Places Of Interest In Costa Del Sol

Those visitors who never leave the coastal strip will never appreciate that famous slogan ‘Spain is different’ run by the Spanish tourist office for many years.

For Andalucia in particular is such an exciting and diverse region steeped in history and rich in culture and tradition that it deserves to be explored and enjoyed. 

By travelling a mere 10 miles inland to a rural village or town, even the casual visitor will begin to feel that he or she ‘is abroad’ and by going further afield to one of  Andalucia's provincial capitals, the feeling will be stronger and the reward greater.  

Caves of Nerja The caves of Nerja are located in the slopes of the Sierra Almijara Mountains, a few kilometres from the town of Nerja, in the province of Malaga. Access to the caves is indicated on the Mediterranean highway. They are perfectly situated in the picturesque surroundings of typical Mediterranean villages, full of the unique beauty of Andalucía. To facilitate the access to the Nerja Caves there is a bus service provided as well.
Balcón de Europa The historic centre of Nerja, which begins at the Balcón de Europa (Balcony of Europe), was constructed around 1487. The former 9th Century Castle, is now a viewing point above the sea. To the side of the Balcón, you will find the 17th Century El Salvador Church, constructed in baroque-mudejar style. You may also visit the 16th Century Nuestra Señora de las Angustias Hermitage with its paintings by the master Alonso Cano.
Granada Granada is best explored on foot and has its Moorish past evident at every turn.

Any visitor will be impressed with the breathtaking snow capped Sierra Nevada, the magnificent Alhambra, the old Moorish quarter of Albaicin with its maze of narrow steep cobbled streets and elegant villas and the famous Sacromonte Abbey, high up on the hill, its gypsy caves and flamenco sounds.

The centre is full of historical buildings of great interest and beauty and a visit to this hospitable city should be on your itinerary.

From Malaga take the N331 following signs to Granada and exit on to A92.
Alhambra The best view of the Alhambra fortress is from the San Nicholas Mirador in Albaicin from where you can appreciate its beauty and reddish hue. It is one of the legacies remaining from the Moorish occupation with its Alcazaba dating from the llthc and the Royal Palace added later in the 14thc.

Of great importance and interest is the Renaissance Palace of Carlos V and fabulous gardens of the Generalife, originally the summer gardens of the sultans with a series of lakes, fountains, pavilions and abundant trees and flowers.

It’s a truly magnificent place to visit but tickets must be reserved in advance.
Frigiliana The typical ‘white village’ of Frigiliana perches on the lower slopes of the Sierra Tejada,  4 ½ miles inland from Nerja.

It is historically important as it was here, in a bloody battle that the Moors were defeated in 1569. 

The village is a maze of narrow stepped streets, whitewashed houses with wrought iron geranium filled balconies and pretty plazas where the elderly locals sit and chat while watching the world go by. 

It is very picturesque, with traditional shops selling the local sweet wines, honey and ceramics.

The weekly street market is on Thursday. 

Take E15 east of Malaga to Nerja and follow signs inland for Frigiliana.

Cordoba Located 110 miles inland, Cordoba was once the capital of Moorish Spain and the main centre for Muslim culture and learning.

The fascinating old city stretches north from the River Guadalquivir and is a maze of picturesque narrow cobbled streets with monuments, historical buildings and pretty patios at almost every turn.

The city Mezquita dates from 785 from where streets fan out to the Jewish, Muslim and Christian quarters that contain much to interest the visitor and include the Alcazar, the Juderia, Roman Bridge and Plaza del Potro, mentioned by Cervantes in Don Quixote.

From Malaga take the N331 direction Cordoba.
Antequera Located in the centre of a rich and fertile plain, 28 miles inland, Antequera dates back to prehistoric times and its subsequent history is marked by a profusion of remains including dolmens, located in a park to the west of town, Roman baths, a Moorish castle, Gothic churches and Renaissance fountains.

For those with a sweet tooth, buy delicious pastries from the nuns at the Convento de las Descalzas, from just inside its entrance.

The town is attractive, hilly and interesting and the surrounding countryside including La Peña de los Enamorados, and El Torcal are also worth visiting.

Take the N331 north of Malaga.
Alora Located in the lush green valley of the Guadalhorce valley as it meanders south to the coast, Alora borders the lovely Sierra de las Nieves Natural Park on its western side and was once home to Cervantes.

Its ruined Moorish castle shadows the picturesque town of white houses and steep narrow streets, lemon trees and an impressive 17thc church of the Encarnacion.

Alora’s economy comes mainly from agriculture and there is a lively street market on Mondays. Combine Alora with a trip to the lakes (reservoirs) just to the north.

Take the A357 from Malaga to Cartama, the M402 to Pizarra and the A343 to Alora.
Golf Hotel Atalaya Park The Golf Hotel & Resort Atalaya Park is situated on the beach in the very heart of the Costa del Sol between Estepona and Marbella with San Pedro de Alcantara also nearby. This lovely offers a good choice of restaurants and bars together with diverse watersports, tennis, golfing and diving activities.
El Chorro El Chorro Gorge is one of Andalucia’s natural wonders found north west of Alora where three lakes are dammed across a 200m high river gorge.

Built in 1921 and opened by King Alfonso XIII there was originally a walkway called the Camino del Rey, a catwalk clinging to the sides of the gorge, but this is now closed for repairs.

Drive across the dam to reach the lakes where there are several good restaurants and plenty of space for sunbathing, picnics and swimming.

Take the A357 from Malaga, via Cartama and Pizarrra, the A343 To Alora, turning left at Alora for El Chorro.
El Torcal Places of outstanding beauty surround Antequera. El Torcal, 8 miles away is a unique natural beauty spot and designated a Natural Park.

1483 yards at its highest point with grey limestone shaped by weather conditions over the centuries, it is a haven for wildlife and a huge variety of wildflowers such as orchid, peonies and dwarf irises.

Bird watchers flock to see the Booted and Short Toed Eagles and many other species as well as the abundance of reptiles including the rare green eyed lizard. The keen naturalist can follow trails and there is a visitors centre.

From Malaga take the N331 to Antequera and follow signs.
Ojen A winding road climbs through spectacular countryside with breathtaking views over the Sierra Blanca arriving at the white village of Ojen.

The whitewashed walls and steep narrow streets are evidence of the Moorish influence and with around 2000 inhabitants, it has retained its charm.

Best explore Ojen on foot, visiting the 17thc parish church of the Encarnacion in the Plaza de Andalucia, built on the site of a mosque, the remains of a 10th c castle and the caves located in Calle Cuevas.

Finally a tasty tapa and local wine in a traditional bar would go down well.

Take the A355 inland from Marbella to Ojen.
Las Nieves Natural Park Sometimes, during the winter there are snowy peaks in the lovely Sierra de la Nieves Natural Park.

Located just north of Marbella and bordering Ronda to the west, El Burgo to the north and Yunquera and Tolox to the east, it was declared a Natural Park in 1989 and covers an area of exceptional ecological richness and beauty.

It boasts a wide variety of flora, in particular, the rare pinsapo, and on lower slopes, cork and evergreen oaks, chestnut and algarrbo.

Many species of protected animals live here, notably the wild cat and the Spanish royal eagle.

From N340 take the A376 San Pedro to Ronda road.
Ronda Ronda is one of Andalucia’s most visited inland towns, a one hour drive from the coast.

It is steeped in history and legend, a town of bullfighters and bandits with the River Guadalevin dividing it in two as it passes narrowly through the town creating the famous deep gorge.

The Tajo Bridge separates the lively and extensive new Ronda from the more historical and picturesque old town, with its churches, palaces, arab baths, city walls and gateways.

Ronda is home to the oldest bullring in Spain with a museum alongside, both can be visited,

From the N340 take the A376 inland at San Pedro de Alcantara.
Benahavis The pretty village of Benahavis, located 4 ½ miles inland, is justifiably known as the centre of gastronomy. 

It has the highest concentration of restaurants in the area and visitors come from all over the region to enjoy the cuisine.  

The streets are narrow so leave the car at the entrance and explore this picturesque village on foot.
The ruins of the llthc Moorish fortress of Montemayor nearby deserve a visit and also La Aldea, the village within the village itself built by a local British sculptor has antique and craft shops with a true Andalucian feel. 

West of San Pedro take the MA547 to Benahavis.

Sevilla Seville is considered to be the most vibrant city in Andalucia and occupation by the Romans, Moors and Christians has left indelible traces which can be seen all over the city through its monuments, churches, minarets, city walls and gateways.

In springtime orange blossom scent fills the streets, the passion and excitement of the Seville Fair and Holy Week are world famous and exploring the Juderia, Cathedral and Giralda will whisk you back in history.

Finish the day with a carriage ride in the Maria Luisa Park and a stroll down the famous Calle Sierpes.

Take the N331 north from Malaga.
Casares Legend has it that Julius Ceasar bathed in the sulphurous waters of Casares, one of the most picturesque white villages in breathtaking scenery, 9 ½ miles inland from the Costa del Sol.

The road up is good but narrow and rounding a bend you will be greeted by a fabulous view of the Moorish village and its fortress.

Stroll around and savour its steep cobbled streets and whitewashed houses, the hilltop fortress, the 16thc church of the Encarnacion and the 17thc Church of San Sebastian.

Good traditional tapas bars too.

Reach Casares via the MA 546 inland, between Estepona and Manilva.
Gaucin Gaucin is a beautiful mountain village between the Ronda hills and the Cadiz Sierra with outstanding views down to Gibraltar and the Rif Mountains.

Of Roman and Moorish origins, there are many remnants of its turbulent history notably its magnificent Castillo del Aguila, an Arab fortress where the occasional concert is held.

The baroque 18th c convent of the Carmelitas Descalzas and the 16thc renaissance temple should also be visited. The Algeciras to Ronda railway has a stop here and is a charming way of visiting the village and enjoying the breathtaking surrounding countryside.

From the N340 at La Duquesa take the A377 to Gaucin.
Jimena de la Frontera Located in the province of Cadiz and one of the main towns of the Sierra is Jimena de la Frontera, another hilltop village which notably remained under Moorish rule for the longest time.

Its castle, restored by the Christians in the 15th c is amongst the best preserved in the region, particularly the triple arched gateway.

The narrow steep streets are enchanting and worth exploring. Visit the gothic Misericordia church and the baroque Coronada church with its collection of images. The 15th c Franciscan Convent is also worth a visit.

From Guadiaro, west of Sotogrande take the CA513 and the A369 to Jimena.
Arcos de la Frontera Archetype of the ‘white villages’ Arcos de la Frontera is a site of Roman, Visigoth and Arab settlements whose magnificent old quarter has been declared to be of historical and artistic interest.

Perched on top of a high ridge overlooking the Guadalete River, the views are impressive. The narrow stepped and cobbled streets of whitewashed buildings and the tinkling fountains in quaint plazas where the elderly locals sit and chat are bathed in sunlight.

Don’t miss the llthc Arabic walls and castle and the 15th Gothic Mudejar church of Santa Maria.

From Puerto Duquesa, take A377 to Gaucin, A369 to Jimena and C331 to Arcos.
Gibraltar Gibraltar has a fascinating history and probably a colourful future – who knows!

The border with Spain was shut for 13 years from 1969, during and after the death of the dictator, General Franco, with Spain pursuing her claim to the Rock.

Nevertheless, it is a welcoming destination with a mix of Arabic, Spanish and British influences with plenty of history and sights to see.

Don’t miss the Great Seige Tunnels built in 1782, the views from the cable car and the endearing colony of apes that will steal your wallet with a swish of their tail.

With dolphin trips and good duty free shopping, take your passport and enjoy.
Jerez Jerez de la Frontera is famous for its sweet wines and the word ‘frontera’ relates to frontier between the Moorish and Christian kingdoms that once stood there.

Jerez is also famed for its horsemanship and in May, a fabulous Horse Fair is celebrated in the city.
The Royal Andalusian School of Equestrian Art is also based in the city where visitors can see spectacular equestrian ballet and dressage displays. The bodegas, of which there are many, also open to the public for visits and tastings.

Historically, Jerez is fascinating which is reflected in its fine buildings and monuments.

From Algeciras take direction Jerez via Los Barrios.
Tarifa Known as the ‘windy city’, Tarifa’s atlantic coastline and sandy beaches situated at Europe’s southernmost point provide some of the best windsurfing conditions in Europe.

This unspoilt area of Tarifa attracts nature lovers too and sports facilities such as horse riding, hang-gliding, and kite-surfing are first class.

The town of Tarifa dating from 711 has Moorish origins and the restored city walls are clearly visible. There is also a fabulous indoor market selling all kinds of produce that should not be missed neither should the church, castle, museum or the many tapas bars and moorish restaurants .

Reach Tarifa on the N340 west of Algeciras.
Cadiz Cadiz has the reputation of being the oldest inhabited city in Europe that was founded over 3000 years ago.

It is now a seafaring and trading town that appears as an island after passing through the old city gate, La Tierra, to cross the long strip of land which joins Cadiz to the continent.

The city is now a popular port of call for cruise ships and celebrates an acclaimed Carnival in February.

There are many interesting sights, including the baroque cathedral and the neo-classical Oratory of San Felipe de Neri as well as the tightly crammed streets of the old city centre scattered with churches, and pretty squares,
Compared to the hustle and bustle and cosmopolitan atmosphere of the Costa del Sol holiday resorts, Malaga is a very "Andalucian" city. The vast majority of holidaymakers pick up their hire car, venture no further than Malaga Airport and give the city itself a wide berth and in doing so they are missing a true opportunity to mix with the Andalucian people and see how life goes on.

Historically, Malaga dates back to the Phoenicians. It was then occupied by the Romans and afterwards the Moors occupied the city from the eighth century until 1487 when during the re-conquest, the Christians retook Malaga after a long and very bloody battle. The most recent fighting took place during the Spanish Civil War between 1936-1939 when the city, by supporting the Republican cause, was severely bombed by the Italians who had come to the aid of Franco's Nationalist side.

Anybody wishing to explore the city on their villa holiday, should do it on foot. Most of the sights are centred on Malaga's old quarter which is a maze of narrow cobbled streets and found around the cathedral, park and bullring areas. Most of the sights have a Moorish flavour but the discovery of a Roman theatre close to the Alcazaba has been very exciting.

Visit a traditional Spanish tapas bar. Visit the port and take a boat trip around the harbour. Shop at El Corte Ingles or better still in the little old fashioned shops in the old quarter. Hop on a bus up to the castle overlooking the city for fabulous views of the city and coast and finally spoil yourself with a drink at the adjacent Parador. Malaga Cathedral is also worth visiting on your holiday to Costa del Sol. It was built in the 16th century and is nicknamed 'La Manquita', the one-armed lady, due to one of the two towers never having been completed.

Malaga's beaches probably won't be of too much interest to the average holidaymaker who will be able to enjoy their own further along the coast. However, the beaches which are closer to the city get very busy at weekends but are fairly quiet during weekdays.

Malaga has several open spaces that have been planted offering shade with the palms and colour from the bedding plants and other Mediterranean species that survive the intense summer Spanish heat.
Paseo del Parque One of the most charming areas of the city is this wide tree lined avenue that was built at the end of the 19th century reclaimed land. In fact, the Palacio de Aduana was once on the water’s edge but the park now houses the city’s botanical garden which is one of the largest tropical and subtropical enclaves in Europe with around 160 different species of plants and trees. Take a stroll and enjoy some of the city’s interesting architecture such as the old post office, the art nouveau ayuntamiento (town hall) and the Italian Renaissance Genovese fountain at the eastern end.
Museo de Artes y Tradicones This is perhaps the most fascinating museum in Malaga, housed on two floors with an attractive central cobbled patio and fountain. It was originally a 17th century inn known as the ‘Meson de la Victoria’ and the stables and lodging rooms are nowadays used to house examples of furniture, arts and crafts, costumes, boats, carriages, winemaking and agricultural implements and replica rooms from different periods. The museum is found in Calle Pasillo Santa Isabel 10, behind the central market close to the river Guadalmedina.
The Alcazaba Alcazaba means Moorish Fortress and its original structure built on the site of a Roman fort dates back to the 8th century although much of what you see today belongs to the llth century. It is the most visited monument in Malaga and has been lovingly restored over the past few year. Look out for the Puerta del Cristo (Christ’s Door) where the first mass was held after the Reconquest. Enjoy attractive gardens with fountains, the small palace which now houses the Archeological Museum and wonderful panoramic views over the harbour and city.
The Roman Theatre Dating from Augustus and found by accident in the 1950’s during excavation to extend the Casa de la Cultura, the theatre took precedence and after many years it was well restored and is now used as an auditorium for outdoor events.
Located in Calle Alcazabilla close to the Paseo del Parque and next to the Alcazaba.
Castilla Gibralfaro High above the Alcazaba stands the Castillo de Gibralfaro. It was once a Phoenecian site with a lighthouse (gibralfaro) and the castle was built here in the 14th c. by Yusef 1 of Granada. This monument has been very much restored but some of the solid ramparts that you can walk along date from this period. Inside the Castle is an interesting museum of weaponry and costumes with models of the City of Malaga over the centuries. The views are absolutely stunning and close by is Malaga’s Parador with a fine restaurant and terrace bar.
Malaga Cathedral The cathedral in Malaga is worth visiting and although it is not one of the most beautiful buildings, it has character. It is fondly known as La Manquita, the one armed lady, because one of the towers has never been completed. Construction began in the 16th c and continued until the 18th c accounting for the interesting combination of architectural styles. Exceptional is the 17th c choir with the famous sculptor Pedro de Mena responsible for 40 of the 58 carved wooden figures. Noteworthy too are the magnificent organs dating from 1871.
Malaga market The Mercado Atarazanas is found in the busy centre of Malaga just north of the Alameda. It’s a fabulous indoor food market where the visitor can really soak up the atmosphere of the daily life of the Malagueño. Before you enter, however, look up at the 14thc Moorish arch located on the southern façade that was built for Yusuf 1 of Granada when Malaga was once part of the Nasrid kingdom. The building you see today was built in the 19thc in Mudejar style but In Moorish times an arsenal stood here.
Concepcion Gardens La Concepcion is considered the most beautiful and important tropical gardens in Spain and one of the best in Europe. It was created by Amalia Heredia Livermore in 1850 and a visit will prove unforgettable. While visiting, you will have the sensation of being deep inside a tropical forest even though all around are the parched hills of Andalucia. Populated by perennial tropical plants a visit at any time of the year is rewarding. Take the Malaga ring road, direction for Antequera and watch for signs on the right side near a petrol station and restaurant
Picasso Foundation The Casa Natal de Picasso is the celebrated artist’s birthplace in an imposing and elegant house in one corner of Malaga’s traditional Plaza de la Merced. The house was declared an historic monument in 1983 and has recently became the headquarters of the Picasso Foundation. It is not a gallery but more of a cultural centre, where visitors will be able to see memorabilia and documentation relating to the most famous son of Malaga. The Picasso museum has been opened in the Palacio Buenavista where many of the artists paintings and other works are housed.
Torremolinos in Costa del Sol has come a long way from the small Spanish fishing village it once was. To get the real flavour of Torremolinos, take a stroll along the Calle San Miguel. These days, the original and largest holiday resort on the Costa del Sol attracts thousands of holidaymakers each year, mainly British who come in search of the hot Spanish sun, beaches, booze and nightlife. They are not disappointed –Torremolinos is full of bars, restaurants, discos, shops and apartment blocks and during the summer months the streets never seem to be empty. However, Torremolinos has a lot of warmth and character and is certainly worthy of a visit on your holiday, if only to enjoy her paseos, tree line avenues, small plazas and narrow streets of whitewashed villas which are very attractive indeed.

Torremolinos has 6 beaches, all with blue flags and they are (from east to west) – Los Alamos, Playamar, Bajondillo, La Carihuela, Montemar and El Saltillo. They all have fine gritty sand, are clean, safe and have excellent facilities and water sports available.

There are many restaurants, to choose from in Torremolinos from Chinese to Italian and English to Spanish. There is also lots of good seafood and you will not be disappointed with a stroll along the paeso to take your choice from the many fish restaurants, there. Otherwise, the streets leading off from the Plaza Costa del Sol are full of eateries of all nationalities.

The main shopping street of Torremolinos is the bustling pedestrianised Calle San Miguel, which cuts down from the Plaza Costa del Sol and eventually leads down to the beach at Banjondillo. Gift shops, liquor stores, bars and cafes line each side. You can also buy some very good quality jewellery, clothing, perfumes and shoes. The main streets which pass through the centre of town are Avda Palma de Mallorca and C/Hoyo, both of these streets are lined with a variety of shops, some with better quality goods than others.

To entertain the children on holiday, Torremolinos Aquapark is located on the main N340 just behind Torremolinos with water slides, pools and restaurant.

If you enjoy walking on your villa holiday perhaps you would like to drive your hire car to the hills behind Torremolinos and then spend some time walking and enjoying the surrounding countryside.

All-in-all, Torremolinos has something for everyone on their villa holiday in Costa del Sol
La Carihuela From Torremolinos, its attractive Paseo Maritimo extends west to the traditional old fishing village of La Carihuela which is a charming area of whitewashed old houses in narrow cobbled streets that has managed to retain its ‘spanishness’ despite attracting thousands of visitors eager to savour its reputation for the excellent fish and seafood restaurants on the sea front. Once upon a time these restaurants were right on the beach and called ‘chiringuitos’ but these days a fine promenade separates them from a fine safe beach with good facilities. At weekends these restaurants are packed with Spanish people who flock from the city.
El Ranchito Horse Show If you don’t have the opportunity to see the dancing horses in Jerez, you can visit an impressive version in Torremolinos. The enjoyable weekly show includes displays of dressage, elegant exercises with the rider dismounted, groups of Spanish horses moving to the rhythm of traditional Andalucian music and riders wearing the colourful costumes normally seen at the famous Andalucian fairs. The Rhythm on Horse show is a real equestrian ballet and a recommended experience for all horse lovers.
El Torcal National Park The Torcal National Park is based around a massive craggy limestone mountain moulded into spectacular shapes by weather conditions over the centuries and dating from Jurassic times. Spring or summer are the best times to visit the peak, and at 1639 metres, you are greeted with breathtaking views across the province. Lots of flora and fauna to enjoy and maybe a chance sighting of a rare short toed eagle. Reach the park from Malaga on the N331 road to Antequera, or if you want the real scenic route then turn off onto the MA424 via Villanueva de la Concepcion.
Los Alcornacales Natural Park Los Alcornocales National Park extends over 170,000 hectars of land in the east of Cadiz and west of Malaga provinces. Alcornocales means cork oaks, and this is the most abundant form of vegetation growing in leafy thickets over this most extensive of Mediterranean woodlands. The flora and fauna is rich and varied with an important population of birds of prey including eagles and vultures. With a wide choice of outdoor activities, including water sports, fishing and mountain biking the park is enormously popular best reached via the A7, and N340 to Algeciras and the C440 Los Barrios.
Crocodile Park, Cartama Crocodiles are one of the most powerful and fierce predators on earth but the inmates at the fascinating Crocodile Park always appear to be relaxed! You can see hundreds of these unique creatures from those recently hatched to huge examples from the Nile measuring more than 5 metres. There is also a crocodile nursery, an African curio shop, a video show, bar and café. You can even hold a baby croc, its jaws taped closed of course! From Mijas take the A387 to Alhaurin, the MA422 to Cartama, then west on the MA402 to Aljaima.
Arroyo De la Miel
Arroyo de la Miel is an attractive, holiday town with a real Spanish flavour, which has expanded over the past 10 years. This town in Costa del Sol lies about 1.5 km back from the coast and is the main residential and commercial centre for the area stretching from Banalmadena Costa up to the N340 inland.

Our Villa Nicole is a large villa with a heated private pool to rent at Torremuelle, on Banalmadena Costa. The beach and local facilities are a short stroll away from this villa rental. Also, Casa Mi Sueno, is a 3 bedroom villa to rent inland from Banalmadena Costa. For those who enjoy relaxing on holiday with a round of golf then Torrequebrada Golf Course is within driving distance of these two Costa del Sol villas, making these two private villas a perfect base for a Spanish golfing holiday. A car is essential for these two holiday villas and can also offer competitive rates for car hire which must be booked in the U.K. before your villa holiday in the Costa del Sol.

At Arroyo de la Miel you will find a busy town centre and a picturesque old quarter with a great variety of shops, bars and restaurants and supermarket and there are many pretty plazas where you can relax and watch the world go by. There are two weekly markets. Its busy and lively promenade overlooks a wide safe beach with many traditional fish restaurants and bars to choose from.

In the centre of the town you will find the railway station which connects Benalmadena with Fuengirola and Malaga. The train service is used by commuters, tourists and visitors to Tivoli Amusement Park and the Cable Car Station.

Tivoli Amusement Park is the largest family entertainment park on the Costa del Sol. It is a fun filled amusement park for all ages and worth a visit on your holiday, offering the usual rides and attractions.

Take a cable car ride from Tivoli up to the mountainside to Estacio de Calamorro. On clear days you will be able to see Morocco.

Visit La Paloma Park on your villa holiday where the gardens overlook the sea. Also in the park is Selino Marina where there are sealions, penguins and dolphins with daily shows for feeding times.

Overall, Arroyo de la Miel is a popular Spanish town and communication with other resorts in Costa del Sol is excellent by bus and train.
Selwo Marina The Selwo Marina is the latest of the Costa del Sol’s attractions and it promises to become a firm favourite as the first dolphinarium in Andalucia. Located in the lovely leafy Parque de la Paloma in Arroyo de la Miel and close to the promenade there are many sea creatures and exotic birds on display, including sea lions, penguins, dolphins, seals and toucans. Shows are put on at specific times during the day as are feeding times which are always a joy to watch. Further attractions and displays are planned for 2003 when many more animals will be in residence.
Benalmadena Pueblo
Benalmadena in Costa del Sol is just 19 kms from Malaga airport and has the privileged position of overlooking the Mediterranean Sea.
The area is split into three distinct areas: Benalmadena Pueblo (the old village), Arroyo de la Miel (the town centre) and Benalmadena Costa (the coastal area with hotels, beaches, nightlife and the marina)
The picturesque 'white village' of Benalmadena located in the Sierra de Mijas is Benalmadena's original settlement long before the development of land near the coast. This Spanish village retains its white buildings which show vestiges of ancient civilisations that settled on this land over the centuries.
Benalmadena Pueblo (the Old Village) is always popular with visitors to Costa del Sol who come to stroll and enjoy the sights.
Our Villa Nicole is a large villa with private pool to rent at Torremuelle, a pleasant residential area 3¾ miles east of Fuengirola on Benalmadena Costa. The beach and local facilities are a short stroll away from this villa rental. Casa Mi Sueno, a 3 bedroom villa for rent at La Capellania is inland from Benalmadena Costa. Fuengirola 5 miles west of this Spanish villa and the beach and villages of Mijas and Benalmadena are a short drive away.
For those who enjoy relaxing on holiday with a round of golf then Torrequebrada Golf Course is within driving distance of these two Costa del Sol villas. Also if you enjoy tennis on your villa holiday, several hotels have courts and equipment for hire.
A car is essential for these two private villas, and can offer competitive rates for car hire which must be booked in the U.K. before your villa holiday.
Banalmadena Pueblo has a lot of interest for those on holiday in Costa del Sol.
Colmares Castle This unusual creation is located on the outskirts of the village on the twisting road that leads down to the N340 coast road. The fairy tale style castle is set in lovely grounds and was built by an eccentric back in the 70’s to commemorate the achievements of Christopher Columbus and has remained a firm attraction ever since. In the same area is the Jardin de las Aguilas, the eagle garden where under the supervision of expert handlers, these majestic creatures and other birds of prey perform with regular displays throughout the day – fascinating indeed.
Cable car Starting from outside the Tivoli Amusement Park in Arroyo de la Miel, on Benalmadena Costa you can enjoy the thrill of a 9 minute ride in a 4 person car to the upper station on the Calamorra mountain at 724 metres above sea level. Views from the top are breathtaking along the coast and across to Gibraltar and Morocco. There are refreshment facilities and donkey rides for the youngsters and if you are wearing strong enough shoes you can climb up a little further for that extra viewpoint.
Muro gardens These beautiful gardens are located next to the Santo Domingo Church on the outskirts of the village off the twisting road down to the coast. It is a really peaceful spot and the tropical gardens of unusual plants are a must for any garden lover. The gardens are perched up high and can be reached via a lift from the parking area set just off the road.
Benalmadena Puerto
Benalmadena in Costa del Sol is just 19 kms from Malaga airport and has the privileged position of overlooking the Mediterranean Sea.

The area is split into three distinct areas: Benalmadena Pueblo (the old village), Arroyo de la Miel (the town centre) and Benalmadena Costa (the coastal area with hotels, beaches, nightlife and the marina)

The picturesque 'white village' of Benalmadena located in the Sierra de Mijas is Benalmadena's original settlement long before the development of land near the coast. This Spanish village retains its white buildings which show vestiges of ancient civilisations that settled on this land over the centuries.

Benalmadena Pueblo (the Old Village) is always popular with visitors to Costa del Sol who come to stroll and enjoy the sights.

Our Villa Nicole is a large villa with private pool to rent at Torremuelle, a pleasant residential area 3¾ miles east of Fuengirola on Benalmadena Costa. The beach and local facilities are a short stroll away from this villa rental. Casa Mi Sueno, a 3 bedroom villa for rent at La Capellania is inland from Benalmadena Costa. Fuengirola is 5 miles west of this Spanish villa and the beach and villages of Mijas and Benalmadena are a short drive away.

For those who enjoy relaxing on holiday with a round of golf then Torrequebrada Golf Course is within driving distance of these two Costa del Sol villas. Also if you enjoy tennis on your villa holiday, several hotels have courts and equipment for hire.

A car is essential for these two private villas, and can offer competitive rates for car hire which must be booked in the U.K. before your villa holiday.

Banalmadena Pueblo has a lot of interest for those on holiday in Costa del Sol.
Sea Life Benalmadena For thousands of years the lost city of Atlantis has been one of the world’s great mysteries. Here at Sea Life in Benalmadena port you can join Plato to explore the fabulous Temple of Poseidon overlooking the legendary city itself. Now the home to sharks and many exotic and beautiful tropical fish you will be fascinated by the world of sea life.  Boasting the biggest shark collection in Europe with over 20 species Sea Life campaigns hard for shark conservation.  A thrilling and enjoyable day out for all the family.

Torrequebrada Casino Located on the N340 coast road on Benalmadena Costa between Fuengirola and Torremolinos, the Torrequebrada Casino is part of the 5* Hotel of the same name.
Here, over 18’s can enjoy American Roulette, French Roulette, Black Jack, Punto Banco and Poker. There is also a Slot Machine hall and a classical grill room offering fine Mediterranean cuisine. With a table reservation there is free entrance to the Casino and under the same roof is the Sala Fortuna a popular venue for extravagant international floor shows, flamenco and dancing to live bands.
Benalmadena Costa
Benalmadena in Costa del Sol is just 19 kms from Malaga airport and has the privileged position of overlooking the Mediterranean Sea.
The area is split into three distinct areas: Benalmadena Pueblo (the old village), Arroyo de la Miel (the town centre) and Benalmadena Costa (the coastal area with hotels, beaches and the marina)
Benalmadena Costa stretches for about 9 kms in the Costa del Sol and is the long stretch of coast between Fuengirola and Torremolinos with some beautiful beaches and a booming hotel industry.
Benalmadena Costa has beaches offering all manner of water sports and is lined with traditional beach restaurants and bars serving delicious charcoal grilled fresh sardines.
Since the early 1980's many improvements have been carried out to the beach area, including widening the beaches with imported sand from the Sahara and creating a very attractive paseao (a 2 km long promenade) which provides a lovely walk from Arroyo de la Miel to Benalmadena Port and then along to Torremolinos, passing the fascinating Castillo de Bil Bil, an Arab style building. This is a modern construction and is a restaurant, bar, conference exhibition and concert venue.
The marina at Benalmadena Costa offers boat rides and fishing trips. Just inland from Benalmadena village is the popular Tivoli World Amusement Park and cable car which offers unforgettable views of the coast from the top of the Calamorra mountain.
Our Villa Nicole is a large villa with private pool to rent at Torremuelle, a pleasant residential area 3¾ miles east of Fuengirola on Benalmadena Costa. The beach and local facilities are a short stroll away from this villa rental. Casa Mi Sueno, a 3 bedroom villa for rent at La Capellania is inland from Benalmadena Costa. Fuengirola is 5 miles west of this Spanish villa and the beach and villages of Mijas and Benalmadena are a short drive away.
For those who enjoy relaxing on holiday with a round of golf then Torrequebrada Golf Course is within driving distance of these two Costa del Sol villas. A car is essential for these two private villas, and can offer competitive rates for car hire which must be booked in the U.K. before your villa holiday.
The attraction of Benalmadena Costa lies in the safe beaches with a variety of water sports and is worth a visit whilst on your villa holiday.

Fuengirola in the Costa del Sol is famous for its 5 miles of beaches and attractive promenade lined with high rise hotels and apartment blocks, lively restaurants, bars and a hectic nightlife.
This Spanish holiday town has also mananged to retain some of its charm from when it was once a small fishing village. The main square, Plaz de la Constitucion and the narrow streets that lead from it are probably the best to expore on your VillaPlus holiday. The 7km promenade leading from Carvajal to Torreblanca, Los Boliches and along the seafront to Fuengirola, now newly planted with palms and rubber trees and brightly lit in the evening, is one of the area's most pleasing additions. 
Fuengirola also has a busy commercial centre with great shopping and several flourishing weekly markets which attract visitors from miles around. Don't forget to explore the charming old town of Fuengirola centred around the church square.
The beaches are clean and well organised, stretching from Carvajal right along to Fuengirola. Beach bars and restaurants can be found every 100 yds or so and most of the beaches around them offer sun beds and sun shades. Various water sports are available and from Fuengirola harbour, boat trips can be taken along to Benalmadena.
If you like to relax with a game of golf on your villa holiday, there are two golf courses at Mijas Golf which are challenging enough, as well as other golf courses in the area. Fuengirola is without doubt one of the most popular holiday resorts on the Costa del Sol and there is no shortage of things to do at this fun filled family holiday resort.


Port Fishing and Boats Fuengirola’s large sporting marina is always an enjoyable place to stroll around and have a drink or meal at one of the many quayside restaurants and bars. There are opportunities for boat trips to see the dolphins, deep sea fishing and excursions to other resorts and from the fishing harbour alongside you can watch Fuengirola’s extensive fishing fleet come in, unload and auction the catch, much of which is taken away to the town’s many fish restaurants. Those in search of a bargain will also enjoy the popular Sunday tourist market held here.
Promenade Recently renovated and extended, Fuengirola’s Paseo Maritimo, stretching almost
4 ½ miles is the town’s main attraction. Now, with plenty of wrought iron benches, palms and rubber trees offering that essential shade, the promenade is a very pleasant place to stroll, people watch and enjoy the many restaurants and bars along the way. There is something for all the family, with several playgrounds and carousels around the port area, pony and trap rides around the town and fresh sardines cooked in the traditional way on charcoal fires on the beach.
Plaza de la Constitucion Fuengirola’s old town is centred around the Plaza de la Constitucion which houses the parochial church. A maze of narrow streets lead off in all directions and some are pedestrianised with pavement cafes and old fashioned shops. The Plaza is a traditional meeting place for the local people where mainly old men congregate on the benches around the fountain and chat while watching the world go by. Busy shoppers cross from one side to another, sometimes stopping at the colourful flower stall or one of the bars whose tables spill out and surround the church.

Market Fuengirola has several weekly markets but the biggest is held on a Tuesday morning at the fair ground heading east from the centre towards Los Boliches. This market is huge and exhausting during the hot summer months but you will always find a bargain. It is mainly a tourist market for clothes, leather goods, linen, tapes and cassettes, jewellery and the like. The only food products available are fruit, vegetables, sweets, nuts, pickled vegetables such as olives and gherkins and of course wonderful herbs and spices. Take care of your cash and enjoy!
Fuengirola Zoo A few years ago, Fuengirola Zoo was at the centre of controversy over its bad conditions and treatment of animals. Subsequently closed, a fine new zoo has emerged with apparently contented and well cared for animals who live in comfortable and as near natural conditions as possible. The tropical grounds house Nile crocodiles basking in the sun, chimpanzees playing in the trees, Sumatra tigers, leopards, hippos, turtles, kangaroos and much more. Over 250 animals of 62 species enjoy large areas surrounded by gigantic trees, waterfalls, rivers and bridges.
A pleasant experience awaits you.
Cartujano Horse Show The Finca Cartujano puts on a weekly unique spectacle showing the visitor the dance and elegance of the pure blooded Spanish carthusian horse with examples of dressage and ballet with traditional Spanish costumes and Andalucian music. Conveniently found in Camino Campanales 71, by taking the Coin road opposite the Fuengirola Aquapark inland and turning right at the Venta La Morena.
Fuengirola Castle High on a hill at the western end of Fuengirola is the Castillo Sohail dating from the 10th century. When the Christians took the town during the Reconquest in 1485 it was destroyed and rebuilt in 1730. Extensive renovations have taken place over the past couple of centuries and the building you see today is used mainly for concerts and exhibitions. Gardens have been laid on the surrounding area and there is an attractive path through a wooded area up to the top from where there are panoramic views out to sea and over Fuengirola town.
Mijas Costa Mijas Costa is the lengthy stretch of coast between the districts of Fuengirola and Marbella. It is a busy area with the N340 coast road linking up some well established and other newish residential areas spreading from the coast with commercial and residential areas extending up into the hills.

Beach facilities are very good along this stretch of coast with several water sports centres, the picturesque marina at Cabopino and the traditional sea side village of La Cala while for golfers within a few minutes drive inland are a handful of fine golf courses.
La Cala de Mijas and Riviera del Sol
The municipality of Mijas is one of the largest in the Province of Malaga. It is divided into three urban areas, one of these is the seaside town of La Cala de Mijas. "Cala" means bay, and this is a bay surrounded by a charming fishing town that has managed to hang on to its traditions and its "Spanishness". The streets are narrow, with small shops and whitewashed houses and the elderly residents still sit outside their homes chatting to neighbours, a traditional Spanish pastime but something seen less and less these days.
During the summer, the population swells considerably – it is a popular holiday resort in the Costa Del Sol with many of the Spanish people themselves, renting their beachside properties as holiday homes.
The beaches are clean and safe with pedaloes, sun beds and shades for hire and a tree lined beach promenade complete with stylish lighting and wrought iron benches. The promenade has recently been extended and provides a lovely walk overlooking the beach wth many attractive bars and restaurants with views out to sea. The best place to park your hire car is on the main street and then walk down any of the side streets to the sea. An impressive look out tower in the middle of the town reminds us of its historical past.
There is a large, colourful open market on Wednesday and Saturday mornings.
For those who like to relax on their villa holiday with a game of golf, Miraflores Golf Club is located in the hills of Mijas Costa. Or as an alternative to golf visit the new Costa del Sol Hipodromo for a spot of horse racing with the complex offering a leisure centre, 5 star hotel, riding centre, bars, restaurant, polo field, shopping and parking.
You will be pleasantly surprised by your visit to La Cala which is found just off the N340 west of Fuengirola.
Hipodromo When completed, the Costa del Sol Racecourse will be the largest tourist complex on the coast. Opened a couple of years ago it has proved a big attraction with racing during the summer on Saturday evenings at 11pm and in autumn and winter on Sunday mornings at 11am. With two tracks, a large paddock and even a dog sitting service for the punters, there is always a good crowd in attendance who can also enjoy the several good restaurants, bars and excellent parking. The construction of a grandstand, hotel, gym, swimming pool and further accommodation for horses is in progress.
Riviera del Sol Riviera del Sol is one of the expanding residential areas off  N340 coast road which also has good access to the inland A7 toll motorway. This urbanisation, made up of wide avenues and small cul de sacs with spacious villas, town houses and low rise blocks of apartments is always popular with holidaymakers and provides an excellent choice of restaurants, bars, small shops and a twice weekly street market close by. The beach is reached via an underpass and golfers can enjoy the Miraflores Golf complex which is adjacent.
Calahonda Calahonda is one of the larger more attractive towns in Costa del Sol, stretching back from the coast up into the hills with several good shopping areas and a wide choice of restaurants, bars, sport and entertainment venues, and is situated on Mijas Costa. Mijas Costa is the coastline between the busy and fashionable resorts of Marbella and Fuengirola, both offering great holiday pursuits in their own distinctive ways. Puerto Banus with its fasionable shops and marina is only 15 minutes away from Calahonda. 
There is a twice weekly street market and the local beach is safe with restaurants and bars close at hand, Calahonda has wide avenues of villas, town houses and low rise apartments and the public garden areas are pretty and spacious with the A7 inland toll motorway a short drive away.
Calahonda has is own harbour, Puerto Cabopino where you can take part in all kinds of water sports and activities such as sailing, wind surfing, paracending, kite surfing, boat trips, dolphin watching and diving.
Cabopino, Elvira and Las Chapas Nestling on the coast between Fuengirola and Marbella, just off the N340 is the charming and picturesque marina of Cabopino.

It is popular with locals and holidaymakers alike who come to enjoy its relaxing atmosphere and attractive surroundings and there are several companies who offer water sports and dolphin watching trips. Close by is a lovely wide beach with safe bathing and a newly built golf course.

Cabopino is an ideal choice for dining out, with a good choice of restaurants located around the marina with views out to sea.

Located on the N340 road between Calahonda and Marbella, Elviria is one of the newer residential areas in Costa del Sol that is expanding from the coast up into the hills.
It is an attractive area with the lower part set amongst pines leading down to good beaches with all the necessary facilities.
Elviria has ample shopping facilities with several large supermarkets and a good selection of smaller shops, banks and bars. Dining out is no problem either with restaurants of all nationalities. located in this attractive and cosmopolitan area.
If you like to relax with a game of golf on your villa holiday you can visit Golf Club Marbella and Golf Rio Real, Marbella. have several villas to rent with private pools in the Marbella area such as Pedrosol, Rio Verde, and Flora Danica.
In Calahonda, VillaPlus also has a selection of villa rentals including Santa Elena. You may wish to hire a car when staying at one of our villas in the Costa Del Sol and offers competitive rates for car hire which must be booked in the U.K. before your villa holiday.
Elviria is an atractive and cosmopolitan area to visit whilst on a villa holiday in Costa del Sol.

Las Chapas
Las Chapas in Costa del Sol is another of the expanding residential areas located along the coastal N340 road in between Calahonda and Marbella.
The coastal side is probably more established with wide avenues of attractive properties leading down to the long safe beach which is dotted with the traditional beach restaurants and has safe bathing and all the necessary facilities.
There is a small selection of shops with a supermarket in the commercial complex, several excellent restaurants and a fine tennis club. The surrouding countryside is green and lush with several golf clubs close by. have several villas to rent with private pools in Marbella such as  Pedrosol, Rio Verde and Flora Danica.
In Calahonda, VillaPlus also has a selection of villa rentals including Santa Elena.
You may wish to hire a car when staying at one of our villas in the Costa Del Sol and can offer competitive rates for car hire which must be booked in the U.K. before your villa holiday.
Las Chapas is one of the most prestigious areas on the coast, full of tropical gardens, commanding wonderful views of the Mediterranean sea.
Marbella Marbella is one of Europe's most famous holiday towns that never fails to surprise first-time visitors with its aristocratic charm and beauty. It offers sweeping beaches, immaculate promenades and excellent shopping facilities.
Marbella's old town is a maze of narrow cobbled streets lined with white washed houses, shops, bars and restaurants. In the heart of the old town is Plaza de los Naranjos, a delightful square shaded by orange trees where you can enjoy a meal at one of the many restaurants whilst watching the world go by. There are several museums and the remains of the old castle, located just off the square which is well worth a visit during your villa holiday to Marbella.
Marbella is also well-known for its 17 miles of coastline with the most famous part being Marbella's Golden Mile. The Golden Mile is made up of many different beaches between Marbella and Puerto Banus and is flanked by a recently built promenade, designer hotels and beach bars. For those who enjoy relaxing on holiday with a round of golf then Marbella is the perfect base for a Spanish golfing holiday. There are several good golf courses within the area, including Los Naranjos, Dama de Noche, Guadalmina and the world famous Valderama course.
Plaza de los Narinjos The Plaza de los Naranjos is in the centre of Marbella’s old town. A delightful spot, shaded by orange trees, it is a traditional meeting place and is architecturally interesting with the lovely Casa del Coregidor completed in 1552, a Renaissance fountain dating from 1504 and the 14th century Ermita de Santiago on the southwest corner. Collect a map at the tourist office in the 16th century Town Hall and enjoy a drink or a meal at one of the many bars and restaurants while wathing the world go by.
Parque Arroyo de la Repressa This pleasant park is quite close to the old town of Marbella and worth a visit after exploring the interesting streets that surround it. Made up of terraced gardens and lakes it offers plenty of shade and comfort during the heat of the day. The Bonsai museum is located in this park. Nearest parking would be Plaza de la Victoria in the old town.
Marbella old town The old town, known as the ‘casco antiguo’ is located within the perimeter set by Avenida Ramon y Cajal, and the smaller streets of Huerta Chica, Peral, Solano, Portada, Arte and Avenida Nabeul. It is a fascinating area, a maze of narrow cobbled streets lined with whitewashed houses, shops, bars and restaurants that are worth exploring. Several interesting museums are housed here as well as remains of the castle and town walls and the imposing church of Nuestra Señora de la Encarnacion, dating from the 16thc in the Plaza de la Iglesia.
Marbella Club Hotel This luxury hotel is situated on the famous Golden Mile, the stretch between Puerto Banus and Marbella. It was founded by Prince Alfonso von Hohenlohe of Liechtenstein, nephew of a Spanish aristocrat, who set up a small beach complex to attract the jet set to Marbella in its early days as a resort. This complex eventually became the Marbella Club Hotel, and with its elegance and wonderful sports facilities set in beautiful gardens leading down to the sea, it is no wonder that it boasts celebrities and royalty amongst its clientele.
Avenida del Mar The Avenida del Mar is recently developed thoroughfare in the centre of Marbella leading down from the lovely old Alameda Park close to the Casco Antiguo near to the Paseo Maritimo. It is wide and attractively tree lined with flowers and fountains.

Look out for the collection of sculptures cast from moulds by Salvador Dali to be found in the avenida and take a break at one of the shady spots under the trees.

There is a public car park in Avenida del Mar, perfect for exploring the old town and seafront.
Bonsai Museum If you are interested in these Japanese style miniature trees then head for the Bonsai museum located in the delightful Arroyo de la Represa Park close to Marbella’s old town. It is the only one in Spain and has a magnificent collection of trees, claimed to be one of the best in Europe. It is a private collection and tended lovingly by its owner Miguel Angel Garcia.
Puerto Banus

Puerto Banus is located just west of Marbella before you reach the small town of San Pedro de Alcantara. The port is named after its designer, "Jose Banus" and was opened in 1970. This fashionable marina can be reached by driving along the Golden Mile, the stretch of coastal road from Marbella which houses some of the most luxurious hotels and properties. Some of the most luxurious yachts and cruisers that one will ever see are moored at Puerto Banus marina and all are set against a backdrop of luxury apartments, expensive shops and boutiques, night clubs, piano bars and restaurants. Boat trips are available on a regular basis from the central promenade. The popular beach adjacent to Puerto Banus holds a European blue flag. 
For those that like to shop on their villa holiday to Puerto Banus, the El Corte Ingles/Hipercor shopping complex will bring you swiftly back to reality, with easy parking for your hire car in the underground car parks, and a great selection of goods. Every Saturday morning at Puerto Banus by the bullring is a very popular street market where you can pick up all sorts of bargains.

Hotel Andalucia Plaza An imposing and attractive 4* hotel located just of the N340 coast road in between Puerto Banus and San Pedro de Alcantara, set in the fashionable residential area known as Nueva Andalucia. It has spacious public rooms and a very attractive marble ground floor lounge and coffee shop area where snacks and afternoon tea are served to non residents. Set in lovely gardens with an underpass down to the beach, it has two pools and boasts a famous casino.
Andalucia Plaza Casino This popular casino, located underneath the Hotel Andalucia Plaza in Nueva Andalucia is open daily and offers Punto y banca, French Roulette, Stud Poker, American roulette and Black Jack. The large slot machine hall opens from midday with a wide range of machines including touch screens for Poker, Bingo and Keno.

For an enjoyable evening why not dine first at the Casino restaurant for excellent international cuisine. Visitors are required to show their passports for entry into the casino, where entry is restricted to over 18.
Nueva Andalucia Nueva Andalucia is a fashionable residential area lying l mile north of Puerto Banus and 3 miles west of the elegant resort of Marbella. The whole area is set in lush green surroundings with many wide tree lined avenues, manicured gardens and attractive properties. Three very fine golf courses, those of Aloha, Los Naranjos and Las Brisas are all located to the north of Nueva Andalucia as well as being convenient for all the facilities at Puerto Banus and Marbella. Nueva Andalucia itself has several small shopping complexes particularly at Central Plaza alongside the bullring where a popular weekly flea market is held..
Aquarium Puerto Banus The Aquarium is located in the marina of Puerto Banus at the western end where the glitziest craft are moored by the control tower. The main aim here is for the study of marine life and the centre is open to the public who can see over 20 tanks holding 50 different species including sharks, conger eels and sun fish.

The latest attraction here is Try a Dive where visitors are instructed and offered the chance to dive to 3 meters and touch and feed the smaller species.
San Pedro de Alcantara

San Pedro de Alcantara is ideally situated just 6 miles west of Marbella, close to Puerto Banus and 12 miles from the town of Estepona. Its close proximity to the toll motorway makes it convenient for Malaga airport and other holiday resorts in Costa Del Sol.

The Plaza de la Igelsia seems to be the centre of activity and is a good base from which to explore the town. San Pedro de Alcantara retains its "Spanishness" in a delightful way with its pretty plazas, narrow streets, (some pedestrianized), and whitewashed old houses, traditional Spanish shops and excellent restaurants.
The promenade is a place to stroll with its beachside restaurants offering typical Spanish dishes and fresh fish. The beach areas are attractive with good safe bathing and sports facilities, such as scuba diving/jetSkis/canoes/pedaloes, etc. The two main beaches are Playa de San Pedro and to the west, Playa de Guadalmina. Both have been awarded the Blue Flag.

Visit the street market whilst on your villa holiday, held on Thursdays and located in the west of the town centre. The municipal indoor market in the north-west part of the town centre sells fresh meat, fish, fruit and vegetables – open Monday to Saturday. If you like to relax on your villa holiday with a game of golf, San Pedro de Alcantara is well placed with some fine golf courses close by.

Refugio de Juanar The Refugio was originally a parador built on the site of an old hunting lodge, nowadays it is a privately owned hostelry with a fine restaurant. After enjoying a meal or drink here, walk or drive the 1.5 miles to the mirador which is 1000 metres above sea level from where in a dramatic mountain setting there are some breathtaking views down to Marbella and the coast. From Marbella take the A355 to Ojen, drive through the village and take a left turn to the Refugio on the MA469.
Basilica de vega de Mar ruins Nearly 200 tombs have been discovered here dating from Roman times to the early 8th c.

Another ruin just along the beach in the Guadalmedina urbanisation close to San Pedro is the Roman Baths and the third site is at Rio Verde close by which contains some interesting mosaics, including one of Medusa’s head with four snak,es amongst the strands of her hair and another two coiled around her neck.

These ruins are all surrounded by railings but the tourist offices as San Pedro and Marbella can arrange visits.
Cueva de la Pileta This fascinating prehistoric cave is located south west of Ronda, 3 miles from the village of Benoajan. The cave was discovered in 1905 and skeletons of Paleolithic Man together with pieces of pottery dating from 25,000 BC were found. Wall paintings of deer, fish and a goat were also found and the visitor can see stalactites and stalagmites. You will be given an oil lamp because it is pitch dark and quite chilly – there is also a colony of bats in residence!
El Madronal When driving from San Pedro de Alcantara on the N340 inland to Ronda, you will pass by the attractive hillside village of La Heredia. A little further on is the luxury residential area of El Madroñal. Apart from the several popular restaurants here the views across Rio Guadalmina valley are stunning.
Guadalmina Guadalmina is a stylish residential and commercial area located just west of San Pedro de Alcantara on the N340. Its surroundings are lush and green with several first class hotels offering excellent sports and beach facilities. The fine Guadalmina Golf course is close by and easy access to the inland toll motorway makes it convenient for the airport and other resorts.
Guadalmina Hotel The Guadalmina Golf Hotel is a touch of luxury situated in one of the most exclusive areas of Marbella. Surrounded by fine golf courses and the sparkling blue Mediterranean, it offers excellent facilities for the golf and sports enthusiast with a lively beach club with very good facilities open to non-residents. There are tennis and paddel tennis courts, a piano bar and attractive terrace restaurant with a Sunday buffet lunch from 1.30 which is very popular with people from the Marbella area.
Benahavis Reach the picturesque village of Benahavis by taking the N340 west of San Pedro and then the MA547 inland and follow the lush valley inland for about 5 miles. Best to park at the entrance and stroll in to explore this fascinating village which is known for its gastronomy. Foreign residents almost outnumber locals here where the streets are narrow and quaint and you will find interesting shops, small plazas and fountains and most notably restaurant after restaurant. Visit La Aldea, which is a village within the village containing antique, décor and handicraft shops.

Estepona is a traditional but expanding, Spanish seaside town in Costa Del Sol. The lengthy promenade overlooks the popular beach where there is safe bathing for families, with good facilities.

Estepona itself has many interesting corners and it is worthwhile exploring those cobbled, narrow streets leading off the sea front. There are numerous cafes and Spanish tapas bars serving traditional dishes such as paella. Shopping facilities are excellent and you will also find some unusual shops in Estepona with reasonably priced goods.

The Plaza de Las Flores is one of the prettiest squares set in the heart of Estepona, where you can enjoy an ice cream or coffee at one of the many bars in this pretty flower covered square. The Marina is a pleasant place to stroll on your holiday and view the magnificent boats which are moored here. At night the port comes alive with night clubs and discos. On Sundays there is a busy tourist market in the port.

For those that like to be active, the coastline offers a variety of water sports and fishing trips. If you like to relax on your villa holiday with a round of golf, Estepona is very proud to have 8 excellent golf courses surrounding the town.

Estepona Port The attractive marina is located on the western side of the town and provides moorings for both pleasure and fishing boats. The small specialist shops, and wide choice of restaurants and bars around the quayside make this a pleasant place for a stroll followed by a relaxing meal. You can watch the fishing boats land and auction off their catch and on Sundays there is a popular tourist market. At night, especially in the summer, the pubs, clubs and discos open and there is a thriving nightlife scene attracting people of all ages.
Tool Museum Located by the bullring, the Museo de Aperos is interesting because it gives an insight into rural and domestic life in years gone by. It houses all kinds of implements that were regularly used in the fishing and agricultural industry together with those of a more domestic nature when Estepona was still a very rural area.
Museum of the Sea The Museo del Mar is located in the Plaza de Los Misioneros and here you can learn about the oceans from a different perspective through a collection of shells and molluscs belonging to a private collector.
Doll Museum The Museo Municipal de Muñecas houses a private collection of antique dolls consisting of more than 500 exhibits from traditional rag dolls to modern dolls with movement.
Puerto de la Duquesa This pretty marina is just off the N340 in between Estepona and Sotogrande with attractive whitewashed apartment blocks overlooking the collection of luxury yachts and cruisers and a good selection of boutiques, restaurants and bars surrounding the quayside from where you can enjoy a leisurely meal or drink.
Sotogrande is approximately 45 minutes from Malaga Airport and is a well-established, luxury holiday resort, just 10 minutes along the coast from Gibraltar. It is a huge urbanisation and any first time visitor to Sotogrande will be amazed by the individuality and size of the majority of the villas that line the wide tree lined avenues. Well-tended gardens surround these villas and you will be impressed at the beauty of the trees, plants and flowers.

Sotogrande is one of the most luxurious sports and residential developments in Europe with a Polo Club, golf , unspoilt beaches, a world class marina, bars, restaurants and leisure centres.

Road access from Sotogrande to Marbella, Malaga, Jerez, Cadiz and Seville and all along the Costa del Sol is easy by the motorway or new Toll Road.

If you enjoy relaxing with a game of golf on your villa holiday, Sotogrande is home to the famous Valderrama golf course which hosts the Ryder Cup and Volvo Masters and also home to the Real Club de Golf Sotogrande. There are, however, other golf courses to visit in Costa del Sol.

Sotogrande is popular with Spanish families and tourists on their villa holidays who visit during the summer to enjoy the beach, restaurants, comfortable accommodation and above all privacy that Sotogrande has to offer.
Sotogrande Marina The first important leisure harbour on entering the Mediterranean is Sotogrande which is situated on the estuary of the River Guadiaro and there is a protected marshland on the west bank of the estuary at the mouth of the river which is of particular interest to bird watchers. For those thinking of taking a boat into the harbour, the entrance width is 80 metres with a depth of 5 metres. Once inside, this picturesque marina is surrounded by up market and extremely stylish apartment blocks, you will see some impressive craft moored and there are many fine restaurants, shops and bars where you can relax and watch the world go by.
Polo Sotogrande is one of the top venues in the world for polo and here it can be played all year round. If you have never seen a match before, this is your chance because during the summer, particularly the peak month of August, tournaments are held most weekends and spectators are very welcome. Polo is a rich man’s sport since each rider needs to stable up to 10 horses which allows for a change of four horses per game who in turn need to be very fast and turn on a sixpence!
San Roque Casino The San Roque Casino is well signposted off the N340 coast road close to Sotogrande on the way to Gibraltar. Here you can enjoy Roulette, Black jack, Poker, Punto Banco and the spacious slot machine hall. In the same complex is a fine restaurant and nightclub where colourful spectaculars are put on. You are required to show your passport to gain entry to the casino where age limit is restricted to 18.
Marbesa Marbesa is a beautiful area located between Elviria and Cabopino. It is slightly sloping upwards from the beach towards the main road and is mainly a villa area. Marbesa has many facilities available for the residents like supermarkets, restaurants and bars. The area was developed by Germans in the late 70´s and early 80´s and it is easy to see why of all available places back then they chose Marbesa as the spot. It is a very lush green area and because of the gentle slope many villas have beautiful sea views but the roads are not steep at all. The beach in Marbesa is very quiet and if you want more action the Nikki beach club in Elviria is at walking distance.
Maro Village, Nerja

The lovely little village of Maro is located a few kilometres outside Nerja on the old coastal road. Although small, you will find a local supermarket, bars and a pretty beach.

The famous Nerja caves are located just outside the village and attract visitors from near and far.

It is an area of natural beauty and the surrounding environment is heavily protected to preserve its natural charm. A national park area by the caves is the home to mountain goats and other protected wildlife.

Once a year the local fiesta of San Isidro takes place with a procession up to the caves on horseback in traditional dress.

La Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park Apart from having a reputation as being one of the wettest villages in Spain, Grazalema is also one of the most delightful. Located in the province of Cadiz by taking the C339 from Ronda direction Sevilla and following signs to Grazalema,
The surrounding national parklands are a haunt of nature lovers, hikers and artists.
The mist can come down very quickly so beware on rainy days. Trout farming is an important industry particularly around El Bosque and also look out for the rare variety of pine, the pinsapo. You will certainly enjoy the stunning panoramic views over rugged countryside
Donana Natural Park The delta of the might river Guadalquivir at Sanlucar de Barrameda is its only outlet to the sea with the rest of the delta having been blocked by sandbanks created by the winds which have formed a natural stretch of marshland and constituting about half of the park. The Doñana national park is one of Europes most important wetlands. It provides refuge to many endangered species such as the pardel lynx and Spanish Imperial eagle it is also a natural habitat to many other species of wildlife especially around the 300,000 water birds arriving to winter there from the north,

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