Some say that Marbella is southern Spain’s answer to St Tropez. One thing is clear, if you are looking for chic holidays in Costa del Sol, Marbella’s marvels could be just what you are looking for. This is one of the most important cities on the Costa del Sol and is a popular tourist destination year round. People come here not just for the beaches and fun in the sun but also for the city’s cultural and historical treasures and to enjoy a range of cultural activities and events throughout the year.
While it is believed that Marbella was founded on its current site by Phoenicians, the first evidence of a civilization within the settlement itself is of the Romans. A number of intriguing signs of Roman habitation have been found within the city centre. The city’s fortifications date to the Arab period and Moorish defences can still be seen here today, as can plentiful evidence of the Middle Ages in the Old Town area of the city.
Including the ancient city walls and with a 16th Century layout that has remained little changed to this day, the old town of Marbella is high on the list of the town’s attractions. This part of the city has a number of interesting historic buildings and plenty of character and charm. Between this old town and the sea is the ‘historic extension’, which includes Constitution Park. Marbella’s Golden Mile is a four mile stretch of development with exclusive villas and estates along with a couple more attractions. Of course, as with all holidays in Costa del Sol, beaches are also high on the list of attractions. Marbella’s busy beaches are fun and lively, especially during the peak summer months. A number of annual festivals are held in Marbella, over and above the usual events you would expect from summer holidays in Costa del Sol. There is also a range of fascinating museums.
Marbella has a thriving tourist infrastructure and that includes plenty of places to splash that cash should you feel the urge. There are all the regular tourist markets and international stores that you would expect from holidays in Costa del Sol or elsewhere in Spain as well as some more interesting local, independent boutiques. If you choose, you can shop til you drop as many places do not close until late in the evening, though remember that, as is the case elsewhere in Spain, smaller stores will close for a siesta in the middle of the day.
Food and Drink
Seafood specialities are, of course, amongst the typical foods on offer here. Fried fish is a dish particularly associated with this area. Gazpacho and garlic soup are also typical fare. For those with a sweet tooth who would like to try local food, borrachuelos (syrup dipped rolls), torrijas (like French bread) and churros are all popular options. Of course, as well as all the local, traditional food here it is also possible to find a wide range of international food to suit every taste.