The Balearic Islands: Mallorca, Minorca, Ibiza, Formentera and Cabrera
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The Balearic Islands is a quite unknown name that comprehends all the Spanish Mediterranean islands: Majorca, Minorca, Ibiza, Formentera and Cabrera, and also some other small and almost insignificant islands. All of them forms a part of Spain.
The Balearic Islands: Majorca (Mallorca), Minorca, Ibiza, Formentera, Cabrera: The Balearic Islands are located in the Mediterranean Sea off Spain's Eastern shore and is one of the foremost tourist areas in the country. The five islands are Majorca (Mallorca), Minorca, Ibiza, Formentera and Carbrera. The largest island, Majorca (Mallorca), is most famous for its beaches and resorts. Majorca is mountainous in the northeast and beautiful caves in the east and a picturesque coastline. The port of Majorca is one of the most important in the Mediterranean. Majorca's capital is Palma de Mallorca (or simply Palma).
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The Balearic Islands are located in the western Mediterranean Sea, and they enjoy the unique Mediterranean climate with mild and often sunny winters and pleasant summer. Mild winters does not mean beach weather between October and May in this case. Some winters it snows on The Balearic Islands.
Although The Balearic Islands enjoy a mild, classically Mediterranean climate, this is characterized by typically insular features, such as the high humidity that causes remarkable differences in the seasonal temperature range.
The temperatures The Balearic Islands vary from an average of around 19.5ºC in spring, to 27ºC in summer, 20.5ºC in autumn and 15ºC in winter. The annual average temperature on The Balearic Islands is about 17ºC. The Balearics enjoy around 300 days of sunshine yearly, which makes the islands a very attractive tourist destination.
Nestling in the western Mediterranean, halfway between the Iberian Peninsula, the south of France and the north of Africa, the Balearic archipelago is made up of a string of islands: Majorca, Minorca, Ibiza, Formentera and Cabrera, and also some other small and almost insignificant other islands.
The Balearics are made up of three major islands: Mallorca, Minorca, Ibiza (Eivissa) plus Formentera, as well as numerous islets, the most notable of which is, without a shadow of a doubt, Cabrera, officially declared a Sea & Land National Park. Together, the islands cover a surface area of a little over 5,000 square kilometers and have 1,239 kilometers of coastline.
The Balearic Isles have a permanent population of over 950,000, almost half of whom live in the capital, Palma de Mallorca. The city of Palma de Mallorca is situated 132 miles from Barcelona and 140 from Valencia, with daily plane and ferry-services covering the routes to and from the mainland. Ibiza and Minorca have approximately 106,000 and 83,000 inhabitants respectively.
The best way to see a little more of all that the Balearic Islands has to offer is to come in spring or autumn when the mass tourism is not invading the islands, and to rent a car. Those who are just looking for nightlife and fun all around the clock should definitely not miss Ibiza during the peak season: July and specially the first two weeks in August.
The Balearic Islands are mainly famous for the clean warm and crystal clear Mediterranean water, fine beaches and the many small bays where the sailing and motor boats can anchor during the sunny Spanish summer months. Nothing to do with the hectic nightlife of Ibiza.
Getting there and away - Getting around the Balearic Islands
Most tourists visiting the Balearic Isles arrive by plane. Each of the three major islands, Mallorca, Minorca and Ibiza, is served by an international airport, linked by direct flights to Europe’s main capital cities. Palma Airport, Son Sant Joan is not only the biggest locally but one of the leading tourist airports in Europe. It is located eight kilometers from the city centre. There is a bus to the airport from the Paseo Mallorca. Should travelers decide to go to Mallorca by ship, the Trasmediterránea ferry line runs a scheduled passenger service. From Palma, ferries run regularly to Mahón, Ibiza, Valencia and Barcelona. There are only two railway lines in the Balearics, both on Mallorca. One is privately owned and links Palma with Port de Sóller. It is a quaint electric train which relies mainly on tourists visiting Sóller. The second is the Inca railway, the last of a once extensive network of trains that connected many of Mallorca’s towns.
Coaches and rental cars are the most usual means of transport for tourists visiting the islands. The fares are very affordable and there is a wide range of routes on offer. The Balearics are covered by comprehensive network of roads. Three toll-free highways lead from Palma to Palmanova, Cala Blava and Inca respectively.
Airports on the Balearic Islands
Palma de Mallorca airport (Son Sant Joan):
07000 Palma de Mallorca
Eleven km southeast of Palma de Mallorca
Airport code: PMI
Telephone: (+34) 971 789 000
Fax: (+34) 971 789. 014
Minorca Airport (Maó):
Carretera de San Climent, s/n
07700 Maó (Minorca)
Five km from Maó
Airport code: MAH
Telephone: (+34) 971. 157. 115
Ibiza airport (Sant Jordi):
7 km from Ibiza and 5 km from Sant Jordi
Telephone: (+34) 971. 809. 900
Fax: (+34) 971. 809. 287