GETTING THERE Flying non-stop has no romance. You prefer dolphin watching during the seven-hour ferry ride from Barcelona.
GO In spring. A wet winter brings out stunning fields of wildflowers. A Republican stronghold ignored by the Franco regime, Menorca escaped the swathes of tourist development that soiled much of southern Spain and was instead declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve with protection extending 19km out to sea.
STAY Down in the port is Ciutadella’s coolly rustic Hotel Tres Sants, or in the port district of Mahón where the quiet and luxurious Casa Albertí has six rooms in an 18th-century mansion.
EAT The French are coming and are set to ramp up the restaurant trade. Hauser & Wirth, a Swiss art gallery, is restoring part of an old naval hospital on Mahón’s Isla del Rey, which will become an exhibition space and restaurant modelled on its Somerset location. You love Es Cranc’s caldereta de langosta, a spiny lobster bouillabaisse or fried lobster with egg and chips at Jàgaro in Mahón. Beyond the Georgian architecture, gin is another British legacy. You drink it with crushed ice and lemon for a typical pomada.
SEE Pine and oak forests, wild-olive woods, marshes and lagoons. You want a week to walk the Cami de Cavalls, the 185km medieval track around the entire coast. Dotted with beaches and little coves, each of its 20 sections are perfect for an amble.
BUY A pair or two of those avarcas, the traditional Menorcan slippers. Once made from a leather strap and a tyre, they give espadrilles a run for their money. A bottle of artisanal gin with the windmill label, from local distillery Xoriguer. Or, for a million euros, you could always opt for a seven-bedroom villa with pool.•