What’s changed in 15 years?

Any general questions, tips or information, best beaches, great days and nights out in Menorca.
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Evasmum
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What’s changed in 15 years?

Post by Evasmum » September 8th, 2019, 7:27 pm

Having visited this gorgeous island many times since the age of about 7, now that our kids are grown up, my hubby and I plan to return next year. We were last there in 2005 so I suspect there have been a few changes???
I see from google earth that la menorquina parlour opposite the Esplanada is no longer there. This is somewhere my dad and I loved to visit.

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Sue Adderley
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Re: What’s changed in 15 years?

Post by Sue Adderley » September 15th, 2019, 7:37 pm

Hi Evasmum

Not sure what resort/town you used to stay in, but there have been a few changes over the last 15 years, some good, others not so :eek:

In general, there are far more good places to eat these days, with a much wider selection of cuisines. I remember my first visit, about 25 years ago, when all pretty-much all you could get was a dried-up lasagne, a tuna salad, burger/chicken and chips or an average paella. The competition to offer quality food is much greater these days, so now there's no shortage of decent restaurants to suit all palates. :grin:

However, things are much more expensive now, especially eating out, car hire and fuel. Most things really then :lol: :shock:

Despite the increase in cost, during high-season the roads are packed with rental cars and it can be virtually impossible to park near most of the more popular beaches. In fact, some beaches (Macarella) and places of interest (Favàritx lighthouse) are now only accessible by buying bus tickets in advance and travelling from Ciutadella/Mahon.

Tourists in search of the 'real Menorca' are spending less time and money in the resorts and, instead, are exploring residential towns, such as Es Mercadal and Sant Lluis, which each have a market and live music nights/dancing throughout the summer months. Consequently, a lot of these towns now have a good selection of decent eating places and bars, as the event nights are a huge draw, due to them offering a more authentic Spanish atmosphere than the resorts.

However, it can be difficult to park in the towns during high season. In fact, parking in general is a huge problem on the island during the summer. Parking spaces along the harbour in Mahon are few and far between, due to the government deciding to put concrete planters in front of the restaurants. Ciutadella is also a nightmare, due to pedestrianisation of some of the town, along with route alterations. There are also now 2 huge, ugly half-finished bridges on the ME1 between Mahon and Alaior, due to the government making a right balls-up of completely unwarranted expansion plans. :evil:

A lot of businesses collapsed following the 'crisis' in 2007/2008. Many popular restaurants/bars that had been trading for years suddenly disappeared, maybe this was the fate of La Menorquina Parlour :sad: All-inclusive hotels also had a negative effect on many establishments. :sad:

The current government seems to have strange views on tourism, only wanting 'quality tourists' (ie. folk who spend a fortune in fancy restaurants and like to visit during the winter, so the beaches and roads don't become too overcrowded). They've also removed tourist attractions, such as pedaloes/banana boats and sea inflatables from some popular resorts, as they want the island to revert to a more natural environment.

On the plus side, the Cami De Cavalls (coastal path) has been fully restored all around the island, so if you enjoy walking/cycling there are many fabulous treks through the woods/along the coast to some beautiful coves and places of interest (great in the Spring, Autumn or Winter). :grin:

We have a place on the island, so will always visit, but our holiday experience has definitely changed over the years. We spend more time in the residential towns these days, and more time walking/visiting beaches off the beaten track than we used to. So, it's different than it used to be, but our preferences have changed as we've got older and we still find it equally as fabulous (if not more so)! :cool:

Sue :toasting:

Evasmum
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Re: What’s changed in 15 years?

Post by Evasmum » Yesterday, 7:57 am

Hi Sue

Thank you for your great reply! It’s given lots to think about and to plan around.

My parent used to own an apartment in Binibeca so that is where we stayed most times but have also stayed in Es Castell ( always Villacarlos to me!) and CNP.

We are planning on staying in S’Algar out of UK school holidays so hopefully before it gets too busy. We’re hiring a car as we always used to so that we can visit all our old haunts and as many beaches as possible.

We always visit ciudadella and monte toro but tend to spend most of our time in the south.

It sound as though parking might be our biggest problem.

Thanks again Sue

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