In this third and final part of the "Hiking in Minorca" series, we are going to show you three little-known routes along the south coast of Minorca
- Rafalet Cove
- Talis Beach
- Sa cova des Pardals (Son Xoriguer- Ciutadella)
The south of the island has always been the most popular with visitors, with coves and beaches as well known as Macarella, Turqueta, Binibeca, etc... for this reason, we are going to leave the circuit of crowded beaches and focus on three places that still retain the charm of being little frequented.
Approximate duration: 1 h. 30 min.
Difficulty level: Low.
This route will take us to the southeast coast of the island and will allow us to discover a small and cosy cove that usually goes unnoticed by many visitors, but which is worth visiting due to its unique location and beauty.
We will leave Ciutadella on the main road (Me-1) towards Maó, a city located on the other side of the island, travelling a distance of approximately 45 minutes. When we arrive at Maó, with the Industrial Estate on our right, we will find a crossroads where we will turn right in the direction that is signposted as "Sant Lluis". After that, we will find 7 roundabouts, and we will take all of them in the direction of the village of Sant Lluis. Once you have reached this town, turn left following the signs to "Alcalfar / Binibequer". Continue along a wide avenue until you reach a new roundabout, which you take in the direction of Alcalfar. Go straight on for about 3 km until you see a sign on your left that says "Salgar", enter here and go straight on until you reach an entrance, again on the left, that says "Camí de Cavalls"; here you enter and can park your car under some trees that are just at the entrance. You will see a sign on the wall that says "Camí de Rafalet" and this is where you will start the excursion on foot.
Start of the excursion that will take us to Cala Rafalet
We will follow the path, first passing in front of several typical Menorcan houses belonging to residents of the area, until we reach a clearing on the promenade with a large holm oak in the middle. Here the path narrows into a small dirt track. Continue walking until you reach a new clearing where on the right you will see an entrance in the "dry wall" wall (a small pile of stones on the ground indicates this).
On the way to Cala Rafalet
We will enter this entrance and descend through a beautiful forest until we reach the small cove of Rafalet, where we can sit by the sea or, depending on the time of year, take the opportunity to swim in its turquoise waters.
A view of Cala Rafalet
To return, we will go back by the same route we came by until we reach the point where we left the car. If we have time, we can also take advantage of the opportunity to visit the nearby urbanization of Salgar, with its picturesque summer residences and its promenade, from which we will enjoy beautiful views of the southern coast of Menorca.
Approximate duration: 1 hour 30 min.
Difficulty level: Low.
In this pleasant excursion we will be able to enjoy the small beach of Talis, located on the south coast of Minorca. Talis is approximately 10 metres long and its waters are crystal clear and the sand is very white, but its main attraction is that as it is located at the end of the well-known Son Bou beach, it is always very quiet, even in August, as many visitors prefer to stay on the first beach and not walk to Talis. The access road is impressive, with the contrast of having the sea on the right and green Menorcan "tanks" on the left.
We leave Ciutadella by taking the main road (Me-1) towards Maó. After approximately 15 km we will have arrived at the town of Ferreries and just at the beginning of the first houses of this town, on the right hand side we will see a sign indicating "Es Migjorn", we will turn here and enter by a narrower secondary road (the Me-20) where we will drive for 6 km until we arrive to the town of Es Migjorn Gran. When we arrive we will follow the same road, which crosses the village, and then we will find 1 roundabout that we will take in the direction that indicates "Sant Tomàs", soon we will have left the village and we will be on our way (on the Me-18 road) to the beautiful urbanization of Santo Tomás. When we arrive there, we will find a roundabout with a sculpture in the middle in the shape of a nest, we will take it to the left and we will go straight on until the end where the hotel "Victoria Playa" is located; here we will park the car and the excursion will start on foot. With the hotel in front of you, take the path on your right and then enter a small path on the left, next to the hotel's garden, which is actually a public green area and therefore freely accessible. Walk along the lawn to the bottom where you will see an entrance on the "dry wall", pass through it and take the path that leads to Talis.
Step that will take us to Talis beach. Access is from the garden of the Victoria Playa hotel
We will start our route on this beautiful dirt and rock road that runs along the coast with magnificent views. Throughout this journey we will find the wooden posts of the "Camí de Cavalls" so there is no possibility of getting lost. In the final section we will pass by a wooden bridge and we will find a sign from the town hall of Es Migjorn Gran that indicates that we have already arrived at Talis beach.
Magnificent view of the path that will take us to Talis beach
Here we can sit on the sand and contemplate the magnificent southern coast of the island. If we continue further on, we will find the beach of "Son Bou", the longest in Minorca and also very beautiful, but this one is urbanized.
Talis beach, on the south coast of Menorca
On the way back, we will return by the same way back to the car and from there we will return to Ciutadella, first passing through Es Migjorn Gran and connecting with the main road at the level of the town of Ferreries.
Sa Cova des Pardals” (Son Xoriguer – Ciutadella)
Approximate duration: 1 hour 30 min.
Difficulty level: Low.
We can also extend the excursion to Son Saura beach:
Approximate duration: 3 hours round trip.
Difficulty level: Low
This route will allow us to get to know a natural cave, known as "Sa Cova des Pardals", which can be reached by going down some steps that belong to an old fishermen's house. It is located on the southwest coast of the island and from there you can enjoy fabulous views of the sea. It is also an ideal place to have a swim without crowding. The path to access it from the urbanization of "Son Xoriguer" is also very beautiful, so the walk will be very pleasant.
Leave the hotel along the Camí de Sant Joan de Missa and when you reach the roundabout at the end of the path, turn left, following the sign for "Cap d'Artruix". Then we drive for about 12 km and we will find several roundabouts that we will always take in the direction of Cap d'Artruix (at one point we will connect with the Me-24 road that will take us to this urbanization). Once we are in the first roundabout just at the entrance of Cap d'Artruix, we will take it to the left following the sign that says "Son Xoriguer" and we will drive for about 10 min. following always the orange signs that say "Son Xoriguer". At the last sign, which is green and says "Platja Son Xoriguer", park the vehicle and begin the excursion on foot, entering the path leading to the beach.
Sign indicating access to "Son Xoriguer" beach, start of the route
Once on the beach, and to our left, we will see a small dirt and sand path where we will see the wooden posts that mark the "Camí de Cavalls", where we will continue the route following these posts along a path that borders the sea and where we will find, almost at the beginning, a large green sign indicating that we are on the way to "Sa Cova des Pardals".
Sign indicating "Sa Cova des Pardals", on the way
After about 30 minutes of walking, you will find a small white house with a red roof, located at the very edge of a cliff. Next to it we will see some stairs that descend and that are the ones that take us to the cave; we will go down them, since they are of public passage, and we will have the cave in front of us, with splendid views of the sea and the rocks. If time allows, we can take advantage of the opportunity to swim in the calm waters.
"Sa Cova des Pardals", with direct access to the sea
If we wish to prolong the excursion, we can continue along the path marked with the posts of the Camí de Cavalls. We will pass by 3 small coves: Cala de Son Vell, Pesquera d'es Comte and Es Calons; as well as some Talayotic remains and old military batteries for the defence of the coast. Finally, we will reach the beach of Son Saura. Its dune system is protected by ropes to prevent deterioration by man.
To return, we will go back along the same route, passing once again by the beach of Son Xoriguer, we will access the vehicle and return to Ciutadella along the Me-24 road, then taking the Ronda RC-2 on the right and later entering the Camí de Sant Joan de Missa, which will take us back to the hotel.
In order to carry out all these hiking routes, it is recommended that you wear good footwear and stock up on water, especially during the hottest times of the year.
In our rural hotel, and for our guests, we can prepare a take-away picnic consisting of a sandwich and a piece of fruit, so that they do not have to worry about lunch, as most of these routes are located in areas without any type of catering establishment.
All you have to do is ask us in the morning at breakfast time.
Once you have chosen your route, we can only wish you a happy trip!