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Explore the Costa del Sol - Spain in affordable luxury

Looking for a sunny and relaxing holiday destination in Spain and want to stay at a hotel that offers affordable luxury? Then you might want to consider the Costa del Sol in southern Spain.

Benalma Hotel - Costa del Sol - Spain in affordable luxury
Roomview from the Benalma Hotel-Costa del Sol in affordable luxury

This region is actually a long stretch of Mediterranean coastline that spans from Sotogrande in the west to Nerja in the east, covering the province of Malaga and part of Cadiz.

The Costa del Sol is one of the most popular tourist areas in Spain, attracting millions of visitors every year who come to enjoy the sunshine, charming towns, rich culture and delicious cuisine.

Sangria on terrace Ronda, Plaza del Socorro -Spain
Sangria on terrace Ronda @Plaza del Socorro

Why visit the Costa del Sol region in Southern Spain

In this blog, you’ll find out why the Costa del Sol is such a perfect holiday destination and what you can do there. With some of the best places we stayed and visited in the area. Such as Benalmadena, a lively and diverse coastal town, less than a 30 minute drive from Malaga airport.

Benalmadena costa beach - Costa del Sol - Spain
Benalmadena Costa - Costa del Sol

Hotel Benalma Costa del Sol; a beachfront hotel that offers modern and spacious rooms with sea views and a variety of facilities and services.

And Ronda; one of the most beautiful and historic towns in Andalusia, situated on a high plateau with stunning views, making it an absolute must visit in my opinion.

Views upon the gorge of Ronda - Andalusia - Spain
Views upon the gorge of Ronda

Benalmadena: A lively town on the Costa del Sol

One of the towns worth visiting on the Costa del Sol is Benalmadena, a very diverse place that offers something for everyone. It's divided into 3 main areas: Benalmadena Pueblo, the old town that preserves the traditional Andalusian architecture and atmosphere.

Benalmadena Costa, the coastal strip with a wide range of hotels, restaurants, bars and entertainment venues; and Arroyo de la Miel, the commercial and residential center that connects the other 2 areas.

Benalmadena pueblo - Costa del Sol - Spain
Benalmadena puerto marina - Costa del Sol - Spain

Benalmadena has plenty of attractions and activities for a lively holiday. You can visit the Puerto Marina, which has been awarded as one of the best in the world and hosts many shops, cafes, restaurants and nightlife venues.

Here you can also enjoy several water sports, such as sailing, kayaking, jet skiing or dolphin watching.

Benalmadena marina - Costa del Sol - Spain

If you prefer culture and history, you can admire the whitewashed houses, the church of Santo Domingo, the Plaza Espana and the Colomares Castle, a monument dedicated to Christopher Columbus, at Benalmadena Pueblo.

You can also take a cable car ride to the top of Mount Calamorro, where you can enjoy spectacular views of the coast and the mountains, as well as watch some falconry shows.

Benalmadena cable car view - Costa del Sol - Spain

Benalmadena is also a great base to explore some of the surrounding sights on the Costa del Sol from. You can easily reach other towns such as Torremolinos, Fuengirola or Marbella by car or public transport in 10-30 minutes.

You can also visit some of the natural parks and reserves in the area, such as Parque de la Paloma, a large green space with lakes, gardens and animals, or Selwo Marina.

Hotel Benalma Costa del Sol - Spain in affordable luxury

We stayed at a comfortable and convenient hotel in Benalmadena, located quite centrally on the Costa del Sol. Hotel Benalma Costa del Sol has been completely renovated and offers modern and spacious rooms, all with direct sea views.

Hotel Benalma royal sea-view suite - Costa del Sol - Spain
View from above upon Playa Bonita & Hotel Benalma - Costa del Sol - Spain

Other unique facilities that this beachfront-hotel offers are:

- A rooftop terrace on the 12th floor with stunning panoramic views and Jacuzzi's

- A sky bar with delicious cocktails and (live) music / DJ's

- An adults-only pool and solarium - A family-friendly pool and playground

- A wellness and fitness area - An extensive buffet restaurant with show cooking

Hotel Benalma - Costa del Sol - Spain buffet restaurant view

- A Thai restaurant with exotic flavors for dinner

- A Mediterranean beach-front restaurant open for lunch

A great affordable luxury hotel in a central, yet quiet location, directly on the beach. The Benalma hotel also offers an all-inclusive option with drinks and cocktails included all day.

And this includes 1 x 3-course dinner or lunch at the on-site a-la-carte restaurants for each 7 or more night’s stay as well. The other meals are served in the buffet restaurant with a big range of options and themes.

Get an impression through this gallery, and don't forget to swipe:

More info and the best package rates for this hotel,, you can find via

Ronda: one of the most historic towns of Andalusia

A great day trip recommendation, a bit further from Benalmadena, is Ronda, one of the most beautiful and historic towns in Andalusia. It's situated on a high plateau split by a deep gorge called El Tajo. The gorge is spanned by 3 impressive bridges: Puente Romano (Roman Bridge), Puente Viejo (Old Bridge) and Puente Nuevo (New Bridge).

Ronda Puerto Nuevo - Andalucia - Spain

The New Bridge is the most famous and offers stunning views of the gorge and the surrounding countryside and is lined with many restaurants, offering the best views upon it. Ronda has a rich history dating back to Roman times. It was also an important stronghold for Moorish rulers until it was conquered by Christians in 1485. You can still see traces of its past in its architecture and monuments.

Ronda view from above - Andalucia - Spain

Some of the highlights I recommend visiting here are: - La Alameda del Tajo (a park with panoramic views) - Plaza de Toros (the oldest bullring in Spain, luckily no longer in use, but now a museum)

- Casa del Rey Moro (a palace with a water mine) - Palacio de Mondragon (a museum with Moorish gardens)

- Plaza del Socorro (an atmospheric historic square with some nice terraces, bars and a quaint church. Also very convenient to park your car here at the underground garage APK2)

Ronda Plaza del Socorro - Andalucia - Spain
Ronda Plaza del Socorro - Andalucia

- Iglesia de Santa Maria la Mayor (a church built on a former mosque) - Baños Arabes (Arab baths)

Ronda is also famous for its wine production and artistic and literary heritage. It's the birthplace of famous bullfighters, poets and painters, such as Pedro Romero, Rainer Maria Rilke and Joaquin Peinado.

Ronda most historic town of Andalucia - Spain

You can learn more about them in the museums dedicated to their works or taste some of the local wines in the many bodegas and wine bars in town.

Rent a car in Costa del Sol

To visit Ronda from Benalmadena you have several options. Book a guided day trip with a local travel company. You can also rent a car, like we did with Marbesol at Malaga airport, and drive yourself, following one of the scenic routes that will take you through the mountains.

Ronda countryside views - Andalucia - Spain

The distance is about 100 km and it will take you around 1.5 hours from Benalmadena. Or you can take public transport, either bus or train. However, this will take longer and may require some transfers.

Conclusion: Why visit the Costa del Sol in Spain?

As you can see, there's no shortage of things to do in Benalmadena and the Costa del Sol region. With sunshine and warmth almost year round, an abundance of beautiful spacious beaches, lined with picturesque towns, affordable, yet luxurious hotels and plenty of history and culture.

Ronda old town - Andalucia - Spain
Playa Bonita bay - Costa del Sol - Spain

Would you like to explore the Costa del Sol - Spain in affordable luxury as well?

Whether you're looking for sun, beaches, architecture or entertainment, you will find it here.

If you need inspiration for even more things to do in this region, check my previous blog about my retreat stay at Villa Pureza including all the activities we did here.

Or you can follow me on social media with daily inspiration for this sunny Spanish region.

And discover all about this stylish region and more affordable luxury hotels on Corendon's Costa del Sol page.


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