A Paradise on the Mediterranean - BALEARIC ISLANDS

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This cluster of islands on the Mediterranean Sea has visitors coming back for more and singing its praises once they've experienced the beauty and pleasures on offer. The paradise is categorized by its north and south-west sections. Gimnesia, in the north, contains Mallorca, Cabrera, and Menorca, while Ibiza and Formentera are found in Pitiusas, in the south-west.

The Balearic Islands are a favorite holiday destination for many in Spain, who can enjoy 300 days of sun, annually, on which to enjoy beautiful beaches, the rich cultural experience, and the most amiable hospitality from the local folk. The tourists, in huge numbers, passing through Palma de Mallorca airport cannot be wrong.

There have been many occasions where visitors have fallen in love with this place, and have decided to make the Balearic Islands their home.

It is interesting to note that every island in this cluster is unique, and one has to slowly explore each island to truly appreciate the idiosyncrasies and beauty. The islands are so rich in traditions stemming from their own individual culture.

One event, common to all the islands, is the fiesta; a lively, colorful, and charming event for any visitor. The Mallorca folklore will entice you not only with melodious music but also enthralling ceremonial dances, while Ibiza will entertain you with ancient traditional dances.

History of Balearic Islands

There are more pre-historic findings from the Balearic Islands than anywhere else on the Mediterranean islands or in Europe. Menorca is best known for its Pre-historic Nature Museum, housing about 500 historical items. Several outstanding stone constructions exist, which may have been used in ritual ceremonies, such as the Talayot de Trebaluger, in Villarcarlos, Naveta des Tudoms, near Ciutadela, and Taulas.

Every time the islands have been invaded by a cultural group, the influence can be seen and felt on the islands. Some of these groups include the Greeks, the Phoenicians, the Byzanthinians, the Carthaginians, the Moors, and the Romans.

Island Fiestas

The locals love to celebrate and they do this very well with the various occasions they call fiestas.

In Mallorca, the Three Magi procession is the most famous fiesta in December, whereas in January, fire dancers entertain with lively, regional dances. In February, the Carnival opens; an energetic and colorful event, complete with masks and festivity. Beautiful, ornate processions celebrate Easter, and the streets are full of enthusiastic visitors and locals.

A re-enactment of historical battles occurs in May and August; this celebrates the island's victories. Music lovers will appreciate the Jazz Festival in July, while the popular festival, Feria of Inca, is celebrated over three Sundays in November. An appropriate ending to the year is the 31 Palma, ushering out the old year during the Fiesta del Estandarte.

There are many exciting and interesting carnivals in Menorca, Ibiza, and Formentera; each being unique to the place and occasion. The locals do love a celebration anytime!
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