In one of my posts from last year I just mentioned the “Camí de Cavalls”, an ancient path around the coast of Menorca. Today I would like to tell you more about it.
The path has existed since 1330. The original function of the path was military. It was used to guard the coast and to go from a watchtower to another. The settlers with the armed horses were prepared to defend the island in case of need.
Camí de Cavalls was also used by farmers and its access was completely free for everybody. Along the 20th century the path suffered a considerable deterioration mainly because of the lack of maintenance and the disuse of some parts. In 2000 a law was enacted with the aim to establish a public path through the original path of the Camí de Cavalls, to allow its general and free use.
In 2010, the path was reopened to the public as a part of the European network of long-distance footpaths under the denomination GR223.
Camí de Cavalls
Camí de Cavalls is considered historic heritage and declared of cultural interest by the Comunidad Autónoma of the Illes Balears (Autonomous Community of the Balearic Islands). The “Path of Knights” is 185km long. It crosses gullies, rocky zones, valleys, wetland and farming areas; it connects ancient watchtowers, lighthouses and trenches, and it leads to a great deal of coves and spots of the island.
The path is divided into 20 different stages, each of them is between 5 and 14 km long. It can be walked as a single long hike or individually in sections. You can find more information here – distance of each stage as well as the difficulty and estimated walking time.
Walk to the cave
Camí de Cavalls is also a part of my animation programme. Every Saturday I walk with the guests to the cave Sa Cova dels Pardals – it is a part of the stage 12 Cap d’Artrutx – Cala en Turqueta. We start from the hotel in Cala en Bosch, we pass the beach Son Xoriguer and then we just follow the little wooden columns of Camí de Cavalls. The cave can be reached in about 30 minutes.
First you will see a white house and nearby there are stairs downstairs to the cave. From the cave you can actually see the bottom of the house. There probably used to be a direct access from the house to the cave. It used to be used by fishermen.
Sometimes I continue the walk depending on how much time we have. When the guests walk fast, we have time to discover the path a bit further. We usually go to see the stone hut that is situated approximately 5 minutes from the cave. The stone huts were originally made for the animals to hide there. Very rarely we reach the beach Son Vell which is also very beautiful and worth seeing.
Walking to Cala Blanca
Camí de Cavalls attracts my attention because it is a unique path where you can discover the nature beauty of the island. You can see there many different kinds of plants, you can also find there for example wild rosemary and wild thyme.
Anyway, last Sunday I decided to walk to Cala Blanca. I had never been there before and I was curious how the Camí de Cavalls looks like on the way there. When I got out from my apartment, I was heading to the beginning of the stage 11 Cap d’Artrutx – Ciutadella. Before I got there, I was passing by the viewpoint which is my favourite place of watching the sunset where you can see Mallorca as well.
I started the walk to Cala Blanca and there were quite many people walking the same or the opposite direction. The weather was actually perfect for walking that day – cloudy and not too hot. I really enjoyed the trip, the stunning views and the silence. The only company I had were my thoughts, my camera and surrounding nature.
If you like hiking, I would definitely recommend you to walk at least a part of the Camí de Cavalls. You will get completely different impressions from the Menorca island than if you just visit beaches and do sightseeing. Camí de Cavalls will show you the true face of Menorca. If you decide to do the walk, always make sure you have enough water to drink and something to eat. And then just go and enjoy it. It is really worth it!