Dry Stone walls go right back to prehistoric times, we can see examples such as the “navetas” or the “talayots” (local prehistoric structures), and extends further than the Mediterranean, as far as Japan or Cuzco.
Dry stone work
In the Balearic Islands, it has formed a unique scenery, due to the abundance and quality of structures built using this system.
The stones are placed according to their shape and size. Gravity keeps them together, no mortar is used, which means water can pass through any gaps, minimalizing the risk of collapse and making it unnecessary to transport material from faraway places to the construction site.
Dry Stone, building technique declared Intangible Heritage of Humanity
The elevated value of dry stone, both from a landscape and a cultural perspective, has now been recognized on a worldwide level. On the 28th of November 2018, the dry-stone building technique was declared Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by the UNESCO. The aim of this classification is to protect and promote an ancestral technique, ensuring that the ”marger” trade does not disappear.
At the same time, here in Mallorca, three great Heritage collections, linked to this technique, have been protected as Assets of Cultural Interest, they are: The Gully Lane at Biniaraix, the snow wells, and all the associated elements, on the Massanella range, and the terraces of the Rotes de Caimari.
Apart from this, municipal catalogues include the dry-stone walls, due to their environmental and landscape value.
Also included are terraces, huts, lime kilns, snow houses, coal bunkers, mining sources and stone paved paths. Other paths have also been recovered, among which we must highlight emblematic lanes such as the old lane to Lluc, the Post Lane (Camí des Correu) and Ses Voltes d’en Galileu, among others. All walls in these areas have been repaired. Altogether, a very representative sample of Mallorca’s ethnological heritage.