The Costa del Sol offers
It is often said that the province of Malaga is a small continent. Exaggerated and somewhat pretentious as this might sound, there is an element of truth in it. The province of Malaga, although the smallest in Andalusia, measuring 7.272 square kilometres, is indeed a land of contrast. Mountains, sea, rural villages and sophisticated tourist resorts. It is all here, and with the most extensive network of hotels anywhere in Spain, enjoying the contrast is one of life’s rare pleasures.
To help the visitor make the most of his or her stay on the Costa del Sol, we present what must necessarily be no more than a résumé of the multiple attractions and services of the region. A great part of the enjoyment of a holiday is the anticipation, and knowing what you can do in the province of Malaga makes the pleasure all the greater.
It takes a battering from some elite quarters, it may not be to the taste of everybody that comes to the Costa del Sol, but sun and beach tourism is the motor that first drove the southern Spanish tourism industry into the fast lane, and this aspect of tourism is still alive and well and living on the Costa del Sol. The 161 kilometres of Malaga province coastline is mostly beach, and with most of the hotels in the province built close to the beaches, most of the finest restaurants within shouting distance of the beaches and the best climate in Europe, it is little wonder that the beach means so much to local residents and tourists alike in Malaga.
And these are excellent beaches, cleaned every day and with all the services that only a great Spanish beach can offer: bars, restaurants, showers, beach umbrellas, beach beds, palm trees, children’s parks, special access for the disabled, lifeguard services, policing, water sports and much more. And if you want none of this, but to lie on an empty beach with nobody around, or even with no clothes on, you can have that too, because there are also small coves and beaches set aside for naturists. Newcomers must be warned, however, that the coves around Maro, in the Nerja area, form part of a nature park and thus do not have beach services of any kind. One the other hand, they are among the most beautiful beaches on the entire Costa del Sol.
There are eleven marinas on the Costa del Sol, putting the region ahead of the rest of Andalusia in sailing and water sports facilities. All these ports, from the smallest to the biggest, offer all the basic services needed by any sailor, and in some of them, there are sailing schools authorised to grant official skippers’ licences to those that qualify, to learn to sail and navigate, or to simply learn underwater diving.
It must also be remembered that these ports on the Costa del Sol generally have a magnificent nightlife and top restaurants, with many stylish boutiques and shops of all kinds.