Holiday Rentals on the Costa del Sol Spain

Self-Catering holidays on Spain’s Costa del Sol

Wine tourism on the Costa del Sol

Did you know that as well as the glorious sunshine and beaches, the Costa del Sol is a great place to discover wine? It may not be as well known as the more traditional wine producing areas of the world, but Andalucia is growing in reputation for producing great quality wines and increasingly opening up their bodegas and vineyards to visitors. Wine is excellent value for money here in Spain and there are many specialist wine shops and bars where you can try some of the best and most interesting wines in Spain.

If you want wine to play a role in your next Costa del Sol holiday, here are four things to do and places to go –

Take a day trip to Ronda

Ronda has been making wines since the Roman times and has a wonderful climate and soil conditions. In recent years, it has been making a name for itself for producing some excellent wines and recently launched an official wine tourism route where you can visit bodegas, sample wines and find out how they are made. While you’re there, marvel at the gorge and enormous bridge and visit the home of modern bullfighting. Ronda is an easy day trip from Marbella.

Visit Manilva and learn about their sweet wines

Manilva is in the western Costa del Sol and is famous for its sweet wines and white village surrounded by vines. There is a wine museum where you can learn about the making of the wines and do a tasting. This is where Nilva wine is being produced, a new breed of Manilva wine which is winning many awards at the moment and you can meet the maker and even visit the vineyards […]

Exciting events announced for Estepona in 2018

There’s a lot going on in the beautiful seaside town of Estepona this year. The charming town is well known for its summer feria and Ham Festival, as well as cultural events throughout the year and now the Town Hall has announced two more great events to look forward to.

Wine lovers will love the festival “10 Wine Street Estepona” on the 13th and 14th of July which will celebrate the wines of Rioja, right in the centre of the city. During the festival, you can taste wines from the most important bodegas from the Rioja region, including Faustino, Campillo and Marques de Vitoria. There will also be wine producers from other countries represented to showcase the best international wines. There will be a chance for wine pairings, where you can try different tapas paired with the best wines to complement the flavour profiles and there will also be live music.

This is an evening event, from 7.30pm to 11.30 and you need to book a place on the tastings, as there is a limit of 200 people per tasting. To find out more information and register for the tastings visit the website www.10winestreet.com

The second new event to be announced in the Estepona calendar is the cycling race “Gran Fondo Costa del Sol” which will start and finish in Estepona on the 15th of September. Approximately 1,000 cyclists will gather in Estepona to start their 133 kilometre journey.

One of the reasons why Estepona was chosen as the starting point for this event, is the spectacular mountain climb up to the Peñas Blancas which has become a real classic challenge for cyclists and has been included in competitions including the Vuelta Ciclista a España. If you are […]

Why visit Casares in 2018

Casares is a stunning white village in the hills inland from the Costa del Sol. It is a wonderful place to visit and a village that we really love, here are five reasons why you should be planning your next holiday to Casares.

It is charming and pretty with an old fashioned Spanish vibe – It is just a short car ride from the bustling town of Estepona, but arriving in Casares is like stepping back into time. The beautiful village is built around and on a rocky outcrop, with the houses clinging onto the rock and steep paths winding up the hill. People looking for the “real Spain” but within easy reach of the coast’s facilities will love it here.
The countryside is gorgeous and it is ideal for hiking and birdwatching – Nature lovers will be delighted by the unspoilt countryside all around Casares. The village sits in the Sierra Bermeja natural park with volcanic mountains (now extinct), unique flora and fauna and native pine forests which are not found anywhere else in the world. The area is protected and perfect for hiking and spotting amazing birds of prey, which nest in this natural paradise. It has varied countryside with rocky outcrops, rolling plains, valleys and rivers, so it is a great base for a walking holiday.
There are lots of sites to visit – Within the village itself you can visit ruins of an impressive Medieval castle perched high on the rock, a lovely church and chapel, the birthplace of the father of Andalusian nationalism Blas Infante and the cultural centre which has been named after Casares’ famous son. In the surrounding countryside you can visit Roman baths and see an […]

Why should you book your holidays in January

The post Christmas blues and January’s cold, wet weather, leads people to book sunshine holidays in their hoards. The first Saturday on the New Year is dubbed Sunshine Saturday in the UK, and it is the busiest booking day of the whole year for travel agents and airlines! So the question is have you booked yet?

Don’t worry if you haven’t, there’s still plenty of time, but we do recommend getting ahead of the curve to get the best deals and ensure availability. Some people like to wait to see the last minute deals, and of course that’s fine too, but early bookings are important if you fit into any of these categories.

You have kids and need to travel in the school holidays – Not surprisingly, these are the most popular times to travel and availability is limited, so getting in ahead of the rest is the best idea.
If you have a particular destination in mind, which has limited accommodation – If you love a particular village which doesn’t have many holiday rentals or hotels, then booking early will make sure you’re not disappointed.
If you have fallen in love with a particular villa or apartment and want to return – We have many guests that return to the same holiday rental time and time again, because it is perfect for them. If that’s your case, then don’t wait to book, especially in peak times, as you may be disappointed.
If you’re travelling in a group – Group holidays are getting increasingly popular, but take some organisation to make sure that everyone is free, so fixing your dates and booking up that perfect villa in January makes sense.
If you’re dreaming of a […]

The most photogenic spots on the Costa del Sol

If you love taking photos and are looking for some real lens candy, then consider a visit to the Costa del Sol. The area has been popular with artists for many years, due to the wonderful quality of light and clear, sunny skies. From September to December the clarity is at its best and there are less tourists to get in the way, so now is a great time to come on holiday and get snapping.

There are Kodak moments everywhere you look on the Costa del Sol, but here are some of our favourite things to capture.

La Concha – This imposing mountain sits behind Marbella and its shape and the deep grooves in the sides make for an amazing backdrop. At certain times of day, it really glows and there are many wonderful shots to be taken from the seafront promenade or from the Old Town, where you can compose shots to include charming church spires and white washed buildings with La Concha in the background.
The Med – The long sandy beaches and sparkling sea is synonymous with the Costa del Sol and there are some beautiful images to be captured, from amazing sunsets over the water, to early morning calm, or even dolphins playing in the waves. Walk along the beach or seafront promenade, or take out a boat to look for dolphins and whales around the Straits of Gibraltar for a different perspective. On clear days, you can see the African coast and the Atlas Mountains and the rock of Gibraltar is a very striking sight – these all make for wonderful images that you will treasure.
Casares – There are many white villages in the countryside close to the […]

The best Autumnal activities on the Costa del Sol

We love autumn on the Costa del Sol, the weather is still warm – but not too hot, there’s plenty to do, but the crowds have gone and so you can park, get a table in a great restaurant and enjoy the area to the full without the queues!

Get active

October to December are the perfect months to get active, with cooler temperatures but plenty of sunshine. If you’re sporty, you could play a round of golf at one of the 70 golf courses on the Costa del Sol, go and play tennis at the club of Wimbledon legend Manolo Santana, jog along the seafront promenade each day, or take place in a race. Find out more about Golf on the Costa del Sol here.

Alternatively, why not take to your bike, and explore on two wheels? The Costa del Sol is a great place for cycling, with miles of seafront promenades to enjoy, plus lots of great routes for mountain biking.

Another great option is to hike some of the beautiful routes into the countryside, which is so close to the hustle and bustle of the coast. There are wonderful walks behind Mijas Pueblo, around Casares, Estepona, Ronda and Istan to explore, with easy to follow paths and Town Hall organised guided walks too. If you are staying in Marbella, you must go to the Refugio de Juanar, just up from the La Cañada shopping centre. The countryside is beautiful, and you can walk for miles along marked trails, or just wander amongst the trees and find a perfect picnic spot. From there you can do the ultimate challenge, which is to climb up the iconic La Concha mountain, which dominates the Marbella skyline. This […]

Five Spanish customs and traditions to enjoy on the Costa del Sol

As we explained in our last post, Spain is rich in culture, heritage and traditions. The Costa del Sol has a lot to offer on that front as well, but it can be easy for the average tourist to miss. So, we wanted to offer you five things to experience on your next holiday to the Costa del Sol so that you can really have the true Spanish experience, while still making the most of all the tourist attractions.

Eat Tapas – One of the best ways to explore a Spanish town is to “tapear” or explore the area by visiting its tapas restaurants. You can do this on your own, with a tour group, or as part of organised tapas events, where you can follow a set route with a booklet and a map to try out different tapas and find hidden corners. Marbella, Malaga and Estepona all have yearly tapas events, as do many other towns, so ask in your local tourist office. You can also check out this great website with articles about tapas in Marbella, Nerja, Antequera, Malaga, Torremolinos and Ronda to find out more.

Experience Flamenco – Andalucia is the birthplace of flamenco, with Jerez, Cadiz and Seville all hubs for this passionate art form. The unique sound, music, singing and of course dancing is central to ferias on the Costa del Sol, with people breaking into spontaneous song and dance at local bars, and hundreds dancing in traditional dress in large dance areas. There are also flamenco shows at hotels, restaurants and bars – some more traditional and authentic than others, but all amazing to watch. There are also many schools and teachers who can help you to learn flamenco […]

Marbella’s new gourmet market

The Costa del Sol has always been a fantastic destination for gastro tourism, but now it has even more to offer, with the opening of a new gourmet market in the heart of Marbella last month.

This indoor market is open from midday to midnight from Sunday to Thursday and until 1am on Fridays and Saturdays. It is located on Marbella’s high street Avenida Ricardo Soriano number 19, is 470m2 in total and has been designed to resemble a town square, with stalls around the outside and a mix of modern and traditional design elements. There are 14 stalls serving a range of delicious food and produce to buy including sushi, cured Iberian meats, cheeses, traditional Spanish food, fine wines, fresh fruit and vegetables, meat and fish.

You can go and shop for great local produce to cook back at your holiday rental, you can take away freshly prepared food, or you can eat on the premises. It is proving very popular with locals and holiday makers alike and has been buzzing ever since it opened. There is seating outside and inside so you can relax and enjoy a coffee, good wine, a beer and delicious food.

There is sushi available from 4€, and a good variety of dishes, but early feedback shows that it’s best experienced in a group so you can share and try a good selection. Look for stalls offering “medio raciones” or half portions if you’re in a smaller group but want to try different options.

It is great to see yet another addition to a thriving restaurant scene and excellent weekly markets which take place in every town along the Costa del Sol. There are also a number of food festivals  which are […]

The Costa del Sol – the perfect spring holiday destination

Spring is officially here, with the clocks going back to give us longer evenings and the weather treating us to lots of spring sunshine, it is a great time to visit the Costa del Sol.

If you ask the locals, they will tell you that spring is one of their favourite times of year, when the warmth of the sun reappears, the beach restaurants and clubs open their doors once more and excitement is in the air for the beginning of the new season. There’s a great atmosphere, everyone is enjoying the warmer weather and more events and activities are popping up all along the Costa del Sol.

As we mentioned last month, Easter is just around the corner and this means a week of processions, pomp and ceremony and bank holidays a plenty, which makes getting away even easier. If you haven’t booked an Easter break yet, there is still some last minute availability, but things are booking up fast, so give us a call to find out what we have left in your chosen area.

However, spring is a lot more than just visiting at Easter. If you aren’t restricted by the school holidays, we’d recommend coming at the end of April and the beginning of May, when the temperatures are rising, but flights are still relatively cheap and the peak period of rentals hasn’t yet begun. This is a brilliant time to visit and your money goes a lot further!

Here are three great holiday rental properties in three different areas, which are perfect for a spring getaway.

3 bedroom apartment Marbella Town – This luxury apartment is situated in the prestigious complex of Jardines de Principe in Marbella, within walking distance of the beach and […]

Looking ahead to Easter on the Costa del Sol

We have just over a month before Easter is upon us, with Semana Santa or Holy Week starting on the 9th of April with Palm Sunday and then going through to Easter Sunday, or Resurrection Sunday, on the 16th of April.

Easter is a great time of year to take a short break, with several bank holidays so you won’t have to use so many precious holiday days. Good Friday is on April 14th and Easter Monday is on April 17th, both of these are bank holidays, so you can have a wonderful long weekend break. Have you decided where you’re going yet?

Why don’t you consider Spain? Semana Santa is a really important time of year for this catholic country, and rather than just have an Easter egg hunt and stuff yourself on chocolate, you can immerse yourself into the culture of catholic Spain by watching the amazing parades. They may look a little sinister with the Klu Klux Klan style headdresses, but there’s nothing to be afraid of, these parades are simply a way of telling the Easter story and worshipping. For the onlooker, they are full of pomp and ceremony and display the most wonderful statues on heavy floats depicting different scenes from the Easter story. These enormous “tronos” are carried through the streets by bands of devotees and followed by hundreds of worshippers and are really spectacular.

Some of the processions are joyous, but most are solemn and powerful. Many are held at night and lit by candles for added drama. As well as the hooded figures, you may also see women in black holding candles, these are known as the widows of Christ and are very striking.

If you want to experience the […]