When to Go
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When to Go
July and August are peak season in the Balearics; it's hot, and even the most secluded beaches are crowded. Weather-wise, May and October are ideal, with June and September just behind. Winter is quiet; it's too cold for the beach but fine for hiking, golfing, and exploring—though on Minorca the winter winds are notoriously fierce. The clubbing season on Ibiza begins in June.
Note: Between November and March or April many hotels and restaurants are closed for their own vacations or seasonal repairs.
In addition to the major public holidays, towns and villages on each of the islands celebrate a panoply of patron saints' days, fairs, and festivals of all their own. Highlights include the following:
Eivissa Medieval. Held in Ibiza's capital on the second Sunday in May, this event celebrates the declaration of the Dalt Villa as a UNESCO World Heritage site. Eivissa, Ibiza.
Festa de Nostra Sanyora de la Victoria. On the second Sunday in May in Sóller, mock battles are staged to commemorate an attack by Turkish pirates in 1561. Sóller, Minorca.
Festa de Sant Antoni d'Abat. Celebrated on Ibiza and Majorca, this festival, held on January 16 and 17, includes bonfires, costume parades, and a ceremonial blessing of the animals.
Festa de Sant Bartolomé. Spectacular fireworks mark this festival, which takes place in Sant Antoni on August 24. Sant Antoni, Ibiza.
Festa del Mar. Honoring Our Lady of Carmen, this festival is celebrated on July 16 in the Ibizan towns of Eivissa, Santa Eulalia, Sant Antoni, and Sant Josep, and also on Formentera.
Festa des Vermar. The grape harvest festival, complete with processional floats and concerts, is held in Binissalem on the last Sunday in September. Binissalem, Minorca.
Festa Major de Sant Joan. On June 23 and 24, this festival is celebrated throughout the island of Ibiza. Ibiza.
Festes de Santa Eulàlia. Ibiza's boisterous winter carnival, held on February 12, includes folk dancing and music. Ibiza.
Festes de Sant Joan. At this event on June 23 and 24, riders in costume parade through the streets of Ciutadella on horseback, urging the horses up to dance on their hind legs while spectators pass dangerously under their hooves. Ciutadella, Minorca.
Fiestas de Gràcia. Held from September 7–9 in Mahón, this celebration is Minorca's final one of the season. Mahón, Minorca.
Processo dels Tres Tocs. Held in Ciutadella on January 17, this festival celebrates the victory of King Alfonso III over the Moors in 1287. Ciutadella, Minorca.
Romería de Sant Marçal. On June 30 in Sa Cabaneta, a procession of costumed townspeople makes its way to the church of their patron saint, to draw water from a consecrated cistern that's thought to give health and strength of heart. Sa Cabaneta, Minorca.
Sant Ciriac. On August 8, this festival celebrates the Reconquest of Ibiza from the Moors; it's capped with a watermelon fight beneath the walls of Eivissa's old city and a fireworks display. Eivissa, Ibiza.
Sant Josep. This festival on March 19 is known for folk dancing, which you can also see in Sant Joan every Thursday evening. Ibiza.
Sant Lluís. Celebrations of this saint's day, at the end of August in Minorca, center on equestrian activities. Minorca.
Virgen del Carmen. The patron saint of sailors (Our Lady of Mount Carmel) is honored on July 15 and 16 in Formentera with a blessing of the boats in the harbor. The holiday is also celebrated on Ibiza. Formentera.
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