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Spain's Balearic Islands are some of the largest and most notable islands in the Western Mediterranean Sea and are made up of four main islands. While the Greek Islands are stunning and famous for very good reasons, they are not the only picture-perfect islands in the Mediterranean. The Balearic Islands offer more choices, and each island has its own unique characteristics and attractions on offer.

Here one will be greeted with azure blue seas and white sand beaches - what better place to enjoy the sunny Mediterranean climate? Each of the islands has its own character, and all are worth a visit. If one can't choose which island to visit, then consider island hopping between the four main Balearic Islands and see each of its own unique attractions.


The Idyllic Spanish Balearic Islands

The four main islands of the Balearic Islands are Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza, and Formentera - there are also many minor islands and islets. These stunning islands enjoy a Mediterranean climate, and all four islands are popular tourist destinations.

Four Main Balearic Islands:

  • Mallorca
  • Menorca
  • Ibiza
  • Formentera

The islands are an autonomous province within Spain and their capital is Palma.

Ibiza - The International Party Destination

Ibiza is known as an international party destination and attracts some of the world's most popular DJs to its many nightclubs. This is an island where the music beats all night long. The peak season for party life is during the summer.

  • Size: 570 km2 or 220 sq miles
  • Population: 150,000

See the lively ambiance of Ibiza as well as its many stunning beaches. Stroll around the UNESCO-listed Old Town and be transported back in time within the fortified medieval city.

  • Famous As: A Party Destination

When not partying, take the time to explore Ibiza's rich biodiversity and archeological attractions. See:

  • Sa Caleta: An Ancient Phoenician Archeological Site
  • Puig des Molins: A Necropolis
  • Eivissa: See The Historic Center

It is the third largest of the Balearic Islands, and the largest towns are Ibiza Town and Santa Eularia des Riu.

Related: Mallorca Travel Guide: What To Do In A Week In Spain’s Largest Island

Mallorca - The Largest Balearic Island

Mallorca is the largest island of the group and is home to ancient villages and inspiring monasteries. It is also home to the bulk of the population of the Balearic Islands. Naturally, it also has its share of pristine sandy shores.

As a popular tourist destination, its airport, Palma de Mallorca Airport is one of the busiest in Spain. One's trip here starts in the main city of Palma. After visiting the lively capital, venture out into the villages, seemingly lost in time.

  • Main City: Palma
  • Size: 3,640 km2 or 1,405 sq miles
  • Population: 900,000

Other attractions in Mallorca include the Cabrera National Park and the Sierra de Tramontana mountains. The island also has the regional capital, Palma. Some consider Mallorca to be the crowning jewel of the Balearic Islands.

Menorca Island - The Lesser-Known Island

Menorca Island is known for being more laid-back and is a smaller island. It is a getaway for those seeking a more quiet escape to the seaside. Its name comes from Latin "Insula Minor" - literally "smaller island" and is the second-largest island in the group (smaller than nearby Mallorca).

The main towns are Mahon and Ciutadella.

  • Population: 94,000
  • Size: 695 km2 or 269 sq miles

It is less known and less busy, but arguably even more attractive than its sister islands. The natural beauty of the island forms many of Menorca's greatest attractions. One way to explore the dramatic coastlines is with the Cami de Cavalls Coastal Path.

One can plan one's trip to Menorca Island with Visit Menorca.

Related: A Travel Guide To Spain: Tourists Should Plan Their Trip Around These 11 Things

Formentera Island - The Laidback And Tranquil Island

Formentera Island is a relatively undiscovered destination with some of the finest beaches of the group and unspoiled coastlines. It is a haven of tranquility and by far the smallest of the four main islands.

  • Size: 83 km2 or 32 Sq Miles
  • Population: 12,000
  • Famous For: Being A Laidback Beach Destination

The waters here are some of the clearest and most crystalline one will find. Some claim its beaches are some of the best in the world. Its coastlines are also full of many deserted coves.