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White Villages – So Many Hidden Gems

Spain’s Costas are renowned for the stunning coastline: fabulous sun-drenched beaches generously dotted with an abundance of beach bars designed to tempt you with their promise of sun tans and amazing fresh food. But Andalucía has so much more to offer its visitors. Take a trip away from the coast, head inland for no more than a few kilometres and it won’t be long until you reach one of the many picturesque towns and villages. You can even follow a tourist route of these white villages, which spreads from la Sierra, in the province of Cadiz to the Serrania de Ronda, in the province of Málaga. These delightful little enclaves are impressive historical monuments in their own right and are the hidden jewels of Andalucía.

Many of the inhabitants of these whitewashed villages still live according to age-old traditions inherited from their forefathers of Iberian, Roman and Moorish times. Some villages near the coast have become quite fashionable resorts, whilst others a little further away, have held on to their ancient appeal and tempt visitors with their local produce such olive oil, fruit and vegetables and goat’s milk.

There is a strong Muslim influence in the architecture of steep, narrow, winding streets, alleyways allowing access into the houses and patios. Many of the villages include ‘…de la Frontera’ (of the frontier) after their name which was due to the ever-moving frontiers brought about by constant clashes between the Moorish and Christian faiths. However, their status as a ‘fortress’ no longer a requirement, has seen many of the towns dropping the ‘de la Frontera’ to be known simply as Vejer or Arcos for example.

If spending some time away from the coast is for you, then have a look at some of our stunning mountain properties. I’m sure we can find you the perfect mountain retreat hidden amongst one of these little white villages.

One of the prettiest villages, in our view, is Casares which is only 15km from the coast. Nestled within the winding streets you can stay in fabulous 2-bed townhouse. If you park at the top of the village you get the best view of its medieval fortress which sits proudly on the top of the hill. This view is best in the afternoon sun and is an ideal spot to climb down one of the steep, but well maintained, footpaths that lead into the village square called Plaza de España.

If you are looking for a larger property, this stunning 7-bed villa could be just what you are looking for. Situated in Ojen, just 10 minutes’ drive from the town and beaches of Marbella. Visitors can stroll through the town centre to view the Fountain of Chorros, a drinking water fountain which dates back to 1905. Also worth a visit are the Oil Mill Museum, Wine Museum and the Caves of Ojen.

Another of our popular rural property rentals features two adjacent properties situated on the mountainside just outside Coin, near Malaga. The first is a 2-bed villa ‘Casa Maria’ and the second, a 4-bed villa ‘Finca Tropical’. Both properties offer spectacular mountain views, abundant orchards, BBQ areas and private pools (which can be heated if required).

We have many more holiday rental properties with beautiful views across the province. Please do not hesitate to contact us for advice, our holiday rental experts are on hand to help you find the perfect property for your next vacation.

Have the new chiringuito regulations ruined one of the iconic elements of the Costa del Sol?

Visiting a local Chiringuito (or ‘beach bar’) on the Costa del Sol has got to be one of the highlights of the Spanish summer. It’s Spanish cuisine and relaxed way of life at its very best. Local meats, delicious salads and the best fresh fish, often barbecued on the beach in full view of hungry diners, just adds to the whole al-fresco dining experience. Sun-worshippers can soak up the rays on the ‘hamacas’ (sun loungers) which line the beach close to the bar, tempting diners towards the ocean for a cooling dip before deciding on what delights the menu may have to offer.

You may have noticed some big changes to these iconic chiringuitos in recent years: not only have the prices increased (by quite a large margin in some cases), but they have almost all been rebuilt. Gone are the dated, old ramshackle buildings, ancient kitchens, crumbling bar areas and very basic toilets. The Costa del Sol has re-developed the shoreline with the assistance of local government grants, resulting in a plethora of modern, ‘designer’ chiringuitos all along the coast.

The new look Chiringuito – new and improved or atmosphere ruined?

Most of the old traditional wooden bars have now been replaced by shiny new purpose-built concrete and glass constructions. All sparkly, clean and fresh! Some will say they have lost much of their original charm, but others are delighted with the contemporary look and better facilities.

The general structure of all the bars appears to be quite similar in design, although many owners have sought to put their own ‘stamp’ on their particular establishment. Perhaps by creating a theme-bar or adding a colour scheme and some ‘different’ furnishing etc. Some have succeeded…some sadly, have failed miserably!

If you search hard enough you will still find a few ‘traditional’ chiringuitos dotted along the coast but these too, in time, will succumb to the stringent new Spanish laws so time is probably running out for the traditional Costa del Sol beach bar.

Head down to a chiringuito or two this month and let us know what you think of the change.

Beach Bars in September

September is the perfect month to sample the chiringuito experience, the sun loungers are still out during the day and it’s lovely weather for the beach – but without the crowds. The balmy evenings and stunning sunsets make sipping cocktails while the sun goes down a wonderful experience too.

If you love the beach, check out our collection of beachside holiday rental properties on our website, or contact us and ask us what we have close to your favourite beach or chiringuito.

Here are a few recommendations for chiringuitos within walking distance from our holiday rental properties.

Cubanga Beach Club located in Duquesa Port in Manilva. Lively beach bar and restaurants, which often has live music. Within walking distance of Cubanga and all the other great bars and restaurants in Duquesa Port is this 2 bedroom apartment in a lovely community with landscaped gardens, pools, kids’ play area, tennis courts and BBQ area.

Chiringuito Tropical is a traditional chiringuito close to Estepona Port with friendly service and good simple food. This is within a short walk of this 2 bedroom Estepona holiday apartment in the development of Puerto Alto. It is in a great location for anyone who likes the beach, but also the buzz of Estepona and its fun port area.

Alegria Beach Restaurant is a firm favourite for holiday makers and residents in Marbella. The location on the beach, close to the port is great and the service and food comes highly recommended. This great beach bar and the nightlife of the Puerto Deportivo in Marbella is just a few steps from this one bedroom front line beach apartment. It’s a fantastic location to enjoy everything Marbella has to offer.

These are just a few of the incredible chiringuitos you can enjoy on your next Costa del Sol holiday. We’re here to help you find the best holiday rental to make that holiday perfect, so please don’t hesitate to contact us and ask for our advice and recommendations.

September and October on the Costa del Sol

For many the end of August marks the end of summer, but thankfully the weather here on the Costa del Sol usually remains temperate throughout September and often well into October and November too. September can be the ideal time to look at booking that last minute, out of season holiday rental for the autumn.

Alongside the fabulous weather, everything is just that little bit quieter and the pace of life tends to be much slower than the hectic, peak summer months of July and August. Parking the car becomes less of a challenge, driving on the roads: not so frantic, the beaches, restaurants, shops etc. are all much less crowded. However, this doesn’t mean life on the coast is any less exciting: there are still so many reasons to visit the area with many top attractions remaining open all year.

Once the scorching summer temperatures drop a few degrees and the crowds disperse, the Costa del Sol still has many delights to offer. Golf, of course is a major draw for many with around 70 top quality golf courses dotted along the coast.

We have some amazing golf holiday rental properties, many situated right on the edge of some of the best courses in the area. Properties close to golf courses include a beautiful 3 bedroom townhouse which is set in the quiet residential complex of Los Naranjos de Marbella, in Nueva Andalucia, near Puerto Banus. Within the complex is an 18-hole golf course with a fabulous clubhouse and restaurant. We also have a stunning 2-bed luxury apartment in Cabopino, which is close to the Cabopino golf course and just a short drive to many more. Many of our properties still have last minute availability, please contact us for recommendations

If soaking up some late summer sun is more your thing, then have a look at some of our beachside properties. Or perhaps you value your privacy and prefer the pool rather than the beach, if so take a look at our selection of villas with pools. We have a lovely 3-bed villa situated in a small complex just outside the charming inland village of Monda, or a stunning 4-bed villa with private pool and spectacular views over the Mijas mountains. Please do contact us and let us help you to find your perfect holiday rental property.

Spain has an endless supply of simple pleasures which the autumn months offer visitors the perfect opportunity to try: walking in the mountains, bird watching (many exotic birds of prey can be found throughout the region), visiting the many stunning inland towns and picturesque white villages, sunrise/sunset walks on the beach and so much more.

What’s on in the Autumn?

Here are just a few of our favourite things to do in September and October, which we hope you find useful.

Autumn is the perfect time to visit the Caminito del Rey (The King’s Little Path) an incredible walkway, pinned along the steep walls of a narrow gorge in El Chorro, near Ardales, Malaga. The walkway had fallen into disrepair and was partially closed for over a decade. After four years of extensive repairs and renovations, the walkway re-opened in 2015. It was previously known as the “world’s most dangerous walkway” but is now totally safe and an amazing way to spend a wonderful afternoon in the mountains.

Cirque do Soleil, the largest theatrical producer in the world, will be back in the Costa del Sol to present its latest show, Kooza, from 13th September in the Malaga fairground. A return to their origins, Kooza combines acrobatic performance and the art of clowning, while exploring fear, identity, recognition and power. The Innocent’s journey brings him into contact with comic characters from an electrifying world full of surprises, thrills, audacity and total involvement.

As mentioned above there are some fabulous birds of prey to be spotted in the area. If you want to experience some of these birds close-up and in a safe and educational way then take a trip up the Benalmádena Cable Car. This spectacular 15 minute journey takes you approximately 3 kilometres up to the peak of Mount Calamorro, where you will find unique and indigenous fauna and flora, spectacular views of the coastline, plus an amazing Falconry demonstration held at 13.00 and 20.00 every day. Something the whole family will undoubtedly enjoy.

These a just a few of the vast array of fabulous and varied activities available here on the Costa del Sol…many, many more await. If you are still looking for holiday rental accommodation and ideas for a late summer break then please don’t hesitate to contact us and ask for our advice and recommendations. Our experienced and knowledgeable team await your call.

How to holiday on a budget on the Costa del Sol

We love holidays, but we know that they can be expensive and difficult to afford when you’re on a budget. However, the good news is that the cost of living here on the Costa del Sol is significantly cheaper than in the UK and most parts of Europe and there are loads of great things to do which are completely free! If you look out for deals and follow a few simple tips, you can have an amazing holiday on the Costa del Sol on a budget.

Here are some of our top tips

  1. Travel as a group and book a villa

If you’re travelling with a large group, you can get an incredible deal per person per night and have a stunning villa too. While they look expensive, splitting them between three families for example makes them much more affordable than staying in a hotel. Plus, because you have the space to relax, cook and enjoy the facilities, you spend a lot less money on eating out and it is much more relaxing too.  Check out our villas with pools

  1. Eat, drink and be merry like the Spanish do

The Spanish locals are price sensitive and so cafes, bars and restaurants catering to locals are significantly cheaper than tourist places and offer a more authentic experience. They don’t tend to be the most beautiful places – expect plastic chairs and strip lighting, but the atmosphere and food tend to be great and you can still get a small beer or a coffee for 1€, or a three course meal for 10€ in some places, so follow the Spanish to the busiest places and you’ll definitely get a bargain.

  1. Pack a picnic

When you’re staying in a holiday rental you can save a fortune by stocking up at the supermarket, making up a delicious picnic, or some snacks and drinks and taking it with you. We love a picnic on the beach for lunch, or a few beers as the sun goes down and it’s cheap as chips if you take it with you. Be prepared on a day out with a reusable water bottle and snacks too so you avoid having to spend money when you’re thirsty and hot. There are water fountains everywhere so you can keep topping up and you’re minimising plastic use too!

  1. Enjoy the free activities

Over the summer there are hundreds of free activities going on along the Costa del Sol, from concerts to ferias, magic shows, talks, dance classes and activities for the kids. Ask at the tourist office, or check out one of the local area guides online, then head along and enjoy the fun totally free! For families with kids, the many playgrounds are a godsend and of course a stroll by the sea and a trip to the beach is perfect family fun. Many holiday rentals even have toys and games to take out with you, or enjoy at your apartment or villa, so you don’t need to buy things to keep them entertained.

  1. Book online and look out for money saving coupons or special days
  • If you are going to one of the summer ferias and want to take the kids on the rides look out for the “Día del Niño” every fair has one and rides are often 1€, or half price, which really saves you a lot.
  • Pick up any coupons you see around for the attractions like water parks and theme parks, but then check online before you buy, as it’s often a lot cheaper booking online ahead of time and you can also skip the queues.
  • Look for later entry tickets to waterparks, which can result in a massive discount but still give you quite enough time to enjoy the experience
  • Look out for packs of offers for different activities such as the ones from Selwo which offers a combined price for a number of different activities, but then check online to ensure that it adds up compared to buying them individually online

There are lots of other fantastic money saving tips from Money Saving Expert on their website which could save you a fortune.

We have recently dropped the price on this great one bedroom penthouse in La Cala by 20%. It is a great centrally located property, just 400 meters from the beach and a five-minute walk into town. It sleeps four people and costs from just 66€ per day, so is an excellent base for a great value holiday on the Costa del Sol. Check out more budget holiday homes on our website, or contact us for more information on great value holiday rentals.

The best places to go out on the Costa del Sol this summer

If you’re packing your bags, jetting over to the Costa del Sol this summer and are looking to dance the night away, you are spoilt for choice! Andalucia is well known for throwing epic fiestas and enjoying the good life, well into the early hours of the morning. Plus hotspots like Benalmadena, Fuengirola, Marbella and Puerto Banus all have incredible nightlife year round.

If you’re dreaming about a fun holiday in the sun but haven’t sorted out your accommodation yet, contact us for holiday rental properties with last minute availability.

Here’s our guide for where to head out and enjoy a party on the Costa del Sol this summer.

Beach Clubs

There is a huge range of Beach Clubs to choose from along the Costa del Sol, from relaxed affairs to party hubs and everything in between. Most have special nights and bring in DJs, so you can soak up the sun, enjoy cocktails and listen to fantastic music from your sun lounger. Check out Nikki Beach in Elviria, La Sala by the Sea or Ocean Club in Marbella if you want to party, or a wide range of others for a more relaxed but very cool place to hang out this summer.

Starlite

The biggest concert series of the year is the Starlite music festival in Marbella. Starting on the 5th of July and running until the 23rd of August there is an amazing line up of Spanish and international artists including The Beach Boys, Kool & The Gang, Jamie Cullum, Sting, John Legend, Luis Fonsi, David Bisbal, Jason Derulo and many more. There are also DJs, groups and events around the autdiorium where there are great bars and food stalls to enjoy. Definitely one of the biggest parties in town.

Puente Romano

Marbella’s Puente Romano is a fantastic place to eat, drink and party. There are loads of great restaurants around its central courtyard and a number of funky bars and a nightclub. The square transforms itself into a cool bar on summer nights and there are lots of excellent events during the summer season. The Puente Romano tennis club is also welcoming The Jacksons to perform a concert on the 8th of August.

Puerto Banus

Puerto Banus is well known for its huge concentration of bars, restaurants and nightclubs, so is a mecca for party animals throughout the year. Get your glad rags on and hit the town, starting off with a walk through the port and ending in one of the superclubs on the square. Another very popular option is La Sala, just up the road in Nueva Andalucia, where you can eat, drink and dance the night away.

Tapas Tour

A favourite past time of the Spanish on long, hot summer evenings is to do a tapas bar crawl, where the streets are buzzing from 9pm to midnight. Find a lively area with lots of restaurants and have a drink and try a different dish in each, soaking up the atmosphere and sampling the delicious food.

Ferias

Young and old come out to party for the summer ferias in Andalucia, and you should definitely join in the fun! Head to your local tourist office and find out what ferias are happening near you during your stay and go ahead and join in.

For more great tips like these for enjoying your holiday to the full, download our Costa del Sol Holiday Guide. Get in touch with our helpful team to find that last minute holiday rental, or look ahead to next summer. Contact us

The best family friendly activities on the Costa del Sol

The summer holidays are finally here and if you’re coming over to the Costa del Sol with the family this year, we wanted to give you some advice on a few of the best and newest things to do with kids during July and August.

If you haven’t sorted out your accommodation yet, don’t panic! We do still have holiday rental properties with availability in the peak season. However it is limited, so contact us via email or phone, tell us your ideal dates, locations and requirements and we can give you a list of available options.

New attractions

Experience the thrill of freefall – There’s a brand new activity inland from the Costa del Sol called Fly4Real which is causing quite a stir. It is an outdoor skydiving simulator and the first of its kind in Spain and gives visitors the chance to fly on a column of air and feel the sensation of freefall, without jumping from a plane. It’s located at KartCenter Campillos, about an hour inland from Malaga and around an hour and a half from Marbella and Fuengirola. This is the best kart track in the region, so adrenaline junkies can combine flying and karting for an intense day of thrilling fun.

Lego Exhibition Malaga – Lego fans young and old will love the new exhibition running in Malaga until the 22nd of September. This is the biggest Lego exhibition in Europe, with 100 models to admire in 12 different zones and a fun play area too. It is located in Muelle Uno in Malaga Port and is open from 11am to 3pm and then 3pm to 9pm. Find out more

Old Favourites

Hit the beach – A family holiday to the Costa del Sol would not be complete without a day at the beach and there are hundreds to choose from. To make sure you enjoy it to the full check out our tips for visiting Costa del Sol’s beaches and have a fantastic day soaking up the sun, and enjoying the sand and sea while feeling the stresses and strains melt away.

Cool down and have fun at the waterparks – A visit to a waterpark is another family favourite and there are three big ones on the Costa del Sol, in Torremolinos, Fuengirola and Algeciras. You can save a lot and beat the queues by booking your ticket online, so it’s best to be prepared for this one. Read our article on Costa del Sol waterparks to make sure you know all the tips and tricks to ensure a great day out.

Go to the playground – There are loads of great playgrounds all over the Costa del Sol, many of which have a café, so you can enjoy a cool drink while the kids play. The key to enjoying these in the summer is to get your timing right. Check out which parks are in the shade at what times of day and if in doubt go later in the day when your kids are likely to have the most playmates and you can wear them out before bedtime!

For more great tips like these for enjoying your holiday to the full, download our Costa del Sol Holiday Guide.

Get in touch with our helpful team to find that last minute holiday rental, or look ahead to next summer.

Holidaying on the Costa del Sol like a local

People often ask us how to have a true Spanish experience on their next holiday. Staying in a holiday rental is a good start, as you have a home-from-home and can cook, relax and enjoy the amazing weather in comfort from day one. We will also supply you with an information pack with recommendations of the best places to visit near your holiday rental, as well as supermarkets, banks and practicalities of living in Spain, so you feel right at home.

Here are a few tips from our holiday rental advisors, who all live and work here on the Costa del Sol, on how to really holiday like a local this year.

Enjoy the perfect beach day – Spanish summers are all about the beach and Spanish families typically camp out all day long, bringing amazing amounts of supplies to make their stay comfortable. After a lazy breakfast in your holiday rental, gather your towels, snacks, cooler, sun cream, beach chairs and parasols and set up to be there until the sun goes down. Check out our tips for visiting the beach for more info.

Join the crowds at an event – The Spanish love to do everything en masse and so heading along to an event is a great way to feel at home and join in the fun. Whether you choose a traditional feria or a concert you will have an amazing experience and see how the Spanish party!

Hire a car or choose your location wisely – Public transport options are limited here on the Costa del Sol. If you want to explore the area, visit the nearby tourist attractions and fill your time with activities, you don’t want to be stuck waiting for buses. Hiring a car is a good option, which will make you feel like a local and give you total freedom. However, if you’d rather not hire a car, then base yourself in one of the towns along the train line from Malaga to Fuengirola. This makes travelling a lot easier, and the towns themselves have plenty to see and do on foot.

Make the most of the amazing Spanish foodThe Costa del Sol is a foodie’s paradise, with a huge range of wonderful restaurants and tapas bars. The produce is fresh, delicious and excellent value and new gourmet markets are springing up along the coast. For the full experience, make sure you go to a chiringuito or beach restaurant for lunch and enjoy fresh seafood grilled over a wood fire (espeto), a selection of fried fish such as boquerones al limon, calamares and cazon en adobo and try a paella. Lunches here are long and leisurely and paellas normally take about 45 minutes to come, so snack on the fish and salad first and only order a paella for 2 people, even in a group of 5 or more, so you can all enjoy a selection. Try a tapas crawl one evening, moving between places and ordering a few dishes to share in each. This will allow you to sample lots of amazing food and find your favourite dishes and places for the rest of the holiday.

We hope you have an amazing holiday here on the Costa del Sol and that these tips help you have an authentic experience that you’ll never forget. Browse our collection of holiday homes and book online. There are still a few properties available for this summer, but they are booking up fast. Please contact us with your requirements for a last minute summer break and we can send you a shortlist.

Sporty holidays on the Costa del Sol

You are spoilt for choice if you want to play sports on the Costa del Sol, so why not incorporate it into your next holiday?

Water sports are plentiful and a great option for being active in the hot summer months. Stand Up Paddle Boarding (SUP) is all the rage right now and you can hire boards all along the coast. There are jet skis to hire, not to mention banana boat rides and parasailing. For the more adventurous, look into sea kayak tours in places like Nerja, where you can explore the coves and enjoy the crystal clear waters with an experienced guide.

Golf is a huge draw for tourists to the Costa del Sol as we have so many fantastic courses within a small area. Wherever you decide to be based, you are never far from a course, and you can choose between a driving range, nine hole or championship courses, depending on your skill and preferences. If you are visiting in the summer this is the low season for golf, so there are some good deals available and we have teamed up with Golf Two4One to allow you access to some amazing offers. Simply email our reception and we will provide you with a card free of charge.

Tennis and Padel are also incredibly popular here and there are some excellent tennis clubs all along the Costa del Sol which are open to non-members. Padel tennis is a massive sport here and is like a mix between tennis and squash. Many of the larger developments will have their own tennis and padel courts which residents and guests can use free of charge. Please ask us when you book your holiday rental and we’ll let you know what facilities are available. There are also municipal tennis and padel facilities, which are excellent value for money. Ask in your local tourist office for one close to you and how to book the courts, as it’s not always obvious.

Cycling is a sport which is booming here and hiring a bike is a great way to explore, as well as getting you active. Start easy by heading to the seafront promenade and enjoy the flat terrain and the amazing views, or head into the hills for some serious mountain biking. Read our guide to cycling holidays on the Costa del Sol.

Last but not least, one of the nicest (and cheapest) activities is to walk and explore the area on foot. Once again the paseo is the easiest and prettiestplace to do this and you can walk for miles along this beautiful coastal path. There are also a number of excellent hiking routes in the hills and you can also take walking tours to see the sights. We love exploring Marbella on foot and there are some great routes in town, along the seafront and in the hills.

As you can see, there’s a huge range of sports to enjoy as part of your next holiday on the Costa del Sol. If sports are important to you, please let us know when you enquire about your holiday home. This allows us to advise you on the best properties with communal sports facilities, or the right place to stay for a golf holiday.

Tips for visiting the beaches of the Costa del Sol

Spring has most definitely sprung here on the Costa del Sol and after the showers and rain over April, May has brought us some beautiful summer weather and seen many of us lucky residents hit the beach. Of course we’re spoilt for choice here, with 25 beaches awarded Blue Flag status in 2018 and miles and miles of stunning coastline. Check out our article on the best beaches on the Costa del Sol to help you choose where to go on your next holiday.

Wherever you choose, here are five tips for making the most of your beach experience –

  1. Come prepared – You will notice that the Spanish arrive at the beach with everything but the kitchen sink. It’s normal for families to bring gazebos, chairs, tables, coolers full of drinks, ice, food and lots of toys and games for the kids. While this may seem a little over the top to us, it certainly makes sure they are comfortable and enjoy the whole day on the sand. We’d suggest bringing an umbrella, or choosing a location with easy access to the shade, or if you have kids bringing one of those pop up tents to give them a place to play and relax out of the sun. The low beach chairs are much more comfortable than just a towel and fold up pretty small. Buckets and spades, a bat and ball and a football keep the kids entertained. Don’t forget plenty of water, some snacks and sun cream. If you can carry it all, that should keep you hydrated, comfortable and entertained and allow you to stay there the whole day.
  2. Go to a chiringuito – The beach restaurants are legendary for their fresh fish, cool drinks and great atmosphere and are perfect for a long, lazy lunch this summer. If you don’t want to lug a load of stuff with you for your beach day, many of them have sunloungers which you can hire for a small daily fee and allow you to relax in comfort, get some shade, pop in for a drink, use the toilets and enjoy a fantastic lunch at the beach. Heaven!
  3. Go to a jellyfish free area – Last summer there was a serious problem with jellyfish, which kept many people out of the sea. We hope this won’t recur this year, as it depends on weather and wind conditions, but if it does while you are on holiday, look out for the jelly fish free areas. Marbella’s councillor for beaches has arranged for floating play parks to add an area of water screened by nets and floats, which will offer a safe bathing area even when there are jellyfish around. Beaches will include San Pedro, Puerto Banús, Nueva Andalucía, Estrella de Mar and Marbella Playa in Las Chapas. Find out more
  4. Protect your skin – The sun here is very strong and you do not want to burn, so make sure you liberally apply high protection sun cream before you leave your holiday rental, seek shade between 11 and 3 where possible, wear a hat, sunglasses and coverup to protect your skin and keep reapplying that sun screen every few hours.
  5. Look out for a nearby kiosko – On the promenade there are lots of little huts selling beach essentials from cold water and ice cream, to buckets and spades and things for the kids. Many of them also sell very good value beer and plastic cups for you to take down to the beach for a cheeky sundowner, but you need to ask for it, as they don’t normally put it on display.

If access to beautiful beaches is top of your wish list, then check out our collection of beachside holiday homes. These are perfect for beach lovers, as they are either within walking distance of, or a very short drive away from, sand and sea.

Visiting Ronda

Ronda is a historic, beautiful town, surrounded by stunning countryside. Most famous for it’s extraordinary gorge and being the home of bullfighting, Ronda is developing new attractions for tourists, with a wine route and a new organic olive oil experience.

Ronda is easy to visit if you are holidaying in and around Marbella. There is a bus which goes from Marbella bus station and takes you up there. If you’ve hired a car, it’s also a stunning drive, but be warned the road is steep and twisty, so not advised for nervous drivers. The journey is approximately an hour, inland from Marbella and takes you though some really incredible countryside.

Ronda is growing as a wine producing region and now has a wine route. This comprises of 16 wineries that you can visit and a wine museum and interpretation center, where you can learn all about it. A visit to a bodega is a lovely thing to do on your holiday, where you can see them making the wine, understand the process and of course sample some of the produce. Find out more about wine tourism on the Costa del Sol on our blog, or discover the Ronda Wine Route here.

Design guru Philippe Starck has recently launched an olive oil experience on the outskirts of Ronda which is a great place to visit. It is being called an immersive cultural centre and is surrounded by vines, olive trees and an organic vegetable garden. Visitors are taken around the centre on a 45 minute guided tour to learn about the region’s olive oil, see some interesting exhibits and sculptures by Philippe Starck, enjoy the beautiful setting and of course taste the oils. Tours cost 20€ per person  and can be reserved on the LA Experience website.

If you like the pretty Andalusian countryside, a village feel and easy access up to Ronda, Benahavis is a good choice as a base. Inland from San Pedro, Benahavis is a beautiful village famous for gastronomy and surrounded by excellent golf courses and countryside with excellent walks and trails. We have a number of holiday rental properties in this area, such as this lovely penthouse in Las Terrazas at Los Arqueros. With two bedrooms, stylish décor, spacious living area and incredible views this is a beautiful apartment. It’s perfect for golfers as well, right by the golf course and with a 30% discount on green fees. From there, you can go straight up to Ronda in less than an hour.

For more information on visiting the Costa del Sol and making the most of your stay, download our free Costa del Sol Holiday Guide or ask one of our helpful team.