Mahon

British connections
The serpentine Costa de Ses Voltes
Ciutadella: the former capital

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Mahon/Menorca

A small but charming city centre

MahónMinorca’s capital, is likely to be your first port of call on an MSC Mediterranean cruise.

Perched high above the largest natural harbour in the Mediterranean, the town’s compact centre is no more than ten minutes’ walk from one end to the other. Its architecture consists of an unusual hybrid of classical Georgian townhouses, which reflect a strong British connection, and tall Spanish apartment blocks shading the narrow streets.

From near the ferry terminal, set beneath the cliff that supports the remains of the city wall, a generous stone stairway, the Costa de Ses Voltes, leads up to the series of small squares that comprise the heart of the old town. The Plaça Constitució boasts the town’s main church, Santa María. Founded in 1287 by Alfonso III to celebrate the island’s reconquest, it has been remodelled on several subsequent occasions.

Like Mahón, Ciutadella is just waiting to be discovered on an MSC Mediterranean cruise excursion. Sitting high above its harbour, with navigation difficult here owing to a narrow channel too slender for anything but the smallest of cargo ships, Ciutadella has nevertheless been the island’s capital for most of its history. The narrow, cobbled streets of its compact, fortified centre brim with fine old palaces, hidden away behind high walls, and a set of Baroque and Gothic churches very much in the Spanish tradition.

The main plazas and points of interest are all within a few strides of each other, on and around the main square, Plaça d’es Born, in the middle of which a soaring obelisk commemorates the town’s futile defence against the marauding Turks in 1558. To the northwest, the square is bordered by the steep harbour walls, and in the northeast lies the vast nineteenth-century mansion Palau Torresaura.

Must see places in Mahon

Discover our excursions

7 results found

  • HIGHLIGHTS OF MINORCA

    CITY TOUR

    MAH06

    Spend half a day off the ship exploring Menorca, the second-largest of the Balearic Islands and home beautiful landscapes, pretty villages and lovely beaches. On leaving the port of Mahon, you’ll first travel north to reach the horseshoe beach of Arenal d’en Castell for a photo stop. Moving on, the next destination will be the pretty fishing village of Fornells, located on the island’s northern shore. A leisurely stroll around the village with its green-shuttered, whitewashed houses then follows, after which you’ll continue on to the highest point on Menorca, the hill known as El Toro. From an elevation of nearly 350 m (approx. 1,150 ft.), this vantage point provides superb views of the surrounding area and is just the spot to take some more photos. Leaving the northern shoreline behind, you’ll then travel to the southern coastline to visit the quaint town of Binibeca, which boasts a secluded cove and a small sandy beach. After visiting the village, the return trip to your ship brings the tour to a close. Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests with walking difficulties or using a wheelchair as it includes walking on uneven ground.
      • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

        Difficulty Level
        Moderate

      • Duration
        4:30 h

      • Adult price from AUD $72Price per person

      • Children price from AUD $52Price per person

      • Adult price from AUD $72Price per person

      • Children price from AUD $52Price per person

    • VISIT THE LOVELY TOWN OF CIUTADELLA

      CITY TOUR

      MAH07

      This appealing half-day tour gives you a chance to leave the current capital of Menorca and travel to the other side of the island on a 45-minute coach ride to its former capital, the lovely seaside town of Ciutadella. Originally founded by the Carthaginians, a major trading centre in the Middle Ages and further extended in the 17th and 18th centuries, the old walled town is a joy to explore. You’ll be taken on a guided walk around the narrow lanes and alleyways of the old quarter, the centrepiece of which is the 14th-century Cathedral of Santa Maria de Ciutadella. Keep your camera at hand to capture numerous views of lovely architecture during your walk, after which the relaxing coach ride back to your ship ends the tour.Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests with walking difficulties or using a wheelchair as it includes walking on uneven ground. Guests also have to walk approx. 350 metres from the bus car parking to the Ciutadella.
        • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

          Difficulty Level
          Moderate

        • Duration
          4 h

        • Adult price from AUD $72Price per person

        • Children price from AUD $52Price per person

        • Adult price from AUD $72Price per person

        • Children price from AUD $52Price per person

      • THE VILLAGES OF MINORCA

        CULTURE AND HISTORY

        MAH03

        Enjoy a comprehensive excursion exploring some of the villages of this enchanting island. We will drive to Binibeca, a quaint town located on the south east coast of Minorca; it has a sheltered cove with a small, sandy beach. Next, we will drive to Torralba, which is famous for its “taulas” – T-shaped stone monoliths typical of the Talayot culture (2,000 BC), mysterious edifices that possibly served as altars. Our next stop will be at Mount Toro; here we will have time for a short visit of the “Nuestra Señora Del Toro” monastery built by the monks of St. Augustin’s Order in the XVII century. Return to the port. Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests with walking difficulties or using a wheelchair as it includes walking on uneven ground.
          • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

            Difficulty Level
            Moderate

          • Duration
            4 h

          • Adult price from AUD $82Price per person

          • Children price from AUD $62Price per person

          • Adult price from AUD $82Price per person

          • Children price from AUD $62Price per person

        • NORTH COAST PANORAMA

          SCENIC ROUTE

          MAH02

          Leave the port of Mahon and drive northwards through Puerto de Addaya where we will stop for photos. We will continue to the fishing village of Fornells, famous for its lobster stew and one of Winston Churchill’s favorite places. Enjoy a scenic tour through the lovely landscaped gardens of Cala Tirant and up to Mount Toro. Here we will stop to explore the “Nuestra Señora del Toro” monastery, built by the monks of St. Augustin’s Order in the XVII century. Return to Mahon where you can either spend time in the city centre or return to the port. Please note: this tour is not recommended for guests with walking difficulties or using a wheelchair as it includes walking on uneven ground. Conservative attire is recommended for visiting sites of religious importance.
            • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

              Difficulty Level
              Moderate

            • Duration
              4 h

            • Adult price from AUD $82Price per person

            • Children price from AUD $62Price per person

            • Adult price from AUD $82Price per person

            • Children price from AUD $62Price per person

          • LLOC DE MENORCA & SON BOU BEACH

            SEA & SUN

            MAH04

            Leave the ship for a half-day outing that promises to be family-friendly, highly entertaining and even informative – a visit to one of Menorca’s top attractions, the Lloc de Menorca zoological park. Situated only a short coach ride from the port of Mahon in the town of Alaior, the zoo’s attractively landscaped grounds, including lakes and ponds that cater to water dwellers, are home to frisky monkeys, friendly dwarf goats, slow-moving giant tortoises, spiny porcupines and jewel-coloured, parading peacocks. Add to that a reptile house squirming with snakes, an aviary that provides a habitat for various bird species, including some elusive parrots hiding in the leafy trees, as well as an adventure playground for kids plus a snack bar and you have a zoo experience that ticks every box. A short drive then follows to the 3 kilometres of golden sands at Son Bou Beach, which is not only the longest but also one of the most beautiful beaches in Minorca. After some time to enjoy the gorgeous setting, the coach will return you to Mahon and your ship. Please note: this tour operates only during summer months.
            • Possibility of swimming

            • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

              Difficulty Level
              Easy

            • Duration
              4:30 h

            • Adult price from AUD $72Price per person

            • Children price from AUD $52Price per person

            • Adult price from AUD $72Price per person

            • Children price from AUD $52Price per person

          • CAR WITH GUIDE

            SOMETHING SPECIAL

            MAH33PV

            Disembark in the port and have a vehicle with a professional guide and driver waiting for you, your family and friends. Create your own tour and enjoy your day with a vehicle at your disposal. Please note: Vehicle, driver, guide and gasoline included. The price does not include any entrance fees or meals and is per vehicle and not per passenger. If you want to set a customized itinerary and add entrance tickets to any of the tourist attractions, please contact your shorex excursion staff on the ship.
            • No guide available

            • Limited seats

            • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

              Difficulty Level
              Easy

            • Duration
              4 h

            • Adult price from AUD $1009Price per person

            • Children price from AUD $1009Price per person

            • Adult price from AUD $1009Price per person

            • Children price from AUD $1009Price per person

          • MINIVAN WITH GUIDE FOR 3 TO 6 PAX

            SOMETHING SPECIAL

            MAH34PV

            Disembark in the port and have a vehicle with a professional guide and driver waiting for you, your family and friends. Create your own tour and enjoy your day with a vehicle at your disposal. Please note: Vehicle, driver, guide and gasoline included. The price does not include any entrance fees or meals. The price is per vehicle and not per passenger. If you want to set a customized itinerary and add entrance tickets to any of the tourist attractions, please contact your shorex excursion staff on the ship. Larger vans can be arrangeg upon request.
            • No guide available

            • Limited seats

            • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

              Difficulty Level
              Easy

            • Duration
              4 h

            • Adult price from AUD $1145Price per person

            • Children price from AUD $1145Price per person

            • Adult price from AUD $1145Price per person

            • Children price from AUD $1145Price per person

          The excursions in the programme are intended to provide MSC Guests with an idea of the different tours that can be arranged in each port of call; this programme is merely a guide and confirmation of each excursion and its description and prices will be made during your cruise. 
          Shore excursions programs and itineraries may vary depending on local conditions and/or any unforeseen events in relation to the timing on the day of the tour.
           
          Some excursions are very popular and therefore availability cannot always be guaranteed, it is advisable to book in advance to avoid disappointment. The guides are guaranteed in English. Only for South America cruises, the guides are guaranteed in Brazilian Portuguese. Narration in other languages depends on the availability of guides. Please note that the final language of the tour will be confirmed on board during the cruise.

          Spain

          Love at first sight
          Love at first sight

          If you’re visiting Spain for the first time, be warned: this is a country that fast becomes an addiction. You might intend to come just for a cruise holiday, a walking tour or a city break, but before you know it you’ll find yourself hooked by something quite different – the celebration of some local fiesta, perhaps, or the otherworldly architecture of Barcelona.

          Even in the most over-touristic Mediterranean resorts of the Costa del Sol, you’ll be able to find an authentic bar or restaurant where the locals eat, and a village not far away where an age-old bullfighting tradition owes nothing to tourism. 


          A holiday to Spain can also show you the large cities of the north like Barcelona, which have reinvented themselves as essential cultural destinations (and don’t all close down for hours for a kip every afternoon). 


          And when the world now looks to Spain for culinary inspiration – the country has some of the most acclaimed chefs and innovative restaurants in the world – it’s clear that things have changed. Spain, despite the current economic uncertainty, sees itself very differently from a generation ago. 

          So should you – prepare to be surprised.