& CAVERNS OF CAP D'EN FONT
the northern half of Menorca is formed of much older and harder metamorphic
rocks that once formed part of mainland Europe and with certain exceptions
the coastline contains few caves and caverns, the southern half of
the island, from Cala Morell to Mahon harbour is formed of much younger
sedimentary rocks; calcareous rocks, primarily limestone intermixed
with sandstones and other sediments, which were laid down at the bottom
of the sea over millions of years and then uplifted and emplaced during
the formation process of the island of Menorca.
Being a relatively soft rock, this limestone together with the embedded
layers of sediments, not only soak up water like a sponge but are
easily dissolved and eroded by water, a process which over the millions
of years has resulted in the formation of underground rivers, tunnels,
caves and caverns, indeed the southern half of the island of Menorca
is absolutely peppered with a huge number of caves and cavern systems,
both under the sea and inland, many of which still remain undiscovered
or unexplored today.
|One of the most
fascinating aspects of these caves and caverns are the beautiful formations
of stalactites and stalagmites that are to be found in all but a few,
both above and below sea level. Above water level, many of these formations
continue to be deposited today, however, formations now observed below
sea level could only have formed if the sea level were lower, as would
have been during the ice ages. The last ice age was in fact a long
series of ice ages beginning 2.5 million years ago and ending only
10,000 years ago. During this period sea levels dropped by as much
as 120 metres and even 7000 years ago they were still 20 metres below
present day levels, a level that would have meant that all of Menorca's
coastal caves and caverns were still above sea level.
remains to discovered and explored, there are some places around
Menorca that are now well known and of particular interest, one
of these is Cap d'en Font, a large limestone headland situated in
the southeast of Menorca close to Binisafuller and which has no
less than 6 caves and caverns all located close to one another and
each one very different to the other.
Cave and cavern diving can be dangerous and should never be attempted
without proper supervision and planning.
Do not attempt to enter these caves and caverns if you are either
inexperienced or if you are sufficiently experienced, have not previously
visited them with a suitably qualified dive guide.
Always seek the assistance of a suitably qualified dive guide or that
of a dive centre.
NEVER DIVE ALONE.