Cala Blanca area Report

Accommodation & Restaurant info for the Santandria, Sa Caleta and Cala Blanca resort area.
trevx
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Cala Blanca area Report

Post by trevx » August 7th, 2012, 2:19 pm

Cala Blanca Report

Version II
Apologies for length- grab a drink of your favourite beverage if you decide to plough on!

Family connections have meant that most of our summer hols have been in Cala’n Porter. In recent years we’ve been able to have a short autumn break and we’ve gone to resorts on the west (because they’re close to our favourite beaches): Calan Bosch and Calan Forcat.
Autumn 2011, we stayed in Cala Blanca for the 1st time; it led to us breaking with tradition and booking to return summer 2012.
Here’s what we found:
Cala Blanca has plenty of hotels, villas and apartments for holiday accommodation, but there’s also a large resident population too which makes for a really nice ambience- it was lovely to stroll around, even very late! We stayed in a frontline apartment about 5 minutes walk from the Commercial Centre (hereafter cc). We weren’t disturbed by noise at night, but I guess you may find it noisier if you were staying closer to the cc or the area immediately to the left side of the beach area. (We had a look on Google maps before choosing our accommodation.) Our first few days were spent settling in and chilling out around the resort and our apartment pool, visiting Ciutadella and friends elsewhere, before hitting the beaches.
We went to Cala Blanca beach on our second day, late afternoon; nice beach, but not very wide, inlet rather than bay, easily accessible, soft white sand and gently sloping sea bed, so good for children; there were plenty of families here. Cafe bars and restaurants either side, good for sunset watching I would imagine.
A popular spot to catch the sunset is the Irish Bar at the end of the cc nearest to the coast, but you’d need to get there early to get one of the good tables! Or you can do it for free from a paved area opposite which also has a few benches (take your own drink)!
Our apartment offered the same view, across the sea to Ciutadella and Majorca, so we had constant daily entertainment: watching all the ships and boats, from the big ferries down to the little dinghies of the sailing schools, and the visual splendours of the sunsets. Suffice to say that over 90% of the photos OH took this year were from the balcony!
There are a couple of supermarkets in the cc offering a reasonable selection of foodstuffs, beach toys etc, with higher prices as you expect in resorts. We only used them to buy essentials that we forgot to buy while out eg bread, milk, lemon for the g&t! There’s also a gift shop. There are shops along the main road down to the beach too and a pharmacy with very helpful English-speaking staff.
Like other resorts, the cc has seen better times: many of the units were closed and some of the bars had very few customers, but we were there just outside the school holidays.
We used the Diskont supermarket (on main Ciutadella- Cala’n Bosch road) for the big shop; it’s convenient, easy to access, good prices and generally excellent quality, most staff pleasant and helpful; good range of groceries and general household items (plus clothes and toys if you need/ want!), great fresh produce (fruit veg and salads), yummy deli counter, fresh meat plus good range of pre-packed meats including bbq ready packs. They also have an extensive range of gluten-free products. There’s an interesting and tasty range of chilled local ready-made meals which we’ve tried in the past. We bought a delicious spit-roasted chicken for 6.60 euros- did us for 2 substantial dinners, lunch and a risotto – can’t argue with that for value! The same oven offered roasted veg and other dishes which we didn’t have a chance to try but they looked v tempting! There’s also a pretty good fish counter which we used once.
We preferred the quality and service we got in the fish market in Ciutadella , even though this is more expensive. We also bought really good ternera (veal) entrecote steak, pork chops and freshly made albondigas from one of the butchers in the market (we’ve bought rabbit and quail in the autumn, v good); it’s lovely to shop in the market and worth getting up early for! Do your shopping, then breakfast with the locals in one of the cafes around the market or in town. Beats food shopping trips here in UK hands down-even OH loves it!
For early morning shoppers, street parking in Ciutadella is free until 9.30am; and again from about 1400 to 1700 (just check the ticket machines), if you want to go into town for lunch and a wander.
By the by, thanks to all who answered my post re shops for utensils etc; we found all we wanted from the Chinese bazaar in Ciutadella- the prices were already cheap but we were given a further discount when we came to pay- bargain!
Eating out:
Cala Blanca: tried the restaurant at the Blancala Apartments (near to our apartment) having heard and read positive reports; good meal of the day (main course baked ternera was meltingly delicious), 3 courses plus drink, 14.95 euros. The couple running it are offering Menorcan produce and dishes along with the standard menu; on our 2nd visit we had amazing stuffed squid, Menorcan-style: so good I asked for, and got, the recipe and a cookery lesson! We’ll eat there again in future. The interior decor is basic (there are outside tables), but it’s lively and obviously popular with local family groups as well as people staying in the apartments, so be prepared to wait.
Ciutadella:
El Horno, small cellar restaurant in carrer del Forn, a side street off Plaza de Born. Not for Michael Winner, the tables are close together(!); the end window looks onto the street about 5 feet above you so the view is limited to the legs of pedestrians and young children. OH had beautifully cooked and presented grilled squid, but my rabbit was disappointing (I’ve had much better and cheaper elsewhere in Menorca); mains plus 2 gazpacho for starters, 2 g &ts, bottle of good wine, water and 2 cortados 55-ish euros. It was busy even though relatively early for Menorca but service was slow, with only one person actively serving.
Aurora, Placa des Palmeres, in the lively square opposite the windmill, so plenty of people-watching to stimulate conversation; we 1st came here in 1973(!) and have been back several times over the years, so yes, we like it. Brisk friendly service. Ate here twice this hol; 1st meal: gazpacho, then roast kid mains; 2nd meal: stuffed aubergine (shared), mixed paella, dessert; costs including 2 g&ts /chilled fino 2nd time, bottle of good wine, water and 2 cortados about the same as El Horno meal, but both of us happy! Aurora offer 3 menus del dia, from 12.95 euros up wards but they stop serving these at 9pm (this was the case with many restaurants this year, which we’d not seen before).
We used the bus for our evening trips into Ciutadella: cost 1.55 each from/ to Cala Blanca; well-run, clean and air conditioned, with helpful drivers. In the UK, we’d never catch the bus home after a night out. Last bus out is 12.30am.
Mercadel:
Jenny’s: had lunchtime menu del dia: impressive mixed salad, then fish for me and veal for OH (neither very good to be honest), finished with a brilliant crema catalan, water and a bottle of chilled white (surprisingly good), all for 9.95 euros each!!! Good, pleasant service, air conditioned restaurant, so no complaints, we’ll just give mains greater thought in future!
Tast: initially stopped here for a coffee but ended up having a beer each and some great tapas: crisp, deep fried cheese and sobrasada croquettes, fried potato, scrambled egg and buttifarra mix (so good, we could’ve eaten mounds of it!); less than 20 euros including the 2 cortados and water.

Well, you’d think all we did was eat!
We did spend many days on our favourite beaches; Son Saura, Es Talaier, Macarelleta. Last year, despite getting up and away from CnP early, we only managed to get to Son Saura/ Es Talaier and Macarella once each (and the latter only because there were jellies there!) because the car parks were full. Not this year, hooray! We also walked around from Cala Blanca to Santandria and around the Cavalleria lighthouse area on cooler days.
So did we like it in Cala Blanca? Yes!
Would we go again? Yes! ASAP!
After all these years we’ve become firm west enders, sorry CnP and Mahon.

Trevx

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sunnysideup
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Re: Cala Blanca area Report

Post by sunnysideup » August 7th, 2012, 3:57 pm

Hi Trev :grin:

So glad you had another great time :finga:
Fantastic report, enjoyed reading your views. We too enjoy the West coast as a base, not that it ever stops us from touring around the Island every visit, just to many good places worth visiting :prayer:
The Diskont supermarket is great and the deli is fab, I love the cheese slice pastry thingy nom nom.
If you like a good meal and don't mind paying that little bit more, why not try Can Bep in Ciutadella on your next visit
http://www.canbep.com/
Lovely food and great service from Pedro and his family
You never know I may well have to go and try it again in 5 weeks time :finga: :partyman: :finga:

Alan :finga: :finga:
Enjoy life...... There's plenty of time to be dead!!!..

Cala n Forcat 1995 - present
Cala N Porter 1992 1993
Arenal 1996
Sant Tomas 1993 1998 1999
Cala n Bosch 2000 2002
Cala Blanca 2001

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Re: Cala Blanca area Report

Post by Slartibartfast » August 7th, 2012, 4:05 pm

WoW
I claim no responsibility for the following disclaimer.
All opinions are my wife's; I have none. (In my opinion.)

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Re: Cala Blanca area Report

Post by glensibs » August 7th, 2012, 6:45 pm

I knew you'd like it but I didn't think you'd write a novel about it!!!!!

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Re: Cala Blanca area Report

Post by SusieH » August 7th, 2012, 7:41 pm

:shock: :shock: :shock: Blimey, I think you deserve he gold medal for that review :lol: :lol: :lol:
I'll stop moaning, when you give me a pay rise this :arms: big


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:nonono: SITE POLICE - REMEMBER i'm watching you :nonono:

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Re: Cala Blanca area Report

Post by sunfun » August 7th, 2012, 8:15 pm

:grin: Really enjoyed your review.
We were at cala blanca last year and loved it,but are trying cala en porter this year.
It'll be interesting to see which we prefer.Any tips you can give on cala en porter are most appreciated.

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Re: Cala Blanca area Report

Post by ladyrose » August 7th, 2012, 8:42 pm

veryyyyyyyy well done Trevx :finga:

trevx
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Re: Cala Blanca area Report

Post by trevx » August 7th, 2012, 9:29 pm

:oops:
Thank you for kind comments and for sticking with my epic! Just shows how much I love the island. :grin:

Alan: Mentioned your comment ref C'an Bep to OH, decided we'll def try it next time we're in Ciutadella! ASAP :smile:

Sunfun: as we've not been out to CnP this year I'd not presume to give up to date tips, but our must do listwould always include: the Caves de Xoroi for sundowners (also check whether they've got any live acts performing, we've caught some early Sunday evenings); Aloha Bar for wicked cocktails ( :rolleyes: ); for cheaper end of the day, beer and calamaris at Bar Rustica on the beach; walk or drive to Calas Coves. Oh and carrots for the donkey who lives in the fields between CnP and Calas Coves!
CnP will always have a special place in our hearts and I wouldn't rule out hols there again.

Trevx

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Re: Cala Blanca area Report

Post by sunfun » August 8th, 2012, 6:08 am

:toasting: Cheers trev! Great tips...especially the carrots for the donkey! :lol: We will deffo be doing that!Thanks.

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Re: Cala Blanca area Report

Post by watta » August 8th, 2012, 1:59 pm

What an epic and a first class report. Well done. :ele: :finga: :supz:

Alan
:cool:

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