Ibiza, the most westerly of the Islas Balearics. Lies 50 miles off Cabo de Nao on the Spanish mainland. It is 26 miles long and 16 miles wide and has an area of 22 square miles. There are three true harbours and hundreds of small anchorages around the coast. Rocky cliffs are interspersed with numerous calas, many with small sandy beaches.
Inland, Ibiza is green and fertile with carpets of flowers in the spring and many pine forests which caused the Romans to name the group the 'Pityusae' (Pine Islands). It is claimed that Isla Conjera, off the west coast of Ibiza, was the birthplace of the Carthaginian General Hannibal.
Like many parts of the Mediterranean, Ibiza has experienced waves of invasion and settlement throughout its history. Watchtowers were kept permanently manned and the present city walls were built and cavalry patrols were established.
In the past Ibiza´s main wealth came from the export of 'Red' salt which was particularly valued - even today over 100,000 tons is exported each year. Fruit grain and shellfish are other exports of importance.