Standing at 357 metres tall, the mountain of El Toro is Menorca’s highest point and can be seen from miles around. Regardless of the town in which your Menorca vacation rental is located, you are likely to be able to spot its towering silhouette somewhere on the horizon.
The view from the top brings tourists and locals alike to its summit. From the top, the whole island unfolds before your eyes, and if the weather is very clear, you may even be able to see the Tramuntana mountain range of Mallorca.
Many locals claim that the mountain is the spiritual centre of the island, and it has been a place of
pilgrimage since the 13th century. They also claim that it earned its name from a bull (el toro) that led a group of monks to a statue of the Virgin Mary, which was in the rock face. Others claim that the name’s origin stems from the time the Moors inhabited the island, coming from the Arabic ‘al tor’ which means mountain.
Although a relatively small mountain, a range of buildings cluster at its peak. In the 15th century, a
watchtower was constructed there, with a defence tower later added. There are also the remains of a monastery that was destroyed during the Spanish Civil War, a convent, and an army station. Today,
masts, transmitters, and satellites that are used by the people of Menorca.
The easiest way by far to reach the mountain’s summit is by car, and the journey
itself is quite an adventure! If you don’t have a hired car, another option is requesting a taxi to
pick you up from your villa in Menorca, and then taking the winding roads down by foot. There are also organised excursions that will take you up the mountain as part of the trip.