Málaga is the Andalusian gateway to the Costa del Sol. Holidaymakers revel in region’s pleasant climate during the spring and summer. August is the hottest month and November is the wettest, but whenever you visit, there’ll be enough activities and golden beaches to keep everyone happy.
Plan your trip with our guide to beaches, cultural excursions and golfing holidays, and make the most of your trip to Spain’s famous “Coast of the Sun”.
Which beach resort is for you?
Along the 195 km-long Costa Del Sol which stretches between the towns of Manilva and Nerja, you’ll find the resorts of Marbella, Benalmádena, Nerja, Frigiliana, and Málaga itself. To help you choose where to stay, here are five of our favourite beach resorts, so you can capitalise on the area’s 300 days of yearly sunshine.
Málaga… For a City Break
Playa de La Malagueta is a clean and pleasant beach that runs along much of Málaga’s seafront. It’s your best bet for soaking up the Andalusian sun whilst staying right in the heart of the city. The 0.6 kilometre stretch of sand is close to must-visit local sights, such as the Museo Picasso Málaga with its 200-strong collection of Pablo Picasso works.
The 10th century El Castillo De Gibralfaro is also a great place to spend an afternoon, whilst there are plenty of designer shops and highly rated restaurants around the port. A trip to watch La Liga side, Málaga C.F, is also recommended when the team is playing at La Rosaleda Stadium.
Benalmádena… For The Party Animals
With Tivoli World theme park, a host of serene beaches, and enough going on at night to keep big groups entertained, Benalmádena is our choice if you want to delve straight into nightlife. Head straight to 24-hour Square (Plaza Solymar) if you want to party all night, whilst Bonanza Square, which is a 15-minute walk away, has a less hectic feel. There are usually live bands playing in an array of bars, where you’ll be able to take it easy after a long day of doing nothing.
Nerja… For Families With Lots of Energy
Nerja is east of Málaga and the perfect destination for families who want to mix beach time with more adventurous activities. When you’re not laying on Nerja Playa Burriana, Playa de Nerja or Playa de Salón, you can take to the water on kayaking trips to Maro and back. There are plenty of caves to explore too, which will ignite the younger ones’ sense of adventure. Fancy cooling down? Aquavelis Water Park has slides and rides for all ages groups, whilst the historic city of Málaga is ideal for a day out if you want a proper change of scenery.
Frigiliana… For a Quiet Escape
Okay, so this one’s not at the beach. But if you’re looking for a quiet escape, the small town of Frigiliana – north of Nerja – is an ideal base. You’ll be able to explore less crowded streets and get a table at top-rated restaurants. Life moves slowly here; choose whether you want a day on the sand or if you want to explore the surrounding mountains. Need a day’s adventure? Take to the biking and hiking trails, or drive on the winding roads of Sierras de Tejeda, Almijara y Alhama Natural Park.
Intrepid explorers will find the clear waterfalls perfect for a dip and the shaded forests ideal for picnic stops and stunning viewpoints. You wouldn’t know it, but you’re just minutes away from the hustle and bustle of the Costa Del Sol’s most popular sunbathing spots.
Marbella… For a Little Bit of Everything
There are 23 beaches — including 7 Blue Flag beaches — along Marbella’s 27 kms of coastline. So whatever holiday type you’re after, you’ll likely find it here, along this popular stretch of sand.
Our favourite chill-out spots include Bounty Beach, which is great for younger travellers with its chilled-out vibes and relaxed bars. Playa Real de Zaragoza is perfect for a quiet escape. Playa de Cabopino is on the edge of the wild sand dunes at Las Dunas de Artola o Cabopino, and Playa Fontanilla is in the heart of the city — within walking distance of the centre of Marbella.
Golfing on the Costa del Sol
Golf on the Costa del Sol is more popular than ever. There are courses all along the coastline and in the mountains, including Alhaurin Golf Course designed by the late Severiano “Seve” Ballesteros. There are over 60 different courses to take on, meaning you’ll find a challenge whatever your handicap — just make sure you end up on the right beach (not a bunker) and ruin your round.
The lack of rainfall in the area means you’ll be able to tee off in pleasant weather, something you can’t say about courses back in the UK. Try to book your tee times before you travel, to make sure you can play the course you want at the time that suits.