Framed in the heart of Menorca, just at the foot of its highest point – Monte Toro, 258 meters high -, Es Mercadal is a must-visit town for all those who drop by the island. We talk in depth about the town and we give many recommendations about what to do in Es Mercadal and its surroundings. A site that is as complete as it is surprising.
It seems necessary to include Es Mercadal among the prettiest towns in Menorca. This town preserves the charm of the traditional architecture of the island, Menorcan essence, and even tranquility.
A white village at the foot of Monte Toro, Es Mercadal
Its origin dates back to the conquest of Menorca by King Alfonso III of Aragon at the end of the 13th century. Already at the beginning of the XIV, by order of Jaume II, one of the first three weekly markets of the island begins to be celebrated there, along with those of Mahón and Ciudadela; custom that is maintained every Thursday of the year: evenings and nights in summer and in the morning the rest of the year.
What to do in Es Mercadal?
Among the recommended visits within the town are the parish church of Sant Martí, Renaissance style and built in the fourteenth century, as well as the cistern (in menorquín, aljub), built during the years of British rule by order of its first ruler, Richard Kane. Of course, it is obligatory to make an excursion to the nearby Monte Toro, the highest point of the whole island, to visit the sanctuary of the Virgen de Monte Toro (17th century), saint of Menorca, and enjoy incredible views of the whole insular perimeter. To regain strength, nothing better than to make a culinary stop in Sa Posada del Toro.
And if you want to try some typical dish of Es Mercadal then you have to choose the traditional dishes (the inevitable stew, Minorcan squid stuffed, goatling…) in Es Molí d’es Racó, located inside an old traditional mill. Also recommended are Ca N’Olga and Tast, a peculiar Asian-Balearic fusion restaurant.
For an authentic meal with a seafaring atmosphere, it is enough to eat seafood stew, oven strips or crab snails at restaurants in Fornells, a small fishing village with a harbor and a bay which are perfect for water sports. Among the best culinary options we can highlight Es Cranc and Can Tanu. And above all Sa Llagosta, where according to the greatest experts in the subject, you can taste the best lobster stew of the island.
Another must that Es Mercadal offers is its spectacular San Martin party, which is celebrated on the third weekend of July. A celebration of medieval origin featuring horses – many of them from the Majorcan autochthonous race – that dance to the rhythm of music in the so-called “jaleos”. Both they and their riders take to the streets with dresses that include colorful flags, bows and mirrors. A very colorful show and definitely something mandatory in Es Mercadal.
To enjoy the sun and the sea in conditions, in the vicinity of the village we will find the virgin beaches of Cavalleria and Binimela, although surely the best kept secret of the area is Cala En Tosqueta, 5 kilometers from Son Parc beach: isolated, virgin and of very low occupation. Two other quiet coves are Cala Pudent and Cala Mica. More familiar, endowed with services and easy access are the beaches of Arenal del Castillo, Macaret or Puerto de Addaia.
All useful and interesting information on what to do in Es Mercadal can be found on the municipality’s official website. The distance by road between Ciudadela – where the Aparthotel Ferrer Skyline is located – and Es Mercadal is about 25 kilometers, and under normal conditions it just takes a 20 minutes ride. In addition, there are several bus routes whose schedules and features can be found on this web page too.
History, art, culture, gastronomy, tourism, nature… there are many attractions that Es Mercadal has to offer its visitants, a small town located in the heart of Menorca that keeps the essence of the island and offers great possibilities and entertainment.