at times. Walking distance a little inaccurate.
Departure dates & prices
|May 2017 departures||Tour only|
|June 2017 departures||Tour only|
|September 2017 departures||Tour only|
|October 2017 departures||Tour only|
|May 2018 departures||Tour only|
|June 2018 departures||Tour only|
Self-guided walking, single centre. Managed locally by hotelier.
selected Fridays from 9 Sep '16 to 13 Oct '17, for 8 days (7 nights). We are able to offer non standard departures for this holiday. Please call for details.
All continental breakfasts and evening meals.
Starting your tour
Tour-only prices exclude flights but include a Europcar Group B air-conditioned hire car which you collect from/return to Mahon airport.
Enquire about this holiday
Simply complete the form below and a member of our sales team will contact you (when it's most convenient for you) to provide availability information, travel options and additional information.