If you are lucky enough to have booked a holiday on the Costa del Sol, you will be spoilt for choice when it comes to great beaches in Marbella, Puerto Banus and Estepona. Here are some of our favourites:
Golden Beach Marbella
This amazingly long, clean, white beach attracts visitors from all over the Costa, and due to the length of the beach, it never seems to get too crowded. Golden Beach is located just 5km east of Marbella. Take the Cerrado de Elviria exit and head straight down to the beach. Restaurants and beach bars on or close to Golden Beach include the Don Carlos Beach Club (Nikki Beach), El Lido Beach Bar and The Beach House Fine Dining Restaurant. If you want to spend the day on the beach and enjoy an early evening meal nearby, try the Playwright in Elviria … superb food and live music.
Puerto Banus Beach
If you are looking to rub shoulders with the jet set or simply chill out with some great sounds, visit one of the fabulous beaches in Puerto Banus. During the summer months, there are plenty of live bands and guest DJ´s performing on the beaches of Puerto Banus, and in the many beach clubs dotted along the shore. Whether you want to chill out and relax or go wild at a champagne spray party, you will find plenty of great beaches in and around Puerto Banus. Also, a great choice of water sports are available including paragliding, kite surfing, jet skiing and water skiing. When you have finished soaking up the rays, there is no better place than Puerto Banus to enjoy a wide choice of superb restaurants, serving fresh fish, authentic Spanish dishes, tapas, paella, Indian food, Italian fare and even fish and chips if you want it. The best beach in Puerto Banus is situated east of the Marina, and although there are plenty of parking spaces, to avoid paying, you should try and arrive early in the summer months.
El Cristo Estepona
With Blue Flag status, El Cristo Beach in Estepona has a westerly orientation, and is well protected from wind. The beach is ideal for families and for swimming with clear, shallow water at the shore. Estepona is one of the best towns to visit on the Cost del Sol if you want to enjoy a typical Andalucian town. Why not combine a trip to El Cristo Beach with a stroll around the town centre and sample the delicious tapas on offer. Alternatively you can find plenty of beach bars dotted along the beach, serving fresh fish and excellent local seafood. Estepona Marina is next door to El Cristo Beach, and is home to some great pubs, bars and restaurants to suit all tastes and budgets.
Best beaches in Malaga
Malaga´s many beaches include: Peñón del Cuervo, La Cueva, Torre de las Palmas, La Araña and El Hornillo, which boast many hidden coves and cliffs, and attract swimmers and scuba divers.
The beautiful sandy beaches of El Candado are perfect for swimming and sunbathing, and are situated beside the Pablo Picasso Promenade, which is lined with cafés and restaurants serving everything from fresh fish to hot chocolate and churros. The most popular beaches in this part of Malaga include La Farola, La Malagueta, La Caleta, Baños del Carmen, Pedregalejo, Las Acacias, El Palo, and El Chanquete.
In the direction of Torremolinos, top beaches include San Andrés, Misericordia, Guadalhorce, Guadalmar, and the ever-popular Golf Parador resort.
El Cañuelo Nerja
El Cañuelo Beach in Nerja offers swimmers and sunbathers a wide choice of coves and is situated at the bottom of the Maro Cliffs. The eastern end of the Costa del Sol includes Nerja, and borders Granada and its mountainous interior. Compared to other main resorts on the Costa del Sol, including Marbella and Puerto Banus, Nerja is relatively quiet and the waters are clearer, making them popular with snorkellers and scuba divers. Although the beaches are less crowded there are still plenty of beach bars and restaurants to choose from along the beach front, and prices are often cheaper than you would find in Marbella. El Cañuelo is also worth a visit for the more adventurous sunbathers. Visitors will find this cove 8 miles to the east of Nerja town, and a small bus transports people down to the cove.
Cabopino Beach Marbella
Cabopino Beach is one of the most popular beaches on the Costa del Sol, and is situated just 7km west of Marbella town centre. Exit the motorway at the sign for Cabopino and then follow signs for the beach or drive into the Marina (you may have to pay to park in the Marina but not for the beach), and stroll around the water side cafés, the boats, and the lush gardens of Cabopino. The beach attracts sun seekers from all over the Costa del Sol, and it is safe for children, as it is relatively shallow and sheltered by two rocky outcrops. You will find two beach bars on the sand in Cabopino, both of which open early for coffee and breakfast, and stay open late into the evening. Enjoy delicious fresh fish tapas, jugs of sangria, full meals, and local seafood, or simply enjoy a snack or an ice cream in this ideal setting.
The beach at Los Boliches in Fuengirola
If you want to explore the western end of the Costa del Sol, Fuengirola is just a 30 minute drive from Marbella, and one of the best beaches in the area is located at Los Boliches. Here you can hire a couple of sunbeds and a parasol for around €5 per day, and enjoy the local town, which is typically Spanish. The Fuengirola Promenade or ´Paseo´ is over 9km in length, making it one of the longest in Europe, so take your time to explore and enjoy the local beach bars and restaurants. There are plenty of things to see and do with the kids in Fuengirola too if you want to make a day of it, including the fabulous Fuengirola Zoo, the town tourist train which allows you to hop on and off around the town, water sports, Fuengirola Market, held every Tuesday and Saturday at the Feria Ground, Adventure Golf and Dolphin Spotting from the Marina.
Wherever you decide to stay during your Costa del Sol holiday, make the most of your time and explore the beaches between Nerja and Estepona.