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A Short Guide To Es Castell – The Town Named After Two Kings


Modified: December 27, 2023

by Clair Bolinger



Welcome to Es Castell, a charming town nestled on the southeastern coast of Menorca, one of Spain’s stunning Balearic Islands. Steeped in history, this picturesque town offers visitors a unique blend of rich cultural heritage, beautiful landscapes, and a laid-back Mediterranean atmosphere. Known as the “Village of Kings,” Es Castell is filled with architectural gems, vibrant markets, and panoramic views of the sparkling Mediterranean Sea.


As you explore Es Castell, you’ll soon discover its fascinating past and the influence of two kings: King Carlos III of Spain and King George III of England. These monarchs played a significant role in shaping the town’s identity and leaving behind prominent landmarks, historical sites, and a distinct British touch.


From its historic sites and cultural festivals to its delectable cuisine and outdoor activities, Es Castell offers something for every traveler. Whether you’re seeking a relaxing beach getaway, a journey through history, or a taste of authentic local flavor, this hidden gem on the island of Menorca is sure to captivate your heart and soul.


Join us on a journey through the streets of Es Castell as we unveil its fascinating history, remarkable landmarks, and the vibrant spirit that makes it an enticing destination for visitors from around the world.


History of Es Castell

The history of Es Castell dates back to the 18th century when it was founded by King Carlos III of Spain. Originally known as Villa de San Felipe, it was strategically established as a military stronghold to protect the nearby port of Mahón, the island’s capital. The town’s location at the entrance of Mahón harbor allowed for easy surveillance and defense against potential invaders.


During this time, the British Empire also had a significant presence in Menorca, and Es Castell became a key location for British military operations. In 1768, the town was renamed Georgetown in honor of King George III of England. The British influence can still be felt today through the architecture, language, and traditions of the town.


Es Castell played a crucial role in the Battle of Menorca, which took place in 1782 between the Spanish and the British. The Spanish successfully recaptured the island, leading to the end of British rule. Following this victory, the town was renamed once again, this time to its current name, Es Castell, meaning “The Castle” in Catalan, referring to the Fortress of San Felipe.


Over the years, Es Castell has evolved into a coveted residential area while preserving its historic character. The town’s unique blend of Spanish and British influences is evident in its colonial-style architecture, narrow streets, and charming squares. Today, Es Castell is a living museum that offers visitors a glimpse into the island’s past while embracing the present.


The Connection to Two Kings

Es Castell holds a special connection to two kings: King Carlos III of Spain and King George III of England. Their influence can be seen throughout the town, shaping its architecture, culture, and traditions.


King Carlos III of Spain played a significant role in the establishment of Es Castell. He recognized the strategic importance of the town’s location and ordered its foundation as a military stronghold to protect the nearby port of Mahón. King Carlos III’s vision resulted in the construction of impressive fortifications, including the Fortress of San Felipe, which still stands as a symbol of the town’s historical significance.


During the 18th century, Menorca was under British rule, and Es Castell became an important British military base. In honor of King George III of England, the town was renamed Georgetown. The British occupants left their mark on the town’s architecture, giving it a distinct colonial-style charm that sets it apart from other towns on the island.


Despite the British influence, the town’s Spanish heritage remained strong. As the Battle of Menorca took place in 1782, the Spanish successfully reclaimed the island, and Es Castell regained its original name. This historical event marked a turning point in the relationship between the two kings, as the Spanish victory effectively ended British rule in Menorca.


Today, visitors to Es Castell can witness the unique blend of Spanish and British influences that define the town. Strolling through its streets, you’ll encounter charming colonial-style buildings adorned with Spanish balconies, ornate ironwork, and colorful facades. The language spoken by the locals is predominantly Spanish, but traces of English words and phrases can be heard, reflecting the town’s fascinating history.


Es Castell’s connection to two kings not only shaped its physical landscape but also influenced its cultural traditions. The town embraces its dual heritage through various festivities and events. One such celebration is the Feast of Saint John, taking place on June 24th, where the town comes alive with fireworks, music, and traditional dances. It is a vibrant showcase of the fusion of Spanish and British customs.


Through its rich historical connections to both King Carlos III and King George III, Es Castell offers a unique experience for travelers seeking a glimpse into the past and an appreciation for the cultural fusion that defines the town’s identity.


Exploring the Town

Es Castell offers visitors an enchanting tapestry of narrow streets, charming squares, and picturesque views that beg to be explored. As you venture through the town, you’ll be captivated by its architectural beauty, historical landmarks, and the warm hospitality of the locals.


Start your exploration in the heart of Es Castell at the Plaza de España. This bustling square is the perfect place to soak up the atmosphere and admire the impressive Town Hall building. Take a leisurely stroll along the winding streets, lined with colorful houses adorned with traditional Spanish balconies and intricate ironwork.


Discover the rich history of Es Castell by visiting the Fortress of San Felipe, a testament to the town’s strategic importance. Climb to the top for breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding coastline and the sparkling Mediterranean Sea. Inside the fortress, you’ll find a museum that showcases the town’s military heritage.


As you continue your exploration, make sure to visit the charming Church of Sant Josep. Step inside to marvel at its stunning Baroque architecture and serene atmosphere. Just a short distance away, you’ll find the picturesque Cala Corb, a tranquil harbor dotted with fishing boats and waterfront restaurants. Enjoy a leisurely meal while savoring the fresh seafood and soaking in the peaceful ambiance of this hidden gem.


Immerse yourself in the town’s vibrant culture by visiting the local markets, where you can sample fresh produce, local delicacies, and traditional crafts. Don’t miss the opportunity to taste the famous local gin, Xoriguer, which has been distilled on the island for over a century.


For a memorable evening, head to the Paseo Marítimo, a charming promenade that winds along the waterfront. Indulge in a leisurely stroll, stopping to admire the picturesque views and perhaps enjoy a drink at one of the many sea-facing bars and restaurants.


Es Castell is also a great base for exploring the surrounding natural beauty of Menorca. Just a short drive away, you’ll find the stunning beaches of Cala Mesquida, Cala Rafalet, and Cala Pedrera, where you can unwind on golden sands and swim in crystal-clear waters.


Exploring Es Castell is like stepping back in time while embracing the present. It is a town that offers a harmonious blend of history, culture, and natural beauty, making it an ideal destination for travelers seeking an authentic and immersive experience.


Famous Landmarks and Attractions

Es Castell is a treasure trove of famous landmarks and attractions that showcase its rich history, natural beauty, and cultural heritage. From impressive fortresses to serene beaches, there is something to captivate every visitor’s interest.


One of the most iconic landmarks in Es Castell is the Fortress of San Felipe. This 18th-century military fortress stands proudly at the entrance of Mahón harbor. Explore its impressive bastions, underground tunnels, and ramparts while enjoying panoramic views of the sea. The fortress also houses a museum that offers insights into the town’s military past.


Nestled by the waterfront, the Church of Sant Josep is another must-see landmark. Its stunning Baroque architecture and ornate interior make it a visual delight. Step inside to admire the beautiful artwork and take a moment of tranquility in this remarkable place of worship.


For nature lovers, a visit to the Cala Corb is a must. This charming harbor is lined with colorful fishing boats and waterfront restaurants serving fresh seafood delicacies. Enjoy a leisurely walk along the promenade or relax on the beach as you soak in the serene atmosphere.


Make your way to the Plaza de España, the town’s central square, where you can marvel at the elegant Town Hall building and the statue of King Carlos III. This bustling square is a great spot to sit and people-watch while enjoying a cup of coffee or a refreshing beverage.


Just a short distance away from Es Castell, you’ll find the Talismana Es Castell, a sculpture park that combines art, nature, and spirituality. Take a leisurely walk through the park and admire the unique sculptures and stunning views of the countryside.


If you’re a fan of markets, don’t miss the opportunity to visit the lively Mercat de Sant Josep. This vibrant market offers a variety of fresh local produce, traditional crafts, and delicious treats. It’s a great place to immerse yourself in the local culture and indulge in the flavors of Menorca.


For beach lovers, the nearby Cala Mesquida, Cala Rafalet, and Cala Pedrera offer pristine sands and crystal-clear waters. These hidden gems are perfect for swimming, sunbathing, or simply relaxing in a tranquil setting away from the crowds.


Whether you’re a history enthusiast, nature lover, or someone who appreciates cultural landmarks, Es Castell has a multitude of famous landmarks and attractions to explore. These sites showcase the town’s unique blend of history, architecture, and natural beauty, leaving a lasting impression on every visitor.


Traditional Cuisine of Es Castell

The traditional cuisine of Es Castell reflects the rich flavors of Menorca with a unique blend of Spanish and British influences. From fresh seafood delights to hearty stews and delectable pastries, the town offers a delightful culinary journey for food enthusiasts.


One of the most famous dishes in Es Castell is the Caldereta de Langosta, a flavorful lobster stew that showcases the abundance of seafood in the region. The succulent lobster is simmered with tomatoes, onions, garlic, and local herbs, creating a rich and aromatic broth. This dish is a true delicacy and a must-try when visiting the town.


Another local specialty is the Sobrassada, a traditional cured sausage made from ground pork, paprika, and various spices. It is a staple ingredient in many Menorcan dishes and is often served as a spread on crusty bread or used as a filling in traditional pastries.


Es Castell is also famous for its artisanal cheeses, known as Queso Mahón-Menorca. Made from cow’s milk, these cheeses come in various forms, from soft and creamy to aged and crumbly. They are perfect for pairing with local honey or enjoying on their own.


When it comes to desserts, don’t miss the deliciously sweet pastries of Es Castell. Try the Pastissets, delicate almond pastries filled with apricot jam, and dusted with powdered sugar. These melt-in-your-mouth treats are a favorite among both locals and visitors.


For a refreshing drink, be sure to sample the famous gin of Menorca. The island has a long-standing gin-making tradition, and Es Castell is home to the renowned Xoriguer Gin Distillery. Take a visit and learn about the production process while enjoying a refreshing gin and tonic.


When dining in Es Castell, you’ll find a variety of charming restaurants, tapas bars, and waterfront eateries that showcase the town’s culinary delights. From traditional Menorcan cuisine to international flavors, there is something to suit every palate.


Whether you’re indulging in a seafood feast, savoring local cheeses and cured meats, or satisfying your sweet tooth with traditional pastries, the traditional cuisine of Es Castell invites you to embark on a gastronomic adventure that captures the essence of Menorca’s culinary traditions.


Festivals and Events

Es Castell is a town that knows how to celebrate, and throughout the year, it hosts a variety of festivals and events that showcase its vibrant culture and rich traditions. From religious processions to lively fiestas, these events offer visitors an immersive experience into the local way of life.


One of the most eagerly awaited celebrations in Es Castell is the Feast of Saint John (Festes de Sant Joan). Held on June 24th, this festival marks the beginning of summer and is a vibrant display of music, dance, and fireworks. Locals and visitors alike gather in the streets to watch the traditional Jaleo, where riders on horseback parade through the town while performing daring stunts.


During the week of the Feast of Saint John, the Fornells-Addaia Regatta takes place, attracting sailing enthusiasts from far and wide. This exciting event showcases the beauty of Menorca’s coastline and the skill of the sailors who compete in various categories. Enjoy the thrilling races and soak in the lively atmosphere as the town brims with excitement.


The Fiestas of San Antonio are another highly anticipated event in Es Castell. Celebrated in January, this festival commemorates the town’s patron saint, San Antonio Abad. The streets come alive with processions, live music performances, and traditional dancing. One of the highlights is the “Caragol des Born” race, where participants navigate the narrow streets while pushing-rolling a wooden hoop.


Throughout the year, Es Castell also hosts a variety of cultural and artistic events. The International Jazz Festival, held in July, attracts renowned musicians from around the world who grace the stages with their mesmerizing performances. The festival showcases the town’s appreciation for music and offers a magical atmosphere to jazz enthusiasts.


For art enthusiasts, the Artisan Market is a haven of creativity. Here, you can find a wide array of locally crafted goods, including ceramics, jewelry, textiles, and much more. It’s the perfect opportunity to discover unique souvenirs and support local artisans.


Whether you’re captivated by the thrilling festivities of the Feast of Saint John or immersed in the artistic ambiance of the Artisan Market, the festivals and events in Es Castell showcase the town’s vibrant spirit and provide a wonderful opportunity to experience the local culture in all its glory.


Outdoor Activities

Es Castell is a playground for outdoor enthusiasts, with its stunning natural landscapes and a wide range of activities to enjoy. From exploring picturesque coves to embarking on thrilling water sports, there is no shortage of outdoor adventures in this idyllic town.


One of the top outdoor activities in Es Castell is exploring the beautiful coastline. Pack your swimsuit and head to the nearby Calas Fonts, a picturesque cove surrounded by charming fishing boats and waterfront restaurants. Take a dip in the crystal-clear waters or simply soak up the sun on the golden sands.


For those seeking a bit of adventure, kayaking along the coast is a fantastic way to explore hidden coves and admire the rugged cliffs. Paddle your way through the sparkling waters and discover the untouched beauty of Menorca’s coastline at your own pace.


The clear waters around Es Castell also make it an ideal spot for snorkeling and diving. Dive beneath the surface and discover a vibrant underwater world teeming with marine life, colorful coral reefs, and fascinating sea caves. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced diver, there are diving centers in the area that offer courses and excursions for all skill levels.


Exploring the countryside on foot or by bike is another popular outdoor activity in Es Castell. Lace up your hiking boots and venture along scenic trails that wind through olive groves, pine forests, and rolling hills. There are several routes to choose from, each offering breathtaking views and opportunities to spot native wildlife.


For golf enthusiasts, the nearby Son Parc Golf Course provides a challenging yet scenic experience. This 18-hole course offers panoramic views of the Mediterranean Sea and is surrounded by lush greenery, making it a golfer’s paradise.


If you’re looking for a more laid-back outdoor experience, why not pack a picnic and head to one of the town’s many parks or green areas? The Parc d’Es Freginal is a popular choice, with its beautiful gardens, peaceful atmosphere, and playgrounds for children.


With its beautiful coastline, scenic countryside, and a wide range of outdoor activities, Es Castell is a haven for those who love to immerse themselves in nature and seek adventure. From water sports to hiking, golfing to picnicking, there is something for everyone to enjoy in this picturesque town.


Accommodation Options

Es Castell offers a range of accommodation options to suit every traveler’s needs and preferences. Whether you’re seeking luxury beachfront resorts, cozy boutique hotels, or charming villas, there are plenty of choices to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable stay in this charming town.


If you’re looking to immerse yourself in luxury, you’ll find a selection of upscale hotels and resorts that cater to discerning travelers. These establishments offer stunning views, world-class amenities, and impeccable service. From spa facilities and fine dining restaurants to private pools and beach access, these properties provide the ultimate in relaxation and indulgence.


For those who prefer a more intimate and personalized experience, there are boutique hotels and guesthouses that offer a unique charm and character. These smaller accommodations often feature stylish decor, cozy rooms, and personalized service. Staying in a boutique hotel allows guests to truly immerse themselves in the local ambiance and enjoy a more personalized experience.


If you’re traveling with a group or prefer more space and privacy, renting a villa or apartment can be an excellent option. There are numerous properties available for rent, ranging from quaint countryside villas to modern apartments with stunning sea views. Renting a villa or apartment allows for flexibility and independence, giving you the freedom to create your own schedule and enjoy a home-away-from-home experience.


In addition to traditional hotels and rental properties, Es Castell also offers guesthouses and bed and breakfast accommodations. These options provide a comfortable and affordable stay, often with a more local and authentic touch. Many guesthouses and bed and breakfast establishments are family-run, ensuring warm hospitality and a truly memorable experience.


Regardless of the type of accommodation you choose, you’ll likely find that Es Castell’s accommodations offer convenient access to the town’s attractions, beaches, and amenities. The warm hospitality of the local hosts and the beautiful surroundings will add to the overall enjoyment of your stay.


When planning your trip to Es Castell, it’s recommended to book your accommodation in advance, especially during peak travel seasons. Whether you opt for luxury, boutique, or budget accommodations, you’re guaranteed a comfortable and memorable stay in this enchanting town.


Getting Around Es Castell

Getting around Es Castell is a breeze, thanks to its compact size and well-connected transportation options. Whether you prefer to explore on foot, use public transportation, or rent a vehicle, navigating the town and its surrounding areas is convenient and efficient.


One of the best ways to explore Es Castell is on foot. The town’s compact size makes it easy to navigate, and strolling through its picturesque streets allows you to fully immerse yourself in its charm. Meander along the waterfront promenade, explore the alleyways, and discover hidden squares at your own pace.


If you prefer public transportation, the bus service in Es Castell is reliable and affordable. Buses connect the town with other popular destinations on the island, such as Mahón and nearby beaches. You can easily access the bus schedules and routes at the bus stations or through online resources.


Renting a car is another convenient option for exploring Es Castell and its surrounding areas. Car rental agencies are available in the town and at the airport, providing a range of vehicles to suit your needs. Having a car allows you to venture further afield, discovering the breathtaking beaches, charming villages, and natural wonders that Menorca has to offer.


For a unique and sustainable way to get around, consider renting a bicycle. Es Castell and the surrounding area offer a network of cycling paths that allow you to discover the town and its beautiful surroundings at a leisurely pace. Many hotels and rental companies in the area provide bicycle rental services, and cycling maps are available to guide you along the designated routes.


Taxis are also readily available in Es Castell, providing a convenient option for getting around town or traveling to nearby destinations. Taxis can be hailed on the street or called in advance using local taxi services. It’s always advisable to confirm the fare with the driver before starting your journey.


Es Castell is a pedestrian-friendly town, and parking can sometimes be limited. If you do choose to drive, be sure to familiarize yourself with the parking regulations and look for designated parking areas. Some accommodations also offer parking facilities for their guests.


Regardless of which mode of transportation you choose, navigating Es Castell is easy and enjoyable. Whether on foot, by bus, bike, or car, you’ll have the freedom to explore the town and its surroundings, discovering the hidden corners and picturesque landscapes that make this town so special.



Es Castell, with its rich history, picturesque landscapes, and vibrant cultural scene, offers visitors a captivating experience on the beautiful island of Menorca. From its connection to two kings to its charming streets and stunning landmarks, this town is a true gem waiting to be explored.


As you wander through the narrow streets of Es Castell, you’ll uncover the stories and influences that have shaped the town. The architectural beauty, from the Fortress of San Felipe to the Church of Sant Josep, showcases the town’s rich history and cultural heritage.


But Es Castell isn’t just about history; it is a town that knows how to celebrate. The festivals and events, such as the Feast of Saint John and the Fiestas of San Antonio, reflect the vibrant spirit and warm hospitality of the locals.


No visit to Es Castell is complete without savoring its traditional cuisine. From mouthwatering seafood dishes like the Caldereta de Langosta to delectable pastries like the Pastissets, your taste buds will be treated to a delightful culinary journey.


The outdoor enthusiasts will also find their haven in Es Castell, with opportunities for kayaking, snorkeling, hiking, and golfing. The stunning coastline, picturesque coves, and scenic countryside offer endless possibilities for adventure and relaxation.


Accommodations in Es Castell cater to every need and preference, whether you’re seeking luxury, boutique charm, or a cozy bed and breakfast experience. The warm hospitality and comfortable amenities ensure a memorable stay.


As you explore Es Castell, you’ll find that getting around is seamless and convenient, providing a variety of transportation options, from walking the charming streets to utilizing public transportation, renting a car, or exploring on two wheels.


In conclusion, Es Castell offers a perfect blend of history, culture, natural beauty, and vibrant celebrations, making it an ideal destination for travelers seeking an authentic Spanish experience. Whether you’re exploring the town’s fascinating past, indulging in its culinary delights, enjoying outdoor adventures, or simply soaking in its laid-back ambiance, Es Castell has something special to offer everyone. So, come and immerse yourself in the rich essence of Es Castell, where history, charm, and natural beauty converge.