Our first base was Benalmadena, a popular summer resort. Located about an hour west of Malaga, Benalmadena is on the train line from Malaga airport.
The best thing about going to summer resorts off season is that they are lovely and quiet. We spent the morning we arrived wandering through some of the pretty little streets.
I love the way the Spanish decorate the outside of their homes.
There’s not much in Benalmadena that I would highly recommend. However it is a great base for travelling. There is a beautiful promenade along the beach, with plenty of places serving paella and barbecued fish such as sardines. As it was very warm on the day we arrived, we stopped off here to enjoy some for lunch.
There is also a lovely marina with plenty of little bars for sipping a drink at sunset.
There are plenty of restaurants and tapas bars around. However we enjoyed our best meals in our apartment which had a kitchen. If you are willing, and able, to get a self-catering apartment I would highly recommend it. None of the meals we ate out in Benalmadena stood out to us.
Food shopping in the south of Spain is excellent. Many of the main supermarkets offering fresh fruit and veg as well as fish and meat counters. Not to mention the numerous small suppliers selling fresh produce such as freshly sliced Iberico ham – delicious!
The first place we visited was Marbella, another popular summer resort. Marbella is a beautiful town to wander around. Like Benanmadena there is a lovely beach promenade as well as a more historic town with beautiful picturesque streets.
Generally Andalusian towns are all painted white but I noticed more colourful buildings in Marbella.
It’s possible to get a bus from Benalmadena to Marbella and this website has details of all the buses from Benalmadena. The bus station in Marbella is located to the north of the town and is about a 20 minute walk to the centre.
For a bite to eat, try the pretty Plaza de Los Naranjos, a picturesque square with plenty of restaurants. You will also find the church Iglesia Mayor de la Encarnacion just off the square.
The weather in Spain in February can be mixed. On the day we went to Marbella we got caught in a little rain shower but it soon brightened up. Generally temperatures are between 10-15 degrees but some days were warmer. It’s definitely very pleasant for walking and exploring and as I mentioned earlier, going to these summer resorts off season means they are lovely and quiet.
Coming next on my Andalucian series, we visit Ronda.