Best Things To Do in Marbella
Whether you're wandering Marbella's labyrinthine Old Quarter, swinging your golf clubs at one of the area's many courses or strolling the seaside Avenida del Mar, you'll find no shortage of outdoor activities to enjoy the city's warm and temperate climate. When you need a break from sightseeing, find a spot in the sand at one of Marbella's picturesque beaches, specifically Puerto Cabopino. When you need a break from the heat, head into the Museo del Grabado Español Contemporáneo to learn more about the region's artists.
Updated March 28, 2019
- #1View all Photos#1 in MarbellaSightseeing, Free, Neighborhood/AreaTYPE2 hours to Half DayTIME TO SPENDSightseeing, Free, Neighborhood/AreaTYPE2 hours to Half DayTIME TO SPEND
Although much of Marbella is defined by its glitzy resort-town trappings, the Marbella Old Quarter – also known as Casco antiguo de Marbella – gives travelers a taste of old Spain. Here you'll find plazas spilling with flowers, punctuated by trees, narrow, cobblestone streets and historic residences and churches. The heart of this quarter is Plaza de los Naranjos – Orange Square – and around it, visitors will find a 15th-century fountain, a 16th-century town hall, a 17th-century church and a handful of unique shops. The best way to experience this area is by slowly meandering, stopping in various shops and eateries along the way.
Most recent visitors highly recommended a stroll through Marbella's pedestrian-friendly Old Quarter, but they also warned that the district is hilly. Others say that the restaurants, cafes and bars are filled with delicious treats; freshly squeezed orange juice and churros, for instance.
- #2View all PhotosfreeAvenida del Mar#2 in MarbellaSightseeing, Free, Neighborhood/AreaTYPE1 to 2 hoursTIME TO SPENDSightseeing, Free, Neighborhood/AreaTYPE1 to 2 hoursTIME TO SPEND
Avenida del Mar is a popular pathway that offers access to both Marbella's beaches and some of its most popular restaurants, bars, cafes and shops. Along the scenic walkway, visitors will also enjoy sculptures by artists, such as Salvador Dali and Eduardo Soriano.
Visitors highly recommend a walk along Avenida del Mar, not only because of the sculptures, but also because it's the most convenient way to traverse the distance between the Old Quarter and the seafront. Others appreciate that it's well-lit at night.
- #3View all Photos#3 in MarbellaBeaches, Sightseeing, FreeTYPEHalf Day to Full DayTIME TO SPENDBeaches, Sightseeing, FreeTYPEHalf Day to Full DayTIME TO SPEND
Puerto Cabopino, translated as Pine Cape Beach, feels a world away from all of Marbella's resorts, shops and restaurants. Here, you'll find sand dunes backed by pine trees and rolling waves. What's more, the amenities surrounding the beach offer all you need for a day along the shore – easy parking, casual restaurants and bars, and restrooms.
Most travelers appreciated Puerto Cabopino's family-friendly atmosphere and gentle waters, as well as its nearby collection of restaurants and bars, ample parking and restrooms. However, some travelers were annoyed by vendors hawking their goods; they recommend ignoring these sellers.
- #4View all PhotosfreeAlameda Park#4 in MarbellaParks and Gardens, Recreation, Sightseeing, FreeTYPELess than 1 hourTIME TO SPENDParks and Gardens, Recreation, Sightseeing, FreeTYPELess than 1 hourTIME TO SPEND
Filled with native Andalusian greenery, marble walkways, beautiful ceramic benches and the gushing Virgen del Rocio fountain, Alameda Park is a refreshing place to meander while enjoying some shade. You can also take a horse-drawn carriage through the small park. And for further refreshment, there are a collection of bars and restaurants that line the serene green space.
Recent visitors described Alameda Park as an oasis in the center of a bustling city. Although travelers admit that you can walk the park's length in about five minutes, it's nonetheless a great excursion – and the cool benches offer a refreshing respite from the heat.
- #5View all Photos#5 in MarbellaMuseumsTYPE1 to 2 hoursTIME TO SPENDMuseumsTYPE1 to 2 hoursTIME TO SPEND
The Museo del Grabado Español Contemporáneo showcases some interesting pieces by Miró, Picasso and Dalí, along with some others by Spanish artists, in an intimate space near Old Quarter Marbella. It's best-known for its prints and graphic works, and the museum also organizes courses and lectures on print-making and drawing.
Recent visitors said this small, yet beautifully designed museum has some interesting pieces, but noted that it might not appeal to everyone. Others recalled that the museum staff spoke very little English.
- #6View all Photos#6 in MarbellaGolf, RecreationTYPEHalf Day to Full DayTIME TO SPENDGolf, RecreationTYPEHalf Day to Full DayTIME TO SPEND
With Marbella's stunning coastal views and frequent inflow of well-heeled visitors, it should come as no surprise that golfing is a popular pastime here. Many of the region's top hotels boast their own courses, but if you want to venture beyond your resort, you'll find several highly praised greens.
One of the most popular is Los Naranjos Golf Club, which is located down the coast from central Marbella near Puerto Banús. Recent visitors said the greens are immaculately kept and that the staff was friendly and helpful. The course charges different fees based on the time of year and the number of holes played. For instance, from March to May and October to November, Los Naranjos charges 59 euros for nine holes (about $70); it charges 44 euros per nine holes (or about $52) between late May and September.
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