Nature - Culture - Society

Physical Aspects


m211.gif (15982 Byte)

The topography of the Island is complex and varied. The Tramuntana mountain range is the element more characteristic. It spreads parallel to the north coast with approximately 90 km long and 15 km wide and it presents the highest points of the Balearics: Puig Major -1.445 m-, Puig de Massanella - 1.348 m -, l'Ofre - 1.091 m -, etc.). Slopes are normally steep with over a third of the area at over 20% gradient, which is the theoretical limit for agricultural exploitation. This chain is a prolongation of the Betic Mountain Range 8Iberian Peninsula) called the Balear promontory.

The Llevant range has minor heights and dimensions. Between the two groups of mountains there are a big plain with small mounds known as es Pla. The 53% of territory is under 100 m of altitude and only the 0,1% over 1100 m.


m212.gif (32780 Byte)The north side of Tramuntana mountain range is the most abrupt. There are cliff with a height of 400 m and slopes higher than 30-40%. The South side is smoother with less unevenness. The obstacle of the slope has been resolved with the construction of terraces. In this way, the man has won agricultural lands and the erosion has been prevented.


m213.gif (53157 Byte)Mallorca it is the greater than the Balearic Islands, those which constitute the emerged part of the Promontory to Shoot, that is extended from the End of the nao (IS of the Iberian peninsula) until the basin Liguro-Provenzal, in address NE.

The older rocks are of the Palaeozoic period, only a asmall outcrop exists and they belong to Carboniferous period (-395ª - 248 m.a.). Mesozoic sequences starts with a Triassic (-248 s -213 m.a.) of Germanic type (Buntsandstein, Muschelkalk and Keuper facies) and a thick layer of Jurassic limestones follows it (-213 a -14 m.a.). They conform most of the mountain peaks and cliff and many of the thrust sheets are defined by recurrences of these lower Jurassic layer. Pelagic deposits build up the rest of the Mesozoic sequence. Lowermost tertiary rocks are unknown in the Island; probably this fact was due to the emersion of the area. The first Tertiary deposits belong to the middle Eocene and they register fresh water limestone and coal steams. Oligocene deposits record alluvial-fan sequences, coming from the NW, and coastal sediments. Lower Miocene, Pliocene and Pleistocene rocks are deposited in more or less restricted basins, postorogenic, and corresponding to coastal environments.



dot_clr.gif (46 Byte) Regions Mediterranean Naxos Elba Mallorca

© 1999 TRIANET, Program of the European Union Socrates-Comenius
Last update on 18.02.2000 by Markus Zapke-Gründemann