From SearchIberia.com

Regions & Cities
Malaga & the Costa del Sol
By Kathy Longworth
May 4, 2007, 06:18

Thousands of visitors come yearly to live on the Malaga coast (more famously known as the Costa del Sol) due to the hot sunny summers and spring-like winters that we residents are privileged to enjoy. This article is to share with you an insight on some of the enchanting Malaga towns where you too can come and hang your hat !

Malaga Capital, first on the list, is what you would expect from a lovely old Spanish city. It has an important university, a lively port area where international cruise ships dock daily, and the beautifully restored mediaeval Alcazaba Fortress and Roman amphitheatre. Close by is the heart of the historic district, overflowing with enchanting
old tapa bars,elegant pedestrian shopping streets, and superb museums (including, of course, the Buena Vista Palace, which houses the famous Picasso collection.) A very exciting place to live especially if you can afford the 'old money' areas such as El Candado, El Limonar and Cerrada de Calderón!

Further along the coast you’ll find the more English (!) Malaga towns which were, not too long ago, fishing villages and which are now hugely popular resorts for European holiday-makers or would-be residents looking for a new home. The list is long and each of these Malaga towns has their own special appeal.

Fuengirola, for example, is a traditional sort of town … as flat as your hat … and as a result attracts lots of retirees and families. The centre has undergone quite a face lift in recent years and consequently presents a more sophisticated image than that of the past. The seven kilometres of sea-side promenade, now up-dated, is illuminated at night and strolling here in the evening when the sun has gone down is such a treat in the summer!

Torremolinos, the very first Spanish resort was really fashionable in the 50's and 60's, yet, lost some of its popularity in later years. But, recently, the town has been extensively re-modelled, has now regained some of the charm of its halcyon days and is currently very popular with the gay scene.

Puerto Banus and Marbella … Now this area is something else again … very up-market, bumper to bumper Ferraris, designer label shopping and 5* everything ! Marbella town is stylish, with a nice mix of the old and new. It boasts a very pretty 'old quarter' and there is a distinctly
cosmopolitan atmosphere.

Estepona, on the other hand, was not too long ago a sleepy kind of fishing village. But, in the last few years it has also developed into one of the more popular tourist destinations of the Costa del Sol. The 'new golden
mile' runs along the beach and is just an explosion of 5* hotels and apartment complexes. Plus, the town's beautifully re-vamped shoreline, three kilometres long, has recently been awarded the coveted European Blue Flag for its pristine presentation.

Mijas, Malaga, Spain
But, maybe you like the idea of village life ? Well, we can do that too… Mijas is probably one of the more well known 'white villages' of the Costa del Sol and is just eight kilometres inland from Fuengirola. It still retains its age-old charm with its tiny houses and narrow, cobbled streets. But, with thousands of tourists a year beating a path to its door, Mijas has become one of the richest town halls on the coast. The municipality is large and stretches much further than the village itself. Mijas Costa, the land
bordering Mijas extends right down to the coast and encompasses yet another appealing village called La Cala situated by the beach and which still has a flourishing fishing community.

Alhaurin, further inland from Mijas is not strictly a village any more. It has enjoyed continued growth since becoming so popular with British residents searching for a quieter, country lifestyle away from the summer crowds. The village now has many modern, new-build properties, but the charm of this area is the rural surroundings with a scattering of 'fincas' or small farms with their avocado and orange orchards.

Frigiliana on the eastern side of Malaga is another not-to-be-missed pretty 'white village' just inland from the resort of Nerja (famous for the caves) and although not as well-known as Mijas it is quaint in its own way. If not to live this is definitely one to visit.

So, there you have it ! Along with this mini-tour of the Costa del Sol, I wish I could have put up some ´photos for you to see just how dazzling
this coast is. But, I guess you’ll just have to come and see for yourself!

Written by Kathy Longworth, owner of Malaga Express - a practical, independent guide for new residents to the Malaga
coast.

© Copyright 2007 by SearchIberia.com & Kathy Longworth