I headed off by bus to Puerto de San Miguel to see the famous caves which the brochure says is a must when visiting Ibiza --- okay, so I was thinking of something to do and so I went to it. Actually, I went too early, leaving my hotel in Sant Antoni at I think 8 AM and the cave museum did not open until 10 AM …so I had the chance to explore little bit of the city of San Miguel before I saw the caves.
But I did go early before the opening just to take pictures at the amazing Cliffside stairs that give an amazing panoramic view of the bay called Puerto Balanzat with the Murada Island in the background.
At the time of opening, there were about fifteen of us and the guide spoke mostly Spanish and German and I did not ask for English translation since it looked like I was the only English speaking one and I understood Spanish anyway. We walked down the stairs where I was taking pictures earlier until we reached the mouth of the cave which is 12/14 meters above sea level.
It is estimated that the cave is 100, 000 years old and it is mostly fossilized but in some very deep galleries, there is still some dripping happening to form the stalactites. I have been to bigger caves before like the huge Meramac Caves in Kansas City and this was a totally different kind of cave…the stalactites and stalagmites were very tiny and very different. It was like a mini version of other caves I have seen in my life.
But the caretakers of the cave have made it an effort to use technology to show water effects of how it might have looked like before…there’s a fountain that changes color with the guide’s flick of switches. The little lake ponds within the cave are also enhanced by light to be a nice jade green color.
Smugglers have also been known to have discovered the cave and at the cavity known as Can Marca, the guide did point out these red/black ink marks which the smugglers used to mark the way out. Other than these, the place has been the site of archeological searches for extinct rodents – skeletons have been sent to the Natural History Museum.
Off the road leading into Port de Sant Miquel (Puerto de San Miguel) is Cova de Can Merca (tel. 97-133-47-76), about 91m (300 ft.) from the Hotel Galeón . There is a fine view of the bay from the hotel's snack bar.
A favored hiding place for smugglers and their goods.
Admission is 5.50€ ($4.90) for adults and 3€ ($2.70) for children.