Mahon

British connections
The serpentine Costa de Ses Voltes
Ciutadella: the former capital

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Mahon/Menorca

A small but charming city centre

MahónMinorca’s capital, is likely to be your first port of call on an MSC Mediterranean cruise.

Perched high above the largest natural harbour in the Mediterranean, the town’s compact centre is no more than ten minutes’ walk from one end to the other. Its architecture consists of an unusual hybrid of classical Georgian townhouses, which reflect a strong British connection, and tall Spanish apartment blocks shading the narrow streets.

From near the ferry terminal, set beneath the cliff that supports the remains of the city wall, a generous stone stairway, the Costa de Ses Voltes, leads up to the series of small squares that comprise the heart of the old town. The Plaça Constitució boasts the town’s main church, Santa María. Founded in 1287 by Alfonso III to celebrate the island’s reconquest, it has been remodelled on several subsequent occasions.

Like Mahón, Ciutadella is just waiting to be discovered on an MSC Mediterranean cruise excursion. Sitting high above its harbour, with navigation difficult here owing to a narrow channel too slender for anything but the smallest of cargo ships, Ciutadella has nevertheless been the island’s capital for most of its history. The narrow, cobbled streets of its compact, fortified centre brim with fine old palaces, hidden away behind high walls, and a set of Baroque and Gothic churches very much in the Spanish tradition.

The main plazas and points of interest are all within a few strides of each other, on and around the main square, Plaça d’es Born, in the middle of which a soaring obelisk commemorates the town’s futile defence against the marauding Turks in 1558. To the northwest, the square is bordered by the steep harbour walls, and in the northeast lies the vast nineteenth-century mansion Palau Torresaura.

Must see places in Mahon

  • Yachts in the pretty harbour

    Yachts in the pretty harbour

  • Ciutadella de Menorca

    Ciutadella de Menorca

  • Monte Toro church

    Monte Toro church

Discover our excursions

3 results found

  • HIGHLIGHTS OF MINORCA

    CITY TOUR

    MAH06

    Spend half a day off the ship exploring Menorca, the second-largest of the Balearic Islands and home beautiful landscapes, pretty villages and lovely beaches. On leaving the port of Mahon, you’ll first travel north to reach the horseshoe beach of Arenal d’en Castell for a photo stop. Moving on, the next destination will be the pretty fishing village of Fornells, located on the island’s northern shore. A leisurely stroll around the village with its green-shuttered, whitewashed houses then follows, after which you’ll continue on to the highest point on Menorca, the hill known as El Toro. From an elevation of nearly 350 m (approx. 1,150 ft.), this vantage point provides superb views of the surrounding area and is just the spot to take some more photos. Leaving the northern shoreline behind, you’ll then travel to the southern coastline to visit the quaint town of Binibeca, which boasts a secluded cove and a small sandy beach. After visiting the village, the return trip to your ship brings the tour to a close. Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests with walking difficulties or using a wheelchair as it includes walking on uneven ground.
      • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

        Difficulty Level
        Moderate

      • Duration
        4:30 h

      • Adults$62.00Price per person

      • Children$45.00Price per person

    • VISIT THE LOVELY TOWN OF CIUTADELLA

      CITY TOUR

      MAH07

      This appealing half-day tour gives you a chance to leave the current capital of Menorca and travel to the other side of the island on a 45-minute coach ride to its former capital, the lovely seaside town of Ciutadella. Originally founded by the Carthaginians, a major trading centre in the Middle Ages and further extended in the 17th and 18th centuries, the old walled town is a joy to explore. You’ll be taken on a guided walk around the narrow lanes and alleyways of the old quarter, the centrepiece of which is the 14th-century Cathedral of Santa Maria de Ciutadella. Keep your camera at hand to capture numerous views of lovely architecture during your walk, after which the relaxing coach ride back to your ship ends the tour.Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests with walking difficulties or using a wheelchair as it includes walking on uneven ground. Guests also have to walk approx. 350 metres from the bus car parking to the Ciutadella.
        • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

          Difficulty Level
          Moderate

        • Duration
          4 h

        • Adults$62.00Price per person

        • Children$45.00Price per person

      • THE VILLAGES OF MINORCA

        CULTURE AND HISTORY

        MAH03

        Enjoy a comprehensive excursion exploring some of the villages of this enchanting island. We will drive to Binibeca, a quaint town located on the south east coast of Minorca; it has a sheltered cove with a small, sandy beach. Next, we will drive to Torralba, which is famous for its “taulas” – T-shaped stone monoliths typical of the Talayot culture (2,000 BC), mysterious edifices that possibly served as altars. Our next stop will be at Mount Toro; here we will have time for a short visit of the “Nuestra Señora Del Toro” monastery built by the monks of St. Augustin’s Order in the XVII century. Return to the port. Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests with walking difficulties or using a wheelchair as it includes walking on uneven ground.
          • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

            Difficulty Level
            Moderate

          • Duration
            4 h

          • Adults$72.00Price per person

          • Children$52.00Price per person

        The excursions in the program above are intended to provide MSC Guests with an idea of the different tours that can be arranged in each port of call; this program is merely a guide and confirmation of each excursion and its description and prices will be made during your cruise.
        Shore excursions programs and itineraries may vary depending on local conditions and/or any unforeseen events in relation to the timing on the day of the tour.

         

        Some excursions are very popular and therefore availability cannot always be guaranteed, it is advisable to book in advance to avoid disappointment. The guides are guaranteed in English. Only for South America cruises, the guides are guaranteed in Brazilian Portuguese. Narration in other languages depends on the availability of guides. Please note that the final language of the tour will be confirmed on board during the cruise.

        Spain

        Love at first sight
        Love at first sight

        If you’re visiting Spain for the first time, be warned: this is a country that fast becomes an addiction. You might intend to come just for a cruise holiday, a walking tour or a city break, but before you know it you’ll find yourself hooked by something quite different – the celebration of some local fiesta, perhaps, or the otherworldly architecture of Barcelona.

        Even in the most over-touristic Mediterranean resorts of the Costa del Sol, you’ll be able to find an authentic bar or restaurant where the locals eat, and a village not far away where an age-old bullfighting tradition owes nothing to tourism. 


        A holiday to Spain can also show you the large cities of the north like Barcelona, which have reinvented themselves as essential cultural destinations (and don’t all close down for hours for a kip every afternoon). 


        And when the world now looks to Spain for culinary inspiration – the country has some of the most acclaimed chefs and innovative restaurants in the world – it’s clear that things have changed. Spain, despite the current economic uncertainty, sees itself very differently from a generation ago. 

        So should you – prepare to be surprised.

         
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