Menorca the Guide
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Mao [Mahon]

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map Mao [Mahon] has been the capital of Menorca, since the British moved it from Ciutadella in 1721. The reason being the harbour at 5 km long, over 1 km at its widest point and 15-30m deep it is one of the largest natural harbours in the world. This coupled with Its location in the Mediterranean, has made it a strategic stronghold for many nations throughout history.

The port itself is relaxing by day and buzzing by night. The bars and restaurants along the portside come alive at night it is easy to spend many hours down in the port, watching the ships, admiring the view, enjoying the hospitality of the restaurants, or just sat taking in the atmosphere.

Port Mahon
There are many historical buildings, the oldest being the Arch de San Roque the only remains of what was once the wall that encircled the town, the old road to Alaior passed through this gateway. Situated a little way down this road is the Town Hall, a typically Menorcan building. built in 1631 and restored around the 1780's, it still has the clock given to the Menorcan's by the English Governor, Richard Kane. Inside there is a gallery featuring paintings of famous Menorcan's.

Also in this square is the Church of Santa Maria which was rebuilt between 1748 and 1772 and is home to a great organ with over 3000 pipes. Behind this is the Plaza de la Conquesta, in the center a monument has been erected to the memory of King Alfonso III who conquered Menorca from the Moslems in 1287. Also of note in this square is the Public Library housed in an 18th century mansion known as the Casa de Cultura.

Mahon Fiesta fireworks night

The town itself has plenty to offer the visitor. Most of the shopping is along pedestrian streets with wonderful cake shops, swish boutiques, leather, pottery and fresh fish and food in the markets.

The town's market now resides in a building which was originally a convent, built In 1751 which has been beautifully restored lately and is the venue for musical events throughout the year. Built underground beneath the market building is a large Spar supermarket which is well stocked and is very competitive price wise so if your in the town it's worth calling in and stocking up.

With narrow streets to explore, pleasant shady squares with welcoming pavement cafes and shopping that ranges from the twice weekly market to the expensive designer boutiques. Mao is a must on every visit to Menorca.

port mahon

More photographs of Mao [Mahon] and Es Castell can be found in our Photo gallery We now have over 60 large quality photographs of menorca in our library, and in our panorama photo section.

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