Spain is more than just a holiday destination offering a sun kissed lifestyle for over 3.8 million expats. The city of Marbella on the southeastern coast of Spain is generally regarded as the crème-de-la-crème for vacation properties in Spain. Marbella is well known for its champagne lifestyle and indulgent quality of life. We have listed the best things to do in this area showing why it has remained a premium safe-haven for foreign investors.
Marbella is famed for its golf championships and beautifully manicured golf courses including La Zagaleta designed by Bradford Benz and the tree-lined open parkland of course of Real (Royal) Club de Golf Las Brisas. There are over 50 golf courses on the coast to choose from. all within a 30 minute drive from Marbella. No wonder that the Costa del Sol is Spain’s leading golf holiday destination.
There is a vast diversity of choices for dining out in Marbella. Enjoy fresh sardines, prawns and tuna from a laid back chiringuito beach bar or dine at one of the Golden Mile’s top restaurants like Dani Garcia’s Michelin star Calima. Being once a fishing village, fresh produce is a huge part of the Mediterranean diet, along with typical Spanish flavours like tomatoes, chilli, citrus fruit and beans widely used in most dishes.
There are indoor markets in Malaga, Marbella and St Pedro. These large markets offer fresh produce from local farms. The Mercado Municipal in the old town of Marbella is a must see for food lovers! Filled with organic local ingredients, it is a huge part of the local community, not to mention excellent value for visitors.
Relax on Marbella’s beautiful Mediterranean beaches or go kite or wind surfing on the Atlantic coast just 45 minutes away. Marbella sits on sixteen miles of pristine coastline with fine golden sands divided into 24 beaches. ‘Nikki Beach’ is popular with the rich and famous, whilst ‘Bounty Beach’ draws in crowds through its beach bar ideal for chilling out in the sun. ‘Funny Beach’, just past Marbella, has a whole host of activities perfect for the kids, including water boats, bungee, trampolines and a bouncy castle.
Explore Andalucía’s historic town of Cordoba and Seville, approximately 2 hours from Marbella. The Mezquita, or Great Mosque, in Córdoba certainly won’t disappoint visitors. A former Roman temple, Church and Mosque, it has played a unique role in Spain’s colourful past with an immense presence that can only be felt in person. Giant columns of marble, architecture and mosaic date right back to the 8th century. The Jewish Quarter of La Judería continues this historical journey of the Sephardi, or Spanish Jews. Their charming medieval identity is depicted through monuments like the Almodovar gate, Spanish Caliphate art and the Alcazar de los Reyes Cristianos gardens.
Visit the museums in Malaga, one of Spain’s most beautiful cities. There are over 29 museums and 24 of these are in its Historical Quarter. The most popular museum is the Pablo Picasso Gallery which opened in 2003 because Picasso was born in the city and displays works donated by his family. Other art museums include the Museo Carmen Thyssen, which focuses on Andalucian art, and the Centro de Arte Contemporaneo, which is more contemporary.
Enjoy cruises to Mediterranean locations from the port of Malaga; the oldest and most continuously-operated ports in Spain. It has seen huge redevelopment in recent years with major cruise lines now operating from there, including Royal Caribbean, Yachts of Seabourn and MSC Cruises. From Malaga, popular routes go to Morocco, the Canary Islands, Madeira, Portugal, Italy and Turkey.
In winter, go skiing at the Sierra Nevada National Park, which is 2 hours from Marbella. Not only an area of great ecological interest and breathtaking views, the Park is also home to the highest peak in mainland Spain and the second highest in Europe after the Alps. Something unique about the Sierra Nevada is that it is possible in early spring to ski in the morning and swim on the Costa Tropical in the afternoon.
The Royal Tennis Club in Marbella is perfect for sport enthusiasts to take their skills to the 8 clay courts which are known to be the best in the Costa del Sol. The tennis academy allows you take your children through all the basics or even advance your own techniques. With a gym, a restaurant, pilates, a massage saloon, yoga, boxing, aerobics and many other activities, the club really does suit all tastes.
The biggest water park on the Costa del Sol is the Aqualand Torremolinos. Just a short drive from Marbella, Aqualand provides the perfect fun filled family day out. Parents can join in too, getting in touch with their inner child as they ride the rapids, jump the surf and fall down the popular ‘black hole’ waterslide. There is even a relaxing Jacuzzi area if that all sounds a bit too much.
About The Author: Tim Baker is a passionate writer and he writes for fineandcountry.es
Photo Credits: Flickr Creative Commons: #1 eDomo G.Services, #2 Bert Kaufmann, #3 David Domingo, #4 jafsegal